Image from page 217 of "Wild wings; adventures of a camera-hunter among the larger wild birds of North America on sea and land" (1905)
Authors: Job, Herbert Keightley, 1864-1933
Contributing Library: American Museum of Natural History Library
Digitizing Sponsor: Biodiversity Heritage Library
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hundred gulls were flying about excitedly, making a greatracket. Their nests were scattered about on the ground,usuallv at the foot of a tree or under a young spruce. Twoor three large, drab-colored eggs, spotted with black, are theusual laying, but many of the nests were empty. Fishermenhad recently landed and robbed them. On the previous visit the gulls had boldly circled aboutclose over ones head. Since then they have been robbedand shot until they are now nearly as shy as hawks. Indeed,in the first colony visited, I could not get near enough toa gull to secure a single satisfactory photograph, and I feltpretty well disheartened, especially after making such aneffort to reach the island. Retracing our steps, we followed the shore along thenorthern end. Groups of seals, or single ones, basked upon l82 WILD WINGS the rocks that stood out of the water. Pairs or groups ofEider Ducks were swimming here and there not far otl therock-strewn shore, the white-backed males very distinguished
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IlF.RRINc; (UI I. LI-.WINr, IKK UKAIl TREE in appearance, compared with their sombre brown mates.This was their nesting-time. The female crawls up from theshore into the thick of the small spruces, and beneath thetangle deposits from fi\e to eight large, smooth, yellowisheggs, surrounding them with a profusion of down plucked AMID SPRUCES AND SEA-GIRT ROCKS 183 from her own breast. On so large an island the nests arevery hard to find. We spent a long time beating the busheswith clubs, hoping that some sitting bird would dash out insudden fright. The main chance was that the dog wouldscent one, but the animal was old, and tired from an earlyhunt on his own hook, and he took but a listless interest inthe search, which was not successful. After lunching by a spring-hole, stared at meanwhile bya band of the numerous sheep that graze at large upon theisland, we went on and came to another gull colony just backfrom the shore. Rambling ofif from the rest of the party,I found the birds less w
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