Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Butchering issues

I have done a headcount, and have 7 roosters. (1 Silver lace wyandotte, 1 jersey giant, 3 easter egger, 2 buff orpington) so such decisions... I decided the buffs and 1 easter were going out the door for sure, looked up how to butcher them and on a whim looked up WHEN to butcher them... and have realized I'm 10-weeks early! Gah!! I thought they were kinda "thin" when I picked them up but thought it was just because they're roosters... I guess if I let them live awhile longer, keep them penned up away from the rest of the flock and feed them meat food they will fatten up a lot more?? Perhaps this is worth considering... I don't really like how thin they are... it seems as though it isn't worth all the work... but they are fighting amongst themselves... and my hens are getting over-bred by the not-quite totally mature roos...

I really don't know what to do... do I let them keep growing, keeping them separated out from each other?  Do I butcher them now and be done with it?? *humph...* I don't know.  I think its time to ask my mother..

Rodney - Jersey Giant - probably keeping him

Rusty - EE - Keeping him or Roger, probably not both

Roger - EE - Keeping him or Rusty, not both

Lightning - Silver Lacey Wyandotte - probably keeping him

Buff orpington roo 1 of 2; not named; plan to butcher
 Then there is a non-named EE that is also planned to be butchered out


  1. hi. did you end up butchering all these rooster? they must be very tender. that's how they look to me.

    1. Yeah; butchered all of them. Turned them into chicken stock then canned the stock. Most of that has been eaten up now. Have another 4 that need butchering this year.

  2. what age do you usually butcher them? what slaughter method do you use? there seems to be so many opinions as the the best way to do it? by the way can you post some pics next time you butcher? thanks

    1. I've never raised the "meat bird" breeds. Only ever just butchered out the roosters as they become too big to deal with any more.

      This last fall, I "chickened out" (ha ha) from butchering them when I should have. The 4 roosters I have to butcher are now about a year & a half, and have 3-inch spurs. It's gonna be very brutal to butcher them... but I don't have to worry about hawks getting my hens right now! lol

      I would advise butchering them as soon as they are of adult size, the longer you wait the longer the spurs get, the tougher the meat. I will be highly limited in how I can use this meat from the 4 roosters I have right now and so will be forced to let them rest for several days, minimum, before cooking it up, and even then will most likely have to drain all the broth off and leave the meat out of the jars when I can it up.

      ** The longer you let a carcass rest, no matter what animal you've butchered out [venison, pigs, cattle, chickens, ducks etc.], the more tender the meat will be.

      These will all be chicken stock birds, each bird produces about 8 quarts of broth and are very stringy, rather tough meat, HOWEVER the broth made from their bones and the meat is very rich because they are wild and are primarily dark meat and useful for many other recipes.

      I guess I could post photos. Not a very pretty sight though, and I don't butcher the way that most people do. Rooster rib cages have a very small opening to work with, so it's really quite difficult to get your hand up into the cavity to pull the guts out, and I have gouged my hands up more than once from broken ribs and what not.

      The last time I did a bird up, I decided that the normal way of butchering was just not the way to go for the roosters and took pruning cutters and literally cut every single rib until the entire carcass was flayed out butterfly style. This made the gut, but specifically the lung removal, SOOOOOO much easier I cannot TELL you!!

      Not sure that this is helpful since that isn't really what you asked but I want you to realize that any photos I post will NOT be your normal orthodox way of butchering.

  3. so can you post some pictures next time?

    1. Yes, but understand they will not be photos of a normal way of butchering.


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