In a survival situation when your food supplies are running low you can’t afford to be picky when it is time to put some meat on your plate. Given half a chance, there are all sorts of animals that you would never consider eating otherwise suddenly make an appearance on your menu.
Luckily, large and small there are plenty of animals out there which can supply you with healthy, wholesome and highly nutritious meat if you have the skills to kill or capture them and prepare them properly.
How about moose? Can you eat moose meat in a survival situation?
Yes, you can eat moose meat in a survival situation. Packed with protein and highly nutritious, moose meat is a great option if you can bring one down. Note that moose organs might not be safe to eat due to high levels of contaminants.
Moose are the largest of the deer family, and a single adult can supply a human family with hundreds of pounds of meat.
This is literally more meat than you’ll know what to do with in most situations, but it is better to have too much than not enough in a survival scenario.
Keep reading and we will tell you everything you need to know about eating moose for survival.
Where Can You Find Moose?
Moose are found throughout the northern ranges of North America, Europe and Asia.
Highly dependent on access to various plants in and around forests, moose are cold-adapted and heat intolerant, meaning they move regularly throughout their range to provide for their environmental and dietary needs.
In general, if it is very cold, snowy (but not too snowy) and forested, you can find moose there.
When the weather warms up in areas where moose are you can commonly find them staying near large bodies of water which they use for cooling, or in areas with good breezes for the same purpose.
Is Moose Meat Nutritious?
Yes, highly! Moose meat, also known as venison like other deer meat, is packed with protein and very lean, with very little fat content.
Moose meat is also dense with various vitamins and minerals, making it an excellent and nutritious survival food if you can get it.
Moose meat contains vitamins B6 and B12, niacin, phosphorus, selenium, iron and zinc in abundance.
What Does Moose Meat Taste Like?
Moose meat is often said to be beef-like in taste, though it is sometimes described as tasting like veal.
Those who are familiar with venison from whitetail deer will probably like it and find it quite familiar.
But, like their smaller cousins, moose is quite lean and has a tendency to dry out and become tough when not prepared properly. This is a something that is easy to mess up when preparing it for the first time.
But compared to other wild-caught game, moose is considered to be quite tasty and “familiar” to the average person’s palate.
Is it Safe to Eat Raw Moose?
No! You should never eat raw or undercooked moose meat.
Moose meat can carry various parasites and diseases which can be passed on to humans, including tapeworms, roundworms, trichinella and echinococcus. All of these can cause serious illness or even death in humans if ingested.
Even if, at best, you wind up with a nasty case of food poisoning in the middle of an already bad situation you could dehydrate or be incapacitated and die from complications.
It is always best to cook moose meat thoroughly, to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, to ensure that any parasites or diseases are killed.
If you don’t happen to have a meat thermometer handy, just make sure the meat is cooked well done, all the way through!
Can You Eat Moose Skin?
Yes, but it is not very good and can be difficult to clean on account of the fur. Moose skin is tough and chewy, and not very appetizing.
However, if you are in a situation where calories are hard to come by, the skin can be eaten as it does contain some nutrition.
Is it Possible to Eat the Bones of a Moose?
Yes and no. The bones of a moose are far too big and hard to be edible as they are, and humans don’t really need to eat bones anyway.
Even if they are cooked, they are highly likely to break your teeth or splinter and cause you to choke or else lacerate your stomach or intestines.
However, there is a way to get good nutrition from moose bones, particularly the long bones of the legs.
By cracking or sawing open the bones you can extract the nutrient-rich marrow within and eat it as is, after cooking, or add it to a soup or stew to fortify it.
This is considered to be a real treat by many who are familiar with eating wild game, and the major boost of vitamins and minerals in the marrow is a major plus whenever you are trying to stave off malnutrition in a survival setting.
Is it Safe to Eat Moose Organs?
Some of the organs, yes. The heart is a prized organ and is basically pure protein, and moose tongue is another safe bet.
However, the liver and kidneys have been shown to contain extremely high levels of cadmium, a dangerous heavy metal, and should be avoided as a rule.
It is so bad, in fact, that some European countries (notably Finland) restrict or even ban the eating of moose organs.
The practice is still legal in the U.S. and many hunters partake, but in studies performed on those who ate large amounts of moose liver, kidney and other organs, high levels of cadmium were found in their systems.
It does not take much cadmium in your body to reach dangerous levels with lasting, negative health effects, so beware!
As with any wild game, it is best to avoid eating the stomach or intestines unless you know exactly what you are doing when it comes to expelling, cleaning and preparation.
Both contain various germs and parasites which can make you very sick, and neither is very good unless expertly prepared.
If you do choose to eat them, make sure to clean them extra thoroughly and cook them until they are crisp to ensure a kill of any dangerous gribblies.
You Must Prepare to Take Advantage of a Moose Kill
Moose are massive animals, and very difficult to process compared to smaller game like deer.
You have no hope of hoisting and moving a moose without a large team of strong men or beasts of burden so you’ll need to process it where it lays if you want to get that delicious meat. And work fast, spoilage is as ever your enemy!
Considering that most moose do not live near areas of human habitation, this can mean that bagging a moose might result in a huge waste of meat depending on where you make the kill, so think through the logistics of maximizing your returns before you set off on the hunt for one of these big boys!
Tom Marlowe practically grew up with a gun in his hand, and has held all kinds of jobs in the gun industry: range safety, sales, instruction and consulting, Tom has the experience to help civilian shooters figure out what will work best for them.