denominated this animal Goodsirea, after the distinguished anatomist of that name.

[ocr errors]

Dr Wright placed on the table specimens of the Gromia oviformis of Dujardin, a gigantic Rhizopod, which he had just discovered in his tanks, and which were displaying the long and intricate branching of their pseudopodia extended along the glass.

III. Notice of some Birds observed in the Island of Heligoland, in a

Letter from W. H. Gütke, Esq. Communicated by Professor Balfour. (Specimens were exhibited.)

We give the following extract from this communication :

“I have rentured upon sending a few birds obtained on this island (Heligoland), which probably may prove acceptable to your College Museum. They are a female of a species labelled in the College Museum, if I recollect right, Sylvia Tytleri, obtained somewhere in India; it is the Muscicapa parva of continental ornithologists, a bird visiting this island almost every autumn, and very early in spring. The specimen in the College Museum is an old male bird, the one I send an old female. To my great regret, I have not been able to obtain a more perfect sample of this pretty little flycatcher.” [The specific term of Rubecola Tytleri was given to the bird referred to above by the late Professor Jameson, when he exhibited it at a meeting of the Wernerian Natural History Society in April 1835. He considered that in the form of the bill it presented as it were a link between the genera Rubecola and Phoenicura. The bird was sent to the University Museum by Lieutenant Tytler from the Himalayan Mountains. It is also a bird of eastern Europe, and is very rarely seen in collections. The sexes are described by Gould in his “ Birds of Europe" as being similar in colour. This specimen resembles that figured by Gould as a young male. “The rest of the birds contained in the box belong to Sylvia cærulicula of Pallas (i. p. 480). I have furnished a sufficient number to exemplify all changes of plumage occasioned by age, season, and sex. This form of the bluethroated warbler frequents Heligoland rather abundantly every autumn; in spring its visits depend much on the weather; a warm and wet May brings great numbers of the finest adult birds, whereas with dry cold weather only some solitary individuals make their appearance, - unfortunately the month of May is generally cold and dry in this island. The common blue-throated warbler, with the white spot in the blue (Yarrell, i. p. 24), is here a very rare bird, scarcely one specimen turning up in every five years, in spite of its being quite a common species on the adjacent coast of North Germany." [It is apparently the Phænicura suecica of British naturalists with the white spot, which is believed to become red with age, as in some of the specimens exhibited ; and is a

rare bird in England, only a very few instances of its occurrence being on record. “I have added these few observations, as they perhaps may interest your ornithological friends. For the same purpose I have enclosed a catalogue of the birds that have, according to my observations, visited this island during the last fifteen years. If the small area of this place (scarcely half a square mile English) is borne in mind, the number of its feathered visitors will be admitted to be wonderful. As this catalogue (including some 320 species) contains the names of several specimens hitherto not known as European, it will, I trust, prove welcome to all who take an interest in the ornithology of our part of the globe.”



Falco peregrinus
„ subbuteo


Strix otus
» brachyotus

tengmalmi noctua

flammea Strix nyctea

nisoria Corvus corax

cornix corone) frugilegus monedula pica glandarius infaustus

caryocatactes anius excubitor

minor , collurio , phoenicurus

Lanius rufus

Sylvia hypolais
Muscica pa grisola


icterina (?) parva

trochilus Bombycilla garrula

rufa Sturnus vulgaris


javonica Turdus viscivorus

,bifasciata (mihi musicus

Regulus modessolitarius

tus) iliacus

(This bird I have pilaris

obtained eight times ruficollis in this island; four torquatus specimens being still merula

in my possession.) varius

Sylvia virens (Wilson) saxatilis

(Oct. 19,1858) rufus

Regulus pyrocephalus lividus

, favicapillus Sylvia philomela Troglodytes parvulus lucinia

Cinclus aquaticus
» (cyanecula

, pallasi
{leucocyanea Accentor alpinus

, modularis
rubecula Saxicola ænanthe

aurita phænicurus

stapazina erythrogastra (?) , leucura hortensis

rubicola atricapilla

rubetra orphea

Anthus Richardi nisoria

campestris cinerea

arboreus provincialis

cervinus turdoides

pratensis arundinacea

ludovicianus palustris

» littoralis

, aquaticus
certhiola Motacilla alba
„ aquatica

» phragmitis

sulphurea , caligata

citreola familiaris


[ocr errors]




[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


Motacilla citrinella Hirundo rufula Tringa minuta » melanocephala , urbica

Temminckii Alauda arvensis » riparia

subarquata alpestris » melba

? arboreus
» apus

Charadrius auratus

calidris » brachydactylus

virginicus » interpres calandra

longipes , platyrhincha Emberiza miliaria

squatarola n pugnax citrinella

vanellus Recurvirostra avosetta " cirlus

ædicnemus Hæmatopus ostralegus aureola

morinellus Cygnus musicus hortensis

asiaticus cæsia

(Pall.) Anser cinereus melanocephala

hiaticula schæniclus


segetum , pusilla (above


15 times) Tetrao cothurnix

, rustica (twice) Columba palumbis , hyperborea
, lapponica

, nivalis
» livia

torquatus Fringilla celebs


Anas boschas montifringilla Rallus aquaticus

nivalis Crex pratensis




canabina Fulica atra

, chloropus

linarea Grus virgo (once)

spinus Ardea cinerea

y purpurea

» stellaris

9 minuta

ferina Pyrrhula vulgaris



» erithrina
Ibis falcinellus

, enucleator Numenius arquatus

stelleri Loxia curvirostra

» phæopus

» molissima ,, leucoptera


spectabilis Parus major

Limosa melanura Mergus merganser ater , rufa

serrator ,, cæruleus Scolopax rustica

» albellus » palustris

» major

Carbo cormoranus biarmicus

gallinago » caudatus

gallinula Picus major Totanus fuscus

Larus marinus Certhia familiaris

, fuscus Cuculus canorus

glaucus Yunx torquilla


» leucoptherus Alcedo ispida

» ochropus

argentatus Merops apiaster

3 bypoleucos Larus canus Coracias garrula

, (Tringa) rufes- , trydactylus Oriolus galbula


, eburneus Upupa epops Phalaropus rufus

ridibundus Caprimulgus europæus , cinereus

minor Hirundo rustica Tringa alpina


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

calidris glottis


Larus Rossii

Lestris parasitica Podiceps minor Sterna cantiaca

, crepidata Colymbus glacialis , anglorum Procellaria glacialis

arcticus caspia


, septentrionalis Dougallii

pelagica Uria troile , hirundo

cinerea „tringria (?) macroura


„ arra leucoparia Podiceps cristatus

y grylle nigra

ruficollis Alca arctica minuta


,, torda Lestris cataractes


» alle » pomarina

IV. On the Danger of Hasty Generalization in Geology.

By ALEXANDER Bryson, Esq. After deducing examples of hasty generalization, and showing the frequency of erroneous conclusions drawn from scanty data, he gave the following example, of which he was himself guilty :-“ In the summer of 1856, a few friends joined me in a yachting expedition, to geologise among the islands of the Firth. Among other islands we visited Inch Mickery, and spent some hours in examining its structure. On the southern summit of the rock, a quantity of lead was found, filling up many of the interstices of the trap, which had, besides, a very scorched appearance. This circumstance naturally excited our curiosity, and many theories were formed to unriddle the enigma, but in vain. We carefully examined the island, but could not find a trace of a fire by which the lead could have been melted, except at such a distance from the rock as to render the idea of lead being carried so far without cooling inadmissible. Then the lead had run into the crevices of the rock, showing that it must have been very fluid when it fell. The absence of every trace of carbon around the lead, or at all near the rock itself, was very puzzling. About this time our talented member, Dr Heddle, had announced the occurrence of native lead embedded in meteoric iron, and I at once held my Inch Mickery lead as truly meteoric in its origin. This idea was rendered the more probable, as Dr George Wilson, who kindly analysed it, failed to detect in it any trace of silver. Professor Fleming, although he scouted the notion of its meteoric origin, kindly accompanied us on a second visit to the island. After a personal examination, he was unable to throw any light on the

subject, but advised us to wait patiently, and time might clear up the mystery. We would have rejoiced had he lived to learn the simple explanation only obtained a few months ago. The Board of Fisheries some years since took it into their heads that garvies were young herrings, and passed an act forbidding nets to be used the meshes of which were smaller than those employed in catching full-grown herrings. The officers of the Board happening to detect a boat using the illicit nets just off Inch Mickery, they, according to statute, took the offending nets to this rocky knoll and burned them. The leaden sinkers attached to the nets supplied my meteoric lead, and the twine yielded sufficient fuel to fuse it.

V. Notes on some points in the Natural History of the West Coast of

Ross-shire. By John Alex. STEWART, Esq., Lochcarron. The first part of this paper was occupied with an inquiry into the food and some points of the natural history of the limpet.' Besides the common species, Patella vulgata, Mr Stewart had detected the finer species, P. athletica (which had hitherto been chiefly found in the southern coasts of Britain), in great abundance upon the coasts of Ross-shire and Skye. He satisfactorily proved that the food of the common limpet was not confined to sea-weeds, as was generally supposed, but that it also fed upon Balani ; and that the chief food of the P. athletica was the Corallina officinalis. Wherever that plant was in abundance, there Athletica was to be found; and it was not confined to the low-water zone, as it is said to be in the south of England. Mr Stewart described the process of feeding on the Balani and Corallina, and exhibited specimens of the half-digested remains taken from their stomachs. Mr Stewart also exhibited and described a species of Comatula, which he considered different from the common C.rosacea. He had, however, been anticipated in this discovery, Mr Barrett having published this species in the “Annals of Natural History,” in 1857, under the name of Commatula Woodwardii. Mr Stewart farther exhibited a magnificent Ophiura, new to Britain, which he had discovered in the same locality. It was 24 inches across, and differed materially from any even of the genera of this family hitherto found

« ElőzőTovább »