Thursday, August 25, 2011

How to Carry a Chicken

This is the best way to carry your chicken. Create a V with your fingers, slide under the breast and lift. I you've got a flapper you can move your finger tips over the tops of the bird's wings, or place your other hand over them, or put them against your body.

Alternatively, if you've got lots you need to move quickly, or have an aggressive bird you can pick them up by the legs. You should grasp them gently as close to the knee as possible. They generally don't like being turned upside down, but once you get them down they will go into a trance-like state where they won't flap or move (but they do still squawk so I wouldn't believe anyone saying they have a hard time breathing).

I find this is a good method if you're moving birds around at a sale/auction where they might become frightened. Or when you have to get 45 or so birds between the barn and the tractor. Quick trip, won't hurt them in the least, and this is something farmers have been doing for centuries.

It's also probably the way they will be slaughtered. I know Dr. Temple Grandin did a paper which explained that cattle who had been handled were calmer at slaughter and gave better meat. There is no escaping the fate of these birds. By handling them often and exposing them to loud noises, etc.; we'll make every facet of their lives, including the end, just a little easier.

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