Can I feed the innards from Christmas dinner to the flock?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by country, Dec 24, 2008.

  1. country

    country Songster

    Sep 14, 2008
    Lincoln, CA
    This will probably win "dumb questions of the year" award but here goes anyway.
    I just put the turkey body into the brine bath & the package of insides is sitting in the sink.
    1. Can I feed these to the chickens & turkeys tomorrow or will I be giving them a taste of bird flesh that might invite later cannibalism?
    2. If okay to feed, should they be raw or should I boil them for a while?
    3. Either way, should I chop them up first or throw out as is?
    4. Do I have to worry about them choking on the bones in the neck?
    Okay, all done with the dumb questions. Sorry about the "turkey body" remark, but since I started raising turkeys as pets, holiday turkey dinners just aren't as enjoyable as they used to be. Even though the turkey is store bought, I still have a hard time looking my babies in the eye after eating one of their kind![​IMG]

  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    All I can say is what I do. I just put out a whole pan of what's left from dinner and let the feral cats and chickens go at it.

    Cooked isn't like raw meat, and we boil our bnes down for soup base. They all pick between the bones and sometimes I find whole pieces of turkey skeleton in the woods that the cats dragged off with.

    Others may disagree, but this is what I do.
  3. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    [​IMG] Country, the only dumb questions are the ones you don't ever ask.

    I don't know about the older colder parts you've found in your store-turkey, but when I process chickens I toss all their organs to the other layers roaming around in the yard. I don't cook nor chop them up, and they get gobbled up quick. I haven't yet tried offering the necks or heads, so I don't know about the bones. I don't think it would give them much trouble. So far none of these layers has tried to butcher their flock mates after tasting chicken meat.

    But I don't know if there is anything in the store-bought turkeys that could be problematic to chickens if they ate it. Don't take my word for it, but wait to see if anyone else who knows more will answer.
  4. flakey chick

    flakey chick Songster

    May 3, 2007
    Definately you would cook it. I would not worry about feeding them cooked poultry EXCEPT with too much added salt (or if it were rotten, etc.) I have no idea if brining would make the innards salty, but that would be my only concern.
  5. country

    country Songster

    Sep 14, 2008
    Lincoln, CA
    After I posted, I read some posts about other uses for the innards, such as soup stock, etc. so I decided to freeze everything until I decided what to do. I'll probably share with Gripper, our Aussie, too. I hadn't thought about giving any to him since I always have him on a diet, but turkey parts shouldn't be too fattening for him. Of course, he'll probably gas us out of the bedroom for the night but at least he'll have a happy holiday! Oh, & FYI, the innards don't get brined, only the body of the turkey goes in the solution so I wasn't worried about too much salt.

    Thank you for the replies.
  6. thechickenchick

    thechickenchick Born city, Living country

    Mar 8, 2008
    Eaton, Colorado
    My birds always get the innards. Sometimes I cook them first, but not always. I also put the turkey carcass out when we are done with it. They pick it clean.

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