Saturday, July 18, 2009

Not For The Squeamish

If you don't like the sight of blood, then this post is not for you. We helped the Wonderful Neighbors butcher their broilers this morning. There is a young man who built some Whizbang Chicken Pluckers. He got 2 trailers and equipped each with chicken butchering equipment. You can rent the trailer to butcher your own chickens.

Here is the trailer. The blue barrel looking thing is the plucker. The red tank is the scalder and the killing cones are on a stand beside the trailer.

Here are the chickens waiting in their pens. They were just taken out of movable pens in the field.

Here is one of the tables all set up and ready to go.

Since butchering chickens is a messy sort of job, we needed aprons. We had some large white plastic bags for hay silage. We brought one a long. The WN girl who makes beautiful aprons that you can buy in my store (hint hint... great Christmas presents.. order early!!) cut out aprons for anyone who needed one. She did a great job!!

Everyone had a job. WN boy number 3 got the chickens out of the pen and gave them to Michael. Here are the killing cones. You put a chicken in head down and pull the head through the bottom of the cone. Michael cut the jugular vein and let the heart pump the blood out. The blood goes down into the blue part of the barrel and there is a drain pipe from that to a bucket.

You dunk the chicken into the hot water for about 45 seconds to loosen the feathers up. The water is between 145 and 150 degrees. Bob (Mr. WN) was in charge of the scalder.

Then you put the birds into the plucker. WN boy number 2 turned it on and let them spin. You spray water down in there while they are spinning. The black rubber fingers take the feathers right off. Most of them go out a chute in the back and into a bucket.

Then WN boy number 1 took the naked birds and cut their feet off and pulled the heads off.

The heads and feet went into a bucket and the chicken was passed to the eviscerating table. Kim (Mrs. WN), WN girl and myself took care of that part. Since it is a REALLY messy job, there are no pictures. :) This is what the table looked like when we were done.

Here is the bucket of heads and feet. The dogs love these for treats.

Here is the bucket of feathers.

Here is the bucket of innards.

And, here is the finished projects cooling down in ice water.

We did 33 chickens and we forgot to check the time we started, so we have no idea how long it took. It took less than we all thought though.


WN Mama said...

A BIG THANK YOU to the "Real Wonderful Neighbors". If it wasn't for you guys, we'd still be out there trying to figure out what to pull out and which end to pull it out of. (smile). Mike and Marci were great helpers and great teachers as well. Thanks again. We love you guys!!!!

WN Mama for the gang

PS..We learned a valuable lesson today, next year we'll let the pro's do it.

Rhonda Jean said...

What a wonderfully productive morning. Do you do anything with the feet and feathers?

I have just found your blog and want to say hello. I'll be back. :- )

Marci said...

All the extras belong to the Wonderful Neighbors. We were just the helpers. :)

Lynn Bartlett said...

So you helped butcher, too! What a professional set up. Hopefully by next year we will have our own Whizbang plucker, and we sure could use a better scalding system.