Our first chicken butcher


That is Goose.  We called him that b/c he had an identity crisis.  He honked like a goose instead of clucking like a chicken.  He was a stinker, though.  He was naughty and mean from the time we got him.  Lately, he had been picking on the younger chickens.

Today we butchered him.  It was the first chicken we have butchered.  My husband did the butchering and I watched.  He spent the past couple days reading up on how to do it, and how to do it humanely.  He found that the most humane way to do it is to knock the chicken out first by swinging them overhead and quickly hitting their head against a hard object.  It knocks them unconscious so they don’t feel their neck being cut or their head chopped off.

Before we did the deed, I petted him and we thanked him for the nutrition he would give us and said a prayer.  It happened quickly.  I wasn’t going to watch my husband kill him but at the last minute I decided to do it anyway.  It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.  I was sad for the chicken, but I didn’t cry like I thought I would.  We didn’t let our son watch this time.  We did let him come over once the chicken was killed and when my husband was plucking it.

While my husband was inside finishing butchering the chicken, I stayed outside with our son and we inspected the chickens innards.  We talked about what each organ was and what it was used for.  We found out that bile is REALLY green and stinky, that a chicken’s trachea feels like a bendy straw, what a gizzard and testicles look like inside, and he got to see the inside of a heart and what an aorta looks like.  It was a good learning experience.

All in all, we ended up with 4lbs of meat from Goose.  The breasts together were almost a pound!  The meat looks awesome.  I can’t wait to try it.

We get to do this again soon because have two more birds to butcher this week.


3 thoughts on “Our first chicken butcher

  1. wow i bet that was something! very awesome learning experience for him! is there a certain type of chicken to get for butchering? we will be getting chickens soon for laying…..i didnt know if there was a difference….but i’d like to get some for butchering too…. i had to laugh at him honking like a good though that would have been a nice little video haha….

    • A lot of chickens are considered “duel purpose”, meaning they can be used for laying and/or butchering. That’s what ours are, except we ordered 9 meat only birds in the order I just made. With duel purpose chickens you wait until they are 18ish weeks to butcher them (which is how old our oldest are now), and with meat birds they grow REALLY fast and you butcher them at 7-9 weeks. Meat birds can have a lot of health issues (mainly with the heart) b/c they grow so fast, though. We’ll find out if we like them or not. lol

  2. Pingback: You big chicken | Tales of a Transplanted City Girl

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