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#1 2010-08-13 14:40:50

Prairie Chick
I Love A.C.E.
From: Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan
Registered: 2009-02-24
Posts: 6508

How to kill a turkey

Ok now that i am getting this meat chicken butchering down pat i am wondering how in the world and i going to kill my turkeys.  Keeping in mind that i will have no help what so ever, this i have to do all by myself.  I have killing cones but there is no way a turkey will fit in them.  How in the world am i going to do this :confused:
A lady i deliver eggs to said when she was young her dad would hold the turkey between his legs, take a knife and jab it into the brain.  Has anyone done this, i would have no clue how to.
Does anyone have an easier way that they use?
I have a month and a half before i have to "do the deed" i just want to make sure i have it figured out before hand.

:blushing:


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If you get, give.  If you learn, teach.... Maya Angelou

BLRW, B/B/S Orpingtons, Lavender D'Uccles, EO, Seb, Super dewlap African and Muscovies

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#2 2010-08-13 15:29:43

FarmerJane
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From: Near Dawson Creek, BC :P
Registered: 2009-10-09
Posts: 1367

Re: How to kill a turkey

I would want to use a gun. . . but then I was ridiculously scared of our turkeys :rofl:  :blushing:


'Just a Few Acres' - Welsh Harlequin Ducks, EE's, Speckled Sussex, Buff Orpington, Cuckoo Marans, Frizzle bantams and Old German Owl pigeons.
2012~Black and blue Magpie Ducks, Buff Orpington ducks, Fawn and white Runners, Khaki Cambells, Pilgrims, American Buffs and Gray Saddle Pomeranian Geese. Blue, Black and Lavander Orpingtons, Mottled Houdans, Frizzled Polish and Rainbows of Silkies

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#3 2010-08-13 15:51:08

muffin
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From: Saskatchewan
Registered: 2009-08-31
Posts: 1038

Re: How to kill a turkey

SIMPLE... I tie around the wings with binder twine...lay on the ground...put a board on their neck, the chop with axe. works easily for me.... I have about 19 to do next month.

Anna


Nubian and La Mancha dairy goats (bucks for sale); Llamas; Alpacas;  Appaloosa horses-DOWNSIZING, BIG ONES ARE GOING, MINIATURES ARE COMING; Araucana Chickens;  Buff Cornish. Custom crafted Jewelry items.

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#4 2010-08-13 15:59:32

silkiebantam
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From: Terrace, BC
Registered: 2010-01-13
Posts: 3012
Website

Re: How to kill a turkey

Well, my husband feels just about everything should be shot.  (I don't know if I agree with this...)

A friend of mine says she uses large pruning loppers and it's super easy and quick.  I think she does get someone to hold the bird though.

My aunt from Brazil told me that in Brazil, they feed the Turkeys grain soaked in Alcohol (I think she either said Tequila or Whiskey, I cant remember).  The Turkeys would get good and drunk, they didn't move around a lot which made them easier to kill, they didn't flop around much and they were more relaxed so that the meat was more tender because they weren't tense and fighting when they died.

Has anyone ever tried getting their Turkeys drunk before butchering them?  I'm curious about this.  If a person was doing it by themselves, maybe this would be the way to go.  You could get them good and drunk and then use the loppers to cut the head off.  Maybe this fall, we'll try this method ourselves...


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#5 2010-08-15 15:31:04

HillTop
Growing Member
From: Westlock Alberta
Registered: 2010-07-20
Posts: 60

Re: How to kill a turkey

my greatgrand father use to hang them by the feet and use a tiny pen knife to poke them through the mouth into the back of the brain, he would so them all and then come in for coffee and when he was through with his coffee we would go out and beleive it or not all but the smallest pin feathers would have fallen out, nd the bird was well drained.  Sadly I never learn the exact secret but i will be picking grandpas brain about it and try a few this fall, if i get it figured out ill let ya know the "secret".

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#6 2010-08-15 16:10:24

ChickieBooBoo
I Love A.C.E.
From: Winnipeg MB
Registered: 2009-12-25
Posts: 7849

Re: How to kill a turkey

can you do it the same way as chickens? Just the bird would be bigger. With our meat birds we have a wooden stump, I held the bird and my dad chopped the head. Can you do that with turkeys?


You haven't seen a tree until you've seen it's shadow from the sky. --Amelia Earhart

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#7 2010-08-15 16:20:13

Prairie Chick
I Love A.C.E.
From: Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan
Registered: 2009-02-24
Posts: 6508

Re: How to kill a turkey

I use a killing cone CBB, the turkey won't fit in it.  I will have to use an Ax or tie the wings, hang them by their feet and use the pvc cutters.

Everyone has some real good advice here so maybe i will try a few different ways to see what works best for me =)


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If you get, give.  If you learn, teach.... Maya Angelou

BLRW, B/B/S Orpingtons, Lavender D'Uccles, EO, Seb, Super dewlap African and Muscovies

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#8 2010-08-15 16:29:24

ChickieBooBoo
I Love A.C.E.
From: Winnipeg MB
Registered: 2009-12-25
Posts: 7849

Re: How to kill a turkey

Prairie Chick wrote:

I use a killing cone CBB, the turkey won't fit in it.  I will have to use an Ax or tie the wings, hang them by their feet and use the pvc cutters.

Everyone has some real good advice here so maybe i will try a few different ways to see what works best for me =)

yeah, aftet hearing all the different ways I'm curious to try them out and see which ones work best. :D


You haven't seen a tree until you've seen it's shadow from the sky. --Amelia Earhart

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#9 2010-08-15 17:04:36

Dark Wing Duck
Guest

Re: How to kill a turkey

I use a 5 gal. pail with a hole in the bottom as a cone. I also use it for muscovy drakes and geese. I then debrain them and make a slit. It really does help with plucking and tenderness.

 

#10 2010-08-15 17:38:54

goatlady
Growing Member
From: Olds Alberta
Registered: 2010-02-21
Posts: 98

Re: How to kill a turkey

we killed our first turkey after much reading and thinking and planning...then we tied it's feet together, hung it from a beam in the shop and sliced the jugglar vein.  Do NOT forget to tie the wings.. like we did.  Suddenly we had a huge turkey flapping and spinning in huge circles spraying blood everywhere.  I screamed like a 12 year old girl and ran for the hills.. my husband emerged a few seconds later with a bit more dignity but covered in blood.. sort of a helter skelter sort of thing..lol.  So Do Not Forget to Tie the wings.  Aside from that, this method worked very well and we've used it for our broiler chickens, etc.


Home to 12 Boer goats, 3 San Clemente Island goats, 2 Clydesdale horses, a JRT, an australian Shepherd, 4 cats, 17 year old boy,  and a very, very patient husband  :)

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#11 2010-08-16 15:22:24

TruNorth
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From: Langley, BC
Registered: 2010-05-10
Posts: 3015
Website

Re: How to kill a turkey

Hilltop -- that method of killing is called pithing.  A small, sharp blade poked through the roof of the mouth destroys a part of the birds' brain (and ability to tighten the feather holding muscles) instantly.  [You then have to also cut the neck veins to bleed the bird.]  The bird flaps a bit reflexively, but much less struggle than if you chop the head off.  The problem is to hit just the right spot in the brain.  I had a neighbor years ago who could do this perfectly about 80% of the time -- you could dry pluck those birds in a minute by just rubbing them gently with a pair of rubber gloves!  But my attempts were a gong show; I only once hit the sweet spot perfectly.  At least it is a humane way to kill the bird quickly.  Several of my chicken books from the 70's have diagrams about how to do it.


"Of course, a large mob of Light Sussex look at their best when running on a field!" - S.C. Sharpe, 1920

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#12 2010-08-16 15:38:22

ChickieBooBoo
I Love A.C.E.
From: Winnipeg MB
Registered: 2009-12-25
Posts: 7849

Re: How to kill a turkey

TruNorth wrote:

Hilltop -- that method of killing is called pithing.  A small, sharp blade poked through the roof of the mouth destroys a part of the birds' brain (and ability to tighten the feather holding muscles) instantly.  [You then have to also cut the neck veins to bleed the bird.]  The bird flaps a bit reflexively, but much less struggle than if you chop the head off.  The problem is to hit just the right spot in the brain.  I had a neighbor years ago who could do this perfectly about 80% of the time -- you could dry pluck those birds in a minute by just rubbing them gently with a pair of rubber gloves!  But my attempts were a gong show; I only once hit the sweet spot perfectly.  At least it is a humane way to kill the bird quickly.  Several of my chicken books from the 70's have diagrams about how to do it.

thats interesting, I've never heard of killing them that way. I've always just chopped the head off and let them flap around on the grass at the back of our yard, where the blood doesn't matter. It worked well for our Cornish Giants.


You haven't seen a tree until you've seen it's shadow from the sky. --Amelia Earhart

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#13 2010-08-16 16:59:26

silkiebantam
I Love A.C.E.
From: Terrace, BC
Registered: 2010-01-13
Posts: 3012
Website

Re: How to kill a turkey

TruNorth wrote:

Hilltop -- that method of killing is called pithing.  A small, sharp blade poked through the roof of the mouth destroys a part of the birds' brain (and ability to tighten the feather holding muscles) instantly.  [You then have to also cut the neck veins to bleed the bird.]  The bird flaps a bit reflexively, but much less struggle than if you chop the head off.  The problem is to hit just the right spot in the brain.  I had a neighbor years ago who could do this perfectly about 80% of the time -- you could dry pluck those birds in a minute by just rubbing them gently with a pair of rubber gloves!  But my attempts were a gong show; I only once hit the sweet spot perfectly.  At least it is a humane way to kill the bird quickly.  Several of my chicken books from the 70's have diagrams about how to do it.

I remember reading this method in a poultry book when I was about 9 or 10 years old (I'm in my 30's now).  The book was probably from the 70's.  (I must have been a strange child to be reading those types of books.)  Now that I'm older I think about it every once in awhile... I'm not brave enough to try it.  Maybe I'll look it up on the internet and refresh my mind.  It's been so many years ago now...

Alright, I found this site that briefly mentions Pithing...  Lol!  It also tells you how to hypnotize a chicken, apparently making it easier to butcher the chicken.  In the Anatomy of a chicken section, It tells/shows you where to insert the knife. 

http://www.rogueturtle.com/articles/chicken.php

Last edited by silkiebantam (2010-08-16 17:00:18)


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#14 2011-10-06 18:46:12

Jay
I Love A.C.E.
From: Newfoundland
Registered: 2011-09-08
Posts: 1573

Re: How to kill a turkey

I generally just use a feed bag with a hole cut in the end for his head to come out. Then if i have someone with me i get them to wrap the bag tightly around the bird so he cant move. If not i can do this my self but its a little tougher but still easily doable. If your in a real bind you can just tie the bag tight to the bird it works quite well. Also works well with geese i have found aswell. Head to block from there then axe to neck obviously. I find this way very clean birds are easy to handle and rarely if ever had one damaged.

Last edited by Jay (2011-10-06 18:47:59)


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#15 2011-10-06 23:04:42

Farmerette
A.C.E. Addicted
From: Central Alberta
Registered: 2008-11-06
Posts: 870
Website

Re: How to kill a turkey

Get an old but clean feed bag. cut a hole in one corner. Hug the turkey between your legs and put the feed bag over him so his head and neck poke out. Then get him to the chopping block. Have one person hold the legs and another with a good, sharp cleaver or axe. go for one mighty, clean cut through the neck. The bag will keep your turkey trussed while it thrashes and keep it from bruising the meat or spraying you in gore.

That's my trick. Throw the bag out, too much effort to clean and save it.


I'm not the farmer's wife, I'm the farmer!
No eggs this year, I'm keeping them to myself! Look for Light Sussex here in 2013.
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