Chickens Found Dead -- Need Food

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by jabowery, Oct 26, 2010.

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  1. jabowery

    jabowery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    I just found several of our free range chickens dead. The temperature has been in the 40s but right now it is in the 50s. No obvious predator marks so it might have been the neighbor's dog which killed a few months ago but hasn't bothered them since. All the birds in the coup are healthy. I doubt it was disease.

    Is it too late to dress them? They feel stiff. We're _very_ poor and have not been able to afford the drive to the food assistance office.

    We'll probably just slaughter the rest of them if we find that this kind of mystery kill results in us not being able to consume the meat.

    We've had a _very_ low mortality rate with our free range chickens due to our isolated location and a couple of dogs that stay in the nearby garage guarding them vigilantly. Our only loss to a predator was early on when the pullets were relatively immature, and a hawk thought he could loft one of them. All he could do was flop around. That was months ago. We ordered 50 chicks in a variety pack and at counting the chickens a week ago we had 50 -- so its apparent they sent more than 50 in the mail to compensate for mortality in transit.
     
  2. linben

    linben Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am not sure how to answer your question. If I was in that situation I would possibly dress them and boil them like crazy before I would eat them. I am sure that everywhere you read it will probally say not to. If you don't have food what are you going to do? I would hate to see you butcher all your chickens if you are getting eggs. Are you feeding the chickens anything or are they just free ranging? Their diet could be a reason for demise.
     
  3. bufforp89

    bufforp89 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2009
    Chenango Forks NY
    I would feed it to the dogs......
     
  4. jabowery

    jabowery Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They're just free ranging since they went off chick starter months ago. Everyone comments on how healthy and fat they look. Maybe with the weather turning colder they just can't get enough from free ranging anymore. We aren't getting eggs yet but have seen some matings going on. Of course, it was our hope to be able to put off feeding them for as long as possible. It was also our hope to use them mainly for eggs rather than meat, but that doesn't seem practical now.
     
  5. linben

    linben Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you can't afford feed you may can gather some foods for them. You may want to gather and store some food for them since the winter foraging isn't as good. Good luck to you. You may have eggs out there where they free range.
     
  6. shortstaque

    shortstaque Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Bucks County, PA
    It sounds really unsavory and I hate to suggest it, but how about cooking them up and feeding them back to the chickens, if you are afraid to eat them yourselves? I know I've read that its technically ok to feed chicken to chickens. In a situation where it would mean that your chickens would have an additional protein source, it might be a consideration.
     
  7. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Overrun With Chickens

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    What kind of chickens are they?

    I would tend to agree with the suggestion to feed them back to the other chickens, then, if you're in need of food go ahead and butcher one of the other chickens for your table.

    I would actually suggest taking that up as your policy for the future if anything suspicious happens to them as well. If you have both hens and a rooster I would caution against killing them all now, in your position they may be a very valuable and sustainable source of food so you don't have to go without. Hatch them out, butcher excess roos and keep the hens for eggs and future babies.
     
  8. austin.ray22

    austin.ray22 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Cullman
    This may be somewhat off topic, but the thing that jumps out most to me in this topic is that if you are having that much trouble feeding your family, maybe re-evaluating the need for internet service right now may be a good idea. Losing priorities has been a major contributor to the state our country is in right now.
     
  9. linben

    linben Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sometimes internet service can be a necessity if you use it to sell items, get jobs, respond to applications etc....not all internet service is expensive. It can be cheaper than having a phone or driving to places to apply for jobs or services.
     
  10. Cindiloohoo

    Cindiloohoo Quiet as a Church Mouse

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    austin.ray22 :

    This may be somewhat off topic, but the thing that jumps out most to me in this topic is that if you are having that much trouble feeding your family, maybe re-evaluating the need for internet service right now may be a good idea. Losing priorities has been a major contributor to the state our country is in right now.

    May be at the local library or sitting in a restaurant parking lot...some folks get on at WiFi hotspots. Just sayin' [​IMG]
     
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