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Should you eat a chicken in molt?

 
pollinator
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We had our planned cull today but one of my hens decided to start molting. She looked and felt gross so I decided if she was that determined to live she could. I did wonder if it would effect the state of the meat at all.
 
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Hmmm, I thought with ducks, at least, molting is the time to "harvest" them, as it makes plucking much easier. I have no idea about the taste, or if it's different with chickens, though!
 
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I've raised chickens as long as I can remember and in all those years I can't remember ever butchering a chicken in molt. I just can't see how it was avoided though. I don't think it would make much difference in most cases, even though I've seen many times when some were showing signs of fever. Personally I would handle it pretty much the way you did, just postpone an individual's processing a few weeks.
 
elle sagenev
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Tracy Kuykendall wrote:I've raised chickens as long as I can remember and in all those years I can't remember ever butchering a chicken in molt. I just can't see how it was avoided though. I don't think it would make much difference in most cases, even though I've seen many times when some were showing signs of fever. Personally I would handle it pretty much the way you did, just postpone an individual's processing a few weeks.



We've had chickens for 4 years and this is the first ever we've had molt. I suppose that says something about the death rate of my chickens........
 
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I find them WAY harder to pluck when molting, at least harder to end up with a clean carcass. The newly emerging feathers are really tough to get a hold of and get out. We stopped butchering molting chickens entirely.
 
elle sagenev
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Will Holland wrote:I find them WAY harder to pluck when molting, at least harder to end up with a clean carcass. The newly emerging feathers are really tough to get a hold of and get out. We stopped butchering molting chickens entirely.



That is interesting to know!
 
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