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white feathers in the tail. In every other respect, the colour excepted, their feathers are at good as tho9e of the males. It is very true, as Mr. Barrow says, that small stones are sometimes found in the ostriches' eggs; it is not, however, very common; and among all that I ever saw opened, I never met with one.

LOCUSTS.

(From the Same.)

We had scarcely passed the northern entrance to the kloof, when we perceived by our side one of those enormous swarms of travelling locusts which I had hitherto wished in vain to see. It had exactly the appearance of a vast snow-cloud, hanging on the slope of the mountain, from which the .snow was falling in very large flakes. I spurred my horse up the hill, to the place where I thought the swarm seemed'the thickest. When I was within a hundred paces of them, I heard the rushing noise occasioned by the flight of so many millions of insects: this constantly increased the nearer I approached; and when 1 got into the midst of them, it was, without any exaggeration, as loud as the dashing of the waters occasioned by the millwheel. Above, bclaw, and all around me, the air was filled with, and almost darkened by, these insects. They settled about the bodies of myself and my horse, till the latter was so much teased and fretted, that he became extremely restless, turning his back constantly towards the side on

which their flight was dh-ertai Every stroke of the riding-cat; swept twenty or thirty to the ground, and they lay there » thiek that it was impossible to take a step without trampling a number to death. I gathered up some for my collection, but found tbeai all injured; even those who Sew before me were obliged almost immediately to settle themsehw. Those that settled were indeed only the wounded of the party. such as had a leg or wing brakes in their flight by coming in costact with their neighbours: the* formed a very small part of the whole enormous mass. Those that flew the highest, rose to fifty or sixty feet above the ground; those which did not rise to more than twenty feet, rested at erm hundred paces, and then flew To again. They all took exactly the same course, not going wit!. the wind, but in an oblique direction against it, directly towardthc fields of the Hottentots. 1** very much alarmed for the Vouik corn; but on my return I tarn; that the swarm had done no mechief; it had gone over at the distance of a thousand paces from the fields. They never deviate from the straight line, so long as the same wind blows. The bushes around were already eaten quite bare, though the animals couH not have been long on the spK since an hour earlier our ea» had been grazing, without the persons who attended upon then having seen a single lwu-,; Finally, that I might compk* my survey, I rode against tt-' swarm so as to pass them, arfound that the train extended u length to between two and three thousand

thousand paces; in.breadth it could scarcely exceed a {mndred. It is difficult to conceive how so prodigious a number of these voracious insects can find sufficient nourishment, in so naked a country, till they arrive at maturity; since we must take it for granted that the number of the larva? greatly exceeds that of the perfect animal. Probably sudden prolific showers, which for. a •while renew vegetation, may at the same time assist the hatching of the eggs, and the developejnent of the young larva? j yet this supposition is not a little contradicted by the observation that such swarms are seen at all times of the year, even after a long and general drought, and in countries the most bare of vegetation. On my first journey I once found in the lower Bokkeveld a whole field strewed over with the larvae of another sort of insect: they sat by hundreds on a bush, gnawing the rind, and the woody fibres; every thing around was devoured, and nothing was to be seen which appeared capable of affording subsistence to these creatures: it was evident that they must have been hatched upon the spot. We may therefore presume that the eggs are hatched very suddenly, and that the young animals require little nourishment; that it is not till they become perfect, at the time when vegetation becomes more abundant, that their extreme voracity commences. The locusts of southern M'rici have., hitherto been supposed the. same as those which infest Asia and some of the southeasterly, narts,, of Europe, gryllus tuiatu-fiti buto^he examination Vp*. LVil.

of some specimens which I preserved,' they are determined to be a very different species] 'aria^they now bear their appropriate name of Gryllus devastator.

GIRAFFE.

(From the Same.)

We had scarcely travelled an hour, when the Hottentots called our attention to some object on a hill not far off on the left hand, which seemed to move. The head of something appeared almost immediately after, feeding on the other side of the hill; and it was concluded that it must be that of a very large animal: this was confirmed, when, after going scarcely a hundred steps farther, two tall swan- necked giraffes stood almost directly before us. Our transports were indescribable, particularly as the creatures themselves did not perceive us, and therefore gave us full time to examine them, and to prepare for an earnest and serious chace. The one was smaller, and of a paler colour than the other, which Vischer immediately pronounced to be a colt, the child of the larger. Our horses were saddled, and our guns loaded in an instant, when the chace commenced. Since all the wild animals of Africa run against the wind, so that we were pretty well assured which way the course of these objects of our ardent wishes would be directed, Vischer, as the most experienced hunter, separated himself from us, and, by a circuit, took the animals in front, that he might stop their «K * '"• * ■ way,

way, while I was to attack them in the rear. I had almost got within shot of them, when they perceived me, and begun to fly in the directiou we expected. But their flight was so beyond all idea extraordinary, that between laughter, astonishment, and delight, I almost forgot my designs upon the harmless creatures' Uvea. From the extravagant disproportion between the height of the fore to that of the hinder parts, and of the height to the length of the animal, great obstacles are presented to its moving with any degree of swiftness. When Le Vaillant asserts that he has seen the giraffe trot, he spares me any farther trouble in proving that this animal never presented itself alive before him. How in the world should an animal, so disproportioned in height, before and behind, trot? The giraffe can only gallop, as I can affirm from my own experience, having seen between forty and fif'tv at different times, both in their slow and hasty movement, for they only step when they are feeding quietly. But this gallop is so heavy and unwieldy, and seems performed with so much labour, that in a distance of more than a hundred paces, comparing the ground cleared, with the size of the animal, and of the surrounding objects, it might almost be said that a man goes faster on foot, The heaviness of the movement is only compensated by the length of the steps, each ene of which clears on a moderate computation, from twelve to sixteen feet. On account of the size and weight of the foreparts, the giraffe cannot move forwards through

the power of the muscles alone; he must bend back his long neck, by which the centre of gravity is thrown somewhat more behind, so as to assist his march; then alone it is possible for him to raise his fore-legs from the ground. The neck is however thrown back without being itself bent, it remains stiff and erect, and moves in this erect form slowly backwards and forwards with the motion of the legs, almost like the motion of a ship dancing upon the waves, or, according to the phrase used by the sailors, arreling-ship. It is not difficult to overtake the giraffe with a tolerably good horse, especially if the ground be advantageous, and somewhat on the rise,-■ for it will be easily comprehended that it mu~it be extremely difficult for a creature of such a structure u move upon the ascent.

PITCH WELLS.

(From Dr. Hollands Travels intkt) Ionian Isles, SfC.

The pitch wells of Zante are a natural phenomenon, which may be regarded as among the antiquities of the isle; since they were known and described as early as the time of Herodotus, and are mentioned since by Pausanias, Pliny, and other authors. Theyare«ituated about ten miles from the city, and near the shore of the bay, on the southern side of the island. We visited this spot, which is called Chieri, a day or two after our arrival in Zante. A small tract of marshy land, stretching down to the sea, and surrounded on other sides by low eminences of limestone, or a bituminous •hale, is the immediate situation of the springs; they are found in three or four different places of the morass, appearing as small pools; the sides and bottom of which are thickly lined with petroleum, in a viscid state, and, by agitation, easily raised in large flakes to the surface. The most remarkable of these pool* is one circular in form, about fifty feet in circumference, and a few feet in depth, in which the petroleum has accumulated to a considerable quantity. The water of the spring, which is doubtless the means of conveying the mineral upwards to the surface, forms a small stream from the pool, sensibly impregnated with bituminous matter, which it deposits in parts as it flows through the morass; the other pools are of similar character. The petroleum is collected generally once in the year; and the average quantity obtained from the springs is said to be about a hundred barrels; it is chiefly used for the caulking of vessels, not being found to answer equally well for cordage.

TUB SIROCCO.

(From the Same.)

A sudden and violent Sirocco came on from the south-east, carrying our vessel forwards eight or ten miles an hour; but bringing with it, at the same time, all the distressing effects which characterize this extraordinary wind; a jense of general oppression, a dull head-ache, aversion to mo

tion, and lassitude and uneasiness in the limbs. Those who are strongly susceptible to electrical changes in the air, such as precede and attend a thunder-storm, will easily understand the effects of the Sirocco, as an increased degree of the sensations which they then experience; and, in fact, though 1 am not aware that the opinion has been held, there are many reasons for believing that the peculiarity of the Sirocco wind is chiefly an electrical one, and not depending either on temperature, an undue proportion of carbonic acid, the presence of .minute particles of sand, or any of the causes which have b«en generally assigned to it. That increased temperature is not the cause, may be inferred from the thermometer being little, if at all, raised by the access of the wind, and from much greater heat often occurring without this singularity of effect. The air of the Sirocco, as it comes from the sea, is not a dry one, but in general thick, and loaded with moisture; much of which appears to be deposited where it passes over any considerable extent of land. 1 have scarcely, in any instance, observed this wind, in any marked degree, without noticing, at the same time, some electrical phenomena in connection with it i to sny nothing of the effects upon the body, which, as mere sensations, may perhaps be doubtfully received in evidence. In the present instance, off the coast of Ithaca, the sky, which had been obscured by the approach of evening, was suddenly kindled, as the wind came on, by broad Hashes or gleams of electric light, which seemed toprevade the whote SKt hemisphere.

hemisphere, and, at intervals, shifting rapidly among the broken

were so bright as to allow the intervals of the clouds, and near

reading of the smallest print. At the horizon, assuming at times

the same time I observed a mass the appearance of a chain of light,

of clouds gathering in the north- whieh seemed to pass from a higher

west, the quarter to which the to a lower surface of cloud, uxl

wind was blowing, and here the often continued to tike eye for two

electrical appearances became pe- or three seconds. culiarly vivid, flashes of light

VSEFIT

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