Monday, May 14, 2012


One morning back in early April we found the quail agitated and bloody.  One of the females had a severely  injured leg and many others had toes missing (where most of the blood came from).  We knew a fox had been around  - checking out the new duck digs, but being that the hutch has 1/2 inch hardware cloth on the bottom we figured they had been spooked and caught their toes in the mesh.

They were much more sedate after that, rarely making their signature sound we (and a few neighbors) had grown to enjoy.

Today was worse.

One pair was missing a leg each.  The top male was pacing around the hutch with all his feathers standing on end and the other 3 were huddled in the corner.  I checked online to find that a predator can hook a claw through the hardware cloth and pull the leg through then bite it off.  Luckily a solution was also given. A second layer of hardware cloth.

So off to Murdoch's I went.  The new 1/4 inch cloth is 2 inches below the first.  Hubby worked on the other, currently unused, hutch that we will use for the injured birds.  Quail are hardy and tenacious birds and these 2 may well survive this.  If they survive tonight, I think we can keep them.  I am reluctant to butcher them as the female just started laying eggs.  If we find some other adult birds for a reasonable price I will replace these two, but for now I want Mesha to be able to have eggs. 

I had had other plans for the afternoon - mainly finishing the driveway garden so I can plant it this week, but that's life.  We finished up around dusk (thanx Mesha for the photo) and spent the last hour of daylight doing our own projects (Hubby had metal to cut and I wood)

Now on to the indoor work (dishes, laundry etc.)

I saw an ad for 4-wheelers the other day.  It showed stereotypical farmers doing early morning and late night chores and had the tag line "Out here 9to5 is usually 5to10.

I need to get with the program.

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