Disposing of your dead chicken in the correct way is very important, especially if the bird was sick when it died.
If you don’t dispose of the dead bird correctly then the other flock members may peck at it and get sick, or, your other animals may dig it up, eat it and get sick. This article explores the topic of chicken cremation
Cremation is a great way to get rid of a dead bird. Some people choose to do this at home and others have it done elsewhere.
Can you cremate a chicken?
Cremation has to be done in a very specific way to get the desired result of turning the whole bird into ash. Simply burning the bird’s body won’t give the same result
Burning the bird’s body in a burn pile or a fire pit will ensure that any disease or parasites in your bird’s body won’t transfer to other animals, however, doing this won’t get the bird’s bones to turn to ash unless the fire is very hot and you let the bird burn for a long time.
If the bird’s body doesn’t burn for long enough, and doesn’t burn at high enough temperatures, then there will be no meat left over but the bones will still be left over. Bones are strong and it takes a lot to get rid of them.
What will also happen, if you try to burn the bird at home, is that the burning will create a very unpleasant smell that will waft into your neighbor’s backyards
If you do want to cremate your chicken at home you’d need to find a safe place to do this in, a place that is far away from any structures or trees. Make sure you maintain good fire safety precautions if you choose to do this.
You’d need to create a very hot fire, you may even have to go as far as adding potassium nitrate to get the fire really hot.
This fire will be very hot and can turn very dangerous very quickly, this is why cremating the bird at home is not recommended
How are chickens cremated?
Pets, chickens included, are either cremated at regular crematories or at crematories designed specifically for pets. Your local vet or local animal shelter may also offer cremation services.
You generally have the choice of a private cremation, where your bird will be cremated on its own, or a communal cremation where your bird will be cremated with other animals.
You can also choose to view the cremation process if you’re having a private cremation. This may add to the cremation cost.
Communal cremation will result in your bird’s ashes likely being mixed together with the ashes of other animals in the cremation chamber. This is however cheaper than private cremation.
When you decide to cremate the bird, your bird will be placed in a cremation unit and then exposed to very high temperatures ranging from 1400 to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit.
This is how high the temperatures need to be to get the bird’s body and bones to become dust and dried bones.
If there are any collars, tags, or pins on or in your bird they will be removed using a magnet or they will be removed manually.
Once everything is removed, the powder and dried bones will be pulverized to a fine powder that is even throughout.
The bird’s body is now ashes and is usually a pale white color. These ashes will be transferred into a plastic bag or a cardboard box and this is what you can take home or dispose of.
Many vet offices will cremate your dead bird for free. This is a simple and effective way to get rid of your bird. However, the vet may not cremate multiple birds for free because of the cost of doing so.
How long will it take?
Because chickens are small it will take less time to cremate them.
Larger animals, like large dog breeds, or horses, may take hours to cremate even at these high temperatures, but a smaller animal, like a chicken, will usually be cremated in a matter of 45 minutes.
You will likely get your bird’s ashes back on the same day or the next day at the latest.
If you enjoyed this article then you may also be interested in other chicken related articles. Here are some articles that you may be interested in: Hard Lump In Chickens Throat, Chicken Not Moving But Breathing, Wobbly Chicken, Chicken Having A Seizure, Sling For A Chicken With A Broken Leg