Give Me Your Input On How To Butcher Pekin Ducks

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by dangerouschicken, May 15, 2008.

  1. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

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    We are going to use an axe, but are worried about them being so big, moving around, etc. Any suggestions about how to do this? Should one person hold the duck while the other "does the deed?"

    We need to butcher them in the next few days or our 8 week mark will be up.

    Thanks!
     
  2. kees

    kees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    It depends on how comfortable you feel about doing this. Two people wouldn't hurt...and if you could do this outside on an old tree stump or wooden cutting board, all the better. One person can hold the birds wings and feet securely and the other person uses a SHARP axe or knife and then quickly into a killing cone to let it bleed. Then make an opening at the vent at the bottom and carefully remove the innards making sure that you don't cut into the gall bladder. If that is done, any meat that is touched will be tainted and inedible. Reach your hand it and pull everything out, including the kidneys. Then start plucking or you can use a hot water bath first to do it. It's not that hard. The most difficult part is just separating yourself from the act and not being squeamish.
     
  3. greyfields

    greyfields Overrun With Chickens

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    See sticky. Or use the search feature on the meat bird section.
     
  4. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

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    Thank you. I wasn't sure what forum to put this in (maybe Meat birds meant only chickens)....

    Kees, there is very valuable information in what you said. I am not squeemish, so I don't think that will bother me (though they are pretty cute ducks!). The movement and using an axe has been my concern. Thanks for addressing that.
     
  5. professor-yellow

    professor-yellow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had my daughter hold the head over a pail to catch the blood, and used a fillet knife with one hard and fast pass. Neck is just way too thick to snap by hand.

    I bought a turkey fryer and used it for a boiling station. temp should be about 150 degrees for 2 to 3 minutes.

    For the pekins the window between pin feathers is 7, 12.5 and 18 weeks of age. without the pin feathers, it is a snap with the water. After feather removal, i pat dry them and then torch the guard feathers off, then clean.

    Cut the head off right up to the head, and use all the neck meat for soup stock. the best!!

    Where did you buy your ducklings? keep us posted on your adventure.
     
  6. kees

    kees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2008
    You're very welcome. There was a time when I had to slaughter a bunch of guinea hens and I had to ask my neighbor to help me because I was freaking out myself![​IMG]
     
  7. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

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    professor, got our ducklings at the local feed and seed (placed an order for them). They are nice, big birds now, and should be delicious eating. Making sure we can slaughter them humanely is my main concern, and I don't want them moving about so much as to have to cut twice :eek:

    Thanks for the info! Greatly appreciated!
     
  8. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I read an article written by a man who was butchering broilers for the first time. He cut a hole in a plastic grocery bag and then seriously duct-taped it around the wings, over the grocery bad. (A LOT OF DUCT TAPE!!) I tried this on my first rooster and it worked well. If you are really worried about moving, you could try the duct-tape method.

    We held the roo upside down while we put the bag around it and then duct-taped it really(!!) well. We used a hatchet and then held the bird over a 5 gallon bucket while we took it to hang.

    Do not underestimate the strength in those wings, use quite a bit of duct tape, especially around the wings.

    It was my first time butchering and processing, I too was scared about movement and miscalculated chopping attempts. I wanted it to be clean as possible and I read about this method of restraining the bird, and thought it to be a good idea to limit movement.

    Even restrained we used two people, one to hold the bird in place on the stump and the other to chop.

    I hope you do well in this venture of your's!

    -Kim
     
  9. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

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    We did one at 8 weeks and PIN FEATHERS SUCK. Now we are into the 12.5 week mark, I think the last two are going to the processor. [​IMG]

    Good info about the duct tape (or should that be DUCK tape?)......
     
  10. Hi! I'm glad to read about processing ducks!
    I have 10 or so young Pekin drakes that are ready
    I had the first 2 penned, cones hung, knives sharpened, and water heating one morning last week --- and Hubby asked me to wait til one day he wasn't home.
    I'm familiar with processing chickens (all my extra roosters), but never tried a duck. These guys are LOTS bigger than any rooster I've dressed out.
    Really looking forward to roast duck [​IMG]
    Lisa
     

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