Yesterday six of our geese went to that happy grazing ground in the sky. They became food stored in the freezer for us to appreciate, enjoy and share with others.
Our daughter, Chicken Mama, offered to help us with the project, and holy moly, we really, really appreciated her assistance. Having her able input knocked a couple of hours off the butchering time, I'm sure.
Here Chicken Mama is doing some hand plucking while her dad is using the plucking machine with another bird.
We tried to keep all of the feathers corralled but a breeze insisted on distributing them all over the acreage sometimes looking just like huge snowflakes floating through the air.
All three of us tried to guess what the dressed weight of the geese would be. My daughter and hubby both guessed they would be about seven pounds each, and I put in my estimate at five pounds. The geese were Shetlands which are one of the smaller breeds. When all was said and done, they ranged from 5.0 pounds to 5.75 pounds. We butchered three females and three males. I was surprised that the males didn't weight substantially more than the females but I suppose that wouldn't have happened until they had reached their full maturity.
While we were working we all reminisced about how much we'd enjoyed watching the geese stuffing themselves on green grass, having a good ol' time in the pond on a daily basis, eating their share of grain and kitchen treats all summer. Their hands-down favorite goodie was watermelon rinds. No doubt about it, they had a good life filled with lots of fresh air and sunshine and were super-healthy.
Mother and Father Goose are still with us and I'm sure will adjust quickly to their empty-nest life in their snug shelter this coming winter.
I know I'll really appreciate having a lot less goose poop in the poultry yard.
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