Freezing kills many parasites, some may need to be frozen for 6 months or more, trichinosis for example. This does not eliminate the need to cook the food properly though. All cooking guidelines still should be followed.
Here in alaska, the Dept. of Fish and Game publishes a book on parasites and disease affecting wild game. It explains cause, life cycle, treatment, edibility, etc. I suggest you inquire at your local dept., they may publish the same type of info. It is a very handy item to have and read.
I was told by grandpaw, shoot them after the first couple of frosts.
Don't eat the ones with spotted livers.
And as someone else said, pass on the ones that just sits there.
Years ago when i had a ZZtop beard, i was wacking rabbits pretty good and one of them was covered with fleas that found there way in the long beard. Thousands of em! Had to shave it the beard and bomb all the cloths and boots. I have not hunted them since 1981. The beagle dog "Hank" was a mess also. It was amazing hearing him howl and bringing the rabbits around,right in front of me. But i sure do miss the hunts and meals that where good. Nobody could make rabbit like grandma and the recipe lost. She soaked in milk and garlic salt over night and breaded them, frying them in the Wagner Ware cast iron. Any one having a similar recipe i sure would like to try it. This stuff tasted like chicken.....
I've heard about looking for spots on the liver... I think that is the Tullermia symptom. (correct me if im wrong) But i am gonna go murder some bunnies tomorrow and i think im gonna cook a couple up. I'll give a report on if i lived or died. Well, if i live i'll give ya a report.
iv always ate them no matter what time i shoot them, they arnt in season in summer here but me and a friend sit on his back porch with our complete arsenal and defend his garden. we took 10 in a day one time out of the garden with 10 different guns .
DEWmocracy, the few, the proud, the GREEN
The looking at a rabbits liver is for disease called sarcocystis as well as tapeworms also found on the liver of rabbits
Tularemia as well will be small white or yellow spots on the surface of the rabbit's liver. The ole saying about not eating rabbit till a hard frost is because first frost kills the fleas and ticks that transmit Tularmeria on the rabbit. The old timers didnt need a degree in animal science to know what they needed to survive, i say this because i remeber my granddad showing me a infected rabbits liver as a lil fella on rabbit hunts long before i went to school for it
You can freeze'm after skinning and eat'm later. Use rubber gloves to avoid skin contact. Pork ought to be handled the same way in warm months.
I realize this is an old post, but I was googling and found this site, and thread...then later found this: TULAREMIA (RABBIT FEVER)
Important part: "Cook all rabbit meat thoroughly before eating. This doesn't mean you have to over cook the meat, simply make sure it is not bloody in the middle which is a sign that the meat is still raw or uncooked. Bacteria that cause tularemia can live for weeks in water, soil, carcasses and hides, and for years in frozen rabbit meat."
Any other Aussies here who can tell me if the same applies to us down under? Being a pathologist, I give the guts and liver a good look-over but the heart and lungs aren't always in good shape to be inspected (if you get my meaning). Hydatid disease is the main worry down here (liver cysts full of EXTREMELY allergenic parasites), and the other - myxomatosis - leaves a rabbit looking very sick. So you need to see them hopping about happily before you blow their little rabbit brains out.
EDIT - whoops, just saw page 2 of the post. As far as cooking 'em is concerned, I boil the rabbit for a couple of hours first to tenderize the meat, and THEN I stir-fry the little bastards when the wok's so hot the oil looks about to ignite. Hopefully that should nail any nasties.