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TAE RHINOCEROS OF JAVA.
“ The animal rapidly increased in size : in the year 1817, having been confined at Surakarta about nine or ten months, the dimensions, as already stated, were nine feet in length, and four feet three inches in height at the rump. In 1821 it had acquired the height of five feet seven inches. This information I received from my friend Mr. Stavers, who is now in England, on a visit from the interior of Java; and he favoured me further with the following detail, which completes the history of the individual whose figure is annexed to this article. Having considerably increased in size, the ditch of three feet in breadth was insufficient for confining it; but leaving the inclosure, it frequently passed to the dwellings of the natives, destroying the plantations of fruit-trees and culinary vegetables which always surround them. It likewise terrified those natives that accidentally met with it, and who were unacquainted with its appearance and habits. But it showed no ill-natured disposition, and readily allowed itself to be driven back to the inclosure, like a buffalo. The excessive excavations which it made by continually wallowing in the mire, and the accumulation of putrefying vegetable matter, in the process of time became offensive at the entrance of the palace, and its removal was ordered by the emperor to a small village near the confines of the capital, where in the year 1821 it was accidently drowned in a rivulet.
“ The rhinoceros lives gregarious in many parts of Java. It is not limited to a peculiar region or climate, but its range extends from the level of the ocean to the summit of mountains of considerable elevation. I noticed it at Tangung, near the confines of the Southern Ocean, in the districts of the native princes, and on the summit of the high peaks of the Priangan Regencies; but it prefers high situations. It is not generally distributed, but is tolerably numerous in circumscribed spots, distant from the dwellings of man, and covered with a profuse vegetation. On the whole, it is more abundant in the western than in the eastern districts of the island. Its retreats are discovered by deeply excavated passages, which it forms along the declivities of mountains and hills. I found these occasionally of great depth and extent.
“ In its manners, the rhinoceros of Java is comparatively mild. It is not unfrequently met in the wilds by Europeans and by natives. No instance of its showing a disposition to make an attack has come to my knowledge;-being the largest animal in Java, its passions are not roused, as in many parts of India, by contentions with the elephant. It is rarely seen in a domestic state, but it is occasionally decoyed into pits, and destroyed. Our animal rambles chiefly at night, and
TAE RHINOCEROS OF JAVA.
often occasions serious injury to the plantations of coffee and pepper,
which are laid out in the fertile districts selected for its retreats.
“ The horns and skin are employed for medicinal purposes by the natires *.
The Baron Cuvier observes that the folds of the hide are observable in the fætal animal. These folds differ in their arrangement from those of the Indian rhinoceros; they are altogether wanting on the head, the integument of which is rugous and covered by a cuticle divided into small angular plates like those on the body; the fold behind the occiput is situated close to the head; another stretches like a hood transversely across the middle of the shoulders, and extends on either side beneath the throat, so as almost to form a continuous circle. A second doubling, which also nearly begirts the body, is situated behind the shoulders : a transverse fold exists above each fore-leg, but there is no fold in the direction of the spine, as in the Indian rhinoceros : a large fold crosses the region of the crupper, and descends on either side in front of the thighs : a slighter depression advances forwards upon the thigh on either side from the root of the tail.
This species has hitherto been found only in the Island of Java. It is called by the Malays, Badak.
The extended and minute comparisons which have been instituted between the several bones of this species and those of the Indian rhinoceros, prove incontrovertibly the specific difference of the two animals. These observations, with figures of the skeletons, &c., are contained in the second volume of the great work by Cuvier on Fossil Remains.
The extinct species whose osseous remains have hitherto been collected and compared, are four in number. First, The rhinoceros described by Pallas in the Commentaries of the Petersburg Academy (1773). Not only are its bones found scattered abundantly over Siberia, but the entire carcass, enveloped in its hairy hide, has been preserved from the ravages of time, frozen up in the ice on the banks of the Wiluji, a river which opens into the Lena. This rhinoceros had two long horns, which were supported by a strong bony, instead of gristly, partition of the nostrils; hence the name, which Cuvier has given to this species, of tichorrhinus. This enormous species appears to have extended its wanderings into Germany, France, and even England, in all which countries its bones are occasionally found.
The remains of the second extinct species abound in Italy, principally in the Val d'Arno in Tuscany, and in the valley
• Zoological Researches in Java.
REMARKS ON THE ALBATROSS AND PETREL.
of P6 in Lombardy, mingled with the bones of elephants and hippopotamuses. It bore also two horns on the nose, but had not the bony partition of the nostrils : it also wanted incisive teeth ;-in all of which characters it approximates to the living two-horned species of Africa ; but its nostrils are much narrower, and the bones of the nose thinner : it is termed Rhi"
The third species (Rhinoceros incisivus,) is known only by its enormous incisive teeth, which could only have belonged to an animal as large as the two fossil species we have just mentioned, which are totally devoid of this kind of teeth.
Lastly, A fossil species, with incisive teeth, not larger than a common hog, has been discovered; teeth and numerous bones, not only of adult but of old individuals, have been found in France : M. Cuvier denominates it Rhinoceros mi
REMARKS ON THE ALBATROSS AND PETREL.
[From Freycinet's · Voyage autour du Monde.'] The ocean has its own peculiar birds as well as the land. Compelled to traverse incessantly its solitudes to obtain their subsistence, they are endowed with a wonderful power of flight; so that in a few hours they are able to cross immense distances, and to betake themselves to those places to which their instinct directs them. Among these numerous tribes there exist distinctions of manners as decided as the physical characters by which they are classified; and this induces us to give the name of Birds of the Ocean (oiseaux pelagiens), properly so called, to the petrels and the albatrosses. The former are found in every sea, under every meridian, and in almost every latitude. Except the short time which they devote to rearing their young, all the rest of their life is occupied in traversing the ocean, and laboriously seeking in the midst of storms, a scanty sustenance, almost as soon digested as procured; which seems to place them under subjection to a single duty, that of obtaining nourishment.
Boobies (Sula Bassana), Noddies (Sterna), Men of War Birds (Pelecanus Aquilus, Linn.) and Tropic Birds (Phaëton erubescens), although they occasionally take long flights over the sea, do not deserve the name of Birds of the Ocean : they simply make excursions; and preferring their lonely cliffs to the rocking of the waves, they generally return to them every evening
The discrimination of the several species of Albatross has become a matter of great difficulty, from the many different
names that successive travellers have bestowed upon them,
It is certain that fish do serve for food to the albatross and petrel, although they were never seen pursuing the flying fish, which are said to fall a prey to them when they leave the deep, and, betaking themselves to their wings to avoid the enemy in the water, only encounter a new danger in the albatross; nor were any remains, either of these or of the mollusca,—which, as it were, cover these seas, and would alone be sufficient to satisfy one of these birds for a whole day,-ever found in their stomachs. We have seen them surrounded with Sea-blubbers, Physaliæ, Salpæ, &c., but these afforded them no nourishment; they invariably sought other food. This was not the case with cuttlefish and calmars, fragments of which were constantly found in their stomachs.
One circumstance which could not escape notice during our long voyages, is the habit, we should almost say the necessity, which these birds are under of frequenting rough seas, The tempest itself does not alarm them; and when the wind is blowing most furiously they may be seen wheeling about without appearing at all affected by it. When, on the other hand, the face of the ocean is smoothed by a calm, they fly to other regions, again to appear with the return of winds and storms. No doubt the reason of this is, that the agitation of the waves brings to their surface those marine animals which serve for food to these birds. It is from the same reason that they keep near the eddying and disturbance occasioned by the passing of a vessel through the water. This design was clearly demonstrated to us when approaching
REMARKS ON THE ALBATROSS AND PETREL.
the Cape of Good Hope. We were accompanied by a great number of small petrels of the size of kingfishers, who were busy skinming the surface of the water in a line of exactly the width of our track. None were to be seen anywhere else. We took great care that nothing should be thrown from the corvette; and yet we saw them every instant, darting their bills into the water to seize some object which we were unable to distinguish.
The duration, the rapidity, the strength and the manner of flight of these birds in general, has been a subject of study and astonishment to us. Their agility in casting themselves, like a harpoon, on their prey, in raising it with their beak, their activity in striking the backs of the waves with their foot, or in traversing their long unsteady ridges, were sometimes the only spectacle which the solitudes of the ocean had to offer to us.
One of the peculiar characters of these Palmipedes (webfooted birds) is, that their flight is effected almost entirely by sailing as it were through the air. If they do sometimes flap their wings, it is in order to raise themselves more quickly; but such instances are rare. In the albatross, which was principally remarked upon, both from its great size and from its approaching nearer to the ships, it was observed that their long wings were concave underneath, and that they did not show any apparent vibration in whatever position the bird might be; whether when skimming the surface of the wave they regulated their flight by its undulations, or when rising into the air they described wide circles around the vessel.
Land birds of prey who fly in this way without moving their wings, are generally descending towards the earth when they adopt this mode of flight; while the petrel and the albatross easily raise themselves up into the air, turn quickly round by means of their tail, and go on in the face of the highest wind without their progress appearing to be at all diminished by its force, and without any apparent motion being imparted to their wings. But still we must admit that some impulse is given to the air which sustains them,-although we cannot perceive it, it is true, since it probably is exerted at the end of very long levers (at the extremities of their wings); for, otherwise, we cannot conceive how the progressive motion of the animal is accomplished. The exceedingly long wings which many of these birds possess, spoil the beauty of their figure when closed, as they produce a thickness in the posterior part of the body. It is when flying that they display themselves to the greatest advantage; and they are endowed with a wonderful strength to enable them to per