Harvesting the Boss Gobbler is only half the work. After the harvest proper card for your turkey is extremely important.. Fortunately for us Wild Turkey hunters there isn't much "work" in field dressing a turkey. Persevering your meat is very important.
We all like to show off our turkey to our hunting buddies or anyone who wants to look for that matter. If you are not going to clean the bird for a while there are a few steps to follow to make sure the meat stays eatable. The first and most important thing to preserve the meat is keeping the meat cool. We all want to lay out bird in the back of the truck to haul it around which is fine. Just make sure to cover the bird so it's not lying in the sun for an hour as you drive home. If you have a really long commute I would recommend bringing along a cooler. Buy a brick of ice and put the bird in the cooler with the ice.
The first thing you must do after harvesting your bird to make sure its taken care of properly is field dress the bird. The process is simple. Remember to bring along a knife into the field while you are hunting. Find the point of the breast. This is between the legs of the turkey. As you make the cut along the point of the turkey's breast. Do not cut into the turkey fan. Most hunters want to make a wall mount from the fan. So as you are field dressing is sure not to cut any of the feathers or pull any of the turkeys fan out. This is very frustrating after you have harvested and field dressed your bird to find you have cut several of the fan feathers out of the fan.
After cutting across the tip of the turkey's breast. Pull the breast and back of the turkey apart. So you can get your hand inside the turkey cavity. Reach inside the cavity as far as you can pull the internal organs out as you go. This will include the heart, lungs, and liver. The guts will follow along as you are pulling these internal organs out of the turkey. Some people like to keep the turkey's heart and liver. If you are going to do this I highly recommend you bring a zip lock bag along with you to store these. This will keep them clean and from getting blood all over your clothes or turkey vest. After removing the internal organs you aren't finished yet. Find the turkey's crop. It's where the neck meets the main body. Slit the turkey's neck open so you can remove the wind pipe and the crop. After this procedure you are ready to show off your big tom. This sounds like a lot of work but after you perform this a few times it comes naturally. I have harvested several turkeys and now I can field dress a turkey under five minutes. Remember it's not trying to be perfect you're going to clean the bird when you get home. You aren't cleaning the bird to eat. You're doing this so the meat doesn't ruin before you can get it home. Hope this helps.