How to get food in the wild?

Discussion in 'Finding, Identifying, and Preparing Food' started by Derek Moore, Jun 5, 2016.

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  1. Derek Moore

    Derek Moore New Member
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    How would a normal person caught in an apocalyptic situation find food in the wilderness? I don't believe you can just go find any animal and just cook it. Aren't there diseases and toxins found within animals such as deer. Also food isn't very abundant in the wild so you can't be very choosy. Additionally, how would you craft the weapons and find the materials to take down the animals that are needed for edible food?
     
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  2. Corzhens

    Corzhens Master Survivalist
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    At first glance, there are 2 sources of food in the wild - flora and fauna, that is the vegetation and the animal life. Usually, those 2 are in tandem. When there is good vegetation for sure there would be animals. The third source of food is water so when there is a stream, river, lake or even pond, there is hope for supply of food. In one of my posts, my husband and his friends climbed a mountain where there was a small pond in the peak. That pond with about 5 inches of water has shrimps. Yes, those edible small fresh-water shrimps. And the water was so clear that some of his companions sampled it for drinking.

    Back to the wilds, don't expect to find vegetables in the wilderness for vegetables are farmed, they do not grow by themselves. Your best bet would be wild berry bushes and edible herbs like wild cucumber which are small but palatable. For animals, the best bet would be the birds so you should at least have a good knowledge of making traps. And if there are prospects of big animals like wild boar or deer, you need to make weapons to catch them.
     
  3. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    Good day Derek, I will try & answer your question as best I can. Firstly I don't know where you live, so I can't tell you what plants & animals are available in your area. One point I think worth mentioning though, I think it is just as important to know what does not grow in your area. Where I am in Australia, the wild edible plants are far & few, & one can expend a lot of energy looking for plants that are not there. You can't afford to expend more energy than you are taking in with what you find.
    I will post some links below my comment on "wild plant food testing". Having said that there are some plants that are easy to find if you know where to look. The Cattail plant for instance grows in many places in many countries where there is water. Here the local variety is called "Cumbungi". The new green shoots are edible & you can extract carbs from the rhizomes. You can also extract the pollen to use as a flour. Cattail stalks are also a good source of arrow shafts.

    The easiest way to catch wild animals for food it to trap them. You can trap any animal of any size with the right trap. BUT, you will gave to dispatch this animal if the trap you use does not kill it. With large animals this can be very dangerous, as the animal will be scared & likely to attack you. If you do not have a gun or a bow, then a long spear with a fire hardened sharp tip would probably be best. An alternative would be to use rocks if you are any good at throwing, I had to do this once to save my dog. I realise that the average person will probably not know how to make cordage from plant fibres & not know how to make traps, but this is something you will just have to learn & practice. That is what survivalists & preppers do, & that is what this forum is here for. I suggest you check out the trapping section & the "All Things Primitive" section on this forum.
    Most wild animals are edible if not palatable. Some sea fish are not safe to eat. All land animal meat can be eaten safely so long as it is WELL COOKED. Bear & pig meat are definitely NOT considered safe to eat without cooking well. That is why one should NEVER use these meats for drying (Jerky).

    You can make a bush survival bow & arrows, but again this is a skill that is best learnt beforehand. Some timbers are better than others & without the experience you may not be able to tell the difference. Here where I live the wattle tree makes a good survival bow & the inner bark of the Stringybark tree makes good cordage for a bow string. To fire harden a tip of a spear you of course need fire. The method is to turn the sharpened tip of the spear slowing in the fire to drive out most of the moisture which makes the wood hard. Or you can use dead wood which is already dry & hard. You can also make a "rabbit stick" for hunting small game, including birds/water fowl. If you sharpen a point on one end it will also function as a digging stick. Again you will need the skill to be able to throw one of these accurately.
    Keith.
    Testing Wild Food Plants: https://www.eatweeds.co.uk/safety-guidelines-for-edible-wild-food-plants
    http://www.ediblewildfood.com/blog/2016/03/edible-wild-food-testing/
    http://www.wikihow.com/Test-if-a-Plant-Is-Edible

    [​IMG]
    This is a rabbit stick I made many years ago. The idea of this stick is that it can be thrown overarm like a tomahawk, or sideways, & it covers more area than does a rock. The Australian Aboriginals use a Boomerang for the same purpose, but the Boomerang is harder to manufacture.
    [​IMG]
    Here you can see the simple wattle self-bow that I made hanging over the fireplace in our cottage with some tomahawks.
     
  4. John Snort

    John Snort Well-Known Member
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    Insects will probably be the easiest to catch since they are everywhere.

    Fact though is not all insects are edible. If you eat insects that feed on poisonous plants, you could ingest the poison and it could cause your problems. In the meantime you need to do some research, find out which insects are edible so that in case you have no option but to feed on insects you'll know which ones are edible.
     
  5. OursIsTheFury

    OursIsTheFury Expert Member
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    It's not very hard to hunt rabbits, even kids can do it. You can also fish, and if you can't catch fish, a fresh stream is still a win, because you get to have clean running water for your needs. What I'm really worried about, in an event of a nuclear fallout or whatever, is the fact that your main enemy isn't starvation or nature, it's competition from the other survivors. You have to compete with them, and when it comes down to the basic survival instincts, only the fittest would survive, so it's not like a scenario where you are stranded in the middle of nowhere with no other person as competition, in the even of a global catastrophe, your competition is everywhere, and you might not survive that encounter.
     
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  6. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    Personally I don't think there will be much competition hunting & trapping wise, the majority of city people don't have a clue how to hunt & trap. BUT, they can still rob you & kill you if you are not prepared & on your guard. No two ways about it, you need to be armed & armed with a gun.
    Keith.
     
  7. jonthai

    jonthai New Member
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    Firstly,there are many kits out there who provide you with the tools you can use in the case of a disaster, and therefore, you could use those.If you don't have a basic knowledge on poisonous foods,berries,mushrooms,etc, then It's going to be extra harder for you to pick good food from bad ones.If you have allot of tools, then I'm sure you can hunt some animals,and only depending on the surroundings,they could have diseases or not.Water is a very important part of obtaining food,so focusing on getting water sources would be the first thing to do in these occasions. Basically,If you are prepared enough,with knowledge and some basic tools, It is possible to survive in the wilderness.
     
  8. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    it also depends on what time of year your disaster happens, most people can survive in the spring, summer and autumn(fall), but winter?? that's when we will separate the men from the boys- as we say over here.
     
  9. DecMikashimota

    DecMikashimota New Member
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    Food Foraging depends heavily on where you are located and what the weather. Even upon finding edible foods you will have to be very careful as you might display an allergic reaction to the some of the foods that you find. My suggestion is that before you actually camp for days in a specific spot, take some of the edible plants and foods that you find and researched home and try them out for yourself. Make sure that the foods that you like are in season and easy for you to get and you should have no problem.
     
  10. richj8am30

    richj8am30 Member
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    You can use a method known as leaching. First you will ground your food by crushing it, straining it and using boiling water through it, soften it. This method works well with wild nuts and acorns. This can help you to break down some foods that are harder to consume in their natural state as well as allow you to flavor them according to your preference of taste. In some cases you will not even need to boil the water if you think that it will lead to the loss of particular nutrients that you would like to still be present in whatever food that you are preparing.
     
  11. ZoeZoundBarrier

    ZoeZoundBarrier Member
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    For the forager that has subscribed to one of the more modern or vegetarian diets, there are countless forms of vegetation that can serve well as food. In the spring morels can be a great source of proteins and in the summer elderberries can make a very decent pie. The best part about having a or organic diet in the wild is that they are very simple recipes that do not require many ingredients, cooking utensils or preparation.
     
  12. thePENofGODx0x0xz7

    thePENofGODx0x0xz7 New Member
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    Small animals such as wild rats are very high in p2roteins and vital nutrients all because of their omnivorous diets. If they are prominent in the area that you will be camping, hunting or otherwise, then they can be a main source of sustenance. There are many small wild animals that have a diet that is sufficient enough for them to eat as well such as; squirrels or rabbits. There is a variety of different things that can be used as a source of food depending on what our initial diet is.
     
  13. tb65

    tb65 Active Member
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    Looking for edible plants is a start. Having a knowledge of what plants are edible can help a lot. If there's a pond or stream you can look for fish or crabs. As long as you cook shellfish until there bright red in color you should be okay. I think this would be the best source of food. Depending on where you are be careful for some type of predators tho if there's fish in a stream something else could be looking for them.
     
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