Getting it done....

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by motdaugrnds, May 17, 2018.

  1. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Those of you who rely on what you raise and grow know there are times you wind up having to do things you're not in the mood for. Those of you who are elderly and live alone on a farm know all too well the frustrations of getting it done....whatever the "it" may be.

    This month for me it is a large (26) number of Jumbo X-Cross Cornish chickens. I purchase these every few years as I cannot eat the store-bought chicken without getting sick. (I even have to wash store-bought before my dogs will eat it.) So the only white meat (other than "wild" fish at times) I get are chickens I raise myself (and goat meat I raise myself for red meat). Now this brings on many trials, not the least of which is keeping these Cornish chickens in food as they behave more like pigs than chickens...and I do want them to gain weight quickly and keep them gaining as this makes their meat very tender no matter how I cook it.

    Well as mentioned above I started processing these 26 Cornish, wanting to get them done before the temperature reaps havoc on them. I was fortunate in that my son brought a friend with him and between them we slaughtered, skinned and gutted ten in one day before they had to leave. That helped so much. The following day my body was yelling at me so I piddled around not doing much. However, starting up again Wednesday the weather changed. It started raining and the temperatures dropped dramatically. Thus, I've been able to get the group down to eight (8) Cornish left. Those I'll let rest, feed well and keep in cool water until Sunday when I'll start processing them again.

    I know this probably sounds silly to some; however, for me it means I'll have "healthy" chicken meat for at least two years...maybe even three. :)

    Now for those ladies who find it difficult to do, let me tell how I'm able to get it done. Now I know how comical this will be to some; so feel free to have a good laugh on me. :)

    First step wear old clothes. LOL Take two (2) baling wires about 4' long with you and climb over the 2' high partition I have in the chicken house door (to keep ducks/geese out when door is open). Catch the largest Cornish by a leg, tie both legs together and toss out the door. (Oh I have a wire on the door that let me lock it shut while I'm inside scaring the fowl.) Get the 2nd Cornish and do the same. Then manage to get both legs back over that 2' partition and shut the chicken house door. Next take the string on one chicken and tie it to the gate (where others still alive cannot see) and do same with 2nd chicken. Then take a sharp knife and cut the jugular of each letting them bleed out before putting them into a large bucket to carry into processing center. This is the hardest part for me emotionally though what remains to be done is the hardest physically.

    I started with two boxes of gallon-sized freezer bags thinking that would suffice; but totally ran out before even half were done. Thus, I've been using the large ice cream containers instead. LOL

    Oh yes, I'm give out and back is yelling big time. Still I'm feeling quite good about getting it done.....
     
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  2. ladycat

    ladycat Chicken Mafioso Staff Member

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    I just skin them. After killing them first, of course.
    Love the ice cream bucket idea. I have some of those accumulated.
     

  3. ladytoysdream

    ladytoysdream Expect the unexpected Supporter

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    Thank you for sharing.

    Only suggestion I have, would working with a smaller group each year work better for you ?
    Like maybe 12 max. Then when butcher time came, it would not be such a big project.
    That and it might be easier on your freezer space.
    When we raised these birds, they got big fast. Then it was a scramble to get them done.
     
  4. aart

    aart HOW do they DO that?

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    Yeppers...many 'its' are overwhelming......slaughter days are especially exhausting.
     
  5. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Yes I've often considered getting a smaller number of these large birds to process. The problem with that is McMurray will not ship less than 25 chickens. They always add an additional one along with a "bonus" chick which turns out to be an exotic type. (This year it is buff lace with the cutest hat on.)

    Today it is still raining; so the weather is a great deal cooler than expected. Thus, I'm resting today and tomorrow (Sabbath) which my body is already thanking me for. LOL
     
  6. Allen W

    Allen W Well-Known Member

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    Hoovers Hatchery in Iowa will ship 15 chicks, https://www.hoovershatchery.com/. I ordered 16 pullets from them in March, I lost one that just didn't get started, the other 15 have done well and I am very satisfied with them so far.
     
  7. barnbilder

    barnbilder Well-Known Member

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    I used to have "butcher day". Seldom convenient, always monotonous drudgery, and a real freezer clogging pain in the butt. Like my system much better now. Completely free range from hatching egg to table, no brooders, no trips to post office, no expensive chick starter, and no "butcher day". Need a chicken or two, shoot a couple off a limb. Pop breasts out, throw rest to dogs. Simple, easy, the way our forefathers did it, up until electricity, mail order chicks, and modern "improved" breeds.
     
  8. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    ROFL Well Barnbilder, I sure like the convenience of what you do. And you're certainly right about the way I'm processing these Cornish is a "real freezer clogging pain in the butt".

    Allen I'm making a note to check out that Hoover's Hatchery next time I'm wanting to place chicken in the freezer. This will probably be in 2-3 yrs. :)
     
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  9. motdaugrnds

    motdaugrnds II Corinthians 5:7 Supporter

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    Updating....

    I did the last four Cornish this morning. All 26 are now processed and in the freezer. I was a bit concerned I wouldn't have enough freezer bags to handle so many as I only had two boxes (total 28 bags); however, I discovered the large plastic ice cream buckets (with handles) work quite well especially with the way I cook now days, i.e. a large meal that I can divide into individual meals for days I don't feel like cooking. LOL (Got some wild brown rice on the stove now with dried nettle in it just waiting for me to add some of this chicken. :) )