The broilers are getting so big that it’s getting hard for them to run. They sort of just waddle and flop around.

They definitely know that me=food, and come running. It is bittersweet… I feed them, and they will feed me. At harvest they’ll be 13 weeks old, more than twice the age of the factory farmed chicken that grocery store dinners come from.

It gives me pleasure to think that they’ve had so much room to run, a comparatively long life, and to see them taking dust baths and eating clover (over in the not-swampy, nicely pastured half of their yard).

Still, I hate harvest day. Hate it. Taking a life is never easy, even if it is “just” a chicken.

I’ve been looking into finding a chicken processor so as not to do the deed myself, but because of MD licensing law the farms that can do other people’s livestock are few and far between. And I’m just not willing to drive an hour and a half each way, twice. Maybe if I had more than 7-8 meats… maybe I should go ahead and get a full order of 25 next time. :)

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