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1/2 my new flock died during the travel...can I eat them?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by live2shine, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. live2shine

    live2shine Out Of The Brooder

    Hi there,
    I've found a few related posts here, but I need a better answer:).
    After having backyard city chickens, we just moved to a bigger property, ready with a chicken coop! I just brought home 10 hens and due to traffic and my inability to keep the car cool enough (even though I tried), 5 of them were dead when I got home:(. I had them in boxes with holes and they were making noise on the way home, but it took 2 1/2 hours (thank you Southern CA) and I was SO bummed and SHOCKED when 5 were dead! I have 2 small children so I had to wait another hour before my husband could get home. I left them outside (approximately 50-60 degrees) and now I'm going to process them. I'll just put them in the freezer until I know what to do, but I need to know if it is safe to eat them, or at least let my dogs eat them. I can't seem to find a rule on how long meat can be dead before processing. I know many of you won't eat a bird you don't butcher yourself, but I think I will if I know they were healthy birds. I'm looking for help from people who would consider eating an already-dead bird. I plan to stew them so they'll simmer for a long time. Thanks for advice!!
    -Roz
     
  2. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    I wouldn't eat them but I would feed them to my dogs.
     
  3. live2shine

    live2shine Out Of The Brooder

    Thanks Heather!
    I see you're also in so.CA. We're right off Ortega hwy, about 20 minutes from San Juan Capistrano. You don't have any hens for sale, do you? I'm not quite homeschooling yet but it looks like we have a lot in common...except you're doing a lot more of what I wish I was doing. [​IMG] I checked out your website. My website is www.RealFoodFamily.com. I'll probably blog about today's ordeal. [​IMG] We may be interested in buying a steer from you, actually, so I'll keep your website bookmarked! Is that a la mancha kid I see in your profile photo? I've been trying to decide about getting goats or a mini jersey cow for milk. I'd love the cow more for many reasons, but the goats may be more practical for us at this point. I've been mostly interested in La Manchas. Do you milk them?
    Nice to meet you here! [​IMG]
    -Roz
     
  4. riane'smimi

    riane'smimi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I wouldn't eat them .I am thinking they have been dead too long without being bled out.The meat more than likely is ruined for you to eat.
     
  5. riane'smimi

    riane'smimi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    riane'smimi :

    I wouldn't eat them .I am thinking they have been dead too long without being bled out.The meat more than likely is ruined for you to eat.

    I wouldn't think it would hurt the dogs though.Cook for awhile though.​
     
  6. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My dad was a hunter. When I was a little girl, he and his friends would go pheasant hunting. He'd bring home the bird HOURS and HOURS after shooting it and I think he'd hang it up and clean it the next day. We never died.

    Do you really think that processing the birds a couple of hours after they expired would be a problem? I have done it twice, after bobcat kills in the middle of the night.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2011
  7. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Same here, as a kid we processed grouse and ducks hours after they were killed, sometimes not until the next morning, never hurt us. Granted this is not the way to produce best quality meat and any lawyer, doctor or food inspecter will tell you otherwise just to cover butt.

    Most people are likely too spoiled and fussy about food and will turn their nose up at perfectly edible things. So it is personal choice, but forcing it on the kids could turn them off the whole real food thing for life.

    Even cooked well and given I felt everything was ok after processing I would test it out myself and wait a couple days before feeding it to family.

    After seeing some of the stuff dogs scavange and choose to eat I sure would not worry about cooking it up as dog food.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2011
  8. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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  9. draye

    draye Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:The difference to me is that the pheasants were shoot so bled out. The chickens died so they did not bleed out. I wouldn't eat them unless they were bled.

    JMHO.
     
  10. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We also snared rabbits as kids, they were never bled out and were fine... well sort of as long as you didn't mind the taste of pine needles and spruce gum.
     

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