To send to abbatoir or to do it myself, that is the question...

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by miss_thenorth, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Ok, my meat birds are 6 weeks old. i just made a "tentative" appointment to have them slaughtered. It will be $2.80 per bird, $3.20 if I want them frozen, and also extra for giblets. ( I didn't ask how much they were,b/c I dont care...)

    The abattoir is 40 minutes away. I would have to drop them off either the night before, or before 8 am the morning of. So to drop them offwould entail 80 minutes of driving. Likewise when I have to pick them up--either the following day if not frozen, or two days later if frozen. To me, 3.20/bird plus gas expense, (approx. $50 in gas) seems really high, added to the cost of raising the birds.

    i have never done chicken before, (other than the rooster that we skinned), and my dh with his work schedule at work, and all the stuff we have to do around here, does not want to do 12 birds at one time (12 white broilers to do first, 12 heavy reds that won't be ready for another two or so weeks).

    I really would like to do them at home, but am quite intimidated to do it by myself (as in ONLY me) Do I have good reason to be intimidated, or is it really not that bad? i have helped with deer, moose, etc, but have never done anything like this by myself.

    So, opinions needed. Is it really that labour intensive? Could I do it myself? Or do I send them to the abattoir?

    Thanks for your opinions.
  2. Leslie In North Pole

    Leslie In North Pole Songster

    Mar 7, 2007
    North Pole, AK
    Have you tried asking around locally to see if you could find someone to help you? Sometimes you can trade a couple of labor helping you do your birds yourself as there are plenty of people who love fresh bird and know how to butcher but don't want the hassle of raising them. Maybe put a flier up at your local feed store asking for "Assistance with dressing out grown meat chickens, will trade fresh chicken for time." Or offer to help them dress theirs if they help you dress yours...

    We had a gentleman at one time that would have done our birds for us if we would have let him keep every fifth bird and we were so tempted.

    If you want to try doing it yourself, I would attempt only one or two the first time, as it can take a while to figure out what your doing the first time. Last year I attempted to butcher out extra roos for the first time by myself. It took me close to four hours as I waited for them to chill in ice water and I skinned them. I was pretty proud of myself, though my hubby did the "I would have helped you." Though every time I had brought it up, he always had something more pressing to do.
  3. cjeanean

    cjeanean Can't Decide

    Mar 5, 2008
    It's really not that difficult!!! You have to ask yourself, what's more important?? Time, or money? Dispatching the chickens is very simple, we had to cull one of ours and got a rake, placed its head in between the tines, and chopped. Almost instantaneous!!! Very effective!!! Plucking isn't too bad, either....get you a nice chair, dip, and start pulling! It may take a while, but I think it's worth it, not just saving the money but having the experience. How old are you??? Is physical activity a problem???
  4. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Quote:I have to admit, I AM cheap for certain things--I hate paying money for things I can do myself.--not that we don;''t have the money do pay the abattoir. I will if it is out of my grasp. i want the experience too, I thought all along that hubby would help me, but he says no. I talked to him tonight, and he's going to rethink it but told me not to get my hopes up.

    I am 29 with 12 years experience (ahem), and I do have a 10 and a 12 yo who will help me----if--I want their help. Physical activity is not a problem. If they do help me, I realize that the brunt of the work will be mine, and I don't know still if it will be too much of a job for me.

    I am reading up on the links for butchering, and forwarding it to dh......

    Hopefully he will agree to help me, then my dilemma is no more................but til then.......,.,
  5. 3peeps

    3peeps Songster

    Jul 4, 2007
    Explain the chair bit for plucking...what do you mean?

    Does "dip" mean scald?

    I tried processing a rooster once and opted for skinning, which wasn't exactly graceful, either.

    My advice is to get all prepared with the right location and equipment well before you start, unlike I did. I was in a serious fit of panic/frustration/laughing anger by the time I was almost done. But that's me...when I'm thumb deep in grossness and a stiff rooster won't skin at 12am and I'm worried I may have just woken my young daughter, things get really interesting.

    I'm sure if I had prepared better, including not receiving the rooster that night impromptu from a friend, I would have done a lot better and not totally amused my husband with the late night kitchen session.
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2008
  6. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Im no expert, so Ill keep mum. I just wanted to say what a cool word 'abbatoir' is. I hadda go look it up.
  7. smith2

    smith2 Songster

    Jan 5, 2008
    Paris, TN
    Could you get an older teenage boy (16-18) to help? They will usually do anything for money and you could offer to pay them a small amount. I'd send my son if I could. I agree with the others, if you decide to do them yourself start with one or two because it does take a while to figure out exactly how to do them the best way. [​IMG]
  8. greyfields

    greyfields Crowing

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    I use a processor. It makes everything easier.
  9. curiousnewbie

    curiousnewbie In the Brooder

    Aug 17, 2007
    How do I go about finding a processor? How much should I expect to pay? I'm in SE Washington.

    I'm willing to do the cleaning, and feel confident that I can since I have cleaned wild game birds, rabbits and squirrels. I'm just not ready to chop off their heads yet!
  10. skeeter

    skeeter Songster

    Nov 19, 2007
    Parma Idaho
    i sent you a private message
    how many birds do you have?
    If you are in WallaWalla or Tri-cities id be happy to do some butchering

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