A chicken plucker helps you pluck the feathers off your poultry such as quails, ducks, turkeys, or chickens. When you have to prep just one or two birds, the plucking activity can be easily done with your hands.
However, when you need to do it more often, it is best to use a mechanical chicken plucker. A chicken plucker is also called a chicken picking tool. It can help you save time and effort when you have to butcher chickens or other poultry on a larger scale.
You can buy chicken pluckers in different styles depending on the size, the number of birds you want plucked, and also the mechanism of operation. The most common styles of mechanical chicken pluckers are tabletop style and a tub style.
A tabletop chicken picker or chicken plucker consists of a wide drum connected to several ‘finger’ like structures. You can connect the plucker to a drill which then rotates the drum and the fingers.
You place your bird against the rotating drum so that the ‘fingers’ remove all the feathers from the carcass. The name table top comes due to the fact that such a plucker takes up only 2-3 feet of space and can be used on a tabletop or a countertop, preferably secured in a vise for a better grip.
A tub picker or plucker is useful for large-scale de-feathering when you need to pluck hundreds of birds. Most commercial units use these to pluck several chickens at a time.
The tub plucker consists of a bucket or tub having several rubber fingers attached to its inner walls. Depending on the tub’s size, you can place two or more chickens in the tub.
The bucket then undergoes a ‘rumble-tumble’ operation which removes the feathers gently and ensures a nearly clean carcass in just 20-30 seconds. Some tub pluckers come with a hose and irrigation arrangement that pours a continuous stream of water on the bird. This facilitates the plucking action.
The Best Chicken Pluckers and Accessories
1. Vevor Stainless Steel Chicken Plucker
Vevor chicken plucker is powered by a 1500W motor. There is a convenient attachment for a hose and water pipe to clean the removed feathers.
The powerful chicken plucker works simultaneously on 2-4 small birds to easily remove all feathers under a couple of minutes. You can use it on bantams, turkeys, quails, ducks, and also guinea fowls.
Vevor chicken plucker is made with a corrosion and rust-proof stainless steel body that is durable and sturdy. The long lasting plucker contains nearly 106 fingers that ensure efficient removal of long and short feathers.
- Extremely well-built, powerful, ultra-reliable chicken plucker that has received hundreds of positive reviews.
- Compared to other chicken pluckers of its kind, the VEVOR plucker has a large discharge slot for removing the caught feathers. This makes cleanup more efficient and faster.
- The power switch is waterproof; a well-thought of feature since many similar units are known to have fused when the switch came in contact with the water used for hosing the birds.
- Many commercial poultry processing plants have been using the VEVOR chicken plucker for years.
- Value for money.
- Easy to clean.
- Very easy to transport.
- The hub driving the belt tends to rust too quickly.
2. Kitchener Chicken Plucker
Kitchener chicken plucker is made with a stainless steel body and a powerful 800W motor.
You can easily de-feather two to four birds within 2 minutes using this powerful chicken plucker.
A feather chute located under the drum allows for an easy clean up.
Kitchener chicken plucker is perfect for outdoor use in large backyards, farms, and commercial food processing facilities. It is weather-resistant, rust-proof, and has a robust and compact design that allows easy transportation and storage.
- Numerous fingers get the job done quickly. It plucks a fully grown bird in less than a minute
- The unit is a breeze to transport
- Excellent customer service
- Easy to assemble and clean
- Value for money
- Destroyed some birds completely; breaking the wings and tearing through the skin.
- You need to remove the feet else they get caught in the fingers.
- Instruction manual has incomplete information and is written in poor English.
- Motor quits after a few uses.
3. Josas Chicken Plucker
The Josas chicken plucker has a detailed video explaining how it works.
The drill attachment works on chickens, ducks, pheasants, and other poultry. You can completely de-feather a large bird in under a minute.
The Josas chicken plucker can be used with any cordless drill. Just make sure you scald the bird at the right temperature before plucking.
- Much cheaper than most commercial pluckers.
- Easy to use.
- Tends to scatter feathers.
- Initial preparation of scalding the birds needs to be accurately followed to successfully use the machine.
- The oil from the feathers tends to slow down the unit. You need to clean the fingers between uses.
- Some users had trouble fitting the attachment to the drill. You need a vise to hold the plucker steady.
4. Plucker Ukraine Chicken Plucker with Drill Attachment
This plucker comes with two types of fingers to remove large feathers as well as the fluff and smaller feathers.
It can be used for plucking hens, ducks, pheasants, and turkeys. The fingers are made with food-grade soft material that does not damage the bird’s skin.
The central rotating stainless steel drum is rust-resistant, sturdy, and durable.
Plucker Ukraine is the brainchild of farmers who came up with the plucker design after they were tired of de-feathering the poultry. Thus, the company can be considered as pioneers in the field of chicken pluckers and have been successfully selling this product for over a decade.
- Reputed manufacturer that truly understands customer needs.
- Excellent design. Two types of fingers work well on different types of feathers and birds.
- Well built, heavy duty chicken plucker that does the job well under a few minutes.
- Requires in-between use cleaning as the oil from feathers slows it down.
- You must mount the drill on a vise to secure the attachment.
- Scalding the bird is a must otherwise the feathers won’t come off properly.
- Some users had trouble removing the finer feathers.
5. BestEquip Stainless Steel Chicken Plucker 2 HP
The durable chicken plucker from BestEquip is made with polished high-quality stainless steel that is resistant to corrosion and rusting.
It consists of 106 fingers made with food-grade rubber that quickly and efficiently de-feather a chicken or other kinds of poultry in less than a minute. The unit is easy to use, clean, and transport and can be used on quails, ducks, and turkeys as well.
- Shortens processing time
- Efficient and easy to use
- Easy to transport
- Larger slot compared to other similar units for easy removal of discarded feathers
- Widely used in commercial poultry facilities
- Versatile; works on different kinds of poultry
- Needs a lot of water to get the job done.
6. YardBird Stainless Steel Chicken Plucker
YardBird 21833 is one of the top selling pluckers in the market. Known for its powerful, efficient, and quick de-feathering action, the YardBird also simplifies discarded feather collection, and allows for ease of transport and maintenance.
YardBirds’s high-quality stainless steel drum is rust proof and the unit also comes with safety sensors to ensure smooth and safe operation.
- Hundreds of happy customers
- Compact size allows ease of transport and storage
- Powerful 1 ½ HP motor
- In-built irrigation ring leaves your hands free for other tasks
- Feather chute in the centre of the tub facilitates easy feather/garbage removal.
- There are a few flaws in the unit’s design. The in-built irrigation ring tends to keep certain parts wet which leads to corrosion. This has even caused the units to malfunction or stop working completely, as experienced by several users.
- Customer service needs improvement.
- The pluckers are not made in the USA. Therefore, getting replacement parts is a painful process.
- For many users, the pluckers worked just for a year after which they stopped.
7. Power Plucker’s Home Processing Kit (Chicken Plucker, Killing Cone, Swedish Knife)
Power Plucker chicken processing kit helps you bundle the different items you need to prep your birds for a money-saving deal.
It is ideal for backyard chicken owners and can easily de-feather large Cornish crosses and bantam birds under 8 lb.
- Easily assemble the unit within minutes.
- The knife is a great accessory and holds its sharpness well.
- Cone helps restrain birds and holds the medium and small sized birds down easily.
- Plucker works fast and defeathers scalded birds quickly.
- Knife is prone to rusting
- Cone is not large enough to accommodate larger birds
- Plucker tends to splash water and feathers. It also does not get the tiny feathers under the wing-side.
8. Rite Farm Chicken Processing Kit
The kit from Rite Farm contains everything you need to begin processing poultry. You get an apron, gloves, a really sharp knife, a killing cone, and chicken plucker as well.
Additionally, this well-thought of kit also contains replacement surgical blades for each chicken you cut.
- Everything you need to harvest your own chickens is available in this kit
- Ideal for people who need to prep just a few birds each day or once or twice a week
- Gloves are really useful when you scald the birds in hot water
- The apron will prevent blood from getting over your clothing.
- Rubber fingers tend to break off.
Why do you need a chicken plucker?
When you own a chicken farm or raise backyard chickens for food, you absolutely need a chicken plucker. Plucking is the main task that determines the final look of your chickens’ carcass. If you have customers buying chicken from you, then good plucking ensures a good-looking carcass that could fetch a better price.
There are many ways to pluck a chicken and the method of plucking will ultimately be decided by your situation.
You can use mechanical plucking to save time when you have lots of chicken/birds to pluck each day. If you are only prepping a couple of birds for your family’s meals, then hand-plucking should get the job done.
In any case, if you have ever hand plucked chickens, ducks, turkeys, or other poultry then you know how difficult the task is. It needs expertise, energy, skill, and patience. It is definitely not a task for the faint-hearted.
If you want your chicken to look like those that you get at the supermarkets or at a butcher’s, then a chicken plucker is a must-have device.
Remember: chickens and other birds that we use for poultry tend to have feathers of varying sizes. You cannot just expect to grip the feathers and pull them out to get a clean carcass; that would only tear their skin and damage the final presentation of the bird.
If you are new to chicken plucking, you may also be unaware of the fact that they also have small fluff or tiny feathers which are extremely difficult to pluck by hand.
For all these reasons, it is imperative for you to invest in a chicken plucker. A good-quality chicken plucker can easily clean and de-feather a bird in minutes saving you time and energy!
Types of chicken pluckers
Tub-based pluckers are ideal for large scale plucking. They come in the form of a large bucket with rubber fingers on the inner walls. You can place one or two birds in the bucket. A machine under the bucket rumbles and tumbles the buckets which cause the rubber fingers to pluck the feathers.
Some units come with an in-built irrigation ring which allows you to hose water into the bucket. This keeps the feathers wet and helps the rubber fingers pluck out small and large feathers with ease and efficiency.
A smaller device for mechanical plucking is the tabletop plucker which has the same design as the tub plucker but is much smaller in size. The tabletop plucker has a drum with fingers attached to it. It can be easily placed on the table or countertop and its drum attached to a cordless drill.
The bird is placed against the device’s fingers. Rotating the drill moves the drum causing the fingers to perform the pulling action which de-feathers the bird. It is a good idea to fix the plucker into a vise for a better grip which then facilitates the defeathering process.
Note that many chicken pluckers come without the drill and the manufacturers assume that you have a drill and vise arrangement at home. Otherwise, you’d need to buy the vise and drill separately.
In both types of mechanical pluckers, the fingers are made using food-grade rubber. They also have different surface designs or structures: ribbed, slotted, or dotted. This helps in pulling the different types of feathers – large or small – with ease.
A killing cone is an accessory that you use prior to using the plucker. It allows you to bleed the bird out. The basic accessory consists of a medium to large cone with a hole at the bottom.
The chicken’s head is pulled out, downwards through the hole and its legs are tied together. You can cut the head or neck off the chicken under the cone and allow the bird to bleed out. The bled-out bird can then be subjected to hand-plucking or mechanical plucking.
For plucking a bird, you also need gloves, an apron, a good quality sharp knife to remove the feet and head, and also a bucket to place hot water for scalding the birds before plucking.
Assuming that you don’t mind prepping your chicken (or other poultry) yourself, once you’ve plucked a few chickens, you’d wish you had a mechanical chicken plucker for the job.
A good mechanical plucker is well-worth the money. It is a real time-saver too if you intend to do a lot of butchering.
For an occasional bird, you can invest in a feather-removal or plucker drill attachment. This can be a useful device as well. But for several birds, you should use a tub plucker. It is convenient and efficient and can de-feather several birds in a matter of minutes.
We hope the above reviews of top chicken plucker tools and accessories help you make an informed choice.
Check out our other articles about raising backyard chickens.