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day, when Mr. Rogers, wishing to save at least one young bird, took away the fifth, boping to rear it by band, but it lived only a day or so. The old birds are now alive, apparently very bappy and in good health. Whilst writing on rearing young birds by band, I may mention a reinarkable instance which occurred at Plymouth a year or two ago. A friend of mine found a gull's nest on some cliffs in the neighbourhood, and, seeing the bill of a young one just appearing through a hole in an egg, he broke it, released the young bird, wrapped it up caresully, brought it home, fed and kept it until it became full grown, when he sent it away as a present to a friend.—John Gatcombe ; Plymouth.From the Field' newspaper.

Goshawk in Ireland.-Since my last communication on this subject (S. S. 632) I have found the following passage in a scarce work on hawking entitled “A Treatise of Modern Faulconry,' by James Campbell, which was published in Dublin in 1780:“The gosbawk is found in the north of both Scotland and Ireland, where she builds her nest in a tree" (p. 214).-J. Edmund Harting; Kingsbury, Middlesex, February, 1867.

The Lesser Gray Shrike (Lanius minor) a British Bird.-On referring to the • Zoologist' for the year 1851, you may observe a notice of the occurrence of a female specimen of L. excubilor baving been sent from St. Mary's, one of the Scilly Isles, in the first week of November: this specimen, which stands in my case of shrikes with another and larger gray shrike, which is the L. excubitor, an adult male bird, is so much smaller that I had for a long time regarded it as the adult female of L. excubitor; subsequent observations, however, of this small Scilly bird caused some doubts in my mind as to its identity with the great gray shrike, and my friend the Rev. John Jenkinson, in a late visit, entered upon the subject, which led to an able and valuable description of my two birds and one of his own, and I can only refer your readers at present to the notice which appeared in the 'Zoologist' (S. S. 605) since. On meeting Mr. Gould in the county some time since, I mentioned to him my conviction that my small bird specifically differed from the great shçike, from the shorter and more conical shape of the bill, its much shorter tail, and the distribution of wbite in the feathers of the tail being different from the larger bird : the blotch of black behind the eye was much broader and not approaching to the character of a streak, and the upper plumage was eutirely plain dull gray, without a vestige of' wbite on the scapularies. Mr. Gould asked me to send the two birds for his inspection, which I did, and he writes me word that my small bird is Lanius minor, the first instance of its occurrence in the British isles, so far as be knew. It will be right to state ibat this specimen has not the black band in front on the forehead, as represented in the ‘Birds of Europe' and Dr. Bree's work on European birds; but as Temminck says that the young birds are without this band my specimen may be a young bird with plumage much worn.- Edward Hearle Rodd; Penzance, March 5, 1867.

Eggs of Ring Ouzel and Blackbird. You seem to think (* Birdsnesting,' p. 11) that the eggs of ring ouzels and blackbirds are so nearly alike as scarcely to be distinguished: my own opinion is that there is a specific difference between them; but as there will be several pairs breeding with us this year, I will collect their eggs myself and leave you to judge whether there is not a marked difference between the two species.-H. W. Feilden.

Black Redstart at Dawlish.- I saw this morning, in a shrubbery at Dawlish, a female specimen of the black redstart. The shrub on which the bird was perched was within a gun-shot of the beach, and a rather strong east wind was blowing at the time. -J. H. Gurney.

Savi's Warbler (?), Plover and Lesser Spotted Woodpecker in Bucks.- Last June, in the neighbourhood of Elon, I saw a bird which I am pretiy sure was Savi's warbler : it was in a low hedge which I am in the babit of passing nearly every morning, and the favourite resort of sedge warblers, close to the River Thames: having heard a harsh .note, like that of the sedge warbler, I looked for the bird, and got a fair sight of it for a moment while sitting on the top of the hedge, when I discovered it was no common warbler, but a bird with a reddish brown back, with (I think) a black line across the wings: the cheeks-and breast were grayish white; I thought it would prove to be Savi's warbler, but I had no idea how closely Morris's plate would describe my bird. Mr. Clark-Kennedy, in his notes from Bucks, might have added that between October and March focks of plorers continually pass over Eton-probably lapwings and golden plovers. About four Sundays ago I observed a lesser spotted woodpecker on an elm close to my window, but the sparrows soon drove it away. These same sparrows are provokingly exclusive: chaffinches and tilinice meet with the same rough treatment at their bands.-Clifton; Elon, Bucks.

Bohemian Waxwing in Wiltshire.— The last week in November, 1866, a very nice specimen of the Bohemian waxwing was killed at West Wellow, Wiltshire: although these beautiful birds, about this time, appear to have been quite numerous in some districts, this is the only specimen, so far as I can ascertain, that bas been killed or seen in this neighbourhood. The lad who shot it said it was quite alone, and that he had seen no others before or since.-Henry Blackmore; Salisbury, March 9, 1867.

Bohemian Waxwing at Vienna.- A bird, very rare as far south as the Danube, the waxwing, has visited Vienva in large Alights during the winter, probably driven from more northerly regions by the unusually beavy falls of snow. This beautiful creature is considered a bird of ill omen by the country people, who call it“ pesi," or “lodtenvogel," —plague or death bird, -and believe its appearance to forebode pestilence and famine and war.–From the Slandard' of March 4, 1867.

Pied Wagtails in January. With regard to this subject (Zool, S. S. 634) I noticed that a great many pied wagtails appeared bere, in the streets of this town, on the 3rd of January, immediately after the first fall of snow this winter: they seemed to have a great dislike to the snow, and exclusively frequented patches of roadway from which it had been cleared, feeding at refuse-heaps or any upfrozen parts of the gutters. Although not in flocks they were pretty numerous : I several times counied eight or ten single birds just in front of the house, and into wbalever street you went at least two or three were seen, so that the number allogether in the town must bave been considerable. Three or four regularly frequented our garden in company with robins, chaffinches, bedgesparrows, tits, sparrows, &c., and fed freely on small scraps of fal, &c., thrown out for them. The robins and wagtails were far more pugnacious than any of the other birds, and cornbals were constantly taking place between individuals of the two species. Immediately upon the break up of the frust the wagtails left the town, and from the 6th to the 12th of January I did not see one: on the latter day, however, snow again fell, and on the 13th there were several wagtails in the streets, where they continued until the return of mild weather, when they again disappeared ; since then I have only twice seen a solitary bird in the town, and but very few in the neighbourhood.- James Shorlo, jun.; High East Street, Dorchester, March 11, 1867.

Does the Yellow Wagtail alwuys Migrale ?-One was killed under the frame of my bird-trap in December, 1814, during a slight frost, and a beautiful specimen it was; and I also saw one on the 25th of December, 1866, at Keynsbam, Somersetsbire.Edward West; Saltford, near Bristol.

Black Sky Lark.- Aboul tweniy years ago the writer called on a tailor, named John Yearsley, near Weaverham, in Cheshire, who had a sky lark nearly black, which bird he said “had become so, as almost any other bird would do, by being sed wholly on hemp-seed.”—1d.

Wood Lark in Kent.—During t'e first severe snow here (Colbam) Aocks of larks were continually passing over the park. These birds I imagine to have been wood larks. I never could find out that they settled anywhere ; all I know is that they were continually passing over my head in a S.W. direction : as they flew over me I noticed that they seemed short compact birds, and that the tail was short-shorter I should say

than any sky lark's tail: the breast appeared to be of a pure white ground-colour, the spots not being visible al such an altitude, while on the throat there was a very thick and distinctly marked cluster of dark red spots. I consulted Mr. Harting's book as to the distinctions between the two species, and was tolerably satisfied as to my birds being wood larks; but what exactly gave me the idea of them was the figure of the wood lark in Our Native Songsters.' I should like to know if any other southero ornithologists obserred any wood larks last winter.-Clifton; March 10, 1867.

Lapland Bunting al Lewisham.-At å meeting of the West Kent Natural History Society, held at Blackheath on the 27th of February, Mr. Price exhibited a very fine living specimen of the Lapland hunting. This very rare straggler was caplured, during the late severe weather, in Lewisham brick-fields, near the Lewisham Road. The specimen is a male in the winter plumage, the velvely black beginning to show a little on the head and breast : the bird is very lively, and, though the lark-feet would suggest a different babil, appears to prefer percbing to resting on the ground. I am glad to add that the bird is in good hands, and is not likely to be killed for stuffing: it is quite refreshing to record the visit of so rare a bird without giving an account of its slaughter. I may add that it showed its affinity to the buntings by descending when caught to the call of the common bunting.--J.Jenner Weir; 6, Haddo Villas, Blackheath, February 28, 1867.

Snow Bunting on Blackheath - I was fortunate enough to obtain this morning a most beautiful specimen of the male snow bunting: the bird is in the variegated plumage of spring, is very healthy and active, and I trust will form an interesting addition to my aviary.--Id.

Siskin at Oatlands. We have the siskin bere just now in very beautiful plumage. -W. C. Hewitson ; March 4, 1867.

Siskin in Buckinghamshire.—About a fortnight ago I saw in a bird-fancier's shop in Eton six-siskins: be informed me that they had all been caught in the vicinity of Elon, by clap-nets. On the 5th or 6th of March I was again at the shop, when an addition of five or six bad been made, having also been caught near Eion. I fancy these birds are not common about here, not having noticed any before. They were all in good plumage, especially the male birds.-A. Clark-Kennedy; Eton, March 11, 1867.

Canaries breeding in January.—A man who lives in Windsor told me that he had had some very early canaries this year: he said that the old birds began to form the SECOND SERIES-VOL. II.

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vest during the old year (1866), and that sour young ones were batched upon the 18th of January following. They are now doing well, and the female batched another brood of three on the 24th of February. Surely the first of these broods was very early, even for birds in confinement.-A. Clark-Kennedy.

Varieties of Chaffinch's and other Brilish Bird's Eggs.- I have the following varieties in my collection of eggs: a short note on each may prove of interest to the readers of the ' Zoologist:'

Chaffinch. - In the month of May, 1862, while staying at Frittenden, in Kent, I found a chaffinch's nest in a laurel, with three eggs, two of wbich were of the usual colour, one with very few spots on it, and a fourth had no spots at all or lines of any sort whatever, but was of a deep rich blue, not unlike a hedgesparrow's egg: the colour has greatly faded within the last two years.

Thrush.--I have a pure blue thrush's egg, and several with bardly any spots : neither of these are uncommon.

Blackbird.— I have a blue egg of the blackbird, with rather a tendency to reddish brown at the larger end, and several very deep browo ones.

Robin.- In the summer of 1862 or 1863 I found a pest of the robin on a mossy bank by the side of a public road near Berkhampstead, Heris: in it were four eggs, all quite white, and of a most lovely pink hue before being blown. Is a white egg of the robin common or pot?

Guillemot.—I have several curiously marked specimens of the guillemot's egg: some are very lightly marked with brown, while I bave others marked as if with ink.

Wood Pigeon.— I have an egg quite round of this bird.

Yellow Bunting. I have several eggs with various letters marked upon them-on some very plainly.

Goldencrested Wren. I have an egg quite round of this bird, and several very elongated. The eggs of this species seem to vary considerably.

Redbacked Shrike. -Av egg with lilac markings, one with brown spots, and avuther bas deep red marks.

Hawfinch. - I got the eggs of the hawfinch in the summer of 1863 near Berkhampstead, Herts.- Id.; February 18, 1867.

Curious Fact connected with the Brambling.Yesterday evening, at a little past eight o'clock, a bird few into a room in this house (in Eton), lbrough the open window: I soon saw that it was a brambling. It is not a common bird here, and I believe not very numerous anywhere; but the curious fact is its iying hy night straight into a house. I should be inclined 10 think it had escaped from some cage, as it made noz effort to escape. It was placed in a cage, and up to this time is thriving: the bird does not belong to me.-Id.; March 11, 1867.

Magpie with a Yellow Beak.-On the 23rd of Febrnary Mr. J. G. K. Young and myself drove down to the coast to see if any birds could be procured. On the way down a inagpie rose out of some blae-berry bushes about twenty yards from us, and alighted on a tree some distance off.“ By Jove! look at his yellow bill!” I said, as he flew off'; “ I never saw that before.” Mr. Young also saw it quite distinctly. I was at first inclined to believe that it was something which it was carrying in its beak,

but the yellow was so distinct, and had so forined itself into the exact shape of the bill that I feel almost certain that it really was a yellow bill, and Mr. Young was perfectly positive that it was. I tried to stalk the bird, and got within sixty yards of it, but could not gel nearer. The gun "snapped,” and the bird few off into the woods. Have you ever seen or beard of a magpie with a yellow beak before ?—John A. Harvie Brown ; Dunipace House, Falkirk, March 6, 1867. [Certainly not; and I can offer no opinion in the present instance.-E. N.]

Curious Abnormal Growth of Feathers in a Woodpecker's Tail.- I have an adult male specimen of the green woodpecker in my possession, killed in January last in this neighbourhood : ils tail contains the usual number of feathers, viz, twelve, all in perfect condition; belween the centre ones iwo curious abnormal shafts issue, raising theinselves above the surface of the others, and curving over the right side: they are quite strong and stiff, and from the ends of each several fibres branch off: each shaft measures one inch anů seven-eighths in length.-T. E. Gunn ; 3, West Pottergate, Norwich.

Breeding of the Kingfisher. I do not find in any book of birds in my possession any reference to the time of year at which the kingfisher begins to breed, and as I have been surprised at its early date I send you the following record. The kingfisher bas bred here every year of my residence, and until I bad a saud-bank cut in forming an island in the lake for ducks to breed upon, it managed (very uncomfortably, I should Ibink) to breed amongst the roots of an alder. This year it first made its appearance on the 20th of February, when it cleared cut its hole, and is now, I have little doubt, sitting upon its eggs. It must I think have three broods in a year. It was here last year for six months, and seemed to be employed the whole time, and daily, passing to and fro. The young birds have very little notion of self-preservation. Out of a brood last year one killed itself against my drawing-room window, and a second few into a neighbour's house.-W. C. Hewilson ; Oatlands, March 4, 1867.

Toad Slones and Eagle Slones.-Anent the quolation from Evangeline' (Zool. 8. S. 561) respecting swallow stones, may I be allowed to place the following observations on toad stones and eagle stones from Brand’s ‘Popular Antiquities.' Pennant, in his · Zoology,' as quoted by Brand, says, “ It (the toad) was believed by some old writers to have a stone in its head, fraught with great virtues, medical and magical. It was distinguished by the paine of the reptile, and called the toad-stone, Bufonites, Crapaudine, Krottenstein; but all its fancied powers vanished on the discovery of its being nothing but the fossil tooth of the sea-wolf, or some other fat-toothed fish, not unfrequent in our island, as well as several other countries.” The editor of Popular Antiquities,' pursuing the subject further, has added two interesting notes from the same author, Pennant:-" These and the other grinding teeth (alluding to the teeth of the wolf-fish) are often found fossil, and in that stale called Bufonites, or toadstones: they were formerly much esteemed for their imaginary virtues, and were set in gold and worn as rings” (“Zoology,' vol. ii. p. 154). “ The ancients believed that the pebble commonly called the ætites, or eagle-stone, was found in the eagle's nest, and that the eggs could not be baiched without its assistance” (Ibid., vol. i. p. 167). For further information consult Brand's work.- George Roberts ; Lofthouse, Wakefield, February 16, 1867. [I think I recollect more than one passage in Shakespeare bearing on this subject; but I leave Mr. Harting, who is su skilled in Shakespearian lore, to investigate this.-E. Newman.]

The Willow Grouse and Red Grouse. After a perusal of what has appeared at various times in the • Zoologist' upon the supposed specific identity of the willow grouse of Norway and the red grouse of the British islauds, I still believe that Temminck was

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