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Eating Bugs in the Wilderness

Posted by on 6/22/2011 to Food Procurement

Sometimes in a survival situation you have to eat anything nature provides. Bugs are almost always available and consuming them could save your life. But not all bugs are safe to eat. Below is a short list of common edible bugs that can provide valuable nutrition.

  • Grasshoppers/Crickets- These guys are very nutritious, filling, plentiful, and easy to catch. Though it is important to be aware of possible worms in the digestive tracts. One way to overcome this is to place a skewer through the center of their body length-way and push out the inside. Roast over a fire like a shishkabob and you got yourself a tasty meal!
  • Termites- Do what the monkeys do and place a stick by a termites lair. Once they crawl onto it just lick them off if you can handle it. If not then just scrape them into a little pot or pan to fry or boil.
  • Moths- Bait these guys at night time with a simple light source and swat them out the air with some type of make shift swatter. Collect, sautee, cook, and eat!
  • Maggots- Sounds gross... and it is. But maggots are a great find. Although we strongly suggest cooking them pretty thoroughly due to what you find them in... Usually rotting meat! Boiling works or simply frying them.
  • Earthworms/Mealworms- Personally, this is the only bug I refuse to try. Just something about a slimy, slithery, wiggly worm in my mouth. Well, Enjoy!
  • Ants- When you start collecting a pot full of ants to cook up, make sure they are of the black variety. Best not to eat them alive because they can bite back a little!
  • Bees/Wasps- Be careful trying to catch them to eat. Getting stung can negate the little nutrition a single bee or wasp would provide. If you're allergic then just stay away altogether. Boiling them for 5-10 minutes will soften the stinger and break down the poison into digestible enzymes.
  • Beetles- Most beetles can be consumed but there are some that you SHOULD NOT EAT. If you are not really a beetle expert and can not distinguish different types, then do not eat any beetles.
  • Butterflies- Again, it is sometimes safe to eat butterflies but there are a lot of butterflies which can be toxic. If you are not a butterfly expert then do not eat them.

What NOT To Eat:

  • If you can't identify it, then don't eat it.
  • Don't eat anything you find dead.
  • As a general rule, if it bites, don't eat it.
  • We recommend cooking anything you eat beforehand. Of course it is not always necessary but better to heir on the side of caution.

Notes: Make sure you check back in on our blog for some tasty critter recipes!

Related Survival Gear: If you stock up on our Survival Food Supplies, then hopefully you won't have to resort to eating bugs!
You'll want to cook most of what you eat, so check out these Outdoor Cooking Supplies.

Can't get a fire going to cook your tasty critters? Try these Fire Starting Tools.

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