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butcher chicken tractor meat birds poultry slaughter

Butchering the Meat Birds

We butchered our 39 Cornish Cross meat birds the weekend of August 8th. I don’t remember if it was Saturday or Sunday. It was great. It took us all day, since it was the first mass butcher we’ve done and we had to get all the kinks worked out of the process.

The killing cones are terrible — we won’t use those again, and I am selling 4 big ones ASAP. It’s much easier to chop the heads off or use a gallows system like what we started to use.

Next time we need a better system to transport the chickens to the butcher location. We started the tractor right about where we needed it to end, so transporting the chickens in a large dog crate took a lot of time and energy. Perhaps we’ll use a trailer next time like Pete from Just a Few Acres Farms (find him on Youtube).

The chicken tractor didn’t go as far as we thought it would! This is not a bad thing. 5 weeks of moving the cornish cross chickens at least once each day, and sometimes twice, resulted in a long stretch of ground covered, but we thought it would be twice as long. I guess math works, so we could have used that.

Getting setup with the scalder, plucker, and cooling bins.
Turn that water on – let’s get the scalding pot filled up!
Killing cones – what a joke. They are far more trouble than they are worth. Sending these bad boys to someone else.
Luke learning the ropes. Doing a great job too!

Overall, it was a good experience. We have a lot of meat in the freezer and chicken feed left over. We will do this again next year and do more so we can sell more. Contact us using the contact form from the top menu to get on the list for next year.

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