We have a bunch of roosters that we started processing for meat yesterday. We're both pretty new to this. After lots of reading on blogs and BYC and friends who have chickens...and watching videos, I finally felt ready to process the first chicken. This was months ago, with a Barred Rock hen and it went well. I sat down with the chicken on my lap, on it's back and massaged behind her ear, where I was going to cut. After about a minute of this, her whole body went limp and I sliced her arteries on one side of the neck. I could feel her "go" fairly quickly and then after about 45 seconds the body shuddered for several moments and it was over. The story I tell myself is that her consciousness was still vaguely attached to her body as she bled out and it seems that the pain is short lived. I did this with 3 roosters yesterday. 2 Americauna and 1 Silkie. With the Americaunas, the experience was similar, but with the Silkie, it "felt" like he was way more present/conscious to what was happening than any of the other birds I've killed. I thought this was horrible and we thought of a different way to do the killing. We did the broomstick over the neck/yank up on the feet quickly to completely sever the spinal cord and arteries and then cut the neck method, which seemed to work well for the 4th rooster. Silkies are considered "kidney tonic" in Chinese Medicine, which roughly translates as a good booster of physical energy. Low physical energy (feeling tired/fatigued) could be a result of "low kidney energy" and there are various herbs/foods and exercises designed to specifically improve "kidney energy". Eating the meat of a Silkie chicken is considered such a food to improve the kidney energy of the consumer. So my hunch is, perhaps the Chinese are right, since this Silkie rooster didn't die as quickly as the others, it could be due to the supposedly strong kidney energy of Silkie chickens. Has anyone else noticed a strong life force quality with Silkie chickens, specifically when it came to ending their life?