Killing chickens with bare hands

If you keep chickens for meat or if you need to cull a chicken you obviously want to do it in the most humane way possible. There are sites offering advice that I think are, quite frankly, rubbish so this is how I handle killing a chicken.

I was ten years old when I killed my first bird and this is how I do mine.     To do this task properly you have to be settled     in your mind that you are able to carry it out, safe in the knowledge     that how you apply the task is the proper and quickest way

First take the bird quietly in the dark with a red lamp so as not to     alarm the rest. Tuck the bird quietly under your arm as you are talking     to the rest and close the door quietly. This calmness must be continued     all the way through so it’s best that you do this with no audience at all     . Go into the coop quietly whistling softly or even talking this way the       birds know its you and don’t all scream about flapping and upsetting everything.

Take the bird by the legs from the perch and pull it into your side by placing   a hand around its body and cup its head in your hand. Walk out quietly and   away from the coop up to the house so as not to cause any more disturbance   to the rest of the birds and the household.

  Take your right hand and slide it under the birds butt and grasp its legs      with the hand closed take the legs with the thumb pointing away from the body      as this is a stronger grip

Placing the fingers and thumb of the left had over the chickens neck just   above the head. The first 2 fingers ie index and second fingers, close over   the head with the neck in between like a V. The thumb then comes over the   head closing it into the palm taking a half twist as it closes

Now bring the bird into your chest holding its legs tight into the body  and taking a firm but gentle grip on its neck extend and put the weight of  the top part of the body onto the neck forcing the head down in one clean movement

The head will part from the body as the neck is broken and your hand will  follow on down and away from the bird. As the pressure you applied is released  the bird will start to flap uncontrollably at this point the chicken is dead.

T his action is only nervous reaction and it will stop in about 30 seconds.  Allow the bird to flap as much as it wants as this action forces any blood  to go down to the neck and coagulate there.

You can hang it for a day or two if you so wish, or you can carry straight  onto the plucking.

Hanging the Chicken

Take your bird and hang it by the feet in a cool place for a day. The     blood will pool in the neck end so draining is unnecessary.

Plucking the Chicken

Get a bucket of hot water (too hot for your hand) dip the bird in and     count to sixty, then take it out start taking the wing feathers out. Next     pluck the legs and then the breast. These feathers will all come out easily     as the hot water melts the fat that is around the pen of the feather so     it nearly falls out. I can pluck a chicken in 5 minutes or so, but I have     been doing this for a lot of years.

Once the bird has been plucked that there are a few fine hairs left on     the bird, just ignore them.

— original source:

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