As ya’ll know, I have ducks and geese. 6 geese and not too long ago there was 27 ducks. We have had a lynx problem that was picking our ducks out and consuming them. I was left with 16 ducks before I decided it was time!
All my ducks and geese were led into the greenhouse for safe keeping and to make it easier to catch them. My neighbor was culling some of his ducks and turkeys so I asked if I could piggy back on the processing since he would have the large boiling water and cleaning table already set up. He agreed and so I started the messy, muddy, crappy process to catch the ducks I wanted to put in the freezer. I decided to process 9 of the 16. My ducks are extremely greedy and eat more than the geese.
So, I’m in the greenhouse cornering ducks all the while they are kicking up poop and mud all over me. One by one I’d catch one of those heavy buggers and had it to Dad and he would put it in a dog carrier. Two of these ducks were named and best friends, so I can’t kill one without the other. Because I named two of these massive ducks I couldn’t bring myself to dispatch them.
I drive up to my friends house and tell him I have all my ducks in a row, but they’re still alive. I just can’t bring myself to do it. Thankfully, he helped me with the dispatching of the ducks. At this point, once heads are quickly chopped off, in my head they are now just meat and I can clean them. I raised them for food and eggs so I knew the day would come that I would have to put them in the freezer. They died quick and painless. Clean kills. That makes me happy. It breaks my heart if they suffer.
And so the plucking begins! Come to find out I need plucking practice. I’m a terrible plucker. It took me for ever to pluck one duck. Thankfully, my friend jumped in and helped me pluck all nine. He also taught me easier ways to gut and clean them as well.
It wasn’t really a cold day, but it was sprinkling nonstop and I was standing in one place for a long time. My feet became ice cubes in my Xtratufs and my fingers frozen from being wet. Let’s just say it was kinda a miserable day. It would have been nice if the sun was out.
After all that work and the cleaned ducks in an ice chest, more work had to be done. There was still the rinsing and wrapping of said ducks and then they could be put in the freezer. This took a couple more hours and a shower was in desperate need. I was bloody, muddy, had duck and goose crap on me and I was frozen to the bone.
After the shower, I had a new sense of accomplishment. I successfully put meat in the freezer for winter. I celebrated with a glass of wine!