how do u make it alot easier for turkey feathers to come out

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by jjackm21911, Nov 24, 2008.

  1. jjackm21911

    jjackm21911 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 20, 2008
    rising sun maryland
    i need to know how to make it easier for the turkey feathers to come out im butchering a white turkey this wendsday and i need to know i know sculding does it but this turkey is 45 pounds can i just soak it in salt water all night
     
  2. AK-Bird-brain

    AK-Bird-brain I gots Duckies!

    May 7, 2007
    Sterling, Alaska
    I scald at 150 degrees for about 20-30 seconds and the feathers practically fall out. For my BBB I have a 55 gallon drum up on cinder blocks with a propane stove underneath. It usually takes 2 people to lift them up into the drum of water but its worth it. We cleaned 2 this morning they each took about 20-30 minutes from start to finish.
     
  3. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2008
    South Central KY
    Soaking in salt water won't loosen the feathers. Scalding works by heating the skin and softening the tissue that holds the feathers in.

    When my DH and I butchered turkeys, we hung them upside down immediately after killing, (DH walked up and shot them in the head, which might make a difference as far as how easily the feathers come out, I don't know for sure) while still warm, and started dry plucking. With both of us plucking, we had the turkey mostly plucked in less than ten minutes. It worked best holding the bird still with one hand, while yanking out feathers with the other. The larger feathers, like the tail feathers and wing feathers, don't come out as easily. We brought the bird inside and placed in the sink. Then I poured hot water from the tea kettle onto the areas that still needed to be plucked. I scalded and worked on one area at a time, (like just one wing, then the other wing, then the tail...) I used pliers for some of the big feathers that were still hard to get out.
     
  4. NC chicken man

    NC chicken man Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 3, 2007
    Mt. Pleasant,NC
    We just processed 60 WBB turkeys saturday and we scalded at about 150 and we had a good pick we started about 10:30 and was finished killing about 1:00.
     
  5. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:You said you were finished killing by about 1:00? PM or AM?
    How long did it take to finish all the plucking and cleaning? How many of you were doing the work?
     
  6. cackle

    cackle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    I have heard that a little dishwasher powder in the water will help lossen the feathers.
     
  7. AK-Bird-brain

    AK-Bird-brain I gots Duckies!

    May 7, 2007
    Sterling, Alaska
    Quote:I haven't heard this but I usually use a couple drops of lemon scent dawn dish washing soap in the water to help clean the poo from the birds. I forgot to add the soap this time around the bids were easier to pluck. Coincidence? or older birds?
     
  8. frelima

    frelima Out Of The Brooder

    we did two bbbs today- it was a piece of cake - more or less! There is also a "debraining" technique which has to do with putting a knife into the mouth and into the brain- it is supposed to loosen the feathers also.
    But I think scalding at 150 for 30 seconds is the best way... and we have an electric plucker that we have almost mastered the use of...saves oodles of time!
     
  9. NC chicken man

    NC chicken man Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 3, 2007
    Mt. Pleasant,NC
    Quote:You said you were finished killing by about 1:00? PM or AM?
    How long did it take to finish all the plucking and cleaning? How many of you were doing the work?

    PM it took us about 2 1/2 hours to process 60 turkeys from start till all of the birds where in the
    cooling tanks we always put about a 3rd of a box dishwashing soap in the scalder.

    We still had to clean up and it took several hours to clean and peal all of the gizzards and then we baged all of the turkeys ,it took all day to do everything.we had about 5 working the killing cones they where getting the turkeys out of the pens putting them in the killing cones ,scalding them and putting them in the plucker,and then there where three to four of us working the table and putting them in the cooling tanks.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2008
  10. cackle

    cackle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    Aaron,

    You should have yelled John and I were around today. I was off and we were running pre-holiday errands. But it sounds like you had a crowd helping you.

    Susan
     

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