African Adventure Stories

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C. Scribner's Sons, 1914 - Hunting - 299 pages
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Page 61 - Albert, we came to a village near which lived a "rogue" elephant that had terrorized the people for weeks. He visited the gardens nearly every night, wrecked huts, destroyed crops, and had killed one man. Getting Rid of a "Rogue" No sooner had we passed through the usual ceremony of greeting the chief of the district than he appealed to Colonel Roosevelt to rid his people of their pest. For several days prior to our arrival the chief had stationed men to watch the brute in anticipation of our coming,...
Page 67 - Heller seldom see more than a few yards into the thicket and he is likely to overlook an elephant standing a short distance away, which on scenting him is quite as liable to charge as not. October and November are the best months of the year to study elephants at close range in the bamboo belts on the high mountains, for it is then that the cows leave the lowlands to feed upon When resting or sleeping elephants stand huddled together, but when they start out to feed they scatter and the hunter can...
Page 79 - ... half of camp and for over an hour we watched them through the glasses. It was about ten o'clock in the forenoon, so probably they were on their way to water at the Nile. There were only young bulls, cows, and calves in the herd and they must have scented our camp for very soon they seemed to become suspicious and after wandering about started back over the route they had come. When in the open country they spread out and walked abreast, but as soon as a thicket was reached they dropped behind...
Page 64 - ... lying here and there on the ground, and roots that had been dug up to eat. In one place where a large herd of elephants had passed through an acacia grove to water at the Nile, the uprooted and torn down trees appeared as though a cyclone had swept over them. The acacia tree is a species of thorn tree with spines three and four inches long. The thorns produce a poisonous effect on the flesh which lasts for several days, yet the elephants fed extensively on them, thorns and all. All through the...
Page 59 - Unless the lawis changed, elephants with tusks larger than this may be exterminated from those parts of Africa accessible to white men, but there are larger areas of country "inside" that have been little explored, where big tuskers are yet found in considerable numbers. Young bulls, cows and calves are still plentiful and always will be, for they have no commercial value, are seldom molested by the natives, and the danger of elephant hunting is so great that few white men care to shoot many of them...
Page 75 - ... resting he may first be warned of danger by a strong pungent odor, or he may hear the rumble of their stomachs and other sounds caused by the process of digestion. The hearing of elephants is very acute, but in regions inhabited by natives they become accustomed to the human voice and scarcely heed them, as already recounted in the case of the rogue elephant killed by the Colonel. We were finishing our last day's march to Lake Albert and passed a village where the people were laughing, singing,...
Page 76 - ... that will catch his wind and give the alarm. Often he sends his gunbearer up a tree or to the top of an ant hill to look about. So long as the elephants' trunks are down there is little danger, but when he sees the U-shaped curve of a proboscis waving in the air over the top of the elephant grass, he knows that if its owner has not actually scented him, it is at least suspicious of danger and is feeling for his scent. Then when another and another appears he is certain that the warning has been...
Page 96 - I realized that my gun-bearer, in the excitement of the moment, had failed to raise the hammers. "Before I could lower the rifle from my shoulder, the brute was upon me ! With a scream of rage he twined his trunk about my body, and, lifting me high above his head, brandished me about in the air as though I were a feather. Every instant, I expected to be hurled fifty feet or more through space, which I welcomed as the only possible likelihood of escape.
Page 68 - ... for a big elephant with a small one is proportionately peevish and a person can never tell when this peevishness will suddenly be thrust upon him. I must admit that a peculiar feeling always passed over me whenever I heard a commotion in the bamboos near by and the gun-bearer frantically seized the shotgun from my hand and replaced it with the cocked rifle. Every instant I expected to see an elephant rush out, and I wondered whether I had better shoot for the heart through the chest, for the...
Page 77 - ... is not of much use beyond fifty yards. Time and again men have stood by the side of a tree, crouched by a bush, or lain flat on an ant hill while a herd of infuriated elephants charged about only a few yards away. While out hunting white rhinoceroses in the Lado country on the White Nile, we ran on a herd of nine elephants. When first seen they were on a burnt tract about four hundred yards away but they gradually drew nearer until they were within two hundred yards. We did not wish to kill them,...

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