Contributors to this thread:
Is the meat spoiled?
I shot a deer Sunday evening in the lungs and it left a very poor blood trail. fat or fur plugged the exit wound. I found it Monday morning. it was very stiff and obviously dead for many hours. Total time from the shot to the recovery was 16 hours. The temperature never got above 40 degrees for that time. When I dressed the deer it had an odor that I haven't noticed on a deer before. Could the meat have gone bad that quickly?
I think you could have lost some of it for sure. Especially on the side that was on the ground. In addition to smell, any strange colors?
When meat sours, there is no wandering about it. My guess is since you said strange smell it isn't sour. But, I don't know that. IF it is, its on the bottom side. Cut down to the bone on the side it was laying on and take a big whiff. That will tell you if the meat is bad
I got one down and found it after only about 7 hours, bloated and with a 'strange ' smell. I processed it and ate it, but when I did, I got the feeling some of it I was eating was partly spoiled, and the proof was realized when it gave me the 'two step'. I kept most and ate it, suffering those consequences some of those times. So some of it had gone bad.
In the instance of the original post the answer would be...."probably not to no". 16 hours with temps below 40 should not be an issue. The stiffness is actually a good thing....meat that is decaying starts to breakdown and become soft and mushy.
^^^ What Franklin said. Below 40 degrees that deer should be fine. The only spot I would check is the front armpit on the side that was down. That pocket can hold some heat, but I'd be willing to bet 99% of that deer is just fine.
The deer body temp was about 99 deg when you shot it. So it had to cool to 40 deg out side temp. We always hung our deer out side in those temps. I would say OK to eat as long as it wasn't a gut or bladder shot!