Handbook to The Birds of Australia, Volume 1

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author, 1865 - Birds
 

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Page 444 - At times the male will chase the female all over the aviary, then go to the bower, pick up a gay feather or a large leaf, utter a curious kind of note, set all his feathers erect, run round the bower and become so excited that his eyes appear ready to start from his head; he continues opening first one wing...
Page 443 - ... bower itself is built. This, like the platform on which it is placed and with which it is interwoven, is formed of sticks and twigs, but of a more slender and flexible description, the tips of the twigs being so arranged as to curve inwards and nearly meet at the top ; in the interior of the bower, the materials are so placed that the forks of the twigs are always presented outwards, by which arrangement not the slightest obstruction is offered to the passage of the birds.
Page 122 - Wales is acquainted, for, independently of its large size, its voice is so extraordinary as to be unlike that of any other living creature. In its disposition it is by no means shy, and when any new objects are presented to its notice — such as a party traversing the bush, or pitching their tent...
Page 451 - Evident indications of high instinct are manifest throughout the whole of the bower and decorations formed by this species, particularly in the manner in which the stones are placed within the bower, apparently to keep the grasses with which it is lined fixed firmly in their places. These stones diverge from the mouth of the run on each side so as to form little paths, while the immense collection of decorative materials is placed in a heap before the entrance of the avenue, the arrangement being...
Page 5 - Parrakeet (Mclupsittacus undulatus), which prior to 1838 was so rare in the southern parts of Australia that only a single example had been sent to Europe, arrived in that year in such countless multitudes on the Liverpool Plains, that I could have procured any number of specimens, and more than once their delicate bodies formed an excellent article of food for myself and party.
Page 299 - I have been surrounded by these birds, pouring forth their loud and liquid calls for days together, without being able to get a sight of them, and it was only by the most determined perseverance and extreme caution that I was enabled to effect this desirable object...
Page 9 - Bustard, whose weight is twice that of its enemy, and who finds a more secure asylum on the extensive plains of the interior than most animals, safe from its attacks; its tremendous stoop and powerful grasp, in fact, carry inevitable destruction to its victim, be it ever so large and formidable. The breeders of sheep find in this bird an enemy which commits extensive ravages among their lambs; and consequently in its...
Page 451 - I frequently found these structures at a considerable distance from the rivers, from the borders of which they could alone have procured the shells, and small, round pebbly stones ; their collection and transportation must, therefore, be a task of great labour and difficulty.
Page 299 - While among the bushes," says Mr. Gould, " I have been surrounded by these birds, pouring forth their loud and liquid calls for days together, without being able to get a sight of them ; and it was only by the most determined perseverance and extreme caution that...
Page 453 - These nests were formed of dead grass and parts of bushes, sunk a slight depth into two parallel furrows in sandy soil, and then nicely arched above. But the most remarkable fact connected with them was, that they were always full of broken shells, Ihrge heaps of which protruded from each extremity of the nest ; these were invariably sea-shells.

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