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How much TIME per animal according to species? (killing + butchering) Tips for saving time  RSS feed

Posts: 1721
Location: La Palma (Canary island) Zone 11
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I had the idea it might be useful to know this and to gather all about TIMING in one thread!
Also if people who counted their time while doing it could share, to get an idea of the differences according to experience.
It can also be intersting to know how to save time with sharing our tips!

I have killed several animals only of the kuy . guinea pig until now.
When I kill a kuy I know I need 1 hour ahead of time including taking it and cleaning after. I also know that it can be much shorter if I am lucky with the hair plucking!

In kuys, guts are also eaten, and the time to clean Vs the amount is not really interesting (well, try it fried and crispy, it looks like noodles!). The upper gut is just squeezed between fingers, and the colon part needs to be opened, and it breaks easily. Feeding pure fennel the day before makes the global smell much nicer, and you can also keep the whole stomach and cook it with its content, as it is fresh.

The time to pluck the hairs Vs removing the skinIS very interesting! The weight of the skin compaired to the meat makes it worth it. Add the quality of broth and the special type of protein giving gelatine: glycine, and it makes you forget about skinning them! 40% skin - 60% meat.
There will be a difference of time to remove hairs according to the period of the year, as they sometimes have short growing hair. It might be that curly hair goes away better and that the hot water goes more regularly under the hairs and until the skin.
Males bite each other on the lower back if they are with females, and wounds make the job more difficult.

The head is worth it but now I cut the ears away.
I also save time by killing with the shock on the head, as I do not have to cut the throat nor let bleed.
I do not know if the bleeding is very important for this animal. I do not mind the content of blood that indeed show in the organs.

With these 2 animals, kuy and chicken, as we keep the skin on, time saving is on the hability to pluck, thus calculating the right temperature and the right time to let it in. Rubbing the skin sometimes goes faster than plucking for cuys, and let the skin clear. It can be nearly done in 5 mns! Burning is faster to remove a few hairs that are left.
(hair plucking is a topic in itself so I will not go further into it here)

I am interrested for goats, sheep and pig...
Also specifically the time needed if we decide to eat stomachs and guts, thus cleaning, Vs giving it all to some omnivore animal like pig and hen.

Thanks for adding more about what you know!
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Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
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I think it depends greatly on how many animals you're butchering at the same time, how often you do it and the facilities you have for processing.  On my homestead I usually butcher 4 chickens at a go.  It takes about 45 minutes per bird to catch, kill, pluck, gut and bring inside to the missus.  She takes about 20 minutes to clean and package.

To do a deer takes about 20 hours to catch  Then it's a half hour to gut and a half hour to skin.  Then I get meat off the carcass in about 2 hours, tease apart soup bones and ribs for the crock pot for an hour and trim up hunks of meat for the grinder for 2 hours.  Grinding and packaging takes another hour or two.

I'm clearly not an expert.  The time saving things I've found are to do multiple birds in the same day (one set-up and one clean up).  Having scalding water hot enough really makes plucking go easier.  Based on my last deer, butchering it before it freezes in the garage would likely save lots of time and cold fingers.
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Location: Zone 5 Wyoming
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My husband and I split poultry killing tasks. It takes us an average of 15 mins a bird. This is helped along by our facilities, which are great (plucker makes a big time difference).

We have not killed any of our pigs yet but I'm psyched to do it and interested to see how long it takes us.
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Location: Northern Puget Sound, Zone 8A
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Chicken slaughter day took 4 adults probably 5 hours to process 46 birds.  That's not counting some time spent trouble shooting some equipment issues or a break for lunch.  Total clock time was probably 8 hours, with a good 1.5 hours each for equipment problems and lunch.  So 2.3 birds per hour per person average.  But it was the first time for basically all of us.  I had slaughtered a couple previously, but the other 3 people hadn't done anything like it before ever.  So with experience that would be able to be sped up quite a bit.

Haven't dealt with domestic rabbits, but the wild ones I've killed I can skin and gut them in about 10 minutes each with a less than optimal setup.  With more practice and a better setup I bet rabbits could be skinned and gutted in about 3-5 minutes.

With elk (hunted) we've got to the point where we (3 adults) can gut and skin it in about 2 hours under nearly ideal conditions.  It's taken as long as 8 hours when the animal runs into a mud-hole to die.  We're getting better all the time, and developing the tools to make it go faster.
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The first hog Wolf and I slaughtered took 9 hours from stun to packaged, we skinned it because we were not set up to scald and de-hair.
This particular hog was around 150 - 175 lbs.
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