Getting ready to butcher for the first time...

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by bolenbunch, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. bolenbunch

    bolenbunch New Egg

    Jun 11, 2012
    My husband and I will be butchering our first batch of meat chickens either this weekend or the next. I am trying to get ready and trying to do it for as cheap as possible. I have been trying to find a website that shows exactly how to cut the birds throat while in the killer cone and I am not having much luck. Can anyone help me with that? Also, I read somewhere you can use bleach containers rather than making the metal killer cones. Anyone on here use the bleach containers and agree that that works well? We are only butchering 5 this time around so it shouldn't be too overwhelming but still, I want this to go as smooth as possible so I can convince my husband that we need to raise our own meat from now on. :)
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    Hello and [​IMG]

    I don't eat or slaughter chickens, so I can't help you there, sorry! Have you looked in the "Meat Birds" section?
  3. ChickiesInUtah

    ChickiesInUtah Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2012
    Northern Utah
    [​IMG]Hello & welcome to BYC! Ditto Sumi, there's probably lots of great info in the Meat Birds section. Sorry I can't help, we haven't butchered before.
  4. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
  5. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us.
  6. groydollar

    groydollar Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 11, 2012
    Hey Bolenbunch,
    I've slaughtered quite a few. Grab the chicken by it's feet and let it hang upside down for a minute or two. This seems to calm them. Some chickens actually close their eyes. The next part is important b/c you don't want to fight with the chicken or cause it to get bruised or break any bones. Slowly lift the chicken into the kill cone with one hand and reach up through the bottom of the cone with the other hand and grab it's head to guide it through the cone. You want to grasp the head firmly b/c the chicken will resist. Once you have it's head you can let go of the feet. Use your other hand to slice hard once on the left side of the neck and once on the right. Slice hard and with pressure. You want to be between one and two inches down from the beak. By making these quick slices the bird feels a minimum amount of pain and will begin to bleed out quickly which will cause it to die in 5-10 seconds. I keep a firm grasp on the head for a full minute so the bird doesn't kick it's way out of the cone. They will kick and gurgle and do all that stuff you don't want them to do so hang on tight. other wise they'll be doing it all over the ground under your feet and you don't want that. After cutting the bird you should notice it's trachea in the middle of it's neck. Try night to sever that. It's okay if you do accidentally, but what I've read is if this is done the bird feels that it is suffocating and that causes more stress than necessary. By placing your thumb and fore finger directly under the birds jawbone you will have it oriented so that it's beak is pointed towards you and you can make your cuts in the proper place. It definitely gets easier the more you do it, but for me it's never been enjoyable. Just part of raising your own meat.
  7. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH
    Hi and :welcome from Ohio. So glad you joined. A really sharp knife will make all the difference. :thumbsup
  8. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    Hi and welcome to BYC from northern Michigan :D

    X2 on the sharp knife

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