Tropical Nature: An Account of the Most Remarkable Phenomena of Life in the Western Tropics

Thomas Nelson, 1875 - 178 páginas

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Página 47 - ... or slaves of the Christians. The prisoners were carried to San Fernando, in the hope that the mother would be unable to find her way back to her home by land. Far from those children who had accompanied their father on the day in which she had been carried off, this unhappy woman showed signs of the deepest despair.
Página 48 - She succeeded, by the help of her teeth, in breaking them entirely ; disappeared during the night, and at the fourth rising sun was seen at the mission of San Fernando, hovering around the hut where her children were confined. " What that woman performed," added the missionary who gave us this sad narrative, "the most robust Indian would not have ventured to undertake!
Página 83 - Delight itself, however, is a weak term to express the feelings of a naturalist who, for the first time, has wandered by himself in a Brazilian forest.
Página 47 - In 1797 the missionary of San Fernando had led his Indians to the banks of the Rio Guaviare, on one of those hostile incursions, which are prohibited alike by religion and the Spanish laws. They found in an Indian hut a Guahiba mother with three children, two of whom were still infants. They were occupied in preparing the flour of cassava. Resistance was impossible ; the father was gone to fish, and the mother tried in vain to flee with her children. Scarcely had she reached...
Página 84 - In England any person fond of natural history enjoys in his walks a great advantage, by always having something to attract his attention ; but in these fertile climates, teeming with life, the attractions are so numerous that he is scarcely able to walk at all.
Página 149 - ... of Santo Tomas, whence he was scared away by the carrion hawks. On alighting in the street, a negro attempted to catch him for the purpose of bringing him home ; upon which he seized the poor creature by the ear, and tore it completely off. He then attacked a child in the street (a negro boy of three years old), threw him on the ground, and knocked him on the head so severely with his beak, that the child died in consequence of the injuries. I hoped to have brought this bird alive to Europe ;...
Página 64 - The men believed they had seen about fifteen dead ostriches, part of one of which we had for dinner ; and they said that several were running about evidently blind in one eye. Numbers of smaller birds, as ducks, hawks, and partridges, were killed. I saw one of the latter with a black mark on its back, as if it had been struck with a paving-stone. A fence of thistle-stalks round the hovel was nearly broken down, and my informer, putting his head out to see what was the matter, received a severe cut,...
Página 151 - Vultures, before it had descended to partake of the savoury food which had attracted it to the place. Soon after this, another King of the Vultures, came, and after he had stuffed himself almost to suffocation, the rest pounced down upon the remains of the serpent, and stayed there till they had devoured the last morsel.
Página 160 - Bouradi makes, is like the clear yelping of a puppy dog, and you fancy he says " pia-po-o-co," and thus the South American Spaniards call him Piapoco. All the Toucanets feed on the same trees on which the Toucan feeds, and every species of this family of enormous bill, lays its eggs in the hollow trees. They are social, but not gregarious. You may sometimes see eight or ten in company, and from this you...
Página 149 - I had a condor, which, when he first came into my possession, was very young. To prevent his escape, as soon as he was able to fly, he was fastened by the leg to a chain, to which was attached a piece of iron of about six pounds weight. He had a large court to range in, and he dragged the piece of iron about after him all day. When he was a year and a half old he flew away with the chain and iron attached to his leg, and perched on the spire of the church of Santo Tomas, wh'ence he was scared away...

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