The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

DIY Kill Cone alternative part 2

5 gallon bucket as Kill Cone Thank you Darren and Jake for the comments on our DIY Kill Cone alternative.

I always hold the head of each bird until it bleeds out, but some chickens have a lot of fight and wiggle their way free and back up in the bucket.

A few pieces of a 2x4 attached to the inside of the bucket with drywall screws decreases movement while the chicken is in the bucket and seems like it would prevent a bird from getting all the way out if you lost hold of its head.

Jake uses a traffic cone, which I bet would work better than a bucket if you can find one and figure out an easy way to mount it at a comfortable height.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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That looks like a good improvement to the bucket idea.

I have to say, I've been tempted to swipe a traffic cone from the side of the road on more than one occasion :-). The best mounting I saw was a pair of parallel 2x4's, with the square bases of the cones screwed to the tops of them. I think there were about 4 cones in the row.

Comment by Darren (Green Change) Sun Aug 18 18:35:21 2013

I think it's really interesting how common the kill cone is in America. Here in Finland it's illegal to bleed out an animal without stunning it first. Chickens are killed by decapitation, larger animals are stunned with a bolt pistol and then bled.

In my opinion it seems to be a lot more work in bleeding a chicken than to decapitate it, why is it so popular over there? The heart continues pumping for some time even after decapitation so it can't be so that the meat would spoil if the bird isn't bled out, and a swift blow with an ax or a billhook just seems so much easier.

Comment by Erica Mon Aug 19 01:46:39 2013
we use a traffic cone that an intern swiped for us a few years ago. i actually think the bucket with wood will work better for our climate, because we are in the desert southwest, and the traffic cone has lost most of its flexibility and has become rigid in a weird, awkwardly-smashed shape, due to sun exposure. The sun eats most things here. Also it's hard to adjust the cone between turkeys & chickens, and we've used a custom-made wood and canvas construction that we built instead. Buckets last longer than most other types of rubber/plastic/etc in the sun. Though they do eventually get brittle and crack.
Comment by Kat Wed Aug 21 14:16:11 2013

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