Hi everyone, I just wanted to share the whole process with ya' all as it may help some other people who are going through the same process someday... I had a cockerel from this years hatch and where I live unfortunately I can't keep cockerels, due to the amount of complaining from relocating city dwellers! Anyway after a few weeks of learning to crow he finally made it and it was time to make a decision. Either I would have to give him away (as cockerels arent in demand in our area and don't fetch any money). Or our family could benefit from him in some way by eating a good, well looked after, free range bird! We chose the second option! Before the killing I felt so guilty as he was such a good looking, proud, gentle, well behaved cockerel and the whole family has spent hours with him every day, he totally trusted us 100%... I couldn't kill him and look at him at the same time, I felt like I was a cold blooded murderer! Silly I know but I put a plastic bag around his head (so I couldn't see it) and it made the whole job a lot easier for me. I then immediately twisted it's neck and pulled (a method told to me by an experienced friend). There was no flapping or noise whatsoever, then after about 5-10 seconds there was a single flap. I checked that he was dead and he certainly was! But I wanted to be doublely sure and also start the rest of the processing so I chopped off his head. From this point onwards, things got much easier for me... I hung him over a bucket to collect the blood. The strange thing was, there wasn't any. Or at least not as much as I was expecting! I imagined blood gushing out for a few minutes, but there was only a few drops. I already had a pot of water on the go and I dunked the bird in the pot for about 30 seconds and repeated it a couple of times as I went around plucking the bird. The feathers came out surprisingly easily with just the slightest of pulling and they didn't tear the skin at all. Also the smell was not as bad as I was expecting (apparently the smell of the wet feathers is enough to make some people gag), I can tell you my wet dogs smell much worse!! Then I cut the feet off, I just felt where the join was from the scaly leg to the fleshy part and made a cut all around. I then bent the foot and the bone came straight out of the socket, I then made a final cut to remove the foot. The hardest part I thought would be the gutting. Mainly because I didn't know what to do and couldn't find much useful help with pictures on it on the net. But actually it was really simple... Firstly I cut the neck bone down a bit lower to the carcass, then I cut the tail/rear off leaving a small hole at either end of the bird. And basically I just pulled everything out! - it was all attached and really easy... Nothing broke inside which was nice. It was the first time I had seen the inside of an animal (we haven't been allowed to dissect animals in schools here for many, many years), which I think is a real shame! If they did so, I might have made a completely different career choice, like a vet or doctor etc. Seriously though, I learnt so much about the inside of a body while doing this, it was like being back at school... After I was sure all the internal organs was out, I thoroughly washed it inside and out and put it in a freezer bag ready for Christmas! In all the process took about 45 minutes to 1 hour from free range to oven ready. But now that I have processed the bird I do feel a great sense of achievement which I wasn't expecting. Similar to the feeling you get when you light your own fire for the first time with just natural materials, like getting back to nature! I would love to hear your comments, questions or suggestions... Especially if anyone has any hints or tips on roasting! EDIT: Sorry I forgot to mention that our cockerel was a copper maran!