Bird Hunting Knives
This post is a few years old.I recently built a new post on this subject and have updated my thoughts and have shared a few new knives I've purchase since this original post. Link below.
The knife is an essential hunting tool and it's not just for just cleaning birds. I've use a knives to cut homemade dog boots, remove heavy burs, cutting tape to dress wounds, fix shotguns, cut rope, cut shoelaces, fix electronic collars, fight bears😀,etc. etc... I also always carry a small leatherman type tool with all the screwdrivers, knife, hole punch, files, scissors and the all important bottle opener. But more often than not, I just reach for my knife.
I like having a gut hook on my bird hunting knifes. Somedays birds can sit in my game bag for several hours before I get a chance to clean them properly. It's not pretty but I believe a quick initial cleaning to get the innards removed helps the flavor of the meat before the bird sits too long, especially in hot weather. I carry baby wipes for not only the obvious reasons but also to clean off my hands and knife after I gut a bird.
I carry the Beretta® Stag Bird Knife. It's a very nice, well made knife. Very sharp and holds it's edge well. Its easy to open and close with its tear drop design. The hook binds the birds intestines well and with the heavy handle they pull out easily and cleanly. But sometimes I wish it was a little longer. Beretta makes it with Deer Stag or Buffalo Bone handles. I scored on this knife and got it for around $68 at knifesupply.com. The price was reduced for some reason and I jumped. Usually the Stag Version costs well over $100. You can find the buffalo bone handle ones for cheaper. It's a very nice knife but not worth that kind of money in my opinion. There are many other nice options for half the price. But… it is beautiful and if you have the money I recommend it.
Drawbacks of the Beretta Stag knife is that it is thick. Meaning that the design is a little wide with both the blade and the gut hook. It is a little too thick to sit comfortably in the your front pocket. The sheath it came with is nylon and is nothing special. I stopped carrying this knife on my belt because I don't trust the sheath to stay closed or even stay on my belt. I stick it in my bird vest/pack. My Mother® packs have zipper compartments inside the shell pockets on the belt that secure items well but keep them easily accessible. Overall it's a very nice knife and I love it. It's an heirloom type instrument. Thats why its carried in my pack and not on my belt. I would love to pass this beauty on someday.
It appears that Beretta has stopped producing this knife with the gut hook so supplies are extremely limited. There are a few around the web if you look.
A nice more affordable bird hunting-knife that is the Case® bird hunter. It comes in a variety of handle materials from bone to classic yellow and even hunter orange. I gave the yellow handled version of this knife to my brother for a Christmas present and he absolutely loves it. Its slender and fits easily in your front pocket. I love Case knifes. They are classics. You can pick these up all over the web between $30- $50.
My new favorite bird hunting knife is the Boker® Bird Hunter. I just purchased this knife a couple months ago. I've had my eye on it a long time.
I absolutely love this knife. It's the perfect design for a bird knife. The right tool for the job, slender enough to fit in the pocket but long enough to do the job. And who doesn't like a rosewood handle? I can't wait to use it next season. It doesn't take a lot of knife to clean a bird and unless I start hunting ostriches I think the Boker® Bird Hunter should do the job for a long time. Prices vary between $49-$59.
Below are some images of how the Böker compares to the Beretta Bird Knife.
This past season I bought a fixed blade bird hunting knife and I've totally enjoyed it. It's the Ruko Bird and Trout Knife.
It is a Spanish made 3" blade with a stag antler handle. It came with a decent leather sheath that retains the blade snuggly in place . It wasn't very sharp when I received it but once I refined the edge it's one of the sharpest knives I own. It took an edge very well and seems to hold it for a long time. I've cleaned almost all my birds since November with this knife and have grown to love it. I like the fixed blade for it's strength and ease of use and it's easier to clean. I bought mine on Amazon for around $60.
It's a very handsome blade and I really like using it and having it on my belt. It's definitely a keeper.
I recently built a new post on this subject and have updated my thoughts and have shared a few new knives I've purchase since this original post. Link below.