Scientific American; Supplement Volume 34

Scientific American; Supplement Volume 34

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1892 edition. Excerpt: ...and foes. The owls and hawks from an elevated position can command a fine view of the surroundings. With all aquatic birds the sitter almost invariably occupies a position presenting toward the water. Shore birds, as the sandpipers, rest on their nests in a position to best view the stream or pond. Rails and gallinules face the water, the latter usually building so that they can plunge from their homes directly into their favorite channels. The loon, who builds, or rather forms, its nest away out from shore in a mass of vegetable matter, usually the foundation of an old muskrat's house, invariably faces the open, deep water. Prom that position it can slide into the lake at a second's notice. Any one can prove this position of the leon by examining the premises when the owner is away. The nest proper is merely a troughlike depression, evidently formed by the bird's efforts at hollowing, rather than in building up the sides. This oblong depression is a foot and a half long and over ten inches wide, and the eggs are always placed from three-fifths to two-thirds of the distance from the front end. In a large number of nests of the brown pelican, which I examined on an island in Indian River, Florida, all gave evidence that the old birds sat in one position, usually with the front to the water. It was interesting to note that, although the very young birds, which occupied many of the nests, assumed no regular position, the larger young nearly all presented toward the shore. In the case of ruffed grouse and quail, the position occupied while on the nest is invariably that which gives the best view of the surroundings from the more or less concealed retreat. Who ever heard of a grouse's nest where the old bird faced into the brush pile or more

Product details

  • Paperback | 948 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 47mm | 1,656g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236871022
  • 9781236871022