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may be taken off one at a time, and left to satisfy their hunger and thirst with the food and water supplied to them, as well as to dust themselves in a heap of rubbish, which should always be at hand, after which they will return to their nests in good time, when the lids may be put down and locked. If, on the contrary, they are slack sitters, they may be taken off and put under a large coop, with food, water, and dust at hand, and at the expiration of the proper time they may be replaced on the nest by hand and covered down; but unruly hens are very apt to break their eggs in this way, and it is better to let them return of their own accord, if they will do so, but they should be carefully watched. In very warm weather the time should be a full hour, while if it is cold forty minutes will be long enough. To ensure the

proper change of temperature in hot weather, some people sprinkle the eggs with cold water, and it is by no means a bad plan, especially towards the latter part of the sitting

As the hatching time approaches, while the hens are off the nest, every egg should be carefully inspected, and if there are several hens expected to come off on the same day, it should be so arranged that one should have all the first hatched, another the second, and so on. This is effected by exchanging the eggs as soon as they are seen to be chipped, giving all the first to one hen, who will thus be off the nest with her brood before the others. As soon as all are hatched in one nest, the hen is put under a coop with a small covered run for the young birds, in which they will remain for a few days. It should be made as follows:-A pen is made of wood on all the sides but the front, which is of wire net, and has a space at the bottom sufficient to allow the


birds to pass under but not the hen (see a b fig. 94 on next page). To this a small run, cd, is attached, and also covered with wire net, and in it the young birds are fed. The whole has a boarded floor, which should be capable of being removed at pleasure by means of pins at the angles.

The rearing commences by feeding the young birds in the above pen or coop, taking care to choose a sunny spot for it. The food should be hard-boiled eggs chopped fine, mixed with rice, which should be carefully boiled in plenty of water so as to keep every grain separate. Cooks know how to do this in boiling it for curry, and they will readily show

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the method to the keeper if he is ignorant of it. Curds chopped fine may also be mixed with barley meal, which should be of such a consistency as to be capable of being divided into little pellets of the size of half a pea. Bread crumbs softened with milk; ants' eggs and scoured gentles may also be given—the two last being especially useful. Change of food is most essential; and it is better never to give any of the above kinds consecutively, or at all events not more than twice, though ants' eggs can scarcely be given too freely. The feeding should be at first five or six times a-day, gradually reducing the number to three at the end of a fortnight.

In procuring the above kinds of food the great difficulty is with the ants' eggs, which are very scarce in some localities. It is worth while, however, to take a good deal of trouble to obtain them; and there are few counties which are without waste ground on which they are to be found. Next to them come the gentles, which are easily bred and scoured in the following mode :-Procure any kind of flesh, or the body of

any small animal. If there is any difficulty about this, the liver of a horse or cow answers remarkably well. With a knife cut some deep gashes in the substance of the liver or flesh, and hang it up in a shady place, but near the haunts of the blow-fly. Where a large number of pheasants are reared an outhouse is specially provided, the incursions of sparrows being prevented by wire-work or netting. In a few days the maggots will attain a lively state of existence; but they require about a week to reach their full development to the green or soft state, and another week to reach their maturity, when they are large and fat, with black heads. Blow-flies are abroad after the beginning of May. The scouring of these gentles is effected by placing them for a few days in a mixture of bran and fine sand, slightly damp. By this process they are emptied of their contents, and rendered tough in their skins; in which state they will not purge


birds. When the object is to preserve them for many days, they must be kept in a very cool place, such as a cellar, or they even should be buried in the earth. Without attention to this precaution they are almost sure to assume the chrysalis condition, in which stage they are useless for feeding. A low temperature, and the exclusion of air and light retard this development; but in most cases the young birds will require the gentles as fast as they are sufficiently scoured. The curds used are those to be obtained at any dairy.

As soon as the young birds are strong enough, which will be at the end of a few days, or perhaps a week, from the hatching, they will require a run on grass. For this select a dry field, with a south-western aspect if possible, but carefully avoiding such as are exposed to the east or north. A slope to the sun is generally preferred, as it allows the rain to run off as fast as it falls; but it is well to provide against the flooding of the coops by digging a trench above them to carry off the water sideways. The young birds are extremely fond of high grass, which not only sbelters them from the sun and from hawks, but allows them to find insects, so that it is well to leave parts of the field uncut. Broad paths must, however, be mown through it for the coops or rips, and on them, at intervals, the latter are placed, removing the bottom, and turning the sloping back towards the sun so as to give the hen shade. At first, till they are settled in their new abode, the birds are to be confined in the pen, but on the second day the flap (e, fig. 94) may be let quietly down, and the young birds will then gradually find their way out and wander among the grass. The call of the hen soon brings them back; and they should always be fed in the small run of the pen, where, also, spring water should be constantly kept, and changed regularly three times a day - it is a good plan to boil it. The flap of the run is shut at night, which keeps out rats and stoats; but the young birds must be let out at sunrise, when they should have their first feed. Every day the coop should be shifted to fresh ground, so as to avoid keeping them on that which has been stained. A shallow box of dust should be provided and moved near the pens to allow of the young birds dusting themselves, and this is more especially necessary with partridges. After the birds are six weeks old the food is gradually changed to barley, buckwheat, or split Indian corn.

KEEPING TAME PHEASANTS. As the young birds grow to full size and are able to fly, they may either be removed to large pens, covered with netting if they are to be turned out, or they may have the feathers of one of their wings cut, and will then be easily kept in by hurdles without covering overhead. Pheasants do not require shelter of any sort beyond that which will be afforded by light faggots, or other similar materials. The hurdles should be made of split spruce laths for perpendiculars, while the horizontal rails must be of rough oak; they should be about seven feet high, and should each have a strong slanting prop fixed to the middle rail (tig. 95), by which they may be supported while they are being fixed to one another, after which the whole square is perfectly firm. Each hurdle may be made ten or twelve feet long, and four of these being arranged at right angles, and their corners tied securely tegether, leave a square within them of sufficient area for one lot of birds consisting of a cock and from three to five hens. A larger quantity should not be put together for breeding; and it is better to add three more hurdles to one of the sides for a second pen, than to place more than six adult birds in a larger one.

These pens should be moved to


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fresh ground every month, except during the laying season; and for this purpose a door should be made in one out of each four, which will also admit the keeper at all times to the interior. When, therefore, the pen is first put up, take care and place the door on that side where the removal is to be effected, and then by fixing three other hurdles to that side, another pen is completed, and the keeper, opening the door between the old and the new, enters the former and gently drives the birds into the latter, shuts the door, and takes down the three hurdles which were used for the first pen, and are now no longer wanted. When the square is completed a strong rail is tied to four props across the middle space, and over this faggots, or loose brushwood are arranged so as to leave a run underneath, when the birds are secure from interference. If the birds are to have their wings cut no net is necessary, but if not a common net is fixed over the top, and in that way the birds are confined.

When the feathers of the wings are to be cut, the birds must be caught; and for this purpose a net, something like a landing net for fish, is to be employed, but larger. A strong

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