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First time after thoughts...

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by foamspoon, Aug 13, 2013.

  1. foamspoon

    foamspoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello everyone,

    I bought 6 baby chicks in the spring. I was hoping for all hens but it looks like 4 out of the 6 are Roos. The seller offered to take any Roosters back. I returned my daughters favorite to the seller because I promised I would not "hurt" him. Of the last three one started to crow this week. I had to make a decision on what to do. Return this one to the seller and act like a "citiot" that "tried" chickens and it did not work and put them up on Craigslist for some one to take off their hands or man up and do what I needed to do.

    Well... Last night I got everything out and set up (I have read numerous threads and watched ALL the youtube videos I could find.) Woke up before everyone in the house and woke up my 10 year old son for help. (Not much help but good moral support.)

    Got everything set, took a breath, and went to the coop. I tried not to think about it too much and to keep going once I started the process.

    Grabbed the Rooster and brought him to the killing cone I made last night. Put him in with little fight. (Everything they say about the chickens going in easy and going into a trance is true).

    I had to reach in the cone and grab his beak to bring him down which I did not enjoy. I used a sheet rock knife with a new blade to cut the jugular vein. (I think I ended up cutting the wind pipe too.)

    I pulled back the head as the blood drained. It was pretty quick and the bird did not seem to struggle or be in pain. It was not perfect but I thought it was better than some of the videos I have seen on line.

    After I dipped the bird in the hot water and began pulling the feathers. Not to bad of a job but it seemed that there was a lot of dark/black pin feathers than were stuck under the skin which were hard to get out. (I ended up skinning the bird because of this.)

    The next part was for me the harder part. I was scared of really doing a terrible job of cleaning the bird and ruining the meat. It is hard to explain but it was easier and harder than I thought it would be. I took the crop out with little problem. And I was able to cut around the vent like I have seen in the videos pretty easily. I found it harder to clean the inside out, I thought it would come out easier.

    The two problems I had were the feathers under the skin and when I took the skin off it was hard to do on the wings. One of the wings became un-usable for anything but soup after.

    So... for the most part it was pretty smooth for the first time. I am glad I was able to do it because I am raising 13 Red Rangers that will be ready at the end of September and it was a good test run that ended successful. I have two more roosters that I need to harvest. I am hoping I will get a little better the second time.

    Oh, I was able to harvest 4 lbs. of meat which I thought was pretty good.


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  2. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The feathers are an age thing. Allowing more time for those feathers to grow will make them easier to pull. I forget what age that is for the easiest and cleanest plucking.

    You got past the hardest part though, which is the first time.
     
  3. foamspoon

    foamspoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the reply!
     
  4. chicken pickin

    chicken pickin Overrun With Chickens

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    Good job! The first time is always hardest, though it is always a hard job. Our first time we did 26 CX it was a long rough day I pushed all feeling aside as best I could though I cried the next day for all the lives taken and meals provided. I have 31 CX coming tomorrow. I like reading stories about people who process it gives me a little more strength each time.[​IMG]

    Oh and for the pin feathers a pinning knife(or even a the dull side of a butter knife scrapping the skin helps push the pin feathers out. What temp did you scald at?
     
  5. foamspoon

    foamspoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    150 degrees
     
  6. Hummingbird Hollow

    Hummingbird Hollow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good job. You should be proud of yourself that you did what needed to be done and provided a fine meal (or meals) for your family. Don't forget to let the meat rest for a few days before you either freeze or use it.
     
  7. foamspoon

    foamspoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How many days before I can eat it?
     
  8. chicken pickin

    chicken pickin Overrun With Chickens

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    I let my meat rest in the refrigerator for about 3 days before freezing or eating. The meat needs to go through the rigor mortis stage. Youll know its ready when you can move a wing or leg easily and it doesn't seem stiff.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2013
  9. foamspoon

    foamspoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Second and third time this morning. Picking the feathers was a little easier this time. I think they are nice looking birds. 7.4 and 7.6 each. they were Delaware/RIR crosses.


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  10. chicken pickin

    chicken pickin Overrun With Chickens

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    Very good size birds. How old were they?
     

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