Chapter 4: Quail Eggs (excerpt from Chert Dog)

“My Father’s Greatest Gift:  Life Lessons from a Black English Labrador Retriever”

My Father’s Greatest Gift


…John has found a new use for his business as a hatchery for
Japanese Quail. Those crazy birds sure can make a lot of noise –
they are lucky that they are in cages otherwise I would just have to
chase them, being the bird dog that I am! No, I would not eat them –
yuck! And remember, unless it’s covered with tomato sauce, I am
pretty much a vegetarian. Anyhow, John sells their molted purple-blue
speckled eggs to Japanese restaurants in New York City. A big
D’Artagnan truck drives up on Fridays to pick up the quail eggs.
I’ve never been to New York City, but I think it would be fun to take
a ride there. I’ve seen on television these bright red double-decker
tour buses that are in the city. I would ride on top of one of those and
see all of the sights! I think I would like best to go for the Macy’s
Thanksgiving Day Parade with all of the floats, big balloons and
music during the day, then at night for all the beautiful holiday lights!

But back to the birds…as I said, John graduated from Cornell’s
Agricultural School and has recently been working with them in the
business of quail-raising. Sometimes we go for rides up to Cornell
to pick up more quail. John has a machine that gets very hot and it
hatches the quail eggs. He keeps the females while the males end up
going back to Cornell. He started this operation in the basement of
the house that we live in, but it outgrew that space, so he moved it to
his business property.

John takes such joy in creating Easter egg baskets for friends
and family using the molted bluish-purple speckled quail eggs in
little tiny baskets. Unique, that is for sure! Can’t say I ever tried a
quail egg, though – I guess they are cooked then pickled and served
in Japanese restaurants as a delicacy. If people could see a “behind
the scenes” of the life of a quail, they might have seconds thoughts
about terming it as a “delicacy” as their lives are not any different
from that of a chicken – the chickens just lay bigger eggs…


5 thoughts on “Chapter 4: Quail Eggs (excerpt from Chert Dog)

  1. I know this is out there, but reading this I am reminded of an article about how temperature in a clutch of reptile eggs determines the sex. The article explained since there is a temp gradient in the pile, that means a nice mix of female and male brood.

    I know birds are not reptiles, but they aren’t that far removed. If your hubby is incubating them, I wonder what very precise adjustments would make. Of course I think of this because, well, that’s just how my curious mind works. But I do wonder…

    1. Thought provoking! Not sure if my Dad was aware of temperature to determine sex, but it certainly would have assisted him with the hens laying eggs! Thanks for the comment and for following my blog!
      Also, released my first book, excerpts are posted in my blog, “My Father’s Greatest Gift: Life Lessons from a Black English Labrador Retriever”
      Thank you for your comments!

      1. Oh, not your husband, but your father! Sorry about that. There may not be a temp. Determining factor with birds, but there may be. I just remembered how physical environment like temperature for mammals can help sometimes in determining sex when it’s at the right point. Maybe worth giving a go, who knows. Good luck with your book and I’ll do more reading!

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