A MONTHLY SERIAL
ILLUSTRATED BY COLOR PHOTOGRAPHY
DESIGNED TO PROMOTE
KNOWLEDGE OF BIRD-LIFE
Nature Study Publishing Company
Nature Study Publishing Co.
This is the second volume of a series intended to present, in accurate colored portraiture, and in popular and juvenile biographical text, a very considerable portion of the common birds of North America, and many of the more interesting and attractive specimens of other countries, in many respects superior to all other publications which have attempted the representation of birds, and at infinitely less expense. The appreciative reception by the public of Vol. I deserves our grateful acknowledgement. Appearing in monthly parts, it has been read and admired by thousands of people, who, through the life-like pictures presented, have made the acquaintance of many birds, and have since become enthusiastic observers of them. It has been introduced into the public schools, and is now in use as a text book by hundreds of teachers, who have expressed enthusiastic approval of the work and of its general extension. The faithfulness to nature of the pictures, in color and pose, have been commended by such ornithologists and authors as Dr. Elliott Coues, Mr. John Burroughs, Mr. J. W. Allen, editor of The Auk, Mr. Frank M. Chapman, Mr. J. W. Baskett, and others.
The general text of Birds—the biographies—has been conscientiously prepared from the best authorities by a careful observer of the feather-growing denizens of the field, the forest, and the shore, while the juvenile autobiographies have received the approval of the highest ornithological authority.
The publishers take pleasure in the announcement that the general excellence of Birds will be maintained in subsequent volumes. The subjects selected for the third and fourth volumes—many of them—will be of the rare beauty in which the great Audubon, the limner par excellence of birds, would have found “the joy of imitation.”
Nature Study Publishing Company.
Illustrated by COLOR PHOTOGRAPHY.
T SHOULD not be overlooked by the young observer that if he would learn to recognize at once any particular bird, he should make himself acquainted with the song and call notes of every bird around him. The identification, however, of the many feathered creatures with which we meet in our rambles has heretofore required so much patience, that, though a delight to the enthusiast, few have time to acquire any great intimacy with them. To get this acquaintance with the birds, the observer has need to be prepared to explore perilous places, to climb lofty trees, and to meet with frequent mishaps. To be sure if every veritable secret of their habits is to be pried into, this pursuit will continue to be plied as patiently as it has ever been. The opportunity, however, to secure a satisfactory knowledge of bird song and bird life by a most delightful method has at last come to every one.
A gentleman who has taken a great interest in Birds from the appearance of the first number, but whose acquaintance with living birds is quite limited, visited one of our parks a few days ago, taking with him the latest number of the magazine. His object, he said, was to find there as many of the living forms of the specimens represented as he could. “Seating myself amidst a small grove of trees, what was my delight at seeing a Red Wing alight on a telegraph wire stretching across the park. Examining the picture in Birds I was somewhat disappointed to find that the live specimen was not so brilliantly marked as in the picture. Presently, however, another Blackbird alighted near, who seemed to be the veritable presentment of the photograph. Then it occured to me that I had seen the Red Wing before, without knowing its name. It kept repeating a rich, juicy note, oncher-la-ree-e! its tail tetering at quick intervals. A few days later I observed a large number of Red Wings near the Hyde Park water works, in the vicinity of which, among the trees and in the marshes, I also saw many other birds unknown to me. With Birds in my hands, I identified the Robin, who ran along the ground quite close to me, anon summoning with his beak the incautious angle worm to the surface. The Jays were noisy and numerous, and I observed many new traits in the Wood Thrush, so like the Robin that I was at first in some doubt about it. I heard very few birds sing that day, most of them being busy in search of food for their young.”
[continued on page 17.]
THE BALD-HEADED EAGLE.
Dear Boys and Girls:
I had hoped to show you the picture of the eagle that went through the war with the soldiers. They called him “Old Abe.” You will find on page 35 a long story written about him. Ask some one to read it to you.
I could not get “Old Abe,” or you should now be looking at his picture. He is at present in Wisconsin, and his owner would not allow him to be taken from home.
I did the next best thing, and found one that was very much like him. They are as near alike as two children of a family. Old Abe’s feathers are not quite so smooth, though. Do you wonder, after having been through the war? He is a veteran, isn’t he?
The picture is that of a Bald-headed Eagle. He is known, also, by other names, such as White-headed Eagle, Bird of Washington, Sea Eagle.
You can easily see by the picture that he is not bald-headed. The name White-headed would seem a better name. It is because at a distance his head and neck appear as though they were covered with a white skin.
He is called “Sea Eagle” because his food is mostly fish. He takes the fish that are thrown upon the shores by the waves, and sometimes he robs the Fish Hawk of his food.
This mighty bird usually places his large nest in some tall tree. He uses sticks three to five feet long, large pieces of sod, weeds, moss, and whatever he can find.
The nest is sometimes five or six feet through. Eagles use the same nest for years, adding to it each year.
Young eagles are queer looking birds. When hatched, they