Saturday, June 18, 2011

How to weigh a chicken...

Did you ever wonder how to much chicken is in a chicken?

I did because I was wondering how big our used-to-be-chickies needed to be in order to be big enough to butcher and give a decent amount of meat. So I asked a professional chicken grower I know and this is what he said: Put the chicken in a bucket and weigh the bucket.

Hmm. have you ever tried to put a chicken in a bucket?? Bet not.

Here's how it goes:

First off you need: a 5 gallon bucket, a scale to set the bucket on and a chicken.

Step one: Grab the chicken. Easier than you think, esp if you have as many chickens as we do because it doesn't really matter which one you get. Wear boots and old clothes. You will get dirtier than you think.

Step two: Put the chicken in the bucket. NOT so easy. After first trying to put the chicken straight in the bucket I realized I would have to subdue the chicken or it would flap too much and break a wing.
Here's how to subdue a chicken and get him in the bucket:
a) grab the chicken by its feet
b) hang it upside down by its feet
c) make sure Jack isn't nipping at it's face so it can relax
d) wait for the chicken to calm down
e) when the chicken goes limp walk to the bucket and quick flip the chicken in the bucket
f) ignore chicken noises, he will be OK but if you stick your face in there, you may not be.

Step three: Weigh the chicken-filled bucket.

Step four: Carry the bucket back to where all the chickens are and gently ease the disoriented chicken out of the bucket.

Step five: Stand guard while the chicken gets his wits back.

Step six: Weigh the empty bucket...subtract this amount from the chicken in the bucket weight.

Step seven: Subtract 30% off the weight of the chicken (without the bucket). and that is how much chicken meat you will get from of your chicken.

Step eight: Take a shower.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Puppy heaven

Jack, the new pup, is a dream puppy. Yes, he chews. Yes, he nips our toes. And yes he gets into plenty of mischief. But still, he is a dream dog.

He is so affectionate--kissing and hugging us with his little paws. He follows us around every chance he gets and sleeps right on my feet when he is tired. I am sure he is drawing comfort from having somebody he loves nearby, but he gives at least as much comfort as he takes..

He sleeps on Charlie too, whenever Charlie will let him. He loves Charlie with all his heart and does his best to show it. His little head cocks when he sees Charlie do something new. I think he is hoping to grow up just like Charlie. (And we are hoping that too.)

This morning Charlie coughed, something Jack had never heard him do. Jack sat right up and looked at Charlie. You could see the concern on his little face. What was wrong with his favorite doggy friend. Charlie put his head right down and went back to sleep; but not Jack, he sat at attention for a good five minutes making sure Charlie was OK. Once he decided he was fine, Jack put his head down on the carpet near Charlie and went to sleep. I think Charlie has a friend for life!