"I think that if more people were cutting up their own animals instead of paying to have it done, they'd probably consider it worthwhile to take one or two additional deer," he added.
"When you do it yourself, it gets a lot more affordable. This year, I killed a deer by every means available except with a muzzleloader. I cut them all up myself, Right now, I have two freezers clear full of venison, and all it cost me was the price of the bullets I used to shoot the deer, the vacuum bags I stored the meat in, and the jars I used when I canned some of the venison."
Taylor said Information-Age technology has made it easier than ever to learn how to skin and cut up a deer.
"There are lots of videos out there, and almost every venison cookbook worth its salt will have diagrams in there that explain what the different cuts of meat are and how to create them," he explained.
Every year, agricultural extension agents in West Virginia offer what they call "Venison 101" courses - two-evening seminars that cover how to shoot a deer to preserve the quality of the meat, how to field-dress the animal to avoid contaminating it, how to process it so it isn't tough and gamey, and how to prepare it for meals.
"Those courses are very worthwhile," Taylor said. "With what you learn in just a few hours, you can save yourself a lot of money, plus you know exactly how that deer was handled from the time it hit the ground to the time you put the meat on the table."
Acquiring the necessary tools, he added, has become a snap.
"Places like Cabela's and Gander Mountain have aisles filled with tools and utensils that make the job easier," he said. "Hey, cutting up a deer isn't rocket science. It's easy to learn, and in the long run it can save you a lot of money."