Andrew Zimmern's Bizarre Foods America: Get Your Own Turtle, Raccoon to Eat

Categories: Rants
Raccoon -- cute and yummy?
Get ready for another season of Bizarre Foods, as host Andrew Zimmern eats his way through the entire wildlife encyclopedia. This year, Zimmern's staying in the United States, giving us at home the opportunity to try strange foods in our own backyard.

This morning, Zimmern visited the Today Show to share some down-home vittles with Amy Robach and Lester Holt. What's for breakfast? Fresh geoduck, fried turtle, boiled, stuffed pig stomach, and barbecued raccoon.

We tried and tried but couldn't find a restaurant that served up raccoon or turtle in South Florida (and come on, we know they're out there), but we do have a recommendation. If you want to eat along with Andrew, go out into Florida's great outdoors and bag yourself a varmint.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, hunting freshwater turtles is just fine, although there are some rules and regulations. Remember that sea turtles are endangered and off-limits to hunters, as are snapping turtles. But "freshwater turtles only can be taken by hand, dip net, minnow seine or baited hook. Many freshwater turtles may be taken year-round, but softshell turtles may not be taken from the wild from May 1 to July 31. In addition, collecting of freshwater turtle eggs is prohibited."

If you want to try raccoon, the Everglades small game season runs through March 4. You can hunt for raccoon, gray squirrel, quail, rabbit, opossum, armadillo, beaver, coyote, skunk, nutria, and a host of other stew-ready critters. Check the website for permitting requirements, rules, regulations, and hunting sites. In the meantime, watch Amy Robach squirm and freak (and ultimately eat raccoon) here:

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My Voice Nation Help

Yeah, I'll stick to pork belly thank you...

Eric Barton
Eric Barton

My college in central Florida featured a few guys who often brought home turtle and alligator and all kinds of things they probably shouldn't have been putting in the deep fryer. The tenderloin of alligator tail is actually quite tasty, but the meat of Florida freshwater turtle tastes exactly like mud.

Laine Doss
Laine Doss

Oh yum.....mud sounds delicious. Seems to me like I'll just order some Chinese takeout when I watch Zimmern - in honor of Chinese New Year.

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