I’ve cut deer, fileted fish and cleaned birds and other game on a variety of surfaces, from flat rocks at waterside to flimsy plywood perched on rickety saw horses. Of all those, the best place I’ve found to butcher is the back of my truck.
A truck’s tailgate, at least that of a late-model F-150, is the perfect height for me to skin and slice, either while standing or seated on a tall stool. I can usually cut an entire deer on a tailgate or clean a limit of ducks and geese without too much strain on an aging back, something I can’t say about most other locations. Of course, some folks might be lucky enough to have a dedicated space for butchering, or an understanding spouse who doesn’t mind blood, fur or feathers on the kitchen counter, but until I get either of these, I’ll stick with my Ford.
Which brings me to the Carnivore from a company called fittingly enough Big Cutting Boards. Measuring 4 feet by 2 feet, the Carnivore fits perfectly across a standard-sized tailgate and offers ample space to clean even the largest of venison quarters — maybe short of a moose. It’s certainly big enough for any deer or elk, and is even wide enough for two average-sized adults to stand side by side fileting fish or cleaning birds.
The Carnivore is made from the same food-safe and culinary-approved high-density polyethylene material used in professional kitchens and butcher shops everywhere. The material is much easier on a knife’s edge than wood or other material. Plus, because it doesn’t absorb blood or other liquids like wood can, it cleans up easier.
I had hoped to show you a photo of the cutting board in action, but so far my season has been a bit slow. Still, I have no doubt the board will serve me well should I finally punch a tag here at home.
The Carnivore is made in the U.S. and retails for $119, which includes free shipping anywhere in the continental U.S. A smaller board called the Cub (32 inches by 16 inches) is also available for $69.