А. Genchev1, H. Lukanov1*, I. Penchev2
1Department of Animal Science – monogastric and other animals, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2Department of Morphology, Physiology and Nutrition, Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
(Manuscript received 29 November 2017; accepted for publication 23 January 2018)
Abstract. Slaughter traits and possibilities for production of manually deboned meat were investigated in Japanese quails. The study was conducted at the Poultry breeding unit of the Faculty of Agriculture, Trakia University – Stara Zagora. Slaughter yield and relative shares of the different cuts with bones and deboned breast and thigh meat were determined in 35-day-old Pharaoh Japanese quails. It was found out that the grill percentage (carcass without skin and giblets) was 58-64.5% of live weight. Breast with bone comprised 36.5-49.9% of grill weight, and thighs: 23.2-32.4%. From one quail, about 75.6-110 g deboned breast and thigh meat could be produced, e.g. 50-67% of grill weight. Breast meat yield was 47-72 g from one bird equal to 31.2-42.8% of grill weight. At 35 days of age, abdominal fat percentage was relatively low (0.8% of grill weight) with bird-to-bird variation of 0.12 and 2.1%. It could be concluded that Japanese quails are a promising species that could be marketed both as whole-body carcass (grill) or as manually deboned cuts (breast with bone and thighs). The ratio of deboned meat and bones plus remaining muscle tissue was 5.9 and 4.5 for breast and thighs, respectively.