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"paidling about i' the mud at nicht, deil tak' them." The carse land. west of Stirling is visited by them also in great numbers.
Bernicle Goose.-The bernicle at one time was a numerous species in our low grounds, but, doubtless owing to its not being so wild a species as the last, from different causes-amongst these, punt-guns-it is not now so numerous. Visits Loch Lomond.
Brent Goose.-Also visits Loch Lomond, and is tolerably common. on the Firth of Forth. The Edinburgh markets seem to be well supplied with them.
Egyptian Goose.-The Rev. F. O. Morris, in his work on 'British Birds' (vol. v. p. 103), mentions the fact of three specimens of this rare bird having been killed at Campsil in November, 1832. One out of a flock of five was shot on Loch Lomond, in 1861, and exhibited at a meeting of the Natural History Society of Glasgow, by Dr. Dewar (Mr. R. Gray).
Hooper.-The wild swan visits Loch Lomond in considerable numbers some winters. Mr. Thompson tells me that he has killed one on the Forth below Dunmore. He writes as follows: "Hoopers are often seen here; one was shot last winter about the Inch, above Alloa: I shot one a great many years ago. There were some this winter (1867), but I could not get a shot."
Bewick's Swan.--Mr. J. Colquhoun tells me that his brother shot one out of a flock of five on Loch Lomond in the winter of 1860-61, and I believe they are frequently seen upon the loch.
Mute Swan.-Large numbers of the mute swan are bred and fed on the Carron Dams, a large sheet of water near the works; also on many gentlemen's pieces of ornamental water, and large numbers on Loch Lomond, the property of Sir James Colquhoun. Those on Carron Dams often take short flights up the river.
Black Swan.-During the very severe winter of 1828-29 some black swans (?) appeared on Loch Lomond, and one was shot, as communicated by Mr. J. Colquhoun.
Shieldrake.—Not a common species, but is not unfrequently shot at the coast. Captain Spiers informs me that he has half-tame ones on his pond at Culcreuch, and that a year or two since he had a hybrid between a shielduck and a common one.
Shoveller.-Mr. J. Colquhoun has seen and shot the shoveller on Loch Lomond in severe winters. Mr. Samuel Singer, of Kincardine, who, having used a punt-gun there since 1851, has only on two occasions shot the shoveller on the Firth of Forth.
Gadwall.-Mr. Singer told me lately that he once killed three gadwalls on the Firth of Forth, and that, not then knowing the bird, he had sold them to Mr. Muirhead, the well-known poulterer in Edinburgh.
Wild Duck. When watching for duck in the evening I have often been puzzled by this bird. One evening I fired at the leading bird of the first pair that came: it fell, and proved to be a male or mallard. The next pair that came afforded me a right and left, and they proved male and female: of the last pair that came that evening I killed the following bird, and it proved also a male. On many other occasions I have attempted to discover to my own satisfaction whether or not the drake always leads, and any such experiments as the above cause me to believe that the duck leads as often as the drake. So wellknown a fact is it in Orkney, that the eider drake will not rise to fly before the duck, that those following after them are at no pains to hide themselves from the drake, if they be properly concealed from the duck; and I have seen cases of this in Orkney myself. Some authors confidently affirm that the drake always leads, but I feel perfectly certain that such is not the case.
Garganey.—The Rev. F. O. Morris mentions, in his work, that three specimens of this duck were shot in Stirlingshire during the last fortnight of March, 1841. Mr. Singer, of Kincardine, has only killed one specimen on the Firth of Forth since 1851.
Teal.-Common. Breeds commonly on the islands of Loch Lomond, and in several other localities throughout the county.
Widgeon.-Common, especially on the east coast.
Velvet Scoter.-Common in the Firth of Forth, and frequently comes as far up as Kincardine, where Mr. Singer has shot both them and the species.
Scoter. As the last. Most plentiful near Bruntisland, further down the Firth.
Pochard.-One of the most abundant species on the Firth of Forth, where, near Kincardine, I once saw a flock which must have numbered at least 1500 individuals. The flocks are, I believe, principally composed of males, though the females are also quite abundant.
Scaup Duck. Also very common in the Firth. pochard, tufted duck and goldeneye, they also Lomond.
Along with the
Tufted Duck.-Plentiful in the Firth: more males than females.
Goldeneye.-Common. The males seem to me to come oftener inland than the females, though at the coast there are six females for every female in a flock: this I was told by Mr. Singer, who has every opportunity of observing them, and who has used a punt-gun to more purpose than three-fourths of those who follow this as a profession. I cannot say myself that I have noticed more females in a flock than males, but I consider that Mr. Singer, having far more opportunities of watching them than I have, ought to know best; I am nevertheless doubtful about the truth of the statement.
Redbreasted Merganser.-Not uncommon on the Firth, and frequently shot inland: one, an immature male, was shot upon our river two years ago. Mr. Singer often procures them. Breeds on Loch Lomond, and I once only found the nest on Loch Coulter.
Goosander.-Common on the Firth. I received a most magnificent specimen from Mr. Singer this winter (1866-67).
All the family of divers, Sir James Colquhoun informs me, have been shot on Loch Lomond, from the redthroated diver to the dabchick.
Rednecked Grebe,-Common on the Forth and come pretty far up the river: I saw one lately (Feb. 4th, 1867), that was shot this winter considerably above Stirling, as also one of the next species near the same place.
Sclavonian Grebe.-A common bird on Loch Lomond, as also elsewhere. It has frequently been shot on the Forth, between Alloa and Stirling.
Little Grebe.-Common but local. Local name," mither o' the Mawkins:" this name I have never heard used in any other part of Scotland, nor can I find out the meaning of the name, or why it is applied.
Great Northern Diver-Very rare on the Firth of Forth, and I believe very few have ever been killed in any part of it, but it is more frequent on the west coast.
Blackthroated Diver.-Commoner than the last, but by no means often got in the Firth. Mr. J. Colquhoun has seen them frequently on Loch Lomond, however, where, amongst others, a specimen of a young blackthroated diver was shot by his brother, Sir James Colquhoun, a few years ago.
Redthroated Diver.-Very common on the Firth of Forth, in immature plumage: Mr. Singer has shot several as far up as Alloa.
SECOND SERIES-VOL. II.
Guillemot.-Common on the Firth, and shot frequently in severe weather in spring above Dunmore.
Little Auk.-A little auk was killed on Loch Lomond by Sir J. Colquhoun, and Mr. Thompson, of Dunmore, shot one three years ago on the Forth.
Puffin.-Local name, sea parrot." Mr. Thompson has shot them
above Dunmore on the Forth.
Razorbill.-Occasionally killed as far up as Kincardine in winter, in severe weather.
Cormorant. I have frequently seen this bird crossing, at a great height, from the Firth of Forth to that of Clyde: it seems a long and unusual flight for this "weird watcher of the ocean." Common at some seasons on Loch Lomond: Captain A. G. Spiers informs me that he has seen them on his pond at Fintry.
Shag. The shag follows, as does the last species, the shoals of small fish that come up the estuary of the Forth in September.
Gannet.-Seldom seen; I have seen a stray individual or two pass high overhead, shaping their course no doubt for Ailsa Craig: one was picked up in an exhausted state in a field in the parish of Dunipace, about three miles north of Denny.
Common Tern.-Local name, "sea swallow." Abundant, often coming up our river in stormy weather. Breeds on the islands of the Firth of Forth and on Inchmoin, an island of Loch Lomond. Arctic Tern.-Also common. Breeds on Inchmoin (?) and on the
islands of the Firth of Forth.
Sandwich Tern.-"This tern has of late years bred on the island of Inchmoin: there are about a dozen pairs. Such a situation is not usual, but they will probably increase if unmolested."—Mr. R. Gray.
Roseate Tern.-"A few pairs breed on Inchmoin.”—Mr. R. Gray. Lesser Tern.-"Occurs in summer upon Inchmoin, in company with the other species breeding on the same station. It is, however, not numerous."—Mr. R. Gray.
Buonaparte's Gull.-An example was procured, on Loch Lomond, by Sir George Leith, as mentioned in Montagu's 'British Birds,' in 'Zoologist' (Zool. 3117), and also taken notice of in Morris's 'British Birds' (vol. vi. p. 146). I notice this bird as killed in Stirlingshire, as I believe it was killed over the surface of the loch. I consider it much better to include all birds killed on Loch Lomond as Stirlingshire, than to draw an imaginary boundary line up the centre of the loch. At the
same time I do not wish to withdraw any such from any Dumbarton
Blackheaded Gull.-One of our commonest gulls: it used to breed near a cairn of stones near Loch Coulter, but these stones being removed it has deserted the locality. Great numbers breed on Inchmoin, where, I am informed by Sir James Colquhoun, who preserves the island, not one was to be seen some few years back.
Kittiwake.-Common in the second year's plumage.
Common Gull.-Commoner in the Firth of Forth than in many other localities, but not by any means so common as others of the tribe.
Lesser Blackbacked Gull.-Not uncommon on the coast in winter, and breeds on the island of Inchmoin, Loch Lomond. There are, Mr. Gray says, some one hundred and fifty pairs, which keep themselves quite apart from their neighbours the blackheaded gulls and the terns, occupying a different portion of the island.
Herring Gull.-Perhaps the commonest of all our gulls, breeding in several localities, amongst which the island of Inchmoin.
Great Blackbacked Gull.-" Not uncommon on the coast at Kincardine: at the ferry two pairs are constantly to be seen in winter. About twelve pairs breed on Inchmoin."-Mr. R. Gray.
Richardson's Skua.-Occasionally seen assisting the other gulls in eating what the latter catch, near Kincardine. Mr. Singer has shot them in the act. Seldom, however, comes so far south.
Waxwing. The only actual occurrence of the waxwing that I am aware of was in the winter of 1866-67. I saw it in the house of Mr. Johnston, birdstuffer, in Stirling: it was shot on the 2nd of February, 1867, about two hundred yards from the old bridge of Stirling; its head was dreadfully smashed. Captain A. G. Spiers has shot Bohemian chatterers on his property of Culcreuch, but does not, I am sorry to say, specify any dates in his letter to me.
Smew. Sir J. Colquhoun writes that the smew has on different occasions been shot on Loch Lomond.
Greenshank.—Sir James Colquhoun writes that the greenshank has been occasionally observed on Loch Lomond, and that there are breeding-places in the vicinity, but not in Stirlingshire.