Chicks are all grown up – Kill Cones and Homemade Plucker

Up dated re-post of two blogs I posted back in the summer of 2011

July and August many people have discovered that they have far to many roosters and old worn out hens in their flock. Its time to cull your flock.
While searching for one or two chicken killing cones that didn’t cost $30.00 – $50.00 including shipping, I found a DIY idea.

** Note: pictures are off the Internet, don’t have any Pictures of my cone.

I got two ‘Free’ cones that were badly faded and no longer being used from a local construction company. Stop and ask the worst thing they can say is they don’t have any!

I cut away about the last 3 inches of the cone leaving a hole in the cone that is about 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter for the chickens head to stick out so I can kill and bleed them.

Unless you want chicken blood and fly’s everywhere place a bucket under the cone to catch the blood. Allow the chicken to bleed out well before scalding, plucking {DIY Plucker} and processing for your dinner table or the freezer.

My cones are to small for an adult turkey but work well on chickens or ducks and other birds of similar size.


Chicken Plucker – For Less Than $10.00

I wish I had been the master mind behind this neat, cheap and effective chicken plucker. It Is not designed for plucking a lot of chickens at one time but looks like this thing will really do a good job for those of us that are only plucking a few chickens, turkeys, ducks or geese at a time.

It looks like he used 8 rubber bungee cords 8 inches long cut in half with the metal S hooks removed for the rubber picking fingers powered by a variable speed 3/8 inch electric hand drill.
Hint A 3/8 or even 1/2 inch electric drill spins the plucker at a much more manageable speed than a 1/4 drill.

Scalding your chicken before picking is ‘Required’. Using a meat thermometer, Heat a pot of water to 150 to 160 degrees. Holding your bird by it’s feet, submerge your chicken in the hot water, pump up and down to insure hot water reaches the chickens skin. After about 15 or 20 seconds check your chicken by test pulling a wing feather or 2. They should pull out easily, if not scald about another 5 or 10 seconds and test again.

Hint If your picking ducks or geese add about 1 table spoon of dish soap to your water, this will break down the water proofing oils in their feathers so the hot water can reach your birds skin.

Video link is broken.

“Use a 4 inch PVC end cap (about $2.00) and drill a 3/8” hole in the center, installed a long bolt as the drive shaft. Drill 3/8” holes all around the outside. Make the plucking fingers out rubber bungee cords(You will need 8 bungee cords). Cut the cord into four inch lengths, pull the fingers through the holes in the PVC cap, they can not come out because of the half inch bump out at the end. The pictures will explain if the words don’t. Then chuck the shaft into your drill and tie the drill to the picnic table with bungee cords. If your drill does not have a trigger lock, A wire tie or tape abound the trigger will work.

It plucks a scalded bird in about 45 seconds. It won’t pull the primary wing and tail feathers very well, and has trouble with the feathers along the leading edge of the wing, but works amazing for my purposes. After plucking your bird with the plucker, rinse bird off and pull out any remaining feathers by hand. Total time is certainly less then 90 seconds to pick a bird.”

Pruning shears are excellent for cutting bones, like bird legs/feet. Remember they are not made of stainless steel and ‘Must’ be washed and very dry after use and put away.

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5 responses to “Chicks are all grown up – Kill Cones and Homemade Plucker

  1. Thank you for the diy. I have been skinning my chickens, for years, because plucking so many was a daunting task. Definitely going to try this.


  2. that was fascinating.


  3. Excellent! We have ducks that are getting old and lots of ducklings that have survived to adolescence. I happen to have a couple of faded cones around the yard. Now, how do you get the duck’s head/body into the cone? Hmmm. My usual solution is to have a neighbor who owes me some loan payments to exchange labor for debt forgiveness.

    Drop my by blog. I think you will get a chuckle from my last two posts.


  4. loved this info. I hope to one day have chickens for laying and meat


  5. Now that was some interesting and useful info. We currently only have egg chickens and when they are done laying they “retire” and live out their lives (mainly because they all have names and are “pets”. Next year we hope to start having meat birds. Have seen the road cone before but the plucker idea is amazing. And just like something I would make rather than buy.


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