Our Common Birds and how to Know Them

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C. Scribner's sons, 1891 - Birds - 216 pages
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Page 151 - When we reflect on this struggle, we may console ourselves with the full belief, that the war of nature is not incessant, that no fear is felt, that death is generally prompt, and that the vigorous, the healthy, and the happy survive and multiply.
Page 24 - IT is, I find, in zoology as it is in botany: all nature is so full, that that district produces the greatest variety which is the most examined.
Page 25 - He noted, what repeatedly befell him, that, after receiving from a distance a rare plant, he would presently find the same in his own haunts. And those pieces of luck which happen only to good players happened to him. One day, walking with a stranger, who in [p. 242] quired where Indian arrow-heads could be found, he replied, "Everywhere," and, stooping forward, picked one on the instant from the ground.
Page 150 - The shock produced a stupor similar to that which seems to be felt by a mouse after the first shake of .the cat. It caused a sort of dreaminess, in which there was no sense of pain nor feeling of terror, though quite conscious of all that was happening. It was like what patients partially under the influence of chloroform describe, who see all the operation, but feel not the knife.
Page 150 - Growling horribly close to my ear, he shook me as a terrier dog does a rat. The shock produced a stupor, similar to that which seems to be felt by a mouse after the first shake of the cat. It caused a sort of dreaminess, in which there was no sense of pain or feeling of terror, though quite conscious of all that was happening.
Page 127 - Dead trees love the fire. The bluebird carries the sky on his back. The tanager flies through the green foliage as if it would ignite the leaves. • If I wish for a horse-hair for my compass-sight I must go to the stable; but the hair-bird, with her sharp eyes, goes to the road.
Page 167 - Twea, twea, twea-ee!" in the upward slide, and with the peculiar z-ing of summer insects, but not destitute of a certain plaintive cadence. It is one of the most languid, unhurried sounds in all the woods. I feel like reclining upon the dry leaves at once. Of the ovenbird, renamed the teacher-bird through the following accurate description: Commencing in a very low key, which makes him seem at a very uncertain distance, he grows louder and louder till his body quakes and his chant runs into a shriek,...
Page 104 - There is nothing more remarkable in the whole instinct of our Golden Robin than the ingenuity displayed in the fabrication of its nest, which is, in fact, a pendulous, cylindric pouch of five to seven inches in depth, usually suspended from near the extremities of the high drooping branches of trees (such as the elm, the pear, or apple tree, wild cherry, weeping willow, tulip-tree, or buttonwood).
Page 71 - ... short. Birds of this remarkable genus feed much upon fruits, as well as insects, and also upon soft inner bark (cambium) ; they injure fruit-trees by stripping off the bark, sometimes in large areas, instead of simply boring holes. Of the several small species commonly called " sapsuckers," they alone deserve the name. In declaring war against woodpeckers, the agriculturist will do well to discriminate between this somewhat injurious and the highly beneficial species.
Page 25 - Ravine, Thoreau had a bad fall, and sprained his foot. As he was in the act of getting up from his fall, he saw for the first time the leaves of the Arnica mollis.

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