April 23, 2014 at 1:30 pm #10418
Hunting as a means of survival has been a staple since time began, but where and how do you hunt if you live in the city? The first thing that you have to realize is that you are unlikely to find large game in the city. The second thing is you need to think about what you are willing to eat. Protein and fat = survival. The first animals that come to mind in an urban environment are squirrels, pigeons and rats.
They are good sources of protien. Pigeons are probably the most prolific in urban areas but how do you harvest something that flys in shtf. Wing shooting is hard. If you have never done it don’t waste your time and ammo trying to learn during shtf. Pigeons are dumb and easily trapped. Look on rooftops, this is the best place to trap them. Find cubby holes or other structure they are roosting in that have limited ingress and egress points. The best time to do this is at night when thay are asleep and less alert.
Block off all exits from their roost. The smaller the roost the better because it gives them less room to move around and get away from you. Cinder blocks are often used to weigh down satellite dishes. When they are layed in a row the hollow centers make a tube. Great place for pigeons to hide and be trapped. Plug the ends up and now your meal is contained. The best part is you never fired a shot drawing attention to your new found food supply. Parks are a good place to look.
Take time to sit and just watch the local wildlife, 2 legged and 4 legged. You will learn a lot. Watch their habits, where they go, where they hide and where they come from. When shtf they will be hidding too but if you know where that hidding place is you are already ahead of the game.April 23, 2014 at 3:45 pm #10456
Thanks Matt76. In hardest days people used simple sticks (throwing) for pigeons. It worked.April 23, 2014 at 4:04 pm #10459
Very practical topic. Thanks Matt76. If one adjust their view of what is edible to survive resources can be more abundant. Insects too.April 23, 2014 at 4:13 pm #10462
I mentioned this in another thread today. Not my first choice by any means but there will be a lot of stray dogs around too. It has been done all over the world for a long time. We westerners have grown soft but if you want to live you eat what you can get.April 23, 2014 at 4:38 pm #10464
My problem is not eating a ‘non-traditional’ food. My problem is eating pigeons and rats, especially those from an urban environment, might fill my stomach but could kill me!
Pigeons in cities are routinely fed long acting poisons to render them infertile. They also usually have high elevated lead counts in their bodies in cities. This was a topic in the news locally a year or ore ago when some writer did a story on the pigeon program of a nearby city. They also are host to tons of diseases. This from pigeonman.com: ‘There are over sixty bacterial diseases, viruses, funguses and parasites associated with pigeons. The most problematic for humans would be Histoplasmosis and Cryptococcus. In addition there are: Trichomonisasis, Encephalitis, Meningitis, Pasteurellosis, Blastomycosis, Sarcosporidiosias, Toxoplasmosis, Candidiasis, Lisreiosis, Vibriosis, Salmonella and Paratyphoid. The National Institute of Health has reported a potentially blinding eye condition that probably results from the fungus. In some areas such as parts of Illinois, up to 80% of the population is reported to have been infected at some point.’
Rats? They eat them in China in the country all the time. Costs more than chicken. But they are generally, raised for this. Eating those that have plague or toxoplasmosis can kill you.
Squirrels probably carry something as they are in rodent family -but I’d take a chance on squirrel over a rat or pigeon more because of how they live and where they tend to travel/forage. Squirrel tastes pretty good too.
I understand people may be starving but….I’d have to be willing to die in a day or two in an unpleasant way to eat an urban pigeon or rat.April 23, 2014 at 4:46 pm #10465
Big game is everywhere, outside major metropolitan areas, and even then, there can be a surprising number, at least right now.
Getting it without getting caught, there’s the problem and the challenge.
Around here, we had complaints just this morning about a fair sized moose wandering through town.
Deer, in the front yard not 10 feet from the front and garage doors.
The highway north of town, there are more deer/elk hit by cars here than anywhere else in the country.
All one has to do is pick them up quietly, the state doesn’t allow the roadkill to be used (how messed up).
How to do it?
Got a very quiet gun?
Suppressors not always needed.
Using a gun in town, dicey in today’s climate.
People stand up and take notice so you have to be double careful about what you are doing.
But if you must, it’s a toss up what’s more useful, short and compact or long and quiet.
Two of the ‘best’ poachers I ever knew used different guns.
The first, used a folding stock Ruger 10/22 with a decent scope mounted.
There wasn’t a critter within 100Y that was safe from him if he decided that it was edible.
He also kept a couple of rolls of electrical tape and a seemingly endless supply of empty 1 and 2 liter soda bottles in his truck. Using target or subsonic ammo, he kept the freezer filled.
The second, used an old long barreled Savage Model 6, a bolt-action semi auto, an odd rifle it could have the bolt locked closed for use with shorts or longs or even long rifles, or leaving the bolt unlocked, it would function in semi auto form using long rifle ammo. Also scoped it was scary accurate and surprisingly quiet without a muzzle attachment but a lot harder to conceal and work around inside a car.
I was so impressed with this rifle, I went out and bought one myself, I also have a 10/22 but without the folding stock.
The same poacher also has a very nice .30-06 with a 24″ barrel.
I would say that the rifle never leaves his side, but he does take showers so it does get put into the corner on occasion. He has his standard hunting/target/defense loads for it but also a couple of “cat’s sneeze” or subsonic loads for it. The first uses a .32 Long bullet atop a few grains of a very fast powder, you literally only hear the firing pin snap then the bullet impact. Perfect for small game, and he takes a lot of it.
The second load uses a 200+ grain lead bullet but this time with a bit more powder, you hear a pop and then a heavy slap as the bullet hits. Not quite as accurate as the previous load, it will however shatter a deer skull out to 50Y with little effort. You just have to know where to aim.
No gun or not legal?
Bows have been around for years.
Crossbows are even better, and with the popularity of Daryl on The Walking Dead, they’ve become more popular and available.
The problem with bows is the lack of an instant kill/drop. Unless you hit the spine, the critter (big game) is gonna run and who knows who’s yard it’s gonna drop in. Small game can be dropped with a ‘blunt’ or target arrow easily saving good hunting points for serious work later.
Snares and traps (box or otherwise) can be highly effective for gathering small game in town, you must conceal what you are doing though, for both legal issues and to keep the critter from getting stolen by hungry neighbors.
Fair warning though, you will catch skunks and if you don’t know how to deal with them, it will get stinky. (Hint: drown not shoot)
Concealment here is a must, what we are talking about is highly problematic both pre and post SHTF.
As to birds, nets in old buildings works wonders. An old fishing net/draped within a critter occupied warehouse/building works wonders. We used an old fishing net to reduce the numbers (for the city) of pigeons that were living on/in an old building. We tried shooting them with air rifles and .22’s but didn’t put a dent in the population until I drug out my old net and strung it up.
One can also “lime” the birds roost, adding a highly sticky compound to it, the birds land and can’t take off.
I’m not a big fan of this one, finding it somewhat cruel but when you’re hungry, all bets are off.
Here’s a few good books, somewhat dated but the info is very pertinent.
Probably the best for our discussion:
[/loggedin]April 23, 2014 at 7:01 pm #10484
I agree there is a possibility of disease with the pigeon and yes they are dirty birds but it is an option. Any animal you run into in shtf will have most likely been exposed to less than sanitary environmental conditions. Even now a lot of animals have been exposed to chemicals. If you saw what they feed commercial chickens these days you would quit eating chicken. There is also the option of capturing and keeping some animals for a time to control their diet and improve their cleanliness. We do it with wild hogs all the time.
Thanks for the reference matterial. A lot of people think of surviving within the constraints of the law. These books should go a long way in helping their mind set.April 23, 2014 at 8:05 pm #10499
Very good info in this topic, thanks!
I’ll have to get Ragnar Benson’s book on traps and poaching on paper.
An airgun would be perfect to shoot pigeons, rats and the like.April 24, 2014 at 6:01 pm #10645
I had a very nice RWS/Beeman air rifle for years, it was accurate, powerful and heavy.
But it was large, heavy and a pain to load and shoot without getting out of the car.
It was just a lot less handy across the board.
My long barreled Marlin M-39 and Savage M-6 got all the use with CCI .22 CB Long’s for much of my ‘in town’ small critter shooting. Occasionally a Remington Subsonic HP or Aguila 60gr SSS load was used but not as often as one would think, depended on the target.
I used to shoot a bunch of raccoons and skunks at night while on patrol to try and keep the rabies and distemper that was rampant in the area to a minimum. (LEO) Proper ammo selection to not wake the residents but still make a clean kill was imperative. The tougher ‘coons and skunks were shot with the more powerful ammo, again, just to make sure they were dead and not wandering off to infect one of the residents dogs/cats.
The pigeon problem was better solved or at least we broke even using the net solution.April 24, 2014 at 7:02 pm #10662
I’m lucky I live on the edge of the city locally we have more wood pigeon than Feral/ Rock pigeon. I see the feral pigeons in the city centre and tbh I’d be hard pressed to eat one, I supposed boil then roast and lots of hot sauce………… maybe if I was starving.
There are several videos on youtube of people hunting birds in the city with airguns and some really good catapult/ slingshot/ wrist rocket hunting videos.
If at first you don't succeed, excessive force is usually the answer.
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