Young people who go away to college often run afoul of the police or school authorities for youthful shenanigans like streaking, underage drinking, or shooting a horse in the dean’s office. It’s a rare sort of student who winds up in trouble for curing wild game in the residence hall, but that’s what happened to four freshman at The University of Oxford this week.
According to The Telegraph, Johnny Windsor-Clive, Miles Pattison-Appleton, Alex Archer, and James Birley found themselves with 17 freshly killed pheasants from a hunting trip. Planning to clean and eat the birds but not wanting to get blood and feathers all over their rooms, they got to plucking on a campus courtyard. Later they covered Facebook with photos of the plucked birds hanging in the windows of their rooms and the common areas of their residence hall to age the meat. The residence hall wardens were not thrilled with all the birds in the windows, though, and told the students to take them down.
"It doesn’t say anywhere in the regulations that we couldn’t do it," said Windsor-Clive.
It might have been overlooked in the regulations because it had not occurred to the school that any students would want to age a couple armloads of dead pheasants in their residence hall common areas. Presumably next year’s rulebook will include an update.
A spokesman for the university said the students were just asked to clean up the blood and feathers from their birds, and to not hang the pheasants in the windows where passersby could see them.
"There had been an issue with them hanging the birds where they were visible, so we offered to provide an alternative place to hang them where they wouldn’t be seen, which I believe is what happened in the end," a spokesperson for the university said.
The teenagers later took the 17 birds that had caused the issue and had a dinner party for 12 people.