Hatch and dispatch

It was a good day yesterday. The weather was pleasant, Mrs Under-by managed to hang on to her remaining ducklings (despite regular fly-bys by the hooded terror) and Louise hatched four chicks!



And there’s more hatching going on as I write; quail this time, our third batch which was unexpected as there was obviously some mix-up at the supplier’s end and although the eggs have had to hang around for longer than is preferred, (waiting for the incubator to be vacated) so far 13 have successfully put in an appearance.

quail chicks

That’s the first batch off in the hat transporter to the brooder. They’re a blurry bunch right enough, not because of my poor camera skills for a change but because they are CONSTANTLY on the move. All squirming and clambering! I love the discarded quail eggs. They are all exactly the same; a very neat split in the shell, almost as though it’s un-zipped!

quail egg

At the ‘darker’ end of quail production however, yesterday Kevin dispatched the first birds. They were seven weeks old which is a wee bit early but one of the females from the more boisterous group had suffered a broken leg. We thought that maybe there were too many males around so whittled them down to two males per run in the hope of restoring peace. Eventually, there will just be one male per run but until they are sexually active, we’re taking a ‘just in case’ view. Unsurprisingly, one of the males from the same run as the injured female had very large testes, a problem we’ve come across in chickens in the past when young cockerels have demonstrated excessive aggression.

So, it would seem that quail is on the menu tonight! You can see the severe bruising on the small, injured female.

Hinnisdal Quail

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2 Responses to “Hatch and dispatch”

  1. Gerlinde Says:

    How to you prepare your quails? I never cooked them. Here in California we have cornish game hens, I wonder if they are similar.

    • garybuie01 Says:

      I have quite a few recipes which I intend to work my way through Gerlinde! On this occasion – because it was unplanned and I had to work with what I had – I wrapped each bird in a slice of streaky bacon, fixed with a cocktail stick, and roasted them for 20 minutes in a medium oven. I served it with a mushroom sauce. I have no idea what a Cornish game hen is, so I can’t help you with that I’m afraid!

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