a bird collectors medley

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER IV. FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF A DUNLIN. I Belong to the ranks of the " inevitable " Dunlin, but I belong also to its small-beaked chestnut-coloured aristocracy, the inhabitants in spring time of the Yorkshire Fells. There are other members of our family—fat, country cousins, so to speak—who visit England in their thousands during migration without ever staying to breed in it; but we, the genuine Britishers, the Trojugenae, if we may so style ourselves, look down upon them, and when we do meet in autumn on the shores, we keep ourselves apart from their motley gatherings on the mud-flats, and frequent rather the small tidal drains at the edge of the saltings, sometimes, though not often, consorting with our near relations the Little Stints. It was late when I made my appearance on the Fells; the Grey Crows had robbed mother of her first clutch of eggs, and we were a second brood, but perhaps none the worse off on that account, since we escaped the drenching rain, which had killed off so many of our relatives in the early days of June. I remember admiring the beauty of the four egg-shells from which we had just emerged. The pale olive with its dark blotches shone beauteously in the morning sun, but mother and father soon made away with them, and then at once began to give us instructions in the art of feeding with one eye open and on the look-out for our constant enemies the birds of prey. Whenever any of us saw one of these in the distance, he gave the alarm in a low note, and we all crouched motionless amidst the tussocks until the marauder had passed out of sight. By great good fortune our family escaped unscathed, though two Merlins made sad havoc amongst some Titlarks which had just left their nests higher up upon the moor. We now began to pay more attention ...
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