Well, the chickens made it to their last day. We had a scare when a local dog, a Pomeranian, tore a hole in the coop and let a few of the birds escape. The funny thing is the roosters in the escape gang were standing up to the little dog so no damage was done. After mending the fence, the birds had only a few days left on the pasture.Justice and I processed 25 birds on our own on Saturday. We worked as a team through every step from crating to packaging. Since these were our first birds we wanted to make sure we had all the processing steps down before our friends arrived on Sunday to help. We were bone tired by day’s end, but were completely satisfied with the entire process.
Since I’m the shorter one of the two it was my job to capture chickens and crate them. Justice was skeptical about these, but was on the bus once he saw how quiet they became once they were placed inside. We’d withheld food in the previous 12 hours, but they were foraging up to the last moments before they were crated. With eight chickens per crate, we stacked them under a tree. This is a before shot of the cones set up. Note the difference in the grass. You can definately tell where the pen was placed on the pasture. Our friends teased Justice that he was trying to make a political sign of thier land based on the green pattern from the pen. Suffice it to say it would be REALLY difficult to write Obama OR McCain. . . but what a great prank. Justice took this job over. I had to take the birds from the crate and place them headfirst in the cone. This is a two person job as you need to load the chicken in head first, position the bird’s head and neck in the lower opening, then hold the bird still as the vein is opened. It was quick. Continue reading