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birds. Among the rocks overgrown with lichen, and in the tall meadow grasses, as well as in the trees and cosy crannies, bird houses may be found. Birds adapt themselves to their surroundings, use the material at hand, and prove by their happy ingenuity that "only poor workmen find fault with their tools."



Part 1.


1. On a hot summer day it is cool and pleasant to walk by the waterside.

2. On the lake in the park we may see some beautiful swans. The swan, like the duck, belongs to the goose family.

3. The swan is the largest bird found in this country. We like best to see it in the water, because it is such a graceful swimmer. It seldom comes on land, and always looks rather awkward there. When sailing on the water its size and beauty make it, indeed, a noble-looking bird.


4. Like geese, swans feed on plants; they live chiefly on the roots and seeds of water-plants, and on the grass that grows near the brink. They hiss when they are angry; and they strike with their wings just as geese do.

5. The feathers are snowy white, the bill is red, and the legs are black. Although they are tame birds, swans are allowed to make their own nests of reeds and rushes on some quiet part of the bank, not far from the water's edge.

6. The hen lays six or seven eggs. Both the male and the female will defend their nest with great bravery. A young swan is called a cygnet.

7. Now let us leave the park and go out of the town, away into the country. There we shall find a clear running stream. We will walk along its banks for a mile or two.

8. What a soft, cool carpet we have to walk upon! The pretty pattern in it is made by dots of daisies and patches of buttercups. The river banks here are steep, and tall wild flowers fringe the water.

9. Here dainty mosses and graceful vines clothe the rugged rocks, while the purple iris waves its flag-like leaves as scepters over its marshy realm, and nods its kingly head in approval to the message of the breeze.


Part 2.

in'-ter-est-ing nerv'-ous quest nymph

has'-socks ex'-qui-site ex-am'-ine charm'-ing pro-trud'-ing glimpse gleam'-ing move'-ments

1. How restful and quiet it is by the pond! We must take care where we step, for the ground is soft and damp. If we are quiet, too, we may be well repaid, for there are some very interesting but timid creatures along the waterside.

2. Look out on the ragged hassocks of grass just beyond! See those brownish looking lumps! Are they bunches of grass or stones? Surely not, for now some of them are moving and we can see their long, protruding necks. Are they turtles? Yes, they are really turtles that have come up, from their home in the mud below, to get a sun-bath.

3. Now peep over into the cattails and see that roll of grass so carefully hung among them. Watch quietly, you may find out what it is. Suddenly a tiny bird flies out of a hole in the side. The long bill and nervous movement tell at once that it is a marsh wren, and the queer little roll of grass is its nest.

4. What a strange bird note, "con-quer-ee!

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