How do I Butcher My Geese?

Getaway Gal

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 19, 2009
Hocking Hills
I have two Chinese Geese that we've had for years, but I just can't take the biting anymore. When they were in the pasture away from us, it was ok, but now I go in with them to feed chickens and goats and it's horrible. I use a trash can lid to protect myself, and then have to get food & water for the others with one hand!
That and the constant noise have just pushed me over the edge.

Soooo....I've decided that this weekend is the time to do the "deed," but I don't know how to do it! Can anyone give me some pointers? I've never done anything like this before.

Thanks, in advance!
I've never done a goose before, but I saw an episode of Dirty Jobs and from handling my own geese, I can tell you there will be MUCH feather plucking.

If my geese bit constantly then I wouldn't hesitate to kill them, either. Thankfully mine are sweet (so far, not a year old yet, have yet to get into the "breeding" mood).

I imagine it is just like with a chicken, cut off the head (might want to leave some neck to hold onto, since the plucking is so much more than with a chicken) then start plucking (you can dunk them into a hot water bath to get the feathers to loosen.) I suppose you could skin them, but for a goose, I think I would want the skin left on, personally.

Once they are skinned just gut them, clean them out well inside, cut off the feet and the rest of the neck that didn't get cut off, and voila, yer' done.

I have four white Chinese (well 8 since they hatched 4 the end of August). When they came to live with me they were already adults (2 males, 2 females). They were slightly aggressive and would try biting me, the males boldly while the females tried to sneak bites. I could not stand it – it HURTS and leaves marks – but was “sitting” the geese and expected their human to return for them.

I started grabbing their beaks or their necks right behind their head and hanging on – firm but gentle – and that goose cannot bite you while you have it caught. I would not strangle or fight them (sometimes I was SOOO tempted thou), just hold my hand steady and let them fight against the hold. Once they calmed down, I would release them. Did not take long – course while I held them, I would tell them if they did not start treating me better I would CHOP off their head and happily eat them – but they started calming down around me and the boys even warmed up to me. The girls and I still have a hate hate relationship – they know they stay cause they lay eggs and make the boys happy.

When my husband starting spending more time with them, they tried the same biting, pinching thing with him. I showed him what I had done - did not take him long and the geese are good with him.

Sometimes in the spring or when they had the nest, I might have to make another grab at someone being protective, but that stops the behavior for us.

They have been here 2 years in November.

The noise I have just learned to live with.
You don't have to, but lots of people do because the goose down is desirable and scalding and burning off feathers ruins it. If I have to butcher any of mine, I'm scalding them like I do a chicken. It's not worth the hassle to me.

ETA: meant to add that you should look at the Meat Birds forum here. There are some great stickies at the top that will tell you step by step for a chicken. It's mostly the same except I know you have to cut off the oil gland near the tail.
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Do you have any Amish in your area that do processing?
So much easier than doing it yourself and by the way you do waterfowl like any other bird but plucking all that down...UGH! NO thanks!
Your decision to butcher is a wise one.
Passing them on would most likely end up disastrous for the geese and the new owners.
Good question....

I didn't really know where to turn, but don't really want to do it myself if there is another option. II'll have to look into that.

I don't think that it is fair to try to re-home them...for them or for future owners.

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