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Full text of "Bullet and shot in Indian forest, plain and hill. With hints to beginners in Indian shooting"

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BULLET AND SHOT 



Indian Forest, Plain and Hill 



WITH HINTS TO BEGINNERS 
IN INDIAN SHOOTING. 



C. E. M. RUSSELL, 

BARRISTER-AT-LAW OF THE INNER TEMPLE, M.R.A.C, 
LATE SENIOR DEPUTY CONSERVATOR OF FORESTS, MYSORE SERVICE. 



LONDON : 
W. THACKER AND CO., 2, CREED LANE, E.C. 

CALCUTTA: THACKER, SPINK AND CO. 

BOMBAY: THACKER AND CO., LIMITED. 

1900 






HIS UNSELFISH AND DEVOTED WIFE, 

WHO, REGARDLESS OF HER OWN PREFERENCES, 

HAS SHARED HER HUSBAND'S EXILE, 

EVER LOYALLY SUPPORTING HIM AND CHEERFULLY BEARING 

DISCOMFORTS AND INCONVENIENCES FOR HIS SAKE; 

TO WHOM HE IS MOREOVER INDEBTED 

FOR VALUABLE ASSISTANCE IN THE REVISION OF THIS WORK, 

THE LATTER IS MOST LOVINGLY AND 

GRATEFULLY INSCRIBED BY 

THE AUTHOR. 



^ 



PREFACE 

THE Author hopes that, in spite of the many 
able works upon Indian Sport which have 
been written, a welcome may yet be accorded to 
the present effort to supply what he believes to be 
a want, viz., reliable and detailed information' for 
the use of beginners in Indian Shooting. He also 
trusts that brother sportsmen and the general read- 
ing public may derive some pleasure from the 
perusal of his personal experiences. 

The Author first went to India in the autumn 
of 1876, remained for five years in Assam and 
Sylhet, and then, having been offered an appoint- 
ment in the forest department of the Mysore State, 
he accepted the same and entered upon his duties 
in Mysore upon the first day of the year 1882. 
From that date (with the exception, of course, of 
periods spent on leave at home) till 1896, when 
he left Mysore in order to practise at the Bar 
in Madura (S. India), he had constant opportunities, 
when on inspection duty in the forests, as well as 
on leave, of enjoying hi^ favourite sport, and also 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of conferring with other sportsmen (chiefly military 
officers) whose experience had in some cases been 
gained in other parts of India, the fauna of which 
the writer had never seen. 

With a view to making this book as complete 
and generally useful as possible, the Author has 
not confined himself to the Game which he has 
personally shot, but, for the use of the beginner 
in Indian Shooting, a brief description of each of 
the principal game animals of that country not 
falling within the category of his own experience, 
has been compiled from other sources, his acknow- 
ledgments for assistance in this and other respects 
being due to the following Authors, whose valuable 
works have been studied and indented upon for 
various information contained in the present 
volume : 

General A. A. A. Kinloch's Large Game Shooting, 
Thibet and Northern India. 

Mr. R. A. Sterndale's Natural History of Indian 
Mammalia. 

Dr. Jerdon's The Mammals of India. 

Colonel R. Heber Percy, in the Badminton volume 
on Indian large game. 

Colonel Ward's The Sportsman s Guide to Cash- 
mere and Ladak, etc. 

Mr. Rowland Ward s Horn Measurements. 



PREFACE 

Mr. A. O. Hume and Colonel Marshall's The 
Game Birds of India. 

In writing the chapters upon " Rifles and Guns," 
etc., and that upon ** Preparatory Taxidermy," the 
Author is indebted for valuable assistance to Mr, 
Henry Holland (Messrs. Holland and Holland, 
Ltd.) and Mr. G. Butt, of 49, Wigmore Street, 
respectively. 



CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER PAGE 

I. Introduction . . . . . i 

II. The Indian Bison . . ' . . . lo 

III. Bison Shooting . . ... 26 

IV. Reminiscences of Bison Shooting . . . 43 
V. Hints to Beginners in Bison Shooting . . 68 

VI. The Wild Buffalo, the Yak, and the Tsine . 88 

VII. The Tiger . . . . • . 97 
VIII. Tiger Shooting in Southern India, with Advice 

TO Beginners . . ... 109 
IX. Incidents in Tiger Shooting . . .138 
X. The Panther, Hunting Cheetah, Clouded 

Leopard, Snow Leopard, and Indian Lion . 170 

XI. The Chief Bears of India . . . . 197 
XII. The Indian Elephant, and Notes for Beginners 

IN Elephant Shooting . ... 206 

XIII. Episodes in Elephant Shooting . . . 228 

XIV. The Deer of India and the Himalayas . . 244 
XV. The Nilgiri Wild Goat, or Ibex of Southern 

India . . . ... 267 

XVI. Brief Notes on the Wild Goats of Cashmere 

AND Ladak . . ... 292 

XVII. Some Brief Notes on the Wild Sheep of India 

AND the Himalayas . ... 307 

XVI 1 1. The Antelopes and Gazelles of India and the 

Himalayas . . ... 316 

XIX. The Rhinocerotid^e and Suid^e of India . . 339 

XX. Poachers and Nuisances . ... 346 

xi 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

XXI. Small Animals Worth Shooting . • • 356 

XXII. Indian Snipe Shooting . . • • 363 

XXIII. Brief Notes on Some of the Game Birds and 

Wild-Fowl of India . ... "380 

XXIV. The Forests, Plains, and Hills of Mysore, 

THEIR Denizens, and the Favourite Haunts 

OF THE LATTER . . ... 399 

XXV. Hints on Camp Equipment, Travelling in 

India, Outfit, Servants, etc. . . . 430 

XXVI. Rifles and Guns, Ammunition and Accessories 446 
XXVII. Hints on Skinning, and on the Preservation 

OF Trophies . . ... 470 

APPENDICES. 
Thamin, and their Quest . . ... 477 

The Banting or Tsine in Upper Burmah . . . 484 

Game Laws and Rules of the Madras Presidency and 

THE NiLGiRi Hills . ... 495 

Revenue Department Notifications . . . 499 

The Rules of the Nilgiri Game and Fish Preservation 
Association, as amended at the General 
Meeting held on the 23RD August, 1893 . 504 
Rules for Observance by Visitors and Residents in 
THE Territories of H.H. the Maharaja of 
Jammu and Kashmir . ... 506 

Brief Notes on Travelling in Cashmere . . . 529 



INDEX 



537 



Xll 



BULLET AND SHOT 

IN 

INDIAN FOREST, PLAIN, AND HILL 



CHAPTER I. 
INTRODUCTION 

SPORT, as distinguished from butchery, needs 
neither apology nor excuse ; the former is the 
moderate and humane exercise of an inherent 
instinct worthy of a cultivated gentleman, the latter 
the revolting outcome of the undisciplined nature 
of the savage. 

Amongst real sportsmen and the bravest soldiers 
will be found the most gentle and tender-hearted 
members of their sex, whilst the pursuit of large 
game in the spirit of true sport is an education in 
itself 

Field-Marshal Lord Roberts, v.c, etc., when, as 
Sir F. Roberts, he was Commander-in-Chief in 
Madras, gave a very practical indication of his 
opinion of the value of such training in the case 
of young officers, by encouraging the latter to go 

B 



BULLET AND SHOT 

out shooting whenever it was compatible with the 
exigencies of duty for them to do so. 

Not only must the sportsman in pursuit of large 
game learn infinite patience during frequent periods 
of unrequited toil, but he must, in order to be 
really successful, often exercise much self-denial, 
more particularly when hill-shooting, or when work- 
ing localities wherein the scarcity of means of 
transport circumscribes the amount of necessaries 
which can be taken with him. He must, moreover, 
be temperate in all things, if he is to attain the 
physical condition which alone will enable him to 
support severe exertion — often in great heat — under 
circumstances diametrically opposed to those of his 
usual life in his headquarters. 

Then again, the sportsman who is in pursuit 
of dangerous game must learn to keep cool in 
moments of peril, and to strive to do always the 
right thing at the right moment, often with no time 
for deliberation. 

As an incentive to exercise in climates which 
engender languor and a disinclination for exertion, 
the pursuit of both large and small game is in- 
valuable ; and the love of this form of sport, so 
common amongst our countrymen, is a potent factor 
in the preservation of the health of Europeans in 
India. It is not often that residents in the country, 
who are obliged to work for their living, have any 
opportunity of bagging more than a certain pro- 
portion of the long list of game animals inhabiting 
the vast continent of India, but there are at home 
many men with both leisure and ample means, who 



INTRODUCTION 

may go out there to shoot large game, and to such 
are open the endless hunting - grounds between 
Little Thibet and Cape Comorin. The collections 
of trophies which may be made by such are 
limited only by the amount of time and labour 
which these fortunate ones of the earth may devote 
to this pursuit. Let me briefly sketch the distribu- 
tion of the various species of large game which 
inhabit this enormous peninsula. 

In the extreme south we find the elephant, tiger, 
panther, bison, sloth bear, hunting cheetah (rare), 
sambur, spotted deer, muntjac, Indian antelope, 
Indian gazelle, four-horned antelope, wolf, wild dog, 
wild boar, neelghaie, and the Neilgherry ibex, all 
of which, with the exception of the two last, are also 
to be found in Mysore. 

Further north than Mysore we come to the 
Nizam's dominions, or the Deccan, which is one 
of the best tiger countries in India. Long before 
we reach these, however, the Neilgherry ibex, whose 
range is confined to the extreme south, has dis- 
appeared. Further north still, after the Nerbudda 
river has been crossed, the wild buffalo must be 
added to the list, and in Guzerat are to be found 
the very few specimens of the Indian lion still 
remaining in the empire. The Sunderbunds at the 
mouths of the Ganges afford shelter to the Javan 
rhinoceros, which also occurs in Burmah. The Salt 
range in the Punjab is the home of the Punjab wild 
sheep, or oorial ; and Burmah contributes the tsine, 
and the thamine, as well as many of the animals 
already mentioned. On yet, and we come to the 

3 



BULLET AND SHOT 

great Bikanir Desert, the home of the finest black 
buck in India; while in the Nepaul Terai, Assam, 
and the Bhootan dooars, a further addition of the 
great Indian rhinoceros must be made. Once the 
Himalayas are reached, most of the southern game 
animals disappear, though a few of them are found 
at comparatively low elevations on those hills. In 
the sub- Himalayan tracts, in addition to most of the 
game animals of the south, the swamp deer and 
hog deer occur, as well as the buffalo and rhinoceros. 
On the Himalayas, an entirely new set of fauna is 
met with, comprising at various altitudes, the mark- 
hor, Himalayan ibex, serow, gooral, ovis ammon, 
burhel, shapoo, Cashmere and Sikkim stags, musk- 
deer, the red and black bears of the Himalayas, the 
snow leopard and the yak. 

It will be observed from the above that the north 
of India offers a far greater variety of large game 
to the sportsman than does the south, for most of 
the game animals which inhabit the latter are found 
in some parts of the former also, while the north 
can boast in addition a large and exclusive game- 
list of its own. 

The difference in the size of the trophies of the 
same species obtainable in various parts of India 
is very marked, as also the methods which must, 
according to local conditions, be employed in re- 
ducing the game into possession, some of the latter 
being far more enjoyable than are others. 

Speaking very generally and comprehensively, 
the south, the Central Provinces, and hill ranges 
everywhere are the fields wherein shooting on 



INTRODUCTION 

foot, i.e.y shooting without the employment of 
tame elephants, is practised. In Bengal, Assam, 
Nepaul, the Bhootan dooars, and Burmah, the 
sportsman who cannot command a number of 
elephants has but little chance of success. 

The south appears on the whole to be more 
prolific in large elephant tusks and fine bison heads 
than is any other part of India, while, the forests 
admitting of shooting on foot, the game can be 
pursued under very pleasurable conditions. 

In so vast a continent, the whole gamut of 
temperature is run through, from the fierce summer 
heat of the Deccan and the Punjab, the compara- 
tively temperate climate of the Mysore plateau, 
the still cooler heights of the various hill ranges, 
up to the abode of eternal snow on the lofty 
Himalayas. 

The best country for tiger shooting on foot is 
the Deccan, and the best season the hot weather — 
say from February ist till the end of April. The 
most favourable season for the fine bison forests 
of Mysore is the early part of the south-west 
monsoon — say from June 15th to the middle of 
August. Oorial shooting on the Salt Range should 
be attempted only in November, December, and 
January, on account of the intense heat which 
prevails there. The best months for Cashmere 
are from April to the middle of June, after which 
the sportsman should move on to the compara- 
tively small portion of Thibet which is open to 
him. From the middle of September to the end 
of December is the most favourable time in which 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to try for the Cashmere stag, who then facilitates 
the sportsman's search for him by "calling." 

It is a sad fact that all over India game is 
rapidly decreasing in numbers, and this is due 
entirely to the destruction wrought amongst them 
by natives, not for sport, but as a means of gain. 

The sportsman's aim is to obtain the finest 
specimens which he can secure of each species, 
and he may, and often does, work hard for days 
together without firing his rifle. He in no 
appreciable way affects the numbers of the game, 
though, of course, in localities much frequented by 
his class, fine heads soon become scarce, the latter 
requiring time, and in many cases a long period 
thereof, to grow to first-class dimensions. 

Day by day, and in every village, native poachers 
are at work, as if the sole aim and object of their 
existence were the extermination of every edible 
species. So loth is Government to interfere with 
what the poachers consider their vested rights, 
and so timid is it in risking opposition on the part 
of native agitators, that the inevitable day when 
legislation must at last interpose to save many 
beautiful, interesting, and harmless species from 
total extinction, is being put off and off with 
terribly sad effects. Locking the stable door after 
the horse has been stolen is admittedly a somewhat 
futile procedure, and it behoves the Indian Govern- 
ment to at once bestir itself, and, by a little highly 
necessary legislation, to stem the torrent which is 
fast sweeping away so many species of large game 
before it is too late. 

6 



INTRODUCTION 

As will be seen from the Appendix, the Cashmere 
Government has at last been brought to see the 
necessity for game regulations, and it is to be 
hoped that the wild game of the Himalayas may 
be effectively protected against the usual whole- 
sale butchery by natives during the winter months. 

The Madras Government has, it will be observed, 
at last introduced game laws, which, however, apply 
only to the Neilgherry district, whereas it is quite 
time that effective protection should be afforded 
to game throughout the presidency, as well as in 
the independent, protected state of Mysore. 

The author's personal experience of Indian sport 
has been derived from many years spent, for the 
most part, under very favourable circumstances for 
the pursuit of large game, chiefly in the south of 
I ndia. 

He can claim a somewhat intimate and extensive 
acquaintance with the game animals of the south, 
having bagged all of them with the single exception 
of the nilghaie. He has not shot the striped hyaena, 
though he has seen it in the jungle, nor does he 
include this scavenger amongst game animals. 

As briefly indicated in the Preface, he has, with 
a view to rendering this work more complete, com- 
piled from other authors brief notices of nearly all 
the game animals of India which have not fallen 
to his own rifle, and he hopes that these, together 
with the references which he has given to other 
books which deal comprehensively with them, may 
prove of service to the beginner who may wish 
to shoot large game in India. 

7 



BULLET AND SHOT 

For the native names in different Indian 
languages of the various species of game, as also 
in many cases for measurements, he is much 
indebted to the works of Mr. Sterndale and Dr. 
Jerdon, though he has occasionally seen fit to 
slightly modify their nomenclature. 

During his long residence in the Mysore province 
as District Forest Officer, the author's advice and 
assistance in large game shooting was constantly 
invoked by other sportsmen (chiefly military officers), 
and he has had very clearly put before him the 
difficulty which beginners find in the prosecution 
of this sport before they have had time to learn 
for themselves by occasionally bitter, and often 
dearly -bought personal experience, how best to 
proceed. 

With a view to smoothing the path of the 
tyro in the Indian jungles, the author has been 
careful to go into all details which have occurred 
to him as likely to aid in attaining that object, 
and he trusts that his efforts in this direction may 
prove successful. 

Chapter XXIV. will be found a complete guide to 
the chief shooting grounds of the Mysore country, 
and as the language spoken therein (as also in 
Canara) ig Canarese, a limited number of words 
likely to be useful to the sportsman have been 
furnished, with their Canarese equivalents spelt as 
phonetically as possible, without any regard to their 
spelling in the vernacular. The author has often 
supplied other sportsmen who did not know 
Canarese with a few of these words, which have, 

8 



INTRODUCTION 

he has been subsequently told, proved of service 
to them in the jungles. 

For record heads, the author has consulted Mr. 
Rowland Ward's last edition, viz., Horn Measure- 
ments. 

He is indebted for valuable assistance in writing 
Chapter XXVI. to Mr. Henry Holland (of Messrs. 
Holland and Holland, Limited), and in the case of 
Chapter XXVII. to Mr. G. Butt (late Edwin Ward), 
of 49, Wigmore Street. 

He closes this introduction wishing his brother 
sportsmen the best of good fortune and health in 
the enjoyment of large and small game shooting 
in India. 



CHAPTER II. 

THE INDIAN BISON {GAV^US GAURUS) 

THE Indian bison — Gavaus Gaurus — is a mag- 
nificent animal, which may well be described 
as emperor of all the bovinae in the world. In point 
of size, his height, averaging in a big bull about six 
feet (or a few inches more) at the shoulder, is superior 
to that of any of the others, while he yields to none 
in activity, gameness, and symmetry of form. 

The mature bull is black, with yellow-and-dirty 
white -coloured stockings. The cows are dark- 
brown, while young animals vary in hue from 
reddish-brown to brown. The dorsal ridge, which 
rises between the shoulders and terminates over 
the loins, is a striking feature in the Indian bison. 
The horns of mature bulls vary in shape and size 
so much that it is not easy to describe them. 
Roughly speaking, however, they may be said to 
curve outwards, upwards, and inwards, and in the 
case of old specimens to be very much corrugated 
from the bases to a considerable portion of their 
length, while the tips are usually more or less worn 
down and blunted by use. In colour they are very 
dark at the bases, greenish or yellowish above, and 
black at and near the tips. The horns of young 
bulls curve outwards much less than do those of 
bulls of mature age, and they are quite smooth. 
In size, the horns of old bulls vary enormously. 

lo 



THE INDIAN BISON 

Some exceedingly old heads which I have seen 
are quite small, with a very narrow sweep and a 
paltry girth measurement, while others are grand 
trophies. A bull with a sweep measurement of 33 
inches, if the head is a fair one in other respects, is 
well worth shooting, and heads of 40 inches or 
above in sweep are uncommon. Only one of 40 
inches has ever fallen to my share, and I give the 
measurements of this head in detail : — 

Width across sweep . . . over 40 inches. 

Girth round base of horn . . . 18 „ 

From tip to tip round outer edge and 

across forehead — in flesh . . . 78 „ 

ditto in bone . . . . . 72 „ 

Between tips .... nearly 28 „ 

Perpendicular distance between line 

drawn between tips and crest . .11 „ 

My next best heads are two of 3 7 J- inches, 
and one of 35|- inches respectively across sweep. 
These are all big measurements, yet I have known 
much larger heads bagged by other sportsmen, in 
each of three instances the bull being, I believe, 
the fortunate Nimrod's first bison. 

A well-known Madras sportsman — Mr. Gordon 
Hadfield, of the Forest Department — has compara- 
tively recently bagged a bull near Nelambur (South 
India), the measurements of whose head are : — 

Width across sweep . . . -44 inches. 

Girth round base of horn . . • 19! » 
From tip to tip round outer edge and 

across forehead . . . . 83 „ 

Between tips 31 „ 

Perpendicular distance between line 

drawn between tips and crest . • I3i » 

II 



BULLET AND SHOT 

This is undoubtedly the record head bagged by 
the present generation of sportsmen. 

In Mysore Major L. (R.A.M.C.) bagged a bull 
with a sweep measurement of 42;!^ inches, and horns 
measuring 2 1 inches in girth : and in Canara, Mr. 
St. Q. (of the 19th Hussars) bagged another head, 
which beats my biggest in all its measurements. In 
each of these last two instances, the bull was the 
first one ever shot by the fortunate sportsman. 

About a month before writing this, I saw a 
magnificent head which had been bagged on the 

higher Travancore hills by Mr. W. M , a 

planter there, the sweep measurement of which is 
either 42 or 41^ inches. 

The proper method by which to obtain the 
accurate sweep measurement is to place the head 
flat on a table, the forehead downwards, and with 
a knife to make a scratch round the outside edge 
of each of the horns at the widest part, and then, 
after removal of the head, to measure the distance 
between the scratches. 

A fine bull bison's head, well mounted, is a 
splendid trophy, and the pale blue eye of the animal 
is well imitated in the glass eyes made in America 
for the use of taxidermists. The operator, in 
mounting the head, should be careful to preserve 
the curve caused by the arched nasal bones in 
the original. 

Bison are widely distributed throughout the large 
primeval forest tracts, and the secondary forest 
adjoining such, all over India, and they are to be 
found in hill ranges of great altitude, as well as in 



THE INDIAN BISON 

fiat forests at low elevations. Speaking generally, 
and with the reservation that Burmah has yielded 
some very fine heads, the further south one goes 
the finer bison heads become, though I have seen 
some very poor specimens which had been shot in 
the forests of South Canara, which also yields fine 
trophies. 

Bison are impatient of disturbance by man, and 
many places in the hills, in which they used to be 
numerous, are now deserted by them owing to the 
opening up of tea, cinchona, and coffee estates. 
Bison are great travellers, and they wander over 
immense areas. When the grass in one part 
becomes too coarse to please them, they move to 
another locality in which it is later in springing. 
No hills appear too steep for them ; on the contrary, 
they can gallop down so abrupt a declivity that 
anyone unacquainted with the powers of this most 
active animal would consider it negotiable by a 
beast of such a size only with due caution and at 
a slow pace. Comparatively recently, when in 
the Travancore hills, I came suddenly upon two 
bison while I was in the act of stalking an ibex, 
and upon getting our wind, the animals, without 
hesitation, crossed the steep ibex -hill, and gained 
the forest (from whence they had doubtless strayed 
in their search for tender grass) as if the formidable 
obstacle were not worthy of consideration. They 
could have reached the forest without much climb- 
ing by making a short detour, but they preferred 
the short cut — precipitous though it was. 

Bison browse a good deal, and so vary their 

13 



BULLET AND SHOT 

ordinary diet of grass. They are very fond of the 
young, tender, sprouting bamboos, from one foot 
to three or four feet in height. They feed and lie 
down alternately both by day and by night, always 
selecting the longest grass which they can find 
in the vicinity for their siesta, which lasts from 
about ten a.m. till two or three o'clock p.m. if the 
sun be hot, but, if the weather be moist and cool, 
they often graze between those hours, and lie down 
when they feel so inclined on their grazing ground. 
Their necessity for chewing the cud renders it 
imperative for them to occasionally repose, if only 
for that purpose. 

Bison are very fond of salt, and they are, in 
common with deer, elephants, and tame cattle, in 
the habit of resorting, generally by night or at 
early dawn, to any places where salt earth may 
be exposed in the vicinity of their grazing grounds 
for the time being. 

Bison are gregarious, and are generally found 
in herds of from ten, fifteen, to twenty or more 
animals. Usually each herd contains only one 
black bull, the other males with it being immature 
beasts. Occasionally two black bulls are found 
at the same time with a herd, but in such cases 
one of them is probably a visitor or an interloper, 
whose stay with the herd, unless indeed he should 
be able to vanquish and drive off the bull in 
possession, will be but a very brief one. But it 
is a very common thing to find a herd without 
even one black bull accompanying it, for the mature 
males of many species of animals prefer solitude 



THE INDIAN BISON 

at certain times ; consequently it by no means 
follows, when a male bison is found alone, that 
he is a veritable "solitary bull." The real solitary 
bull is an aged animal who is no longer able to 
hold his own with younger and stronger rivals, 
and who is therefore compelled by stern necessity 
to lead a life apart from the females. Frequently 
two single bulls meet and keep together for some 
time at least, the absence of the other sex prevent- 
ing any reason for disagreement between them. 
Owing mainly to the fact that comparatively few 
natives will eat bison meat, this noble animal is 
still very plentiful in suitable localities. If the 
majority, or even a considerable minority, of the 
meat-eating sections of the people of the country 
were not imbued with this prejudice, the natives 
would long ere this have done their best to exter- 
minate the bison, as they are doing in the case 
of deer, antelope, etc., which the carnivorous castes 
shoot down, snare, and destroy, irrespective of sex 
or age. 

Bison calves, if captured, are exceedingly difficult 
to rear, and they usually die while quite young. 
A few have, however, been brought up in captivity, 
notably one belonging to Major R. (of the 
Royal Scots), who shipped it home at the age of 
two years as a present to Her Majesty the Queen 
Empress. This young bull most unfortunately 
died at Aden while on the voyage. So far as I 
am aware, but one specimen of the Indian bison 
has reached England alive, and that was a member 
of a herd captured by a Rajah in the Straits, who 

15 



BULLET AND SHOT 

succeeded in driving a herd of the animals into a 
stockade. It subsequently died in the Regents' 
Park Zoological Gardens. 

Mr. M., a planter on the Travancore hills, 
conceived and actually carried out to completion 
the brilliant idea of capturing a full-grown bull 
bison in a pitfall, and then of surrounding the latter 
with a roomy and strong stockade, and of letting 
the bull loose within this enclosure. The success 
of his achievement was complete, and the bull 
soon became so tame that he would allow Mr. 
M. to handle him freely, though he would 
not permit a native to go near him. At last, to 
Mr. M.'s great disappointment, the bull succeeded 
one night in displacing the bars of the gate of the 
stockade, disappeared, and was never seen again. 

The only bison calf which I have ever possessed 
died almost immediately after I received it, since it 
had been nearly starved for some days in a native 
village before it was brought to me, its captors 
being very ignorant and careless. I have seen a 
very young calf left behind, crouching like a hare 
in its form, after I had fired at and had killed a 
member of the herd, the rest of which, with the 
exception of the little calf, had rushed away at the 
shot. The tiny animal was, however, far too active 
to allow itself to be caught, and easily made good 
its escape. 

Bison in southern India are exceedingly timid, 
inoffensive creatures, and it is only when one has 
been wounded and is being followed up, that the 
sportsman may possibly be charged. Even in such 

i6 



THE INDIAN BISON 

event, the bison usually contents himself with one 
rush and then goes on, though he may charge again 
and again if further followed up, but far more fre- 
quently he does not charge at all. The usual 
reason for a bison charging is that the animal, very 
probably struck through the lungs, or with a leg 
broken, betakes itself to the densest cover which it 
can find, and, when it feels itself unable to travel 
further, turns round and stands motionless, watching 
for its enemies. The sportsman and his gun-bearers 
following the blood trail are apparent to the bison's 
keen sense of hearing, and if the wind be from them 
to him, they are also obvious to his very acute sense 
of smell ; while, since the animal is standing silently 
in thick cover, they can neither hear nor see hinty 
till, with a premonitory snort, and "like an express 
train," he is upon, or past them. 

Usually he goes on, either having upset one or 
more of the party, or having missed them, as the 
case may be, but there have been instances in which 
a bull bison has stuck to his man with great per- 
tinacity. One of these occurred in my own dis- 
trict to Mr. (now Colonel) N. C, who was at the 
time a member of Sir F. (now Lord) Roberts' staff. 
Mr. N. C, having read in Sanderson's book that 
one should always rapidly pursue bison immediately 
after firing at them — on account of a habit which 
they have when suddenly alarmed, or being fired 
at, of pulling up and facing round after they have 
run a short distance — ran forward after firing at a 
bull, trying as he went to reload his 8-bore which 
had rather a stiff action. He had only just reached 
C 17 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the spot where the bull was standing at the shot, 
when, from behind a clump of bamboos, the bull 
came at him at speed. C. interposed a tree be- 
tween himself and the bull, who cut a piece out 
of the bark with his horn as he rushed by, and 
then turned round and went at him again with the 
same result. C. then thought that he would try 
to reach a more distant tree, and ran to do so, 
but, being tripped up by a fallen branch, log, or bam- 
boo hidden in the grass, he fell prone, upon which 
the bull came and did all that he could to horn 
him, but succeeded only in ripping his garments 
considerably, and at last, getting his horn round 
C, tossed him, and then came and stood over him 
again. C, a strong, athletic man, now did what 
was very unwise, viz., he sat up and hit the bison 
with his fists in the eyes, and kicked him on the 
vnose, until, for some unexplained reason, the bull 
left him and went off. That the bull was but very 
slightly wounded was evident from the fact that, 
though C. followed him up for some miles, he 
never saw him again. C.'s knuckles were de- 
scribed to me, by a man who saw him soon after 
the adventure, as being terribly skinned, and 
he afterwards showed me a thick, plain gold ring, 
which he was wearing at the time, battered out 
of all shape. Now this bison did not act at all in 
the way in which one would expect an animal of 
his kind to behave. In the first place, although 
not severely wounded, he remained where he was 
standing when first fired at ; and in the second, he 
displayed great pertinacity ; while the third, and 

i8 



THE INDIAN BISON 

perhaps most extraordinary proceeding upon his 
part, was his leaving C. (although he was in such 
a vindictive temper) while that officer was pommel- 
ling him — for I cannot believe that C.'s efforts could 
have really inconvenienced him. 

One of my favourite jungle-men — a little Kurraba 
— was an eye-witness of the encounter, since he 
was jumping about behind a bamboo clump, be- 
wailing C.'s fate, but never thinking of firing off 
the spare rifle which he carried ! This little 
Kurraba's idea was that the bull left C. because 
the latter beat him so severely, but I find it 
impossible to imagine that so huge a beast could 
be hurt by kicks and by blows from a man's feet 
and fists. 

Quite recently Mr. R. M., a planter on the 
Billiga-Rungun hills in Mysore, had the narrowest 
possible escape, being so fearfully injured by a bison 
that his recovery was little short of miraculous. 
Mr. M. had been out shooting, and had bagged a 
bull. He was walking back, accompanied by one 
native, when all of a sudden a bison rushed at him 
from behind and horned him through the back, the 
horn making a huge wound, and penetrating the 
lung. But for the kindness of one of the Army 
Medical Staff in Bangalore, who went and stayed 
with him, and the unremitting care of his charming 
and plucky wife, Mr. M. could not have recovered, 
and in fact, with every advantage in their favour, 
very few men could have survived such a wound. 
It is quite unknown what induced the bison to 
attack Mr. M. ; whether the animal was one which 

19 



BULLET AND SHOT 

had been wounded by a brother sportsman, or a cow 
with a very young calf very close to whom Mr. M. 
unawares passed, will never be ascertained. So 
sudden and so effectual was the attack, that even 
the sex of the assailant is unknown. 

Many years ago a sportsman was killed in the 
Pulney hills by a wounded bull. In this case death 
ensued very quickly after the wound was inflicted, 
the horn having penetrated the stomach. 

In 1897 ^ Colonel Syers was killed by a bison in 
the Malay Peninsula. 

It is quite extraordinary how very few people 
have been hurt by bison, as compared with the 
great number who have been upset, or even tossed 
by them. I have known many men who have been 
knocked over by bison, several of them while shoot- 
ing in my own district, but not one, with the single 
exception of Mr. M., was at all seriously injured. 

The big bull mentioned above as having been 
bagged by Mr. St. Q., tossed that sportsman on to 
his back, and Mr. St. Q. fell off behind as the bull 
rushed on, having got rid of his very temporary 
jockey ! Captain H., of the Bedfordshire Regi- 
ment, was shooting in my district, and fired at a 
bull bison. He followed the blood trail, and was 
charged furiously from the front by a cow. He 
fired at and dropped her, but the impetus of her 
rush carried her on, and she upset H., who fell 
with his leg under the expiring beast, and was 
unable to extricate it till the latter died. He then 
found a second blood trail, and following it up, 
came upon a bull standing, in a helpless state, with 



THE INDIAN BISON 

its throat cut by the bullet. H.'s ball had first cut 
the throat of the bull, and had then gone on into 
the cow beyond. As may well be imagined, his 
leg was very badly bruised. Curiously enough, his 
companion in this trip — Captain F., of the same 
regiment — was also upset by a wounded bull, who 
knocked him (a big, powerful man) clean over, 
although missing his aim, by a creeper, which he 
took with him in his rush, and which cut through 
F.'s gaiter and stocking, and the skin of his leg. 
The bull then went on and lay down, and F. fol- 
lowed him up alone and killed him. 

I have known several different sounds emitted 
by bison. The one most frequently heard is their 
snort of alarm when suddenly disturbed ; I have 
also heard them give vent to a low "moo," very 
like that of domestic cattle. In the Versinaad 
valley, in the Madura district, I heard bison 
making a noise which I mistook for one made by 
elephants ; and I once heard a bison, which had 
been struck in the neck by a '500 Express (solid) 
bullet and was floundering forward on its knees, 
bellow plaintively. This last animal recovered 
itself without falling right over, and went off and 
I did not see it again. 

Bison are forest-loving animals, and on the hill 
ranges inhabited by them, where open grassy 
slopes and dense cover alternate, the hot hours 
of the day are spent in the latter, and they must 
be stalked and shot, like other hill game, when 
they are out on the grass in the mornings and 
afternoons. 



BULLET AND SHOT 

The tail of a bison makes excellent soup, the 
tongue is a delicacy, the marrow-bones afford first- 
rate material for marrow-toast, and the under-cut, 
though somewhat rich, is well-flavoured and tender. 

Although as a rule a bison has no dewlap, the 
first bull which I ever bagged had a well-defined 
one. Captain (now Colonel) W. (late of the 43rd 
O. L. I.), who was with me, and who had shot a 
very large number of bison, was greatly struck 
by the dewlap carried by this animal — a solitary 
bull with a very fair head — and he called my 
attention to it. 

When close to bison, a strong smell as of the 
domestic cow is often very apparent, but this is 
not an unfailing guide to the proximity of the 
animals, as it remains in a place where the bison 
have been lying down for some time after they 
have moved off. 

It is very curious how the natives inhabiting 
the Cossya hills in Assam fear bison. The late 
Major Cock — a great Assam sportsman, who was 
killed at the assault of Khonoma, in the Naga hills, 
some twenty years ago — stated that he had seen 
natives who had little fear of elephants or tigers, 
show signs of funk when called upon to follow 
bison. Possibly, just as the lion evinces a very 
different disposition in Eastern Africa from that 
characterising the same animal when encountered 
in the south and in Somaliland — as is noticed in 
one of the Badminton Library volumes on big- 
game shooting, by Mr. F. J. Jackson — the bison 
of Assam may be more prone to attack without 



THE INDIAN BISON 

provocation than are his congeners in the south of 
India. 

Special localities for bison are numberless, and 
I can note only a few. 

For fine heads, Mysore and Travancore, the 
Anaimalai hills and the Western Ghants are to 
be recommended, but, as elsewhere stated, I have 
seen a number of very poor, though mature heads, 
which have been shot in Canara just below the 
Western Ghants — a district which yields very fine 
heads also. 

The best districts in the province of Mysore for 
bison are those of Mysore, Kadur, and Shimoga. 
The railway runs as far as the town of Mysore 
(and further in one direction), and an easy journey 
thence by bullock-coach will take the sportsman 
to bison ground. 

From Bangalore, the bison grounds of the Kadur 
and Shimoga districts can be approached by rail 
(the railway extension from Birur to Shimoga, 
lately under construction, must be completed by 
this time), a short journey across country from 
the nearest railway station sufficing to place the 
sportsman upon the ground which he may intend 
to work. Travelling across country in Mysore is 
easy, since there are travellers' bungalows at con- 
venient intervals along all the main roads, and 
also because a letter addressed to the Amildar of 
any Taluq (division of a district) giving timely 
notice, will ensure relays of bullocks being posted 
at all stages along the road by which the sportsman 
may elect to travel. Using posted bullocks, an 

23 



BULLET AND SHOT 

average rate of speed of four miles an hour by day, 
and three miles an hour by night (including halts 
for changing bullocks, and the delays and ob- 
structions so dear to the native of India), may 
be counted upon. 

Bullock-coach travelling is a lazy but comfort- 
able means of progression, and, the conveyance 
itself being commodious, a good many necessaries 
can accompany the sportsman in his own carriage. 
His carts, which will travel at a rate while marching 
of only two miles per hour, will of course have 
preceded him. Bullock-coaches can be hired from 
Framjee, in Mysore, who also supplies soda-water 
and general stores, though I should recommend a 
visitor to purchase his tinned provisions and liquor 
in Bangalore. It is probable that, with the com- 
pletion of the railway extension from Birur to 
Shimoga, coaches available for hire by the sports- 
man will be located at the principal stations. 

Other good localities in southern India are 
parts of the Coimbatore district, the Wynaad, 
and the Travancore hills. 

The late Captain Forsyth in his charming book 
The Highlands of Central India, General A. A. A. 
Kinloch in his Large Game Shooting in Thibet 
and Northern India, and Mr. Sterndale in 
Seonee, have dealt with bison-shooting in the 
Central Provinces, and on the Satpura range in 
that part of India. 

Bison are to be found in Assam and Burmah, 
and in fact in all sub- Himalayan tracts of forest 
of sufficient continuity. 



THE INDIAN BISON 

The vernacular names for the bison are — 

Hindustani — Gaor or Gaori-gai, Bun-boda. 

In Seonee and Mandla districts — Bunparra, 
Boda. 

By Southern Gouds — Pera-maoo. 

Mahrathi — Gaoiya. 

Canarese (the language chiefly spoken in Mysore) 
— Kartee, Kard-yemmay, Kard-kworna, (bull = 
kworna ; cow = yemmay.) 

Tamil — Kaluzeni, 

By Mussalmen in Southern India — Jungli- 
Kulgha. 

In Burmah — Pyoung. 



25 



CHAPTER III. 
BISON SHOOTING 

THERE are few forms of sport, with the grooved 
or smooth barrel, more exciting, and from 
every point of view more enjoyable, than the pur- 
suit of this grand specimen of the genus Bos. 
Whether the forests of the low country, or one 
of the hill ranges be the scene of action, the sport 
is one which pre-eminently demands all the pursuer's 
powers of endurance, and all his knowledge of the 
habits of the game ; and, large though the animal 
be, and consequently easy to hit, hitting a bison 
in the wrong place is only useless cruelty, since the 
poor beast so often escapes — at the best to suffer 
great pain for a considerable time, and too often to 
die a lingering death in solitude. 

In the low-country forests the modus operandi is 
as follows. An early start is made, and the sports- 
man, taking with him men enough to carry his 
luncheon, drinkables for the day, and his battery, 
usually proceeds towards any well-known salt-licks 
(or places in which salt earth is exposed) in the 
hope of finding fresh tracks made during the 
previous night or at early dawn. Possibly he may 
come upon such tracks, as he traverses alternately 

26 



BISON SHOOTING 

bamboo jungle, open tree forest, and dense thickets,, 
while on his way to the lick, or he may find none 
until he has reached the latter — situated probably 
either in an open glade on flat ground, or in the 
bank of a deep nullah. The salt-lick will be found 
ploughed up by the tracks of bison, elephant, sam- 
bur, and spotted deer ; and possibly the huge pugs 
of a tiger close by, made as he lay in ambush, will 
show how well aware the tyrant of the forest is 
of the habits of the animals upon which he preys. 

These resorts are well known to the jungle men 
who act as the sportsman's guides, and usually, 
if bison are anywhere in the vicinity, they visit a 
lick nightly during wet weather, in order to eat 
some of the salt earth. 

It sometimes happens that there are several such 
licks only two or three miles apart, and it may be 
necessary to visit more than one of them before fresh 
tracks are found. It is generally worth while to 
follow a track made any time during the previous 
night, provided only that it be found fairly early in 
the day — say before 1 1 a.m. — and the jungle men are 
very expert in estimating the time which has elapsed 
since a track was made. This is a very much more 
difBcult matter than might be supposed, and even 
the best trackers are occasionally at fault. 

I remember a very striking instance of this. I 
was in camp in a forest lodge called Rampore 
(in the Ainurmarigudi forest in Mysore), situated 
close to the bank of the Noogoo river. It was 
in the south-west monsoon, and the weather was 
very wet. We left camp early one morning, and 



BULLET AND SHOT 

within about a mile came upon quite fresh tracks. 
After following these for some time, we came up 
with the bison, which were lying down in long 
grass, and disturbed them without getting a shot. 
I followed up this herd for the best part of the day 
(which was cold and dark, but without much rain) 
without getting a chance at the bull, and then gave 
up the pursuit and started back to camp. On the 
way, when at no great distance from the lodge, we 
came upon tracks which the men considered so 
very fresh that, late as it was, we followed them, 
thinking that we had found the tracks of another 
herd which had passed only just before we had 
come across their footprints. The tracks led to a 
salt-lick, and thence on through the forest, till we 
arrived at last at the spot at which we had found 
them in the early morning ! We had, in the evening, 
been following tracks of the same herd made before 
the tracks which we had found in the early morning! 
So cool and damp was it, that blades of grass, cut 
by the hoofs of the bison, remained perfectly fresh 
and unwithered during the whole day ! If there be 
any sun, the blades of grass so cut wither very 
quickly, and the tracks made by the same animal 
vary in appearance very greatly according to whether 
they are exposed to the sun or are in the shade. 

Spiders often spin their webs in the deep tracks 
made by bison in soft ground ; and in my experience 
an otherwise fresh-looking track, in which a spider's 
web is found, had better be abandoned rather than 
followed. 

The worst feature of tracking is that the sports- 

28 



BISON SHOOTING 

man is entirely at the mercy of the wind. Where 
the tracks go, he must follow, whether up or down 
wind ; and sometimes for several days together he 
will experience the disappointment of hearing the 
bison dash off, having got his wind, without obtain- 
ing a chance at them. This is a risk which must 
be run, and against which no skill or knowledge 
of woodcraft can protect anyone, and it is a very 
severe handicap. 

It is essential in bison shooting (and, in fact, in 
all big-game shooting in the forest) that the sports- 
man's movements should be as noiseless as possible, 
and, of course, he should never utter anything louder 
than a low whisper. 

His boots should be made without heels ^ and when 
he knows that the game is near, he should advance 
pointing his toes downwards as much as possible. 

In the flat forests of part of the Mysore district, 
I often took a Pegu pony out shooting with me, 
and unless we had to cross any obstacles over which 
it would have been risky to take him, he frequently 
followed me throughout the day. My plan was to 
ride until we found tracks, when I dismounted. 
Two Kurraba trackers, each carrying a rifle or gun, 
and sometimes a third unencumbered by anything, 
preceded me by two or three paces ; at some distance 
behind me came two more with my luncheon bag 
and drinkables ; and a long way behind the latter 
again, came a third pair (or a single one), with the 
syce (groom) leading the pony. 

The best time for bison shooting in the forests 
of Mysore is during the south-west monsoon, which. 

29 



BULLET AND SHOT 

usually bursts in the first half of the month of June 
and continues until the autumn, when the wind 
veers round to the north-east, and the north-east 
monsoon replaces the former. 

For choice, I consider the beginning of the south- 
west monsoon as the ideal time for bison shooting 
in Mysore. The grass then is (provided fire pro- 
tection has been unsuccessful) short and of a very 
vivid emerald hue. The ground being soft, tracking 
is easy, while frequent rains usually render it prac- 
ticable to judge correctly the length of time which 
has elapsed since any track which may be found 
was made. A further advantage is that, although 
there is at any time of the year no heat worthy 
of the name to complain of in Mysore, at this 
particular season cloudy skies and cold wet days 
often lighten the labour of a long day's toil after 
bison. At this time, which corresponds to the 
early summer at home, forest nature looks her best, 
and each well-grown tree is an object of beauty to 
the lover of forest life and scenery. 

The sportsman who is intent on bison shooting 
should rise before dawn, and make as good a 
meal as he can manage to cope with at so early 
an hour before going out. He should take with 
him food enough for the day, remembering that 
it may be late ere he can return to camp. He 
must also carry sufficient fluid to last him till his 
return — cold tea or soda-water, as he may prefer, 
since he must not drink a drop of jungle water 
unless it has been boiled, and thus rendered in- 
nocuous. 

30 



BISON SHOOTING 

Native servants cannot be trusted to boil water 
for drinking purposes, unless the sportsman should 
personally see it done, and few will take this 
trouble. 

I have shot bison with a 4-bore, an 8-bore, a '577 
express, and a '500 express. On the whole, for 
work upon this game in fairly open forests and in 
hilly country, I consider a powerful '577, with a 
charge of 6^ drachms of powder, as ^/le best weapon 
for the sport, the bullets used being either solid, or 
with only a very small, short hollow filled by a 
wooden plug. 

Its accuracy and handiness are great advantages 
in favour of the '577, and my experience of the 
weapon is that a bull hit fairly accurately with it is 
as good as bagged, though he may, and probably 
will, unless shot through the heart, require some 
more shooting before he is laid low. 

In very dense cover however, in which following 
up a wounded bison is dangerous work, I should 
prefer the 4-bore, as it has great knocking-down 
power, and a bison hit at all accurately with it either 
drops at once, or stands helpless. 

An 8-bore is also a capital weapon for bison 
shooting, and I have shot many with this bore, 
though I have also hit and lost a good number 
with it. 

The '500 is not to be recommended for use upon 
bison, though they can be killed with it if solid 
bullets be used, and it is certainly useful for braining 
a bull at the end of a hunt. 

The number of bullets occasionally found in an 

31 



BULLET AND SHOT 

old bull bison bears startling testimony to the ability 
of the animal to support badly-placed lead, and I 
have seen the head of one, which was shot by the 
late Sir James Gordon, k.c.s.i. (and which was 
killed by him with a single i6 or i8-bore bullet), in 
whose carcass, the Kurrabas, on cutting it up, found 
no less than thirteen bullets ! I have seen bullets 
lying under the skin of newly killed bison, the 
presence of each being evidenced by a round pro- 
tuberance, a cut through the skin from the hunting 
knife at once exposing the bullet. 

When a bison is shot in any forest in Mysore in 
which there are Kurrabas, these little nomads re- 
move the whole of the flesh, cutting it into strips, 
which they then expose to the sun — on a rock if 
there should be one handy for the purpose — and 
so dry the meat for future consumption. The 
sportsman can feel, therefore, that he is not killing 
a large animal to waste. One caution, however, I 
must give him, viz., not to put his foot upon a 
slain bull, for, should he do so, owing to some 
superstition of their own, the Kurrabas will not 
eat its flesh. 

Personally, I hate following herd bison if there 
are any single bulls about, for, let the sportsman 
be as careful and as experienced as possible, the 
fact that there are cows with the herd makes it 
incumbent upon him never to fire unless he is 
sure that the animal is a big bull. Now it follows 
that since in a herd of say ten, fifteen, or twenty 
bison, there is usually but one bull fit to shoot, the 
chances are nine, fourteen, or nineteen to one. 

32 



BISON SHOOTING 

respectively against the animal first seen — if the 
bison are come upon suddenly in cover — being the 
only one which he desires to kill. 

In spite of all precautions, some cows are so dark 
in colour, and carry such big heads, that a mistake 
may occur, and even the best sportsman may incur 
the shame and self-reproach of having accidentally 
shot a cow. 

In order to be sure that a bison in a herd is a 
bull, the sportsman must either see the animals' 
heads from the front — as may occur if he comes 
upon them in thick cover, hears a snort, and sees 
big heads with outstretched noses pointed in his 
direction — or he must see the herd in the open, 
and be able to form some comparison. A full- 
grown cow bison looks a very big beast, and if 
an unusually dark specimen should be come upon 
when her head is hidden (and no other bison 
visible), when the sportsman is following the tracks 
of a single bull, the latter would shoot her without 
hesitation in the belief that she was the object of 
his pursuit. 

It is sickening to a sportsman to shoot a cow 
by accident, and the danger of so doing inclined 
me latterly to practically confine myself to single 
bulls. 

Very fine heads have occasionally been shot in 
herds, but the herd bull is generally an animal 
in the very prime of life, whose horns, however, 
bear no comparison in size to those of a veritable 
solitary bull. 

In following a single bull, the sportsman has no 
D 33 



BULLET AND SHOT 

chance of hitting a cow by mistake, unless he 
should happen to see one member only of a herd 
of the proximity of which he had no previous idea. 
This occurs so very rarely that this single risk he 
must run if shooting in a thick, low-country forest ; 
for so acute are the senses of the animal, that he 
cannot delay firing should he come upon and see 
any vital portion or large limb of it — probably 
through intervening jungle, and usually at pretty 
close quarters. Should he delay till he could 
make out the animal properly, it would most likely 
detect him and vanish without giving him another 
chance. 

If the sportsman should obtain a shot at a bull 
standing broadside on, a bullet placed just behind 
the shoulder, and a little below the centre of the 
side, will be fatal. If he should fire more in front, 
and break the shoulder-blade, the animal will shortly 
be at his mercy ; though he may travel a little way 
if the bone has only been perforated, until it breaks 
under the weight of the huge body. A shot fired 
at right angles with the body far back through the 
ribs is useless, and beyond inflicting a cruel wound, 
which may cause the subsequent lingering death of 
the animal, will have no effect in compassing the 
object of the sportsman, viz., the bagging of his 
trophy. 

A shot high up through the loins, thus perforat- 
ing the liver, is a certain one, but is not so rapid 
in effect as a bullet well placed behind the shoulder. 
The animal in the former case may travel, fight, 
and take some more lead ere he dies, if followed up 

34 



BISON SHOOTING 

at once. For this shot, the spot to be aimed at is 
about nine inches below the termination of the 
dorsal ridge. 

If no better shot can be obtained — as for instance 
when the animal is standing broadside-on, with all 
its body, with the exception of one hind-quarter, 
hidden by cover — the best plan is not to delay 
in the hope that it will afford a better chance, but 
to at once break the hip-joint, which done, the bull 
cannot escape. 

Should the animal be standing facing the sports- 
man, a shot in the centre of the chest is fatal, and 
is quite as rapid in effect as is one behind the 
shoulder. If, on the contrary, the bull be stand- 
ing or moving away, with only his hind-quarters 
visible, the best shot is straight under the root of the 
tail. A bullet fired thus from a powerful weapon 
will rake the whole body and penetrate the vitals. 
Even should the aim be hardly true, one or other 
of the hip-joints or hind-legs will probably be 
broken. A bison with a broken leg cannot travel 
far, and will be soon recovered on following up. 
A shot fired diagonally behind the ribs in a line 
to the opposite shoulder is a deadly one. 

If only the head of the animal be visible — poked 
up and staring at the sportsman with the nose well 
elevated— a shot in the cartilage of the nose, plumb 
centre, and slightly above a line drawn between 
the nostrils, will penetrate the brain and drop 
the bull dead on the spot. 

For finishing off a floored bull (which common 
humanity requires should be done at the earliest 

35 



BULLET AND SHOT 

possible moment) I use a "500 express, a solid 
bullet from which, fired at the proper angle 
through the forehead between the eyes, behind 
the ear, or behind the horns, brains and kills him 
instantaneously. 

In following a wounded bull, the one thing to 
avoid, if possible, is the coming upon him so 
suddenly, that, should the animal charge, the 
sportsman would have no time to use his rifle. 

A bison charges at very high speed, and, unless 
he can be seen at some little distance, has the 
game all in his own hands so far as the sports- 
man's ability to defend himself is concerned. 

Considering that a wounded bison traverses the 
densest cover which it can find, and that its pur- 
suers cannot possibly tell whether it is not travel- 
ling rapidly with the intention of holding on for 
a long distance ; or whether, on the other hand, 
it is not hidden in some thicket close by, ready 
to rush down upon them with lowered horns the 
moment they shall have approached within a few 
yards, caution in following up a wounded beast 
is highly advisable. 

If the forest be fairly open, so that the sports- 
man can see an animal at a distance of, say, twenty- 
five yards, he can, and should, press on without 
loss of time ; but when the tracks lead through 
places — such as thickets of young bamboo or long 
grass — in which even so large an animal as a bison 
would be invisible at a few yards' distance, great 
circumspection is necessary, and the best plan is 
for the sportsman to keep causing his men to climb 

36 



BISON SHOOTING 

any trees met with on the track as he advances — of 
course in front of his men, for, as soon as there 
is any chance of danger, the armed man's position 
should be the van, and that of the unarmed men 
the rear. 

It may be that the portion of the forest in which 
the bull was wounded is open in the main, but with 
an occasional thicket interposing here and there. 
In such a case the track should be followed at 
a good pace in the open portions, two trackers 
(not encumbered by guns) being in advance, and 
as soon as the tracks enter a thicket, the sportsman 
should take the lead, rifle on full cock in hand, 
and further progress be noiseless and cautious. 

If the thicket be one which is of small extent, 
the shortest way is to "ring" it by going round 
the outside and seeing whether the tracks lead out 
of it again on the other side. If they do not, it 
is obvious that the bull has pulled up in it, and 
in such a case, if approached judiciously, he may 
be slain ; but if blundered in upon, will very prob- 
ably knock over or toss one of his pursuers, and 
will once more retreat, when the following up 
process will have to be repeated. 

Considering that a wounded bull bison will 
sometimes travel for miles, and often escape after 
all, it is obvious that every minute spent in un- 
necessary precautions is to be deplored. 

There are very few rules without exceptions, and 
I have come across one of the latter in the case 
of a bullet through the lungs, which is ordinarily 
fatal. I wounded a bull one day and it went off, 

37 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the light-coloured frothy blood on the track bearing 
indisputable evidence that it had been hit through 
the lungs. I followed it as long as there was light 
to do so and yet to reach camp before nightfall, 
and came up with it several times at long intervals, 
but did not obtain another shot. Next morning 
early, I took up the tracks at the spot at which 
I had left them on the previous evening, quite 
expecting to find the bull lying dead, but after 
following them for a long way, I found that he 
had grazed heavily during the night, or early that 
morning, and when at last I came up to where 
he had been reposing, his open hoof-marks, going 
off with long strides from the form which he had 
made in lying down, showed that he had got our 
wind and had gone off quite fresh. All bleeding 
had stopped, and I hope, and believe, that that bull 
quite recovered from its wound. 

Bison often take many bullets after having been 
wounded for the first time. It seems as if, when 
an animal has received a fairly severe, and yet not 
rapidly mortal wound, he can, in certain cases, 
support several other shocks, any one of which 
would be sufficient to place hors de combat an 
unwounded beast. I hope, and believe, that the 
reason for this is that after one very severe 
nervous shock, sensation is deadened, and so the 
poor beasts suffer far less pain than they would 
otherwise experience when subsequent wounds are 
inflicted upon them. I cannot pathologically 
explain this fact, but presume that the nervous 
system is responsible for it. 

38 



BISON SHOOTING 

As indicated above, body shots in the case of 
bison must be well placed, otherwise the animals 
are likely to escape ; but if a limb-bone be broken, 
the animal cannot go very far, though he may travel 
for some little distance before he pulls up. 

Having bagged his bull, the sportsman's next 
care should be to preserve its trophies. Of these 
the head is, of course, the chief If this be a 
fine specimen, it is well worth while to forward it 
for preservation to a taxidermist, but, as the bull 
may be shot at a distance of a week's or ten 
days' journey from the nearest member of this 
profession, much labour must be spent upon the 
"mask," or it will go bad and become quite 
useless. 

In the monsoon in Mysore, it is an exceedingly 
difficult matter to preserve a bison's mask. Per- 
sonally, I succeeded in saving but one head-skin 
of a bull shot at that time, and in this case it was 
owing entirely to my having bagged it at a 
distance of only some forty miles across country 
from the large town of Mysore, that I was able 
to save the head-skin. I effected this in the 
following manner. I had taken out men enough 
to carry in the head of a bull in case I should bag 
one (four men are required solely for this purpose), 
and the head was brought straight into camp 
directly after the bull had been shot. I kept men 
at work skinning it from about seven o'clock 
(when it reached camp) till midnight, supervising 
the operation myself to prevent any punctures 
being made in the skin round the eyes, nose, crest, 

39 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and mouth ; and I had two men kept ready to 
carry the mask, wound round a bamboo, through 
the night to Mysore, promising them a handsome 
reward if they should reach that town by a certain 
time. The head-skin thus reached the native 
worker in leather (chuckler), to whom it was con- 
signed, in good order, and he put it into pickle 
at once ; and after it had been thoroughly cured, 
I sent it, with the skull and horns, to a taxidermist 
on the Nilgiri hills, and a magnificent trophy 
(which is now at home) was the result. 

In dry weather, when there is plenty of sun, 
drying a bison's mask is an easy operation. 
Plentiful applications of arsenical soap and turpen- 
tine to the ears and mouth, and a good painting 
with these preservatives all over the hairy side, 
(the drugs being rubbed well into the skin), 
together with quantities of wood ashes in the first 
instance, and afterwards of arsenical soap followed 
by more wood ashes to the raw side, will, with 
full exposure to the Mysore sun, preserve the 
mask so that the hair will not slip before the 
very thick skin has had time to dry sufficiently 
to arrest all decay. In hotter climates than 
Mysore, exposure to the sun should be avoided. 
No doubt if the sportsman went out in the 
monsoon equipped with a barrel, the materials for 
making brine, and the necessary tools for coopering 
the former so as to exclude air, he might preserve 
his masks in the monsoon in the manner recom- 
mended by Mr. Rowland Ward, but it is seldom 
that he goes out so prepared, and unless he were 

40 



BISON SHOOTING 

invariably to do so, he might not get a head worth 
mounting when he had his barrel with him, for 
such heads are not to be picked up every day. 

If it be the sportsman's intention to preserve 
the head for mounting, the latter must be cut 
off so as to leave a very long neck. The proper 
way is for him, with his hunting knife, to personally 
make incisions through the epidermis where he 
wishes the skin to be cut, and then for his men 
to sever the thick skin along the lines so marked 
for them. 

After this, the neck should be skinned right 
up to the head, and the carcass heaved over (six 
men can, after some labour, effect this), and the 
other side similarly dealt with. Having skinned 
the neck thus, the muscles should be cut through 
down to the spine at the junction of the atlas 
and the axis, after which the head can be severed 
from the body by means of an axe or a heavy 
chopper. 

If, on the other hand, it is not required to 
preserve the mask for subsequent mounting, the 
head can be cut off short with only the skin 
covering itself, and the best plan in such event 
is to skin the head, and then to bury it up to 
the base of the horns in the mud of a forest pond 
or swamp, and so to allow the flesh to rot, after 
which the latter can be removed without difficulty. 
The brains should be scooped out with a rude 
spoon made of bamboo, and a solution of carbolic 
acid poured into the brain-pan will reduce the 
unpleasant smell. 

41 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Time, and constant exposure to the sun, will 
effect all that is thereafter required, with the 
exception of the measures necessary for the preser- 
vation of the horns, the bony cores of which soon 
become full of maggots. To prevent damage 
to the horns, the latter should be worked about 
by hand (after all the previous processes have been 
completed) until they have become loose, and then 
removed from the cores, and these, as well as the 
inside of the horns, should be well washed with a 
solution of carbolic acid. 

In a country in which the processes of decay are 
so rapid as they are in India, it behoves the sports- 
man to neglect no precaution which may enable 
him to successfully preserve a fine trophy. 

The only other trophies yielded by the bison 
are the hoofs. These are easily detached from 
the feet, and require no special treatment. Out of 
these pin-cushions, inkstands, etc., can be made. 



42 



CHAPTER IV. 

REMINISCENCES OF BISON SHOOTING 
MY FIRST BISON 

IT seems a long time ago, that memorable day, 
on which, for the first time in my life, I beheld 
the mighty gaur in the flesh ; still, though it is now 
many years since the occurrences which I am about 
to relate happened, every incident and each scene 
are as fresh and clear-cut in my mind's eye as if 
but one month had elapsed since the eventful 
episodes impressed themselves indelibly upon my 
memory. I was a keen sportsman, but my 
experiences had been confined chiefly to small 
game, and, though I had made some attempts to 
bag large game on foot in a country on the north- 
east frontier of India, where high grass and loft)'' 
reeds, matted and almost impenetrable tree jungles 
and deep swamps render shooting on foot well-nigh 
impossible, I had as yet bagged no single head 
thereof, with the exception of one spotted deer 
which had but very recently fallen to my rifle in 
Mysore. 

In May, 1882, I was at the Travellers' Bungalow 
of Goondulpet, in the Mysore district, detained by 
a heavy cold from proceeding into the forests for 

43 



BULLET AND SHOT 

which I was bound. The south-west monsoon 
happened to be particularly early that year, since 
it burst during the latter end of May, and I was 
eagerly anticipating my first rencontre with a bison 
— an animal which as yet I had never seen. 

While thus detained at the Travellers' Bungalow, 
a bullock- coach one day drew up at the door, 
and from it emerged a tall man with a thick, but 
evidently unaccustomed, growth of hair all round 
his face, from which projected far upon either side 
an enormous, and very handsome moustache. He 
walked slowly and totteringly up the steps and 
entered the bungalow, and it was not long ere we 
became acquainted. My then new acquaintance, 
but afterwards valued friend, proved to be Captain 
(now Colonel) W., of the 43rd O.L.L, who was, 
without exception, the best sportsman, and best 
all-round shot, of the many good sportsmen and 
pleasant shooting companions with whom it has 
been my good fortune to meet and to shoot, while 
his unselfishness and generosity in sport equalled 
his proficiency therein. Captain W. had been 
encamped during the preceding six weeks in a 
very feverish locality, and was weak and much 
reduced after a bad attack of ague, and he was 
even then on his way up to the hill-station of 
Ootacamund, with a view to appearing before a 
medical board. He was out on six months' leave, 
every day of which he had intended to spend in 
the jungles, but after the first six weeks — of perhaps 
the most unhealthy season of the year in those 
parts — it appeared as if he would be compelled to 

44 



REMINISCENCES 

leave the forests, and to recruit his health in a 
favourable climate. After a few days with me, 
however, W. picked up again, lost his fever, and 
gave up all idea of the medical board, deciding 
instead to accompany me in my forest wanderings, 
and, as soon as I was well enough to do so, we 
started for a forest-lodge twenty-two miles off. 

As a convenient travellers' bungalow intervened 
at Maddur, nine miles from Goondulpet, and 
thirteen from the lodge of Molubollay for which 
we were bound, we broke the journey there. 
Leaving the Maddur bungalow after dinner one 
night — W. in a country cart and myself in my 
bullock-coach, our baggage carts, my pony dog- 
cart, and our retainers in procession — we set out 
to traverse the remaining thirteen miles during 
the night, while sleeping comfortably on our 
mattresses and pillows. 

I am a sound sleeper — as my better half (who 
often says that she does not know ivhat she should 
do if anything were to occur which might require 
my being suddenly aroused) can testify — but at 
about 2 a.m. on this march I was aware of W.'s 
exhorting me to get up, and to get out my big 
rifle, as there was a brute of an elephant on the 
road, which — though the cart-men had been shout- 
ing at him — would not clear out. W. had his rifle 
in hand, and was ready for the fray, and it did not 
take me long to get my 8-bore rifle case from under 
my bed in the coach, put the weapon together, and 
load it. 

The procession of vehicles had halted, and W. 

45 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and I went on into the darkness ahead to look 
for the elephantine highwayman who had so un- 
ceremoniously disturbed our rest. 

The high road lay through heavy forest on both 
sides, and as it was quite dark, W. took the 
precaution of grasping the shoulder of a trembling 
old Mahomedan peon of mine, who carried a 
lantern, and of somewhat forcibly inducing him 
to light us, thus leaving himself but one hand 
free for the use of his rifle. I confess that I did 
not at all appreciate the situation. I knew full 
well that had the elephant attacked us — as there 
was every probability of his doing — W. would 
have been obliged to release the ancient disciple 
of the prophet in order to use his rifle, and that, 
to a moral certainty, the peon would have dropped 
the lantern, and have incontinently "hooked it," 
leaving us in the dark, with a charging and 
infuriated pachyderm somewhere or other on the 
top of us — a situation the danger of which could 
not possibly be exaggerated. Fortunately no such 
risk was in store for us ; we could see nothing of 
any elephant on the road, but we heard one 
breaking bamboos or branches in the jungle to 
the right hand side of it. We went a little way 
into the forest, where, in spite of the lantern, it 
was impossible to see further than a few paces, 
and though we could plainly hear the elephant 
(apparently very close to us), we could see nothing. 

We therefore returned to the road, and stood on 
guard until all the vehicles had passed. We then 
went on, having directed the men not to go so far 

46 



REMINISCENCES 

as the forest lodge for which we were bound, but 
to stop for the remainder of the night at the nearest 
water, which was about two miles off. 

Early next morning we got up, had some food 
cooked by the roadside, took our rifles, and set 
off to look for the elephant of the previous night, 
which we naturally dubbed a "rogue." On reaching 
the place however, instead of the expected tracks 
of the rogue, we found those of a whole herd of 
elephants, to interfere with which we had no per- 
mission. There was then nothing to be done but 
to retrace our steps, and to proceed towards the 
said forest lodge, trying for bison on the way. 

The forest consisted of a great diversity of 
growth. In one part were flat or undulating 
stretches of mature bamboo jungle — the bamboos 
standing in large clumps, with plenty of room to 
walk between, except where elephants had broken 
them down and spread them about on the ground 
in a fantastic network. In another, we might enter 
an open glade, with a few large teak and other 
timber trees scattered at considerable intervals, 
which lay at the edge of an expanse of fairly open 
mixed tree forest, where the large trunks stood 
as near to one another as their ever-encroaching 
roots would permit, and where, at this season of 
the year, a lovely carpet of new, fresh, rapidly- 
grown grass, of about half or three - quarters of 
a foot in height, covered the ground. Here and 
there a deep nullah interposed, containing in some 
cases one or more "salt-licks," which were well 
known to the jungle-men who guided us. 

47 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Until nearly midday we came upon no fresh 
tracks of bison, nor did we see any game whatever, 
except some sambur deer and muntjac — at none 
of which did we get a shot. 

About midday, however, we came upon tracks 
made during the previous night by a herd of bison. 
As the grass was then so short that the animals 
were likely to travel far, and as it was moreover 
so late in the day, W. did not consider that these 
tracks were worth following, and we therefore left 
them to look for fresher signs of the game. 

We chanced to come across, and to capture, 
a regular "wild man of the woods," whom we en- 
countered most opportunely. We suddenly heard 
a slight noise which the trackers declared was 
made by a bison, and with the utmost care, and 
after taking all possible precautions against alarm- 
ing the expected game, we stealthily crept towards 
the locality in which we had heard it ; and there we 
found — not the longed-for bison — but a wild and 
utterly uncultivated jungle inhabitant, who, with 
a conical basket on his back, was searching for, 
and digging up roots (the sustenance of his kind 
and of the wild boar), whose first impulse on seeing 
us was to bolt into the depths of the forest. A 
little reassuring, however, upon the part of the 
jungle-men who accompanied us, and who were 
only his more cultivated brethren — though they 
differed from him in appearance far less than does 
a town "masher" from a country bumpkin — showed 
him that we were neither elephants nor tigers, and 
that we required not his blood, but that of a bison ; 

48 



REMINISCENCES 

and we were eventually able to induce him to 
accompany us, in order that he might show us 
where the object of our search could be found. 
He certainly was not a prepossessing animal, but 
might, did not gratitude for his services prohibit 
it, be termed a most filthy and highly repulsive 
one. His large masses of grizzled hair were matted 
together, a dirty rag round his loins constituted 
his only apparel — if I except his native dirt, where- 
with, as the olfactory nerves of even a native cook 
might have testified, he was clad as with a garment, 
— and the conical basket on his back represented 
his stock in trade. Simple and happy jungle 
wallah ! Never wilt thou know what it is to pos- 
sess wants (and possibly duns) far beyond thy 
means to satisfy ! Never will the gnawings of 
unrequited love, or the cravings of unsatisfied 
ambition rack thine innocent soul ! For thee, 
the world outside the forest may wag as it may, 
kingdoms may rise and fall, the world be electrified 
by stirring events which cannot but exercise the 
soul of every civilised human being who can read 
a newspaper! India itself might pass into the 
hands of Russia, nay — worse fate still — it might 
even fall into the rapacious clutches of the Ben- 
galee Baboo, but what wouldst thou know, or 
care, about all such (to thee) trifles unworthy of 
knowledge or consideration .'* Freedom to dig thy 
roots, and to collect thy honey in the forest in 
peace, and a few bamboos and a little thatch to rig 
up thy simple abode, are all thy needs ; and thy 
sole anxieties are the avoidance in thy wanderings 
E 49 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of the dreaded rogue elephant, and the escaping 
in thy humble hearth of the destructive small- 
pox ! 

Taking our newly discovered wild man with us, 
we constituted him our "guide, philosopher and 
friend," and followed him through forest of varied 
character, till we reached some high ground covered 
with only a stunted growth of short stuff and tiny 
trees, which latter are not termed "saplings" only 
because they were too old to be so called. 

While passing through this, I happened to notice 
a dark object on the ground, but before I had at all 
made it out, it sprang up and rushed off, displaying 
the noble proportions of a fine bull bison. 

W., who was carrying his '577 express, at once 
fired both barrels as the bull rushed through the 
little trees, while I grabbed wildly for my 8-bore 
rifle which was being carried by a man behind me. 
Cocking and pitching it, just as if I had been firing 
a snapshot at a snipe, I fired ; the bull collapsed 
at the shot, and fell to rise no more. 

"VVe went up close, and found that, though there 
was still a slight muscular movement, the animal 
was dead to all intents and purposes, my bullet 
having entered the spine through the neck. One 
of W.'s bullets had hit him in the rump, but the 
other had apparently been taken en route by one of 
the before-mentioned trees, for it was nowhere in 
the animal, and as I since had ample means of 
knowing, it was seldom that W. missed a fair shot 
in the open ; though in cover, in firing a running 
shot, no one, however first-class a shot he may be, 

50 



REMINISCENCES 

can avoid sometimes having his bullet intercepted 
by a tree ere it finds its intended mark. 

My own delight at having thus (though by an 
utter and most fortunate fluke) knocked over and 
bagged — by a running snapshot, too — the first 
bison which I had ever seen, may be better 
imagined than described. I may add, however, 
that I afterwards missed several fine standing shots 
before I bagged another ! 

Although of course, by the strict law of sport, 
the head of this bull belonged, not to me, but to 
W. who had first hit him, that generous fellow 
simply refused to take it, and it formed one of a 
batch of trophies which, some two years and a 
half later, I took home to the paternal roof. 

Having cut off the bull's head, which we left to 
be subsequently brought in, we set out for the 
forest lodge to which we had sent on our camp 
when we started early that morning to look for 
the disturber of our previous night's rest. 

We had proceeded for, I suppose, only about 
half an hour, when, again without our finding any 
fresh tracks, and without any warning, a solitary 
bull jumped up and rushed off, followed by a 
second bull who was in his company. W., 
who was carrying his express, fired both barrels, 
and was in hot pursuit of one of the bulls before 
I could get my rifle from its bearer, and he then, 
after taking a fresh rifle, put in two more shots, 
followed by a fifth from a single-barrelled weapon 
of large bore. As soon as I could get my rifle, 
I pursued, and arrived, very much out of breath, 

SI 



BULLET AND SHOT 

at a spot where W. was standing with empty 
rifles, and the bull also standing with a broken 
shoulder. The bison faced round, looking a truly- 
magnificent beast, and W., telling me to keep 
an eye on him in case of his charging, proceeded 
to reload his rifles. The bull standing thus in an 
open glade, watching us face to face and appearing 
as if very much inclined to charge, was one of the 
grandest sights which I have ever witnessed in 
bison shooting. 

W., having reloaded his rifles, told me ta 
take the bull in the neck. I did so, and he fell, 
but jumped up again. W. now opened fire 
and knocked him over, and, as he lay there alive, 
W. told me to brain him by a shot between 
the eyes. My bullet was, however, too high for 
the brain, and then my companion killed him by 
a shot behind the ear. 

Though both were old, solitary bulls, the second 
was a larger animal than the first, and also carried 
a finer head, the horns being wider across the 
sweep, and much worn down, and the head 
altogether more massive and imposing. 

Once more we proceeded towards camp, but 
before we reached it, we came upon very fresh 
tracks of a herd of bison, and, though we saw 
them, they became alarmed, and went off before 
we could make out the bull, and so they escaped 
without being fired at. 

This, my first day at the noble game, is the 
best day's bison shooting which I have ever 
enjoyed, though a good many fine heads have 

52 



REMINISCENCES 

since fallen to my rifle. It is not very often, in 
the forests in which I have shot, that one chances 
upon bison without having first found and followed 
their tracks for some distance, and our doing so 
twice upon this day was a somewhat curious 
coincidence. I am quite unable to determine 
whether it was sheer luck, or an intimate know- 
ledge of the locality and of the habits of the game, 
which enabled our shaggy and odoriferous guide 
to lead us up to them so fortunately. He stayed 
a few days in our camp, and then vanished, without 
saying "good-bye," or even asking for remuneration, 
— very unlike the conduct of the ordinary native ! 

The two bulls, whose deaths form the subject of 
this narrative, carried heads measuring thirty-three 
and thirty - seven inches respectively across the 
sweep, the first being an ordinary solitary bull, 
and the second a fine one ; in fact, its head was 
the best of the six bull bison heads bagged by 
W. in this trip, and the latter was far too good 
a sportsman to intentionally fire at an animal 
carrying a small head. 

THE BULL WHO CAME TO LUNCH WITH ME 

One monsoon day I rode with my wife, who 
was out in camp with me, from the forest lodge 
of Rampore, in the Ainurmarigudi forest, to the 
recently mentioned Molubollay lodge in that of 
Berrambadie. 

After reaching the latter, I went out shooting 
with my men, and before long we found the tracks 

53 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of a single bull. After following these for some 
little distance, we found that a second bull had 
joined the first, and it was evident that the pair 
had gone on together in amity — or, at least, with- 
out any serious disagreement — for some time. 
Then we came to a place where they had had a 
furious " set to," the ground in a circle being 
deeply ploughed up, and saplings broken down 
during the tremendous duel. A little further on 
we found another such ring, where a second 
" mill " had taken place, and a little further still a 
third. 

The tracks then led into those of a herd ; and 
though we tried hard to find a bull's track going 
off alone from the area over which the tracks of 
the former were spread, we were quite unable to 
do so, and were obliged at last to follow the herd, 
believing that the two bulls had joined it. 

On coming up with the bison, I saw two or three 
animals, but could not make out a bull ; and the 
herd, having possibly got a hint of our presence, 
or else on account of being worried by flies, went 
off up a hillside. 

It was then nearly midday, and I reflected that 
if we were to follow the bison forthwith, we should 
be likely to come up with them when they were 
lying down in long grass, and that it was therefore 
advisable to give them time, and to follow the 
animals later in the day, when they would be 
grazing in the open. I accordingly sat down on 
a fallen log, and ate the sandwiches which I had 
taken out with me, my men sitting facing me 

54 



REMINISCENCES 

under a bamboo clump, a short distance off, with 
my rifles. 

I had just finished my lunch and had lighted 
my pipe, when, most unexpectedly, I saw a single 
bull coming from the direction in which the herd 
had gone. He was trotting sulkily along, disgust 
and disappointment being clearly visible in his 
demeanour, if not written upon every feature of 
his face. 

My men, behind whom he passed, did not see 
him, and their astonishment was great when I 
cautiously, but rapidly, went over to them, took 
a '577 express, motioned to them to remain where 
they were, and pursued the bull. He turned end- 
on, leaving me only his stern to fire at, and I 
followed, waiting for him to turn once more and 
so expose his side. He had not discovered us, and 
was not alarmed. Presently he pulled up, and 
altered his course by moving slowly to the left, 
whereupon I fired. The bull, though hard hit, 
went on ; I called up the men, and we followed his 
tracks. Soon we came up with him again, but it 
was not before I had hit him several times more 
that I bagged him. Once we came upon him 
standing with only part of his head visible, the 
rest of it being hidden behind a trunk, his vitals 
also being covered. I fired at his head and missed, 
my bullet going into the tree. At this shot, the 
bull came prancing out across me, with his head 
down, in highly comical bounds. He looked as if 
each horn were tied to the fetlock on the same 
side, and, though he had not the slightest intention 

55 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of charging, this demonstration was apparently 
made with a view to leading us to suppose that 
he was quite willing to do so — in fact, that he 
quite intended business. 

After killing this bull, I found a lump on the 
withers which I knew must be caused by a bullet 
under the skin, and on cutting through the latter, 
I picked out an 8-bore rifle bullet. As the bull 
was shot from the very camp at which Colonel 
N. C. had his great adventure previously related 
with a wounded bison, and as the animal was 
standing facing him when he fired, it is quite 
possible that this bison was the one which so 
severely maltreated that highly distinguished officer 
three years previously. 

The bull was coal-black, with very little hair on 
his body, and though a magnificent beast in size, 
his horns were small, yet they were worn down at 
the tips. Colonel N. C.'s antagonist had, he told 
me, very short horns. 

As I had shot the bull early in the day, our 
camp being only a few miles off, I determined to 
return at once and take my wife out on her pony 
to see the slain monster. The ayah (ladies female 
attendant) and another native servant both asked 
to be allowed to go too, and received permission, 
but though my wife and I got back to camp in 
good time, the servants delayed so long at the 
carcass that they were benighted, and did not 
reach camp till next day ! Possibly their object 
was a " square meal " of beef ! 



56 



REMINISCENCES 



A WONDERFUL FLUKE 



I once bagged a grand bull by an exceedingly 
lucky fluke, and the story is so remarkable a one 
that it is worth relating. I was out in camp in the 
Metikuppe Forest with my wife. As there was 
no forest lodge in the vicinity, we were dependent 
upon tents for our lodging. Upon the day on 
which we were moving camp, and had a ten-mile 
march to perform before evening, " I decided to go 
out early to try for bison before starting. 

I went out with the Kurrabas, and we tried hard, 
but could find no fresh tracks. Despairing of bison, 
I fired a shot at a jungle-sheep (muntjac), which 
obtruded itself upon us, but missed it. 

After firing this shot, I had even less hope of 
doing anything with bison than I had before, and 
simply loitered on through the forest with my men 
in a somewhat aimless fashion, when all of a sudden, 
and only about 200 yards from where I had fired, 
we heard a bison dash off from a dense thicket 
close by. On finding the tracks, it was evident 
that the latter were those of a big bull, and though 
I entertained but a slight prospect of coming up 
with him again within the short time at my dis- 
posal, we started in pursuit. 

It was a weary, stern chase, and the odds were 
against our succeeding ; still, I began to be hopeful, 
when at last, after galloping a long way, the bull 
(as we could see from the tracks) subsided into a 
walk. We had a long way to follow after that, 

57 



BULLET AND SHOT 

before, very suddenly, as we came to a nullah 
densely covered with bamboo, a Kurraba tracker 
stood still, and excitedly pointed into it. I saw 
something very dark, and fancied that I could 
make out also the lighter-coloured hair under the 
fore-arm. Delay was dangerous, and I fired at 
what I saw with the '577 and 6 J drachms. After 
the shot all was still. I heard no rush, no clatter- 
ing hoofs, and, in fact, no sound at all, and I turned 
round to the Kurraba and cursed him for inducing 
me to fire at a stump. He replied that it was not 
a stump, but a big bull bison at which I had fired. 
I went on, and, sure enough, there were the huge 
hoof-marks up the soft bank of the nullah, and 
on through the forest, and there was blood on the 
track. After following for a short distance, we 
found the bull — a magnificent animal with a splen- 
did head, measuring 35I- inches across the sweep 
— lying stone-dead, the little bullet having hit him 
accurately behind the shoulder ! 



THE DEATH OF THE 40-INCHER 

I was in camp at Kalkerra, in the Ainurmarigudi 
forest, about ten miles distant from the already 
mentioned Rampore lodge in the same forest. The 
weather was very wet, and therefore most propitious 
for bison shooting, and being out on duty and yet 
desirous of obtaining a little sport, I applied for 
three days' casual leave, and availed myself thereof 
in anticipation of sanction. 

58 



REMINISCENCES 

On the first day I had no luck, and a long, 
running shot at a herd bull resulted in a miss. 

On the second day I went out with my men 
fairly early, and after a good walk we found the 
tracks of a solitary bull. We followed for some 
distance, the tracks being evidently very fresh, 
until at last one of the trackers called my attention 
to a bamboo, which was shaking in a jungled nullah 
ahead. Soon I was able to make out the bull, who 
was standing broadside on, and I fired a bullet from 
the '577 at him. At the shot the bison stood where 
he was, and I then fired the second barrel with the 
same aim. After the second shot, the animal went 
up the further bank of the nullah, and stood and 
snorted ; the men, anticipating a charge, handed me 
an 8-bore rifle, and bolted. I fired at him either 
once or twice, and he then went on, and we pro- 
ceeded with due precautions to immediately follow 
him up. 

Twice or thrice we came up with him, and he 
seemed very much inclined to fight, but, although 
evidently debating the advisability of a charge, 
he retreated upon receiving further punishment. 
Finally, we got close up to the bull, who was now 
standing completely hidden in young bamboo and 
long grass. We could hear his objurgations, but 
could not see him. There was a tree at the edge 
of the thicket, and I thought that this might be 
useful to dodge behind in the event of a charge. 
I sent a man up this tree, and he saw the bull 
standing only some twenty or thirty yards off. 
The animal knew where we were, and became 

59 



BULLET AND SHOT 

more and more excited, as we could divine from 
his somewhat " cursory " remarks. At last he 
charged, and I waited behind the trunk for him 
to expose himself in his rush, but this he did not 
do, for after he had shown me only the tips of his 
horns and the top of his dorsal ridge, his heart 
failed him, and he retired once more to the thick 
cover. Eventually a Kurraba caught sight of a 
small portion of his head and pointed it out to 
me, and I fired, but missed, though the shot had 
the effect of sending him out of the thicket, upon 
which I was able to give him another body shot, 
whereupon, after following for a short distance, we 
found him lying dead in the long grass. I had, 
in all, fired about a dozen shots at this bull, though 
he was quite unable to travel far after the first two 
or three. 

He was very old, in wretched condition, with 
protruding, hairless ribs, and teeth quite loose, and 
yet, curiously enough, was not really black. He 
had a deep wound (in which were maggots) in his 
forehead, and had, I suppose, met with this injury 
in some dispute with another bull. 



A FORTUNATE SNAPSHOT 

I went out with my men one morning in the 
Karkenkotta forest in Mysore, intending to have a 
day's bison shooting, it being a public holiday. We 
found tracks of a single bull in a swamp, and had 
to follow them for a long distance. 

60 



REMINISCENCES 

The bull had grazed a great deal, but had also 
travelled, and we probably followed him over the 
greater portion of his night's wanderings, as well 
as over the ground traversed by him during the 
early hours of the same day. The sun was high, 
and' the day hot, when we arrived at a dense bamboo 
cover through which the tracks led ; and my hopes 
fell, for I well knew that under such conditions the 
bull would certainly be lying down, and that my 
chance of finding him grazing in the open was 
gone. 

After going through the thick cover for some 
distance, I heard, what I had for some time been 
expecting to hear, viz., the rush of the bull as he 
dashed off alarmed. I could not tell how far the 
thicket extended, but, just on the bare chance, I 
rushed a few paces forward, and at once came upon 
an open, and saw the bison dashing madly across it. 
A huge blackwood log, about three feet or more in 
diameter, which had been felled and squared by 
the Forest Department, lay in his path, aind I 
pitched and pulled a snapshot with the 8-bore just 
as he took a flying leap over this obstacle. I did 
not for a moment imagine that I had hit him, but, 
just as a matter of form, went up to the place and a 
little way along the track, when, to my great sur- 
prise and delight, a Kurraba picked up a fallen 
leaf with a single spot of blood upon it. We 
followed the tracks, found more blood, and I at 
last came up with the bull, and after some more 
shooting and following, I bagged him. My first 
bullet, which was fired from directly behind him,. 

6i 



BULLET AND SHOT 

had simply " skiffed " along outside the ribs, not 
cutting the skin all along the line, but missing the 
portions of it overlying the intercostal spaces, and 
had then entered the fore-leg and thus lamed him. 

THE BULL AND THE WATERPROOF 

The Bandipur jungle differs from most of the 
forests of the Mysore district in being more hilly, 
and in parts far more open than are the others. 

One afternoon, after a long tramp during which 
not a bison had been seen, I had reached a very open 
portion where grassy hill-slopes are the rule, and 
cover the exception. It had been a luckless, weary 
day, and rain had rendered walking uncomfortable, 
and as I wandered over this open expanse in the 
hope of seeing a bear out feeding, and after slope 
after slope, and • hillside after hillside, had been 
searched in vain, I thought that I should have to 
record a blank day. 

It was still raining hard, and I had on a white 
mackintosh coat, and was roaming dispiritedly over 
some open grass with a patch of cover on our right, 
when, instantaneously, one of my men stopped and 
pointed in that direction. 

Thinking that he had seen a sambur or a bear, I 
took my "500 express, but he motioned me to 
change it for the 8-bore. I had as yet seen nothing, 
but at last I managed to make out, between two 
trees, the head and chest of a bull bison standing 
staring at ^me. He had evidently never seen a 
white mackintosh before, and his curiosity so far 

62 



REMINISCENCES 

overcame his fears that he stood gazing at it while 
the man had time to point him out to me, while 
I could take my express from one of the men, and 
then change it for the 8-bore, and until I was able to 
make him out and fire at him. One bullet in the 
chest from the 8-bore laid him low, and another 
from the '500 express brained him. 



A FORTUNATE HEAD-SHOT 

Although, as a rule, a head-shot at any animal, 
except an elephant, is to be strictly avoided, it now 
and then happens in bison shooting that the sports- 
man must either take it, or lose his chance altogether. 
In such a case, the head-shot should be tried, the 
sportsman bearing in mind that what he has to aim 
at is an imaginary line drawn between the eyes, — 
unless, indeed, the bison be standing with his nose 
elevated, in which case he must fire at the top of 
the cartilage of the latter. 

It was once my luck to bag a bull with a head 
measuring T,y^ inches across the sweep, which, al- 
though it was not dropped dead upon the spot, 
would not have been bagged at all had the head- 
shot not been attempted. 

Two miles from Lakwallie (in the Kadur district 
of Mysore) is a large area of teak plantations of 
different ages, lying sometimes on one side, and 
otherwise upon both sides, of the Government road, 
for a distance of about two miles from its commence- 
ment to its end. 

The most distant portion is the youngest, and as 

63 



BULLET AND SHOT 

teak seedlings make very little show till at least 
the second year, that portion was very open, and 
animals in it could sometimes be seen from the 
high road. 

One afternoon in the monsoon, I went out in 
the Lakwallie forest behind the plantations, and 
worked my way round to a point on the Govern- 
ment road at which I had ordered that my riding 
mare, sent on in advance, should be kept waiting 
for me. 

In my round through the forest, I came upon no 
tracks of bison fresh enough to be worth following, 
and, having reached the high road, I mounted my 
mare, and rode towards the Lakwallie bungalow, 
some six miles off, leaving the men with my 
battery, etc., to follow. After riding about two 
miles, I came to that end of the plantation which 
is furthest away from Lakwallie, and there, in the 
plantation, but not far from the jungle which borders 
the latter, I saw a single bull bison out grazing. I 
dismounted, got out of sight, and went back along 
the road to meet my men. On returning with them 
to the place from which I had seen the bull, the 
latter was still plainly visible, but he then moved 
off, though leisurely, into the jungle. The men 
expected that he would emerge again from another 
point and continue grazing in the plantation, while 
I felt very much afraid that we should not see 
him again. 

We had to make a detour in order to prevent 
the wind from betraying us, and then went up to 
a corner of the plantation, the teak saplings on 

64 



REMINISCENCES 

which had failed owing to unsuitability of soil, and 
which had therefore been abandoned, a dense 
growth of young bamboo having sprung up all 
over it. This thicket adjoined the forest in which 
the bull had disappeared. All of a sudden, a forest 
peon who was with me pointed forwards, and there, 
close in front, was the head of the bull standing 
staring at us. I fired a solid bullet from the '500 
express, hoping to brain him ; but off he dashed, 
and I ran through the thick bamboo growth in the 
direction in which he had gone, angry with myself 
for firing a head-shot, and scarcely hoping to see 
the animal again. Imagine my delight when I 
saw the bull rolling over and over down the hill- 
side above us ! He would soon have got up again' 
however, had I not got in close to him as quickly 
as possible, whereupon two body-shots from the 
4-bore, and another from the '500 express, finished 
him off 

The bull must, after running for some distance, 
have become giddy from the effects of the head- 
shot, and as he fell on a steep slope, he rolled till 
he came to fairly level ground. Altogether the 
bagging of this bull was a piece of extraordinarily 
good luck. 

THE BULL WHO DIDN't CHARGE 

Twice in one day I have had different animals, 
viz., an elephant and a bison, run almost over me, 
though neither of them had the slightest intention 
of fighting. A novice would have considered that 
he had been charged by both! The elephant 
F 65 



BULLET AND SHOT 

incident will be related elsewhere, but I will 
mention that of the bison before closing the subject 
of bison shooting, as it is a somewhat remarkable 
instance of the way in which wild animals are apt 
to occasionally run into the very danger which they 
are trying to avoid. 

I had gone out early, and had encountered and 
fired at the before-mentioned tusker elephant (who 
escaped), when we came across the tracks of a 
solitary bull bison. After following these for some 
distance, we found a form in which he had been 
lying, his open hoof- marks leading therefrom 
indicating that he had galloped away in great 
alarm, having evidently got our wind before we 
had approached sufficiently near to hear his pre- 
cipitate rush. 

Now a stern chase of this description is likely 
to be a protracted one, for an old solitary bull, who 
has doubtless been frequently fired at during the 
course of his long life, is usually very cunning ; 
and although bison, if alarmed early in the day, 
before they have had time to lie down and to chew 
the cud, may, if pursued, be come up with again 
and again, yet if the same animals be seriously 
alarmed after they have had time to perform this 
highly necessary function, they may frequently 
be followed in vain till evening. 

In this case, the bull kept to the thickest cover 
which he could find, and the hunt was a long and 
weary one. At last, however, we emerged upon 
a large extent of very open forest, beyond which 
lay the Mysore - Sultan's Battery Government 

66 



REMINISCENCES 

road. Here, to my great surprise, I saw the bull 
coming slowly back, half across and half towards 
us, having evidently been turned by the road or 
by people or carts passing along the latter, but 
he was not seriously alarmed. 

I dared not fire at him at so great a range — 
I guessed him to be about 200 yards distant — with 
one of the 8-bores, of which I had two (a gun and 
a rifle) out with me, so I fired at his chest with 
the '500 express, the bullet used being an extra 
large solid one. At the shot the bull came so 
straight for us that one of the Kurrabas handed 
me an 8-bore, and then he and the other men at 
once bolted, thinking that the animal was charging. 
He rushed blindly past me within a few paces, 
when (after a miss from the first barrel) a bullet 
from the 8-bore in the body knocked him over 
on the spot, and brought the long chase to a very 
fortunate conclusion. 

Whether the little bullet from the express, which 
had hit the bull on one side of the chest, could 
have affected him sufficiently to enable us to come 
up with him again had he elected to bolt in another 
direction, I am not prepared to say, but he would 
undoubtedly have given us much labour and 
trouble had he acted otherwise than exactly as 
he elected to do. 

This was a grand old bull with a splendid head, 
and I was delighted with my trophy. 

I think that I have now given sufficient incidents 
in bison shooting out of a somewhat extensive ex- 
perience of that sport, so I will close this chapter. 

67 



CHAPTER V. 

HINTS TO BEGINNERS IN BISON SHOOTING 

IT sometimes happens that a novice, who wishes 
to go out bison shooting, is obHged to do so 
without the advantage of the company of an old 
hand to show him how to set about it. 

Of course, if a beginner can arrange to be 
accompanied for the first three or four days by 
an experienced sportsman, he will learn much from 
the latter, and will thereafter be able to go out 
alone with a good chance of success ; but as it is 
not infrequently the case that he must needs go 
alone, or with another tyro as new to the work 
as himself, and in the hope of such being useful 
in these cases, I propose to give a few detailed 
hints of the modus operandi. 

Two men cannot shoot together without sacrifice 
of sport when this particular game is the object 
of pursuit, except when an experienced sportsman 
takes the beginner under his wing, and is (as any 
true sportsman will be) willing to forego his own 
chance of shooting until he has taught his pupil 
sufficient to enable the latter to go out alone 
with some knowledge of his game. If, therefore, 
two beginners should arrange to go on a bison 

68 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

shooting expedition together — and I should recom- 
mend this arrangement as far more pleasant, and 
in every respect preferable to a solitary trip — 
they should daily go out separately in different 
directions. In the evening, when they meet in 
camp, it will be delightful for them to talk over 
the incidents of the day, and each will learn some- 
thing from the experiences of the other. 

We will suppose, therefore, that two novices 
have arranged to go out on a trip to bison ground, 
and that they want to know from the beginning 
how to set about it. 

The first point to decide is the country to be 
worked, and their selection of this will, no doubt, 
mainly depend upon the place at which they may 
be stationed (supposing that they are military), and 
whence they mean to proceed to their shooting 
grounds. 

Upon this decision will largely depend the 
amount and description of the requirements to be 
carried with them, since, should their choice be to 
work hilly country, they must travel with the 
lightest possible equipment and very small tents, 
whereas if low-country forests, where carts can be 
taken, be selected, comfort should not be sacrificed 
to extreme lightness of kit. 

The next point will be to ascertain whether any, 
and if so what, leave or licence has to be obtained, 
and from what Government (the Travancore hills 
are under the Travancore Government), and then, 
if possible, to obtain the assistance of the local 
officials, more particularly of the forest officer and 

69 



BULLET AND SHOT v 

the nearest revenue official of high rank. The 
reasons for this are enlarged upon in the chapter 
treating of tiger shooting. 

In the higher portions of the hill ranges of 
Southern India inhabited by bison — notably the 
Western Ghants, the Trayancore hills, and the 
Anaimalais, and in a minor degree the Pulneys, 
the Nelliampatties, and the Brummagherries — large 
expanses of open, grassy hillsides and downs, and 
small swamps, alternate with dense covers (called 
sholahs) in the dips and sheltered depressions. 

In working country of this description, it is 
essential that no more than absolute necessaries 
should be carried, since the sportsmen will have 
to depend entirely upon pack ponies or pack 
bullocks (the former being preferable) and men 
for porterage of all their requirements. Such 
means of transport are expensive, and, even if 
economy be no consideration, the necessity for 
carrying food for the men, and the difficulty of 
procuring coolies in many places, combine to 
render it highly advisable to limit the loads as far 
as may be practicable. 

Before finally deciding upon any locality, it is of 
vital importance that the sportsmen should ascertain 
whether the ground they would like to try be above 
fever range or no. The height at which malaria 
prevails appears to vary considerably, but it may, I 
think, be safely stated that, at an elevation of 5,00a 
feet and above, there is no fear of malarial fever save 
under very exceptional circumstances which need 
not be looked for. I lay much more stress upon 

70 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

this point in the case of hill shooting than in that 
of the low-country forests, since, in the former, 
carriage of soda-water is out of the question, while 
in the latter plenty of this refreshing beverage 
should always be carried, and no jungle water be 
ever drunk unless it has been boiled in making tea 
or coffee. Native servants are in the highest 
degree careless and untrustworthy ; they cannot be 
relied upon to boil water before filtering it, and they 
are very apt to filter it only, both because this gives 
them little trouble, and also on account of their 
master being able to tell from its appearance 
whether it has been filtered or no, whereas he 
cannot possibly tell whether it has, or has not, 
been boiled. The recent theory is that carbonic 
acid gas in solution destroys all germs within 
fourteen days. 

The early showers in April and May cause the 
rapid springing of new grass after the burning of 
the old growth in the hot weather, and these 
months are excellent for hill shooting, provided 
only that the locality where the camp be pitched is 
above fever level ; if below it, this period is very 
dangerous, on account of malaria. Once the big 
monsoon has burst — generally early in June —the 
sportsman will be glad to hurry away, for the heavy 
rain in a cold atmosphere renders camping out quite 
impossible. After the cessation of the rains, the 
cold weather appears to be a healthy time in the 
Travancore hills, but the great disadvantage then 
is the height of the grass in most parts of the bison 
ground. 

71 



BULLET AND SHOT 

I would recommend no one to go out shooting in 
the hills unless he can camp at such an elevation 
that he may safely drink the water unboiled. It 
would profit him not at all were he to go to a fine 
shooting country, make a big bag of good bulls, 
and then die of malaria, as did the late Lieutenant 
R., R.A., only a few years ago. This was an 
extreme case, and the only one I have known of 
a sportsman being killed by malaria while actually 
out on his trip ; but many men have suffered severely 
for years from malarial fever contracted while out 
shooting, and I would recommend every visitor in 
localities of doubtful salubriety to omit no pre- 
cautions which may tend to preserve his health. 
Mens Sana in corpore sano are the two main 
conditions essential for the enjoyment of life, and 
we cannot be too careful in the preservation of that 
inestimable boon — good health. 

For two sportsmen out together in the hills, I 
recommend the following kit : — 

Tents. — One eighty-pound field officer's Cabul 
tent (double-fly, with bathroom) for each, for sleep- 
ing, dressing, and bathing in ; one light single-fly 
tent, nine feet square, as the common dining and 
sitting room ; one light rowtie for the servants. 

Cooking Utensils. — One kettle, one frying-pan, 
two saucepans, one digester, two kitchen knives, 
and one chopper. 

Crockery and Cutlery. — Sufficient white enamelled 
ware, tumblers, and cheap knives and forks, for the 
use of two. 

72 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

Camp Furniture. — Two light folding camp cots, 
with mattresses and pillows to fit the same ; four 
light folding camp chairs ; four pieces of light fold- 
ing camp table (Messrs. Oakes and Co., Madras, 
have supplied me with these) ; two folding camp 
looking-glasses ; two small candlesticks ; two travel- 
ling baths fitted with baskets for holding clothes ; 
two D.P.W. lanterns, and two common hurricane 
lanterns, with spare chimneys for all ; two wash- 
basins with leather covers and handles ; and two 
folding tripod washstands. 

Liquor. — Sufficient for the trip, depending upon 
individual requirements. 

Tinned Provisions and Stores. — Soups, bacon, 
jam, hams, lard, potted meat, flour, baking powder, 
vegetables, Swiss milk, butter, cheese, fish, and 
fruits, of each sufficient for the trip ; also ordinary- 
stores, such as tea, coffee, sugar, candles, ghee, 
salt, pepper, mustard, potatoes, onions, and rice ; 
common rice and curry stuff for the men, wicks 
and kerosene oil for the lanterns. 

Miscellaneous. — Some medicines, arsenical soap 
(and brushes for applying the same), turpentine, 
common carbolic acid, bedding, linen, etc. ; two 
very stout waterproof bags with locks and keys for 
the bedding ; half a dozen empty and tkorottgkly 
clean kerosene oil tins for holding water ; tin 
openers and corkscrews, an axe, a chopper, a 
spade and a crowbar, half a dozen skinning knives, 
vaseline for cleaning the rifles, two luncheon baskets, 
two waterproof sheets, and two hundred 2>\ i^ch 
nails for pegging out skins to dry. 

11 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Some fat sheep should be driven up from the 
plains by short marches, and a number of fowls in 
baskets should also be taken. The sportsmen should 
insist upon baskets being used for this purpose, 
since natives have no regard whatever for animal 
suffering, and treat the miserable sentient creatures, 
who are unfortunate enough to be in their power, as 
if they had no more feeling than blocks of wood. 
Consequently, if allowed to do so, they would tie 
the wretched fowls' legs together, and, slinging a 
number of them by passing a stick between their 
legs, would carry them, with their heads hanging 
down, for any distance under a broiling sun. 

Rifles and ammunition have not been included in 
the above list. If there be — as is probable at a 
high elevation — ibex (the Nilgiri wild goat) within 
reach of the camp, a '303, "450, or '500 express rifle 
should be taken by each sportsman ; while for use 
upon bison, a "577 express each will suffice, though 
if either of them should happen to possess an 
8-bore gun or rifle, he should take it as a second 
gun when out in search of the larger game. 

When shooting in the hills, a first-rate telescope 
should be carried by one of his men, and in his 
own pocket the sportsman should carry a pair of 
"Lilliput" binoculars. 

The tents forming the camp should be pitched in 
a sheltered situation near to running water, and, 
if possible, as previously recommended, at an eleva- 
tion of not less than 5000 feet. 

The sportsmen must insist upon trenches of suffi- 
cient depth being dug all round the tents, if the latter 

74 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

are on flat ground ; and along three sides, if the 
ground be sloping, a shallow trench along the 
lowest aspect being sufficient in such a case. Rain 
may fall at any time, and if, through laziness, the 
servants have omitted to see to this necessary pre- 
caution, the tents may be swamped. 

Having reached, as soon after dawn as may be 
possible, a commanding situation from which the 
sportsman hopes to view his game, he should, if 
possible, get under cover ; or if none be available, 
at least take care not to linger on the sky-line, but 
sit down below the latter, take his telescope, and 
thoroughly inspect any likely country within range 
of his glass. 

It is possible that he may chance to view a bull 
from his first point of observation, and if so, he has 
only to carefully plan his stalk, first, by noting the 
exact direction of the wind, and also looking out for 
any valley or gully in the vicinity of the game, up 
which a gust might blow at any angle to its pre- 
vailing course ; and then, by seeing of what cover 
he can avail himself during his stalk— to be made 
along such a line that during no portion of it will 
the sportsman be between the game and the direction 
of the main current, or of any minor or local 
currents of wind — to decide upon, and mentally take 
note of the points through which his approach to 
the game must be made ; and finally to get in as 
close as possible to the latter without being seen 
or heard by it. 

The rest is a mere piece of straight shooting 
at a large bull's-eye, since, if he puts a '577 solid 

75 



BULLET AND SHOT 

bullet driven by 6|^drs. of powder through, or just 
behind, the shoulder of the bull, he will most 
certainly bag the latter, though he may, or may 
not, have to give him another shot (or shots), 
according to the organs which the first bullet may 
have penetrated. And here let me recommend all 
beginners on no account to fire at an animal, but 
to carefully aim at an imaginary bull's-eye on the 
very portion of its body which he may desire to 
hit. 

A common impulse of most tyros is to fire at an 
animal directly they see it, for fear that it should 
bolt, and a miss, or a wound so badly placed that 
the recipient escapes, is the usual result. In firing 
with an express, I always, where it is practicable, sit 
down before pressing the trigger. Great steadiness 
can be obtained by sitting with the heels close 
together, the knees well separated, and the elbows 
resting one on each knee. But sometimes, in the 
jungles, game visible on foot cannot be seen when 
sitting, and in such an event the shot must be 
taken standing. Coolness and absence of hurry 
are the main essentials for steady shooting at big 
game. It is preferable that no shot be fired than 
that a wounded animal should escape. 

Far more game is missed, or wounded and lost, 
through the sportsman's having fired too hurriedly, 
without accuracy of aim, than escapes through any 
want of quickness in firing. Let the novice bear 
this carefully in mind. 

I cannot say that I should care to fire either 
my 8-bore or 4-bore ball guns in the sitting position, 

76 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

but prefer to stand when using them. One or two 
more remarks I may make regarding bison shoot- 
ing on the hills, viz., that in some parts leeches 
swarm in the sholahs. One fairly effective means 
of protecting oneself against the attacks of these 
bloodthirsty pests is the use of putties, which 
must be coiled pretty tightly in putting them on, 
and tied securely, otherwise they are liable ta 
become loose, or to come down altogether. Leech- 
gaiters too may be worn under the ordinary 
stockings. 

I strongly counsel the European, camping on 
hills where bison are to be found, to trust to 
nothing less protective in the shape of head-gear 
than one of the "shooting shape" "Sola topees" 
made in the country. 

The sun is to h^ feared, and if once a European 
should unfortunately suffer from a touch of it, he 
will be very apt to be similarly affected upon sub- 
sequent exposure. Sunstroke is no trifling malady, 
but one against which proper precautions in the 
shape of a good topee are most advisable. 

For hill shooting, boots, though they must be 
of stout leather, should not be too heavy; otherwise 
they become tiring during a long day's walking. A 
few nails which will not penetrate the inside of the 
sole (a common fault in the case of Indian-made 
boots after a very little wear) are useful. 

I recommend that the boots be made large enough 
to admit of really thick stockings being worn, and 
I advise sportsmen to eschew altogether the miser- 
able, flimsy stockings so often sold in the country, 

n 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and to wear nothing but thick English woollen 
knickerbocker stockings. 

For shooting in the hills knickerbockers are most 
comfortable. It is unnecessary to obtain new ones 
of any particular material, since any of the sports- 
man's old trousers may be cut down and converted 
into them, so long as the cloth is not of a staring or 
conspicuous colour. For coats, the ordinary Basel 
Mission Shikar cloth (manufactured at Cannanore, 
in Southern India) is the best material, though in 
the cold weather and in the rains, something warmer 
— say an ordinary tweed coat of fairly neutral hue — 
will be found comfortable. 

In any case, the sportsman in the hills should, 
if he be in the least degree liable to catch cold, 
take out shooting with him (even in dry weather) 
a warm overcoat. This should be of mackintosh 
covered with tweed, for such is useful both in dry 
weather and in rain. Of course it will be carried 
by one of his men. 

After fagging up a steep hillside, and having got 
wet through from perspiration, a bitterly cold wind 
is often encountered on the top of the ridge. The 
sportsman may need to sit down for some time 
while he examines with his glass all the country 
within sight of him, and if he does this without 
putting on an overcoat, he is very liable to catch 
a chill. 

I question whether it would be an exaggeration, 
were I to say that half of the illnesses from which 
Europeans out in India suffer are the result of 
chills. 

78 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

Should the locaHty selected lie within the forests 
of the low country, the sportsmen will find the 
south-west monsoon the best time to go out bison 
shooting. In Mysore, as has been already stated, 
malaria practically ceases in that monsoon, and as 
the amount of rain which falls during this period 
is not excessive (except in portions of the Kadur 
district), this season is an extremely pleasant one 
for a forest outing. 

The 15th of June is a good day to fix for the 
start, as the monsoon nearly always bursts before 
that date, but I would not advise sportsmen to go 
into the forests before the latter is fairly on, and 
therefore before the heavy rain which ushers it in 
has washed away the germs of malaria. 

I recommend the sportsmen to take one hill tent, 
fourteen feet square, for themselves, and a rowtie 
for their servants ; but, if luxuriously inclined, 
they might take a second hill tent for their own 
accommodation. 

In some places they will find forest lodges, and 
they should ask the district forest officer to kindly 
permit them to occupy these when he does not 
personally require their use. An ample supply of 
soda-water should be carried, and not a drop of 
jungle water drunk unless it has, to the sportsman s 
own knowledge^ been boiled. 

Folding camp cots, standing as high from the 
ground as can be procured, should be taken, as also 
mosquito curtains of fine net, or, if the weather be 
cool enough to admit of their use, then better still 
of "Mul Mul." Without getting them specially 

79 



BULLET AND SHOT 

made, it is not easy to procure camp cots of, say, 
2 feet 9 inches in height, but it is better to have 
such constructed than to run any risk of incurring 
malarial fever. Although, as I have stated above, 
malaria practically ceases in the monsoon, a dry 
period may supervene in which it can be revived ; 
and it may, and, I doubt not, does, linger at all 
times in certain unfavoured spots. The higher 
above the ground the sportsman may sleep, the 
less risk there is of his suffering from malaria — 
even during the unhealthy season in the forests — 
and he must at all seasons sleep under mosquito 
curtains. The mosquito curtain has long been 
recognised as a safeguard against malaria, and a 
medical savant has now propounded the somewhat 
startling theory, that the poison of malaria (so- 
called) is in reality originated by a diseased con- 
dition in the mosquito itself, and is conveyed and 
communicated to man by that insect, and many 
elaborate experiments are being performed to test 
the truth of this proposition. 

The remarks, under hill shooting, on the necessity 
of obtaining a shooting licence (where one is 
required), and of asking for the assistance of the 
revenue and forest authorities, apply with equal 
force in the case of the low-country forests. 

For bison shooting in the latter, I prefer boots 
•of soft native leather, made, as I have previously 
recommended, without heels, and furnished with 
only a few small nails to prevent slipping. Heels 
make such a noise as no one who has not tested 
it would believe possible, and the " tump tump " of 

80 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

heeled boots should be avoided where one very 
frequently gets extremely close to game before 
seeing it. I used to get my shooting boots made 
by a native chuckler. They did not last long, but 
then they cost only Rs. 4 (about five shillings) per 
pair, and they were soft and did not gall the 
feet. 

After a day's shooting in wet weather, boots 
should be filled with horse-gram, or with oats, to 
dry the insides by absorption, and be, moreover, 
well greased outside. If boots used in wet weather 
should have been allowed to dry and get hard with- 
out the use of any lubricant, the best emollient is 
castor oil. The tongues of all shooting boots 
should be stitched on to the uppers right up to 
the top. Most sportsmen consider that a brown, 
canvas-covered Elwood's topee is sufficient pro- 
tection in forest shooting during the monsoon, but 
personally I prefer the topee recommended above 
for use in hill shooting. When wearing one of 
these in the monsoon, a mackintosh cover to slip 
over it in the event of rain coming on is very 
necessary, otherwise the hat will absorb a great 
amount of water, and will feel nearly as heavy as 
lead. I have also taken out in my luncheon bag 
a soft felt "terai" hat, which I have worn when 
there was no sun (or during rain), exchanging it 
for my sola topee whenever the sun reappeared, 
and this is a plan which I can thoroughly recom- 
mend. Of course, in very wet weather, with a 
total absence of sun, or in very dense forests, 
wherein one is always under partial shade, an 
G 81 



BULLET AND SHOT 

El wood's brown topee is about the best head-gear ; 
still, I should not care to do much work in the sun 
in it, and it must be remembered that, though at 
starting from camp in the morning it may be wet 
and cold, a hot sun may come out at any time 
during the day. 

The sportsmen can suit themselves as to clothes, 
but I recommend the same for bison shooting in 
the forests on the plains, in the monsoon, as I did 
when treating of hill shooting. 

A mackintosh coat with sleeves, and cut short 
to about the knees, is very useful to slip on in 
heavy rain, and may save the sportsman who 
carries one from many a chill — less by keeping 
him dry, than by keeping him warm. 

In the dry weather, however, I recommend, in 
place of tweed knickerbockers, breeches of the 
above-mentioned Basel Mission Shikar cloth, made 
to button round the leg just above the boot, and 
a pair of soft, flexible, light gaiters over these — 
provided only that there are no leeches in the 
forest, in which event leech-gaiters or putties may 
be worn. 

Upon carrying cartridges in the monsoon, some- 
thing must be said. All cartridges taken out in 
wet weather should be made waterproof by smear- 
ing round the cap in the centre of the base of the 
cartridge an atom of a mixture made by melting 
together bees' wax and ghee (clarified butter used 
in place of lard in cookery). If brass cases be 
used, this, and the pouring of a little of the same 
mixture when melted over the bullet, will render 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

the cartridge quite water-tight, but when paper 
cases are taken out, further precautions against 
damp are necessary. For some years I used an 
8-bore rifle taking paper cases, and for its cartridges 
I found the following devices very useful. Firstly, 
I had a belt made with two leather cases (one to 
come on each side of the body when the belt was 
buckled on), each case consisting of four leather 
stalls lined with tin cylinders, of exactly the size 
into which an 8-bore cartridge will fit, a stout 
leather flap covering the whole, and buttoning 
below its top. 

Secondly, for carrying spare ammunition, I had 
a magazine made on the principle of one of the 
above cases, with this difference, that tin boxes 
exactly holding six cartridges each, and so admitting 
of no rattling, took the place of the tin cylinders 
holding one cartridge apiece, but in lieu of four 
cylinders, the magazine had but three, and the tin 
covers of the boxes were also put on, and the 
leather flap buttoned over the latter. 

I seldom put on the belt except when going up 
to an elephant ; in which case, although I have 
seen the men behave remarkably well when I 
should not have expected it of them, I always 
preferred to feel independent of extraneous assist- 
ance, and to carry some cartridges on my person. 
I had been so nearly killed by an elephant when 
quite a beginner in big game shooting, owing to 
my companion and all the men running away, and 
taking with them my spare guns and ammunition, 
that I preferred to have some cartridges at hand 

83 



BULLET AND SHOT 

under my own control in subsequent encounters 
with that ponderous animal. A leather case, made 
to hold ten or a dozen express cartridges and 
fitting on to a belt, is also useful ; and a tin cylinder 
in each stall will render the extraction of the 
cartridges all the easier, as well as serving as 
protection against a knock which might dent their 
contents if the stalls consisted of plain leather 
only. 

For carrying luncheon, a most useful carrier is 
an invention of my own, viz., a stout leather bag 
with five divisions, each of which will hold either 
a quart bottle of cold tea, or two bottles of soda- 
water (the upper bottle being inverted), or a 
tumbler (two if required), and a packet of sand- 
wiches. Thus, utilising one division for the 
tumblers and sandwiches, my bag will carry in 
addition either four quart bottles of cold tea, or 
eight bottles of soda-water. I have found this 
bag a most useful institution, whether out tiger, 
elephant, or bison shooting in the jungles, antelope 
shooting in the plains, or ibex shooting on the 
hills ; while for snipe shooting in Mysore (but here 
it requires to be supplemented by a further store 
of fluid, for the thirst generated by snipe shooting 
is something to be remembered) it is also excellent. 
I preferred, however, when snipe shooting in the 
Madura district, to carry a box of ice, and to ice 
my soda-water bottles therein, as the sun in that 
part of India is very powerful. 

I do not recommend re-capping of any cartridge 
cases used in big game shooting. One gets so 

84 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

few shots (comparatively) that re-capping, with the 
possibility of a miss-fire, or a badly fitting, some- 
what expanded case as the result, is in my opinion 
false economy. 

In the low-country forests, the sportsmen may 
go in for whatever luxuries they may choose to 
carry, since carts are always obtainable through 
the revenue subordinates (provided that orders for 
their assistance have been sent by the head of the 
district), and all resolves itself into a question as 
to how much money the former may wish to expend 
on personal comforts. In any case, however, my 
counsel to all sportsmen going out into the jungles 
is live as well as you can, for, upon doing this, 
health in a great measure depends. 

The liability of native servants to suffer from 
sickness in camp is a fertile source of extreme 
worry and inconvenience to their master. Of 
course, a servant, who is accustomed to the nightly 
attractions and dissipations of the bazaar, frequently 
feigns illness in order to be allowed to return to 
his low amusements — at any rate after the novelty 
of camp-life has worn off, — but in too many cases 
the illness is real, and it behoves the sportsman to 
do all he can to prevent his following from getting 
sick, as much for their sake as for his own. I used 
to try to get my camp servants to sleep on a 
mechan (or platform), erected specially for them 
inside their own tent and covered with grass ; but, 
after having, at the cost of much trouble to myself, 
had the said mechan erected under my own personal 
supervision, I have found them sleeping on the 

85 



BULLET AND SHOT 

ground. Truly it is difficult to know how to save 
such people from the consequences of their own 
carelessness and apathy. 

One great factor in the preservation of health 
in India is attention to the internal economy, and 
every servant should be warned, should the 
slightest symptoms of his requiring one occur, 
to at once come to his master and ask for a 
purgative. 

In India almost every ailment, from whatever 
cause originating, appears to cause a rise in the 
temperature of the body ; consequently, when a 
native ''boy" comes up and says that he has 
"plenty bad fever," his master's first inquiry 
should be directed towards ascertaining whether 
he stands in need of the above-mentioned cor- 
rective, and if so, it should be administered in 
potent form (for natives require something very 
moving) at once. 

Before starting on a jungle trip, every servant 
should be supplied with a suit of warm clothes 
and a blanket, and, in the rains, a waterproof cape 
and a waterproof turban cover should be given 
also. 

I have tried — but I believe it to be useless to try 
— to induce them to boil their drinking water when 
in camp, and I don't suppose that other sportsmen 
are likely to succeed better than I have done in 
this particular. Of course they would say that 
they do so, if they knew that it would please their 
master to be told this. 

If a servant should get seriously ill in camp, 

86 



HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

his master must personally see that he is properly 
attended to, and fed with nourishing and suitable 
food. A very useful book on medical treatment 
in India is Moore s Family Medicine, by Sir 
William Moore, k.c. i.e. 



87 



CHAPTER VI. 

THE WILD BUFFALO, THE YAK, AND THE TSINE 
THE WILD BUFFALO {Bubalus ami) 

THE wild buffalo stands about fifteen to sixteen 
hands in height at the shoulder, and is a 
massive, ponderous animal, with enormous horns, 
which are often longer in the case of the female 
than are the thicker trophies carried by the bull. 
The habitats in India of this animal are the 
Northern and Central Provinces, with part of 
Bengal. Buffaloes are not found in the wild state 
in Southern India, though, curiously enough, they 
reappear in Ceylon. In the Terai, Assam, and 
the Sunderbunds, wild buffalo are plentiful. 

Except in size, dimensions of horns, activity and 
general appearance (in all of which respects the 
wild animal is much the superior), he resembles 
closely his tame congener, which, as a milk and 
butter producer, as well as for the purposes of 
ploughing and of draught, is so generally kept 
in a domesticated state all over India. Even the 
latter animals vary much with locality, the tame 
race in Assam, on the Neilgherry hills, and in 
Dharwar, showing a very marked superiority over 
the village buffalo of most parts of the country, the 
latter being but a miserable animal by comparison. 



THE WILD BUFFALO 

According to Rowland Ward, the record horns 
of the wild buffalo are a pair in the British 
Museum, each measuring 77f inches In length, and 
^7i i" S^^^^ ^t the base. The sex of the animal 
which carried these magnificent trophies is not 
stated. A single bull's horn, also in the same 
museum and quoted by Ward, measures yy^ inches 
in length, its girth measurement being exactly 
the same as that of the former pair, General 
Kinloch says that the horns of the bull, measured 
from the tip of one across the forehead to the 
tip of the other, usually attain a length of about 
8 feet, with a girth measurement of about 
1 6 inches, those of the cow being usually longer, 
though slenderer. He states, however, that he 
has heard, on the best authority, of a pair of bull's 
horns measuring by the said method 12 feet 

7 inches, and thick in proportion, and has also 
heard of a cow's head measuring 13 feet. He 
personally bagged a bull whose head measured 

8 feet 3 inches. Lieutenant-Colonel R. Heber 
Percy, in the Badminton volume, considers about 
8 feet in length, and 16 inches in girth at the base, 
the average measurements of a good bull's head. 

The wild buffalo is certainly a cranky, bad- 
tempered and " three-cornered " brute (his tame 
congeners in Assam and on the Nilgiri hills are 
just the same), and he is as obstinate as a mule. 
He is liable to attack without provocation, though 
instances of such action on his part are compara- 
tively infrequent. When wounded, however, a 
wild buffalo is a very savage and dangerous 



BULLET AND SHOT 

antagonist, as Captain Baldwin, the author of 
The Large and Small Game of Bengal, found to 
his cost, since he underwent a severe pommelling' 
by a bull which he had hit. 

Although I have never bagged a specimen, the 
wild buffalo was one of the first beasts at which 
I fired after my arrival in India in the days of 
my youth. 

Close to the tea estate in Assam on which I was 
then residing, lay a large expanse of open swamp 
and rice land, beyond which stretched a vast tract 
of high reeds and grass, forming a very dense, 
as well as high jungle. From the latter, a wild 
bull buffalo used to visit and appropriate the herd 
of tame females, which, in the season when there 
was no rice cultivation, were accustomed to graze 
in the swamp and in the area devoted to that 
cereal. Upon many occasions I attempted to 
shoot this bull, but as I had to plunge through 
water up to my knees, and as, moreover, the 
ground on which the herd was usually found was 
quite open and destitute of all cover, the animal 
would always move off before I could approach 
near enough to put an 8-bore bullet into him, and 
long shots at the bull, with this most unsuitable 
weapon for long-range work, only resulted in 
misses. One day, however, I came close upon 
the herd, which was upon this occasion grazing 
where there was some cover, and a bull, which 
I took to be the wild one, dashed past me alarmed 
at my presence, receiving as he passed a 2-ounce 
bullet ; but this animal unfortunately proved to 

90 



THE WILD BUFFALO 

be a tame one ! My bullet had (luckily for me) 
drilled a hole right through him too high for the 
vitals, and too low to injure the spine, so the injury 
being but a temporary one, the compensation which 
I had to pay was far more moderate than it would 
have been had I killed the bull. 

One evening, when out with a 12-bore rifle, 
while on the same estate, I visited a narrow open 
in dense reed and grass jungle, in the hope of 
finding wild pigs feeding there (I had, when out 
with a shot-gun, previously seen a sounder of pig 
in that spot). In place of pigs, I found a herd 
of buffalo. I could not be sure whether they 
were wild or tame animals, so to settle the point 
I showed myself, and they stampeded, one big 
beast pulling up at the edge of the jungle and 
turning round to look. My shot at it was, how- 
ever, ineffectual, and it disappeared in the dense, 
high reeds. 

Another evening I visited the same spot, this 
time taking my 8-bore rifle. It was devoid of 
game, but further on in the jungle was a pond, 
and on proceeding to look at this, I found a single 
buffalo grazing at its edge. I made a careful stalk 
in, and gave the bull both barrels. He rushed 
into a dense patch of high reed and grass, and 
I could hear him snorting and blowing inside — 
evidently very sick — but as it was getting dusk, 
I was obliged to leave him to his own devices. 
Next morning I went to look for him, and found 
him in the same place. He jumped up close to 
me and went off, but in such jungle a man on 

91 



BULLET AND SHOT 

foot was quite helpless. I foolishly followed him 
up for some distance, but did not see him again 
— probably luckily for myself, for the only sight 
of him which I could well have obtained would 
have been that of his head, at very close quarters, 
had he charged me ! 

I then procured an elephant, and tried to obtain 
a view of the bull from its back, but found it 
hopeless. So high were the reeds, that the cover 
was often above my head as I sat on my lofty 
perch, and we failed to track him up. A few 
days later I heard that the bull had been found 
dead, and that he had a ring in his nose. It 
appeared that he was once tame, but had become 
quite wild (very possibly his father was a wild bull). 

Some Assamese came up to my bungalow stating 
that I had shot their bull, and demanding com- 
pensation, adding by way of proof that they had 
found the cartridge cases. My reply was, I fear, 
not very polite, and they went off, but did not 
attempt to enforce their claim in a court of law. 
The fact was that the bull had reverted to a state 
of nature, and was quite beyond human control. 

It will be seen from the above that consistent 
bad luck was my portion when attempting to shoot 
wild buffaloes in Assam, but I had not even one of 
the three requisites — viz., money, time, and ele- 
phants — for sport in those jungles, a man on foot 
having no chance there. It is often very difficult 
to distinguish wild from tame animals in jungles 
to which both have access, the latter being in 
Assam fine large beasts, and very often, as above 

92 

\ 



THE WILD BUFFALO 

indicated, themselves the offspring of wild bulls. 
I heard of a heavy bill which the then Deputy- 
Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police at 
Dibrugarh once had to pay. They were shooting 
from elephants near Sudiya on the frontier, and 
getting amongst a herd of buffalo had capital 
sport with them. The animals proved however 
to be tame ones, and the sportsmen were obliged 
to recompense the owners of the slain. 

My advice to beginners under "the Great Indian 
Rhinoceros," applies with equal force to buffalo 
shooting in Assam. 

Wild buffaloes possess very great vitality, and 
will stand much lead if the latter be not very 
accurately placed. The late Mr. Sanderson, a 
long time subsequent to the publication of his 
book, wrote to me just after he had returned from 
an expedition undertaken mainly in search of this 
game, telling me that he had lost half the "buffs" 
which he had wounded, though some of them 
were upon three legs, and in spite of the powerful 
weapon (an 8-bore with a powder charge of twelve 
drachms) which he used in that trip. 

The vernacular names for the buffalo are — 

Hindustani — Arna (male), Arni (female), JunglL 
Bhains and Bhains. 

In Bhagulpore — Mung. 
Gondi — Gera-erumi. 



93 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE YAK {Poephagus grunniens) 

This animal, which is a native of Thibet, is but 
rarely shot by English sportsmen. The reason for 
this is the extreme jealousy of the Thibetan 
Government, whose Tartars turn back any English- 
men who may try to cross the frontier into those 
inhospitable regions. 

General Kinloch relates how he tried unsuccess- 
fully upon several occasions to bag a bull yak, and 
that it was not until his fifth visit to the ground that 
he at last succeeded. Cows are not unfrequently 
found in the Chung Chemno valley, and very occa- 
sionally a sportsman (who is highly favoured by 
fortune) has had the good luck to find and to bag 
a bull there. 

Many devices have been employed by ardent 
sportsmen to get past the cordon of Tartars on 
the Thibetan frontier, but it is very seldom that 
any have succeeded. 

Colonel W. (of the 43rd O.L.I.) succeeded in 
bagging a bull in his first trip to yak ground, but 
if my memory rightly serves me, he managed to 
cross the frontier and to bag one bull before he 
was discovered and turned back. 

According to General Kinloch, anyone who might 
succeed in eluding the Tartars, and in reaching the 
mountains to the north of the Sutlej, would have a 
good chance, but he also points out how very 
difficult it would be to effect this. 

He states that the height of a wild bull yak is 

94 



THE TSINE 

fifteen hands" or more, the horns measuring up to 
3 feet in length, with a base circumference of 14 
inches. Rowland Ward, in his Horn Measure- 
ments, gives the length of a pair of horns in the 
British Museum as 38J inches and their girth as 
19 inches. 

Great care has to be exercised in stalking yak, as 
their sense of smell is most acute, though Kinloch 
does not consider them very sharp-sighted animals. 
Colonel Ward, writing in 1883, suggests as localities 
the Kobrang (or Kugrang), and the Keipsang, 
which is about eight miles from Kyam. 

Both he and Kinloch agree that there is good 
ground beyond the Lingzinthung plains, which 
themselves lie beyond Chung Chemno, but special 
arrangements would be necessary in order to reach 
the locality, on account of the entire absence of 
both fuel and fodder for some six or seven 
marches. 

The vernacular names for the yak are — 

Thibetan — Dong, Yak, Soora-goy, Bubul, Brong- 
dong. 

H industani — Bun-Chowr. 

THE TSINE {Gavceus sondaicus) 

The tsine, or Burmese wild ox, is found in 
Burmah, and is therefore included amongst Indian 
animals. He also inhabits the Malayan peninsula, 
Sumatra, Borneo, and Java. 

The tsine differs widely from the Indian bison in 
many respects. 

95 



BULLET AND SHOT 

In colour, the cows and immature bulls are bright 
chestnut, and the old bulls black, with a white patch 
on each buttock. 

In size, the tsine is much inferior to the gaur, 
and he lacks both the dorsal ridge and the frontal 
crest of bone appertaining to the latter. His horns 
are very small, the largest quoted in Rowland 
Ward's Horn Measurements being only 24J inches 
in length, and \2\ inches in girth. He, like the 
gaur, is devoid of a dewlap. 

In Burmah this animal is, I believe, shot either 
from elephants, or by beating a large stretch of 
jungle with a number of men, and he is said to be 
more pugnaciously inclined when wounded than is 
the gaur. 

The vernacular name for this animal is — 
Burmese — Tsoing. 

Note. — For an article dealing at length with this animal, see 
appendix. 



96 



CHAPTER VII. 
THE TIGER {FELIS TIGRIS) 

DESPITE the facts that so many English 
people have relations and friends earning 
their living in India, and that so many Englishmen 
of means now visit that country, it is surprising to 
find how great is the ignorance which prevails at 
home regarding the big striped cat who is the 
subject of this chapter. 

English people are wont to believe that tigers 
are common in India, and that a man has only to 
be keen on shooting, and to desire interviews with 
these interesting felines, in order to obtain plenty 
of skins. 

As a matter of fact, however, the truth is (alas !) 
exactly the reverse, and every sportsman has 
ascertained the falsity of the pleasing fiction so 
soon after his arrival in India as his circumstances 
may have rendered it possible for him to go out 
tiger shooting. Many keen sportsmen have been 
out in India for a number of years, have spent a 
good deal of both time and money in trying to 
bag tigers, but have not succeeded in slaying even 
one. 

The fact is that tigers are necessarily rare 
H 97 



BULLET AND SHOT 

animals, for they prey ordinarily upon other ferce 
natMrcBy and it follows from this that were they to 
become plentiful in any one locality, the game 
would be killed off and the tigers forced to migrate. 
The ultimate result would undoubtedly be that the 
tiger would become extinct. Nature, however, 
maintains so even a balance that this danger has 
been completely guarded against ; and, although 
the eventual extinction of the tiger is probable, 
there are so many vast solitudes but rarely in- 
habited by man in the immense continent of India 
that, although he is an uncommon beast, his 
extermination is still very far off. 

But for the havoc wrought by man amongst 
the wild animals upon which the tiger preys, there 
would no doubt be food for more of the latter ; 
but the fact being that the country bristles with 
guns in the hands of natives who shoot only for 
the pot, and who spare neither females nor young, 
and as moreover there are so many meat-eating 
castes that shooting venison for sale is a profitable 
business, deer, etc., will soon be exterminated in 
forested areas near villages ; and the tiger, his 
food supply being cut off, will be forced to seek 
haunts more remote from the borders of civilisation, 
where game may still exist. 

Unfortunately, a reward, which is in Mysore as 
high as fifty rupees, is paid for the destruction of 
each tiger. Now when we reflect that a forest 
guard in Mysore draws pay at the rate of only 
six rupees per mensem in most localities, we can 
well imagine how profitable a business it must be 

98 



THE TIGER 

for a man of his class to shoot deer, etc., for the 
purpose of sale, and to occasionally shoot a tiger 
for the sake of the reward. 

This, then, is another reason why tigers are 
even rarer than Nature requires them to be, for, 
owing to the scarcity of the tiger's natural food 
which is fast being exterminated by native gunners, 
the former are compelled to take toll of the 
villagers' cattle, and then comes the chance of the 
native, who, lying perdu in perfect safety in a 
tree, watches for the return of the slayer to feed 
upon his victim. Should the tiger so return, he 
is either killed, wounded, or missed, and seriously 
scared by the would-be bagger of so many rupees ! 
I have, however, heard of a case in which the 
ambushed native was so struck by the imposing 
appearance of the animal, to shoot which he was 
watching, that he was too scared to fire at all, 
and the tiger ate the carcass before the eyes of 
the man, who remained all night in the tree, afraid 
to descend ! 

If Government were to abolish the reward, 
natives would no longer have any interest in 
shooting tigers, except, of course, any such as 
might become great oppressors of any one village, 
in which latter event the beasts would get very 
short shrift. In my opinion the time has come 
when the reward ought to be abolished, for, while 
tigers are so rare, guns are so very common, that 
there is no fear of any community, which might 
suffer heavily from the rapacity of a tiger, failing 
to take steps to rid itself of him. 

9^ 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Tigers are great travellers, and each one wanders 
over a very large tract of country, not killing cattle 
often near to any one village, but taking one here 
and one there, frequently in places at long distances 
apart. 

How many animals a tiger accounts for in the 
course of a single year, I cannot say ; but I should 
imagine that, including deer and pig (and an 
occasional cow or goat, if he be partially a cattle- 
killer), the number would not fall short of one 
hundred. 

In the big forest tracts and hill ranges, are 
many tigers which confine themselves almost 
entirely to killing game ; but, beyond the sight of 
their big pugs made after rain in the soft ground, 
the sportsman has no evidence of their existence, 
and no chance of bagging them unless he should^ 
by good luck — which has happened to a few men 
within my own knowledge — chance by accident 
upon one of them when looking for meaner game, 
and slay him on the spot. 

On the hills, where open, grass expanses alter- 
nate with cover, and where animals are far more 
visible than they are in the jungles, a tiger can 
occasionally be stalked and shot when he is him- 
self hunting on his own account. When, however, 
the jungles have dried up after the monsoon, the 
ground has been thickly strewn with fallen leaves, 
and walking noiselessly is a matter of great 
difficulty, if not of impossibility, the tiger finds 
game very hard to stalk ; and during this season 
I believe that some tigers, which usually live almost 

lOO 



THE TIGER 

exclusively upon game, take to cattle killing. 
Others, again, seem to prey chiefly upon cattle, 
but the careers of such are usually cut short ere 
they have enjoyed an almost exclusive diet of 
beef for any lengthened period. 

Man-eating tigers are nowadays extremely rare. 
During many years spent in Mysore, I can person- 
ally vouch for only one isolated instance, and this a 
curious one, for, though the tiger was not killed, 
and though I remained in the district for some 
months after the first — and, so far as I know for 
certain, the only — murder of a human being com- 
mitted by the beast, he appeared to be satisfied 
with the one experiment. 

As a rule, a tiger which has tasted human flesh, 
and has found how very easy a victim the formerly 
dreaded man is, continues man-killing — combined, 
of course, with cattle, and possibly at a pinch even 
game-eating — and becomes a terrible scourge to the 
villagers whose daily work takes them into the 
jungles frequented by him. In the case mentioned 
above, the tiger killed a herd-boy, who, with another 
youngster, was driving the cattle home in the even- 
ing. The latter, frightened nearly out of his senses, 
when upon hearing a shout of " Brother ! brother ! " 
he turned, and saw the tiger holding his victim in 
his mouth, fled incontinently to the village — as also 
did the cattle. Next day the villagers went out in 
force to the scene of the murder, and there they 
found the boy's black blanket, his shank bones, one 
arm bone, and the skull with the flesh of the face 
eaten off it. 



BULLET AND SHOT 

I received the news upon the third day, and at 
once went to the spot. The poHce inquiry had 
been held, and the remains removed before I 
arrived. On my way to the scene of the tragedy 
I saw the deeply imprinted pugs of the tiger lead- 
ing all down the path towards the village for a long 
distance, there having been heavy rain during the 
night succeeding the kill. At the spot itself, there 
was little to be seen beyond the said pugs leading 
down the road, and a few small pieces of bone ; but 
upon further search, I found what the police and 
villagers had failed to find, viz., the entrails of the 
boy collected in a little heap, and footprints close 
by showing where the tiger had lain down in the 
jungle to eat his victim, within thirty yards or so 
of the path. I tried some fruitless beats for this 
tiger, but he had moved off, and I failed to en- 
counter him. 

Recently, while on the Travancore hills, I heard 
of no less than two man-eaters in different, though 
far distant parts of that large extent of country. 
No doubt those tigers were driven to man-eating 
owing to the terrible destruction of game in those 
hills by natives, and the consequent scarcity of their 
natural food. 

I have, however, in the whole of Southern India, 
never heard of a man-eater of such calibre as a 
small tigress shot many years ago by my god- 
father, the late Mr. JEnGas Mackintosh, who re- 
sided at that time in Purneah. This beast had 
been man-eating for about a year, and during this 
period she had, it was computed, killed no less 

I02 



THE TIGER 

than ninety human beings. She had lost all fear 
of man, and used to break into natives' huts, and 
seize and carry off her victims. Several villages 
had been deserted owing to the terror inspired by 
this feline fiend, and great were the rejoicings of 
the villagers when Mr. Mackintosh — a man who 
was at the death of between two and three hun- 
dred tigers during his time in India — brought her 
in dead, and safely padded on his elephant. Women 
held up children to let them see the murderess, tell- 
ing them to look at the brute who had killed their 
father, brother, or other relative, as the case might 
be, and it is easy to imagine what a revulsion 
of feeling her death must have caused — security, 
and freedom from fear, succeeding constant danger 
and extreme terror. 

There is no animal in India so dangerous and 
awe-inspiring as is a man-eating tiger. From what 
I have heard and read, the man-eater is even a 
greater traveller than the cattle-killer, and his beat 
is usually a very extensive one. Over the whole 
of the area ranged by the tiger, no villager can 
possibly feel safe at any time when he has occasion 
to enter the jungles. The man-eater may be even 
then watching him, or it may be twenty miles off 
watching for a wood-cutter or cowherd there. 
Once the victim has been selected, there is ordin- 
arily no possible escape. A stealthy crawl to 
within a few yards' distance, one rush and a spring, 
one yell from the unfortunate who has been seized, 
and all is over, and the murderer retreats with his 
prey to some thicket, there to make his horrible 
meal at his leisure. 

103 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Should an armed man meet a man-eating tiger 
by chance in the jungle, and see the latter before 
the beast could seize him unawares, the former 
would incur no more danger in firing at the animal 
than he would in the case of any other tiger. 
Further, if an unarmed man were suddenly to 
come face to face with a man-eater, and to present 
a bold front to the latter — more particularly if he 
were to pretend to act on the offensive — I believe 
that the animal would retreat without daring to 
molest him. 

A tiger is nothing but a huge cat, and most of 
his motions and habits are those of the latter. 
Just as a cat lies in wait for prey, so does a tiger 
— man-eater, cattle-lifter, or game-killer ; just as a 
cat stealthily stalks his victim, taking advantage of 
every little bit of cover and means of concealment, 
so does its huge counterpart in the Indian jungles. 
There is nothing open in the attack of either till 
the victim is within one second's seizing distance, 
and there is then no need for any further conceal- 
ment. A man so stalked has no chance whatso- 
ever, and a rifle, however powerful, in his hands 
would avail him nothing. 

Fortunately man-eaters are nowadays seldom 
permitted to live long enough to be able to claim 
a very long list of victims, and I should consider 
no means unsportsmanlike in endeavouring to com- 
pass the destruction of so terrible a scourge. 

Amongst the causes which lead tigers to take 
to man - eating I believe the following to be the 
chief : — 

104 



THE TIGER 

1. Old age and failing powers, rendering the 
killing of cattle and buffaloes a matter of some 
difficulty, or at least an operation necessitating 
considerable exertion. 

2. Hunger, the result of the foregoing, embolden^ 
ing the tiger to acts of daring which eventually lead 
to a conflict with man, upon which the former, 
finding how weak a creature the latter really is, 
loses fear of him, and often kills human beings in 
preference to attacking animals which are far more 
dif^cult to overcome. 

3. Hunger, in the case of a tigress with cubs 
dependent upon her, when game is scarce or hard 
to approach owing to the season, leading to the 
same result as that supposed in 2. 

4. A wound, or wounds, causing the same con- 
ditions as those suggested in i and 2. 

In theory it would appear to be a very easy and 
natural transition from game to cattle, and from 
cattle to man, and yet, as has already been stated, 
man-eaters are very rare as a matter of fact, while 
many tigers live exclusively upon game. 

We can well imagine a young animal in the 
prime of life, who is ordinarily able to make a 
decent living by stalking, and by lying in wait for 
game near water or near a salt-lick, being driven 
by stress of circumstances to kill cattle ; and pro- 
bably the reason why so few of such take later on 
in life to man-eating, is due to the fact that so many 
tigers are killed pretty soon after they have com- 
menced business in the beef line that comparatively 
few of them live to attain old age. 

. 105 



BULLET AND SHOT 

When the late Mr. Sanderson wrote his admirable 
book, many years ago, conditions were very different. 
Game was more abundant, guns were comparatively 
few in the villages, and what few there were in his 
vicinity Mr. Sanderson succeeded in getting im- 
pounded, by moving Government so to direct in the 
interests of Kheddah operations. If he could now 
revisit some of his old haunts, he might form an 
opinion widely different to that which he held then 
on the subject of the possibility of the ryots, without 
aid from tigers, being able to keep down game 
injurious to crops. With this one reservation, I 
accept and endorse his views as to the utility of 
tigers, and I sincerely hope that the great cat may 
long survive in the land. 

The activity of the tiger, combined with his 
tremendous power, his acute senses, and his extreme 
cunning, render him by far the most dangerous 
animal which can be met with in hostile encounter 
in the continent of India. 

Nearly every year several sportsmen are killed 
when tiger shooting, and it is almost surprising that 
the list of victims is not even longer. 

Periodically, the question as to the length of tigers 
comes up for discussion ; a lot of more or less in- 
accurate correspondence ensues, and the matter is 
once more allowed to drop until some startling 
measurement is reported, when it is again revived 
with a similar result. 

I was not long ago told by an acquaintance that 
a certain good sportsman, who has shot many tigers 
and who lived near my informant's house, had shot 

io6 



THE TIGER 

a very large tiger ; a few questions, however, elicited 
the fact that the measurement of length quoted had 
been taken from the skin ! 

There is not even a universal method of measur- 
ing tigers and panthers in vogue amongst all sports- 
men, as is highly desirable. 

Personally, I have always treated mine by the 
method which is the only reliable one, and which 
gives the smallest possible measurement. I lay the 
animal on its side, and pull it out as straight as 
possible. I then put a stick in the ground at the 
tip of the nose, and another at the end of the tail, 
and measure the distance between the sticks clear 
of the body. 

Thus dealt with, my largest tiger taped 9 feet 
2 inches, and my largest tigress 8 feet 4 inches, 
respectively in length. 

The ordinary mode of measurement, viz. , running 
the tape along the body following the curves — 
however strictly carried out — gives a considerably 
larger result in the case of the same animal than is 
obtained by the method employed by me. 

The length of the tail varies somewhat in different 
animals of otherwise similar dimensions, and though 
weighment would be the best means of comparison, 
it is seldom practicable. It is quite possible that in 
Bengal tigers may grow to a larger size than they 
do in Southern India, but so unsatisfactory is the 
evidence, and so diverse are the methods of 
measurement, that although I can well believe 
that a giant amongst them might occasionally 
attain a measurement of ten feet by the method 

107 



BULLET AND SHOT 

employed by me, I do not believe that any tiger 
so measured would much exceed that length. 

On a friend, who was out with me when I shot 
the tigress of 8 feet 4 inches, telling me that he 
had always measured his tigers in the ordinary way, 
viz., by running the tape along the body, out of 
curiosity I measured her in that way also, when her 
measurement became 8 feet 7 inches. Probably 
my 9 feet 2 inch tiger thus measured would have 
taped at least 9 feet 6 inches. 

Sanderson says, " My own experience can only 
produce a tiger of 9 feet 6 inches and a tigress of 
8 feet 4 inches as my largest," but most unfortu- 
nately he omits to mention the method adopted in 
measuring these, and as the ordinary sportsman's 
measurement is that along the body following the 
curves, I think it probable that Sanderson measured 
his tigers in this way. 

The principal vernacular names for the tiger are 
the following : — 

Hindustani — Bagh, Sher. 

Canarese — H ooly . 

Bengali — Sela-vagh, Go-vagh. 

Mahratti — Wuhag. 

In Bundelkund and Central India — Nahar. 

In Bhogulpore (hill people of) — Tut. 

In Gorukpore — Nongya-chor. 

Tamil — Puli. 

Telegu — Puli and Pedda-pulli. 

In Malabar — Parain-pulli. 

In Thibet — Tagh. 

In Lepcha — Suhtong. 

In Bhotia — Tukh. 

108 



CHAPTER VIII. 

TIGER SHOOTING IN SOUTHERN INDIA AND 
HINTS TO BEGINNERS 

EVERYONE fond of big game shooting is very 
keen to bag a tiger whenever the opportunity- 
may offer, and the rarity of the animal only en- 
hances the sportsman's anxiety to succeed in each 
attempt. 

As a matter of fact, however, considered as a 
form of sport, tiger shooting cannot be compared 
with bison and elephant shooting, or with sambur 
and ibex stalking on the hills. The reason for this 
is that the sportsman's own part in it is so very 
small a one, by reason of the number of accessories 
— it may be elephants as in Bengal, or beaters as in 
Southern India — which are required, and without 
which, unless he should happen — a very rare piece 
of good fortune indeed — to meet with one acci- 
dentally when stalking in the jungle or on the hills, 
or to successfully sit over a kill, he has no chance 
whatever of bagging a tiger. 

Of howdah-shooting from elephants, as practised 
in the expanses of reed and high grass in Bengal, 
Nepaul, and Assam, I have had no personal ex- 
perience, though my father (who was in the Bengal 

109 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Civil Service, and had great opportunities for the 
sport) did much tiger shooting by this method. 

In Southern India, the sportsman is usually posted 
on a rock, tree, or shooting ladder, and a crowd 
of natives — some of them employing horns and 
tom-toms (native drums) — endeavour to beat the 
tiger up to him. 

This method is often, somewhat erroneously, 
termed "tiger shooting on foot," though, if the 
tiger should go on wounded after the shot, he must 
be followed up on foot ; and this operation is the 
most dangerous one which the Indian sportsman is 
ever called upon to perform. 

Another method by which a tiger may be shot 
is by watching for his return to feed upon the 
carcass of a buffalo or a cow which he has killed ; 
and, unless it be adopted under certain circum- 
stances, e.g., when a tiger has killed in a large 
tract of forest in which beating would be out of the 
question, a chance (a poor one though it be) is 
sacrificed. 

TIGER SHOOTING WITH BEATERS 

Wherever the jungles are not too large and 
continuous, this method is the one which is most 
frequently successful. A great deal depends upon 
the cover in which the tiger is supposed to be lying 
up after a heavy meal of beef. If this be of con- 
siderable extent, and especially if intersected with 
ravines, some of which diverge laterally from the 
main longitudinal nullah, in the absence of men 
well accustomed to the work, and of a large con- 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

tingent to act as stops, the odds against bagging 
the beast are heavy. 

If, on the other hand, there should be but one 
ravine, or a stream of water flowing through the 
cover, and the latter be of reasonable dimensions, 
the chance is a good one. 

The first thing that a tiger does after eating a 
heavy meal is to make for the nearest water, to 
walk right into it, and to drink deeply. He then, 
unless he should feel inclined for a second feed, 
betakes himself to the nearest suitable cover where 
he can obtain cool shade, and from which water is 
not far distant. 

He has generally eaten both hind-quarters of his 
victim during the first night, and he intends, after 
sleeping off the effects of his heavy gorge, to return 
to the kill, and to devour the remainder of the flesh 
on the succeeding night. 

Bearing the above points in view, and with the 
remark that the hot weather, i.e., from February to 
May, is the best time for the sport, we will now 
discuss the modus operandi of, say, three or four 
guns, who may have decided to form a party to 
shoot tigers in any given district. 

It is essential that three or four natives belonging 
to the district, who are keen upon securing success 
(or, at least, upon earning rupees as a reward in the 
event of good sport) should be engaged as shi- 
karries. These men must know the country and 
the people thoroughly well, be active and willing, 
and also ready to carry out all orders promptly, and 
to the letter. 



BULLET AND SHOT 

It is further essential that unless one at least of 
the party be a Government official belonging to the 
district to be worked, the sportsmen should invoke 
the assistance of the authorities by writing a polite 
note to the Collector (or calling upon him, should 
that be practicable), and asking him to kindly issue 
orders to his subordinates for their assistance. (In 
Mysore, and in non-regulation provinces in India, 
the head of each district is called, not " Collector," 
but " Deputy-commissioner.") 

Without the assistance of the authorities, it is in 
many places well-nigh impossible to induce villagers 
to turn out to beat, and in fact in too many localities, 
owing, in the first place, to the extreme general 
leniency of Government towards the natives, and 
in the second, to a too often rabid and scurrilous 
native press (recently however somewhat brought 
under the curb), the natives appear to take the 
keenest delight in thwarting and obstructing an 
Englishman in every possible respect. The party 
must, therefore, in the first instance, and in ample 
time, invoke the assistance of the authorities, and 
should their request for the same be met with even 
a churlish and half-hearted acquiescence, they had 
better decide to leave that locality alone and to try 
another. In many districts it is necessary to obtain 
a licence from the Collector to shoot in forest re- 
serves, and, during the hot and dry weather, this is 
often refused in the interests of forest fire-protection 
— verb. sap. sat. 

Supposing, however, that all has gone well, and 
that the Collector, or Deputy-commissioner, as the 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

case may be, has issued the necessary orders to his 
subordinates, the next matter to be settled is the 
plan of campaign. 

It is at this stage, and not until now, that the 
local native shikarries before alluded to should be 
engaged, and in consultation with them the sports- 
men will decide upon the best locality for their first 
camp. 

It is presumed that each member of the party 
has brought at least one horse or pony, and that 
the one who is in charge of their commissariat has 
provided all camp requisites, as well as a sufficient 
supply of provisions, liquor, and soda-water, to last 
them for the trip ; or that it has been arranged that 
consignments of the three latter shall meet them 
from time to time at pre-arranged places. 

The spot to be selected for the first camp should, 
if possible, be a central one, with jungles frequented 
by tigers within easy reach on all sides, and it 
must be close to good water, and sheltered from 
high winds. 

Till the early showers fall, generally in April, 
there is littir fear of malaria, but, after any spring 
rain has fallen, the sportsmen should be very careful 
never to cam[) in a feverish locality. In all places 
where carts can go, there is no need to sacrifice 
comfort to lightness of equipment, and I shall» 
therefore, reco iimend one 12 or 14 feet square hill 
tent for each two members of the party to serve as 
their bedroom, and a similar, or a still larger tent 
(according to their number) as the common dining- 
room and sitting-room, also camp furniture sufficient 
I 113 



BULLET AND SHOT 

for comfort. Rowties too should be taken for the 
use of the servants, but it is unnecessary in dry- 
weather to take tents for the horses, since shelters, 
efficient except in rain, can be made of bamboo, 
with boughs or grass for roofing and sides, to 
protect the animals from dew and wind. 

It is essential to arrange for the purchase of some 
cattle or buffaloes as baits for tigers, and this is no 
longer so easy a matter in Mysore as it appears 
to have been — at least, in the vicinity of Mr. 
Sanderson's house at Morlay — when he wrote his 
book, over twenty years ago. I could seldom 
procure baits for less than some five or six rupees 
each in Mysore, and often very much more was 
demanded for them. 

A good plan, if there be plenty of time, is to find 
out when auction sales of stray, unclaimed cattle 
are to be held in the different taluqs, and to instruct 
someone to buy the required number, but this is 
more practicable for a man resident in the district 
than for a shooting party consisting of strangers. 
Anyway, at least six or eight cattle or buffaloes 
must be provided, and when any one of them is 
killed, another should at once be purchased in its 
place. 

Tying up the baits must be done regularly and 
systematically by the shikarries, assisted, of course, 
by the requisite number of coolies engaged for the 
purpose. This will necessarily vary with the 
number of animals, and the distances apart at 
which they are to be tied. Great judgment must 
be exercised in tying up, for the objects in view 

114 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

are, firstly, to tie the bait where a tiger is likely to 
come across and to kill it ; and secondly, to tie it 
where, in such event, he will probably lie up within 
a reasonable distance, in a place moreover whence 
he can be beaten up to the guns with a fair chance 
of success. 

Bearing in mind then that water and shade are 
the tiger's main requirements when he lies up for 
the day, and remembering also that a ravine, or the 
bed of a stream is useful, since he is very fond of 
following its course, usually upon one or other of 
its banks, the baits should be tied every evening, 
and in the morning should be let loose, fed, and 
watered till the next evening. Generally a cow or 
a bullock is tied by a rope round the base of the 
horns, and a buffalo by one fore-leg. Of course 
the greater the number of the animals which can 
be tied as baits, the better the chance of one of 
them being seen and killed by the tiger. 

In the event of the baits being- tied near to the 
camp, it is a good plan for one or more of the 
guns to go round the tied cattle very early each 
morning, but not more than one sportsman and 
one attendant with a spare gun should go together, 
as the advance must be stealthy and noiseless in 
the extreme. It is just possible that the tiger 
may have just killed one of the baits, and be found 
even then in the act of feeding upon the carcass, 
in which event he may be shot at once. When 
it is necessary to tie up at any considerable distance 
from camp, arrangements must be made so that, 
in case of a kill, information of the same will reach 

115 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the party as rapidly as possible ; while the shikarrie, 
who has been stationed in some village near the 
spot to look after the tying, should at once proceed 
to turn out a sufficient number of beaters, and to 
keep them collected ready for work. Once the 
villagers have gone to their fields, any attempt to 
collect men enough for a drive would be hopeless. 
As soon as the sportsmen receive the information, 
they should start to ride to the spot. This they 
will probably have to do at a walking pace, as a 
native guide must show them the way ; and they 
should moreover cause all necessaries for the day 
to be taken with them, and not permit the carriers 
of the same to lag behind. 

And here it is necessary for me to digress a little 
in order to describe that most excellent adjunct 
to tiger shooting, as prosecuted in the south of 
India, viz., the " shooting -ladder." This is made 
of bamboo, two stout canes, as straight as possible, 
forming the sides, the rungs being made of split 
pieces of the same, through each extremity of 
which, outside the holes made in the big bamboos 
to receive them, a peg is thrust to keep all firm. 

About sixteen feet is a good length for a shoot- 
ing-ladder ; and at a distance of, say, five feet from 
its top, a wooden seat, in place of a rung, is let 
in, and is fixed at such an angle that, when the 
ladder is placed leaning against a tree, the seat 
becomes parallel with the ground, and therefore 
flat and comfortable to sit upon. 

The top rung should be about one foot from the 
end of the ladder, and should be made extra strong. 

ii6 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

Comfort is everything when combined with 
efficiency, and, considering that a tiger beat is 
often of considerable duration, and that the sports- 
man will find, if he places his ladder at too acute 
an angle with the tree against which it rests, the 
rung next above his seat will catch him in the 
small of the back, thus rendering shooting very 
difficult, and personal ease out of the question, 
he will of course place it at a somewhat obtuse 
angle, comfortable for himself If the seat be too 
near to the top of the ladder, the sportsman's back 
will similarly be brought against the tree, or at 
an uncomfortable angle against a higher rung, and 
he will be bent forward in a most miserable posi- 
tion. 

Having placed the ladder so that the sportsman 
faces about half-left to the direction of the beat, 
or at any rate to that of the tiger's probable point 
of exit, its top should be firmly lashed to the tree 
by a rope — more to prevent the possibility of a 
wounded beast making a blind rush in the direction 
of the danger, and so unintentionally upsetting both 
the ladder and its occupant, than from any fear of 
an attack by the animal after the shot. 

Even in the former event, the tiger would prob- 
ably be too startled to take advantage of his 
opportunity, but the sportsman might be very 
seriously injured by his fall. 

I regard the ladder as an indispensable adjunct 
to this mode of shooting tigers. It is light, being 
easily carried by two men ; can be noiselessly put 
up, and is equally effectual whether a tree, a 

117 



BULLET AND SHOT 

bamboo clump, or a thick bush, be selected as its- 
prop. 

Directly one beat is over, the ladders can be 
carried on to the next one, and be there quietly 
placed in position. 

Where rocks are available as posts of observa- 
tion during a beat, ladders are unnecessary, and 
the former are even preferable to the latter, since 
upon them the sportsmen can turn in any direction 
they please, whereas only about two-thirds of a 
circle can, in the case of a ladder, be covered by 
each rifle. 

I have seen very few trees in which, without 
the aid of a ladder, I could sit with any comfort, 
and many tigers have escaped from other sports- 
men entirely on account of the latter being in so 
constrained a position that they either could not 
fire at all, or, getting only very awkward shots, 
missed. 

I have never seen the cushions for slinging in 
trees, described by Colonel R, Heber Percy, in 
the Badminton Library, as in general use by that 
most sporting regiment, the Central India Horse, 
but I should imagine that their instability, their 
liability to rock when wind is blowing, and their 
comparatively limited sphere of utility (they could 
not, I take it, be employed where a lofty per- 
pendicular trunk, a bamboo clump, or a bush, would 
afford support for a ladder) would render them 
less serviceable. The portability of the cushion 
would appear to be its only advantage, and I 
question the danger of an extra native accom- 

ii8 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

panying the sportsman to his post. Natives with 
their bare feet walk very noiselessly, and the 
ladders are never posted very near to where it 
is probable that the tiger is lying. 

After this digression I will now return to the 
shooting party. 

I will suppose that they have a ladder each 
ready in camp to take with them as soon as news 
of a kill is brought in, and also one or two spare 
ones in case of accidents. 

The local native shikarrie, if he be worthy of the 
name, will, upon finding that a bait has been killed, 
by seeing the direction in which the tiger has 
moved off from the kill, and in consultation with 
the villagers, often be able to form a fair idea as 
to where the beast is probably lying up, and the 
direction which he will, when alarmed, prefer to 
take. Much depends upon the latter, for if an 
attempt be made to drive him in a direction in 
which he is unwilling to go, he will, almost to 
a certainty, either break back through the beaters, 
or outflank them altogether, and so escape at one 
of the sides. 

To prevent the latter, if men sufficient can be 
raised (frequently they cannot), lateral lines of stops 
may be posted up trees, but they are not unlikely 
to do more harm than good, since it falls to the 
lot of very few sportsmen to live long enough 
in any one place to be able to train men sufficiently 
to render them reliable assistants in tiger shooting. 
Still in many cases it is absolutely necessary to 
employ stops and to run this risk. 

119 



BULLET AND SHOT 

The somewhat cumbrous method of placing Hnes 
of string, with bunches of feathers or pieces of 
cloth attached at intervals about three feet from the 
ground, along the sides of the beat, is open to the 
objection that the men putting them up are liable 
to disturb the tiger, who, if he should suspect 
danger, will probably break back through the 
beaters as soon as the latter advance. Of course 
the posting of stops is open to the same objection, 
since the tiger may get their wind, and, considering 
as he does, that noise under such circumstances 
is less dangerous than a silent foe ahead, he may 
similarly break back and be lost. 

If, however, there are cross ravines running at 
right angles to the direction of the beat, it will 
be necessary to post stops to guard them. They 
must be strictly warned not to speak, whether they 
should see the tiger or no ; but each one, taking 
with him some pieces of dry stick, must climb a 
tree, and, should the tiger try to sneak out of the 
beat near him, the breaking of one of these as 
the animal approaches, will cause the latter to 
turn. 

The sportsmen with their ladders, etc., should 
then go as quietly as possible to their posts, taking 
care that the tiger does not get their wind, the 
beaters having been halted meanwhile in a place 
too far from the cover for any danger of their 
disturbing the game by talking, but they must also 
be kept as quiet as possible by the shikarries. 
The best plan of allotting positions is to draw 
straws for the posts before each beat. Of course 

1 20 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

the sportsmen must not be posted so that the wind 
blows from them towards the beaters and the 
anticipated line of advance of the tiger. 

One caution I must give here regarding the 
tricks often played by the beaters in tiger shooting. 
Too many of them try to scamp their work, and 
when his post happens to be one from which he 
can see their advance from some distance off — e.g., 
on a rocky hill or some such post of vantage — the 
sportsman will observe that in place of coming on 
in line, they will shirk all the thick places, and 
will follow one another in a string along any paths 
or opens. This is very difficult to avoid, and 
all that can be done to prevent it is to warn the 
beaters that any such conduct may cause the tiger 
to go back and so escape, to promise them a 
reward in the event of success, and to distribute 
amongst them, at intervals in the line, any trust- 
worthy men who may be in the sportsman's employ, 
to keep them as much as possible in their places. 

Another favourite trick is for men to join the 
beaters before pay -time in the evening, and, 
though they have done no work (or next to none) 
to claim pay for the whole day. To prevent this, 
I used to muster the beaters in line before sending 
them to begin the day's work, and I gave each 
of them a small piece of paper with my own initials 
in autograph written upon it. After the last beat, 
I again caused them to form line, took back all 
the vouchers (which I then destroyed), and paid, 
according to the number collected, at the rate of 
four annas (about fourpence) per man. Small 

121 



BULLET AND SHOT 

change is often a difficulty when in camp, and 
if a rupee be given to every fourth man in the 
line, the necessity for carrying a quantity of small 
silver is obviated. Gun wads are often employed 
for this purpose, but the natives are becoming too 
cunning for so simple a check. 

After the sportsmen have been settled, the 
ladder-carriers may be either sent back to join the 
beaters, or be utilised as stops ; but in either case 
they must be impressed with the necessity for 
absolute silence, and a trustworthy man should, 
moreover, accompany them, not only to prevent 
their making any noise, but also their going where 
they might give their wind to the tiger, should he 
be lying in the expected position. 

All being ready, the beat will begin, and now, 
except to make a straight shot should the chance 
offer, the sportsmen are helpless, and, apart from 
luck, success depends entirely upon the beaters. 
The beat should not be begun too near to the 
expected position of the tiger, nor the guns be 
posted where there is a large open ; otherwise the 
animal, should he come to its edge, will probably 
gallop across it, and so afford only a risky and 
difficult shot. At the same time, it is essential that 
the undergrowth round the posts must not be so 
dense as to rob either of the guns of a chance of 
making a good shot, should the tiger approach his 
position. The "golden mean" is the safest guide. 

When the tiger is viewed, the nearest gun should 
let him come as close as possible, and then, when 
he is nearly level with the line of posts, and if he 

122 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

is broadside on, shoot him through the shoulder- 
blade, or, if he be turned slightly away from the 
sportsman, then just behind the shoulder, taking 
care not to hit him too far back, and rapidly 
following up his first shot with a second, whether 
the tiger appears to require it or no. If, however, 
he has no spare gun on the ladder, it is advisable 
to reload the discharged barrel before firing a 
second shot, so as not to be left with an empty 
rifle in the event of the tiger discovering his 
position, and attempting an escalade. Instances 
of the latter are not common, still it is as well to 
be prepared for all contingencies. Only within 
the last few years, an officer in the Gunners, when 
out shooting in the Deccan, broke the shoulder 
of a tigress, who at once rushed at his tree with 
the intention of trying to get up it (although her 
broken shoulder would have made it impossible 
for her to succeed), whereupon he killed her. 

Years ago, in the days of muzzle-loaders, Colonel 
G. — a fine Mysore sportsman — was on a shooting 
ladder, with a double-barrelled rifle in hand, and 
a second aun at the foot of the tree. A tig-er 
which had been beaten up to him and severely 
wounded with both barrels by the Colonel, catching 
sight of his foe, and being too sick to do any more, 
lolled up on the ladder, with all the will, but lacking 
the physical ability to exact a deep revenge. So 
badly injured was the animal in this case, that, after 
reclining helplessly on the ladder, grinning savagely 
meanwhile at the sportsman, he went a little distance 
off and died. It would have been very awkward 

123 



BULLET AND SHOT 

for the Colonel had his ladder been upset on that 
occasion. 

As a general rule, however, a tiger suddenly 
startled by the report of a rifle, and severely 
wounded by the bullet, if not bowled over on the 
spot, seeks flight without any idea of retaliation ; 
and if he should leave the place mortally wounded, 
will probably go but a very short distance, and die ; 
though usually, if he receives his death-wound from 
a powerful express rifle, he is floored on the spot, 
and easily put out of pain. 

Head-shots at tigers should never be taken if 
doing so can possibly be avoided. The brain of 
a tiger is small, and it lies low and far back in 
the head, the skull sloping backwards so much 
that, unless at the side, and at very close quarters 
— in which case a shot through, or just in front 
of, the ear-hole will prove instantly fatal, — it is 
dangerous to try to reach the brain with an express 
(or indeed any) bullet. A good instance of this, 
which came within my own personal experience 
in the case of a large panther (a panther's skull 
is very similar in shape to a tiger's), will be related 
in its proper place. 

If the tiger be facing the sportsman, and the 
latter can see his chest, a bullet placed in its 
centre will prove fatal. Sometimes only a risky 
snapshot at a tiger can be obtained, and in such 
event it is far better to refrain from firing, than to 
risk missing, with the probability that the beast 
will not come forward in any future beat ; or 
wounding him, with the extremely dangerous 

124 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

necessity of following him up on foot as the result. 
It is highly advisable, whether the sportsman be 
posted up a tree, on a rock, or on the ground, for 
him to make sure that his first shot is a steady and 
good one, for in such case, if an hour or more be 
allowed to elapse before any attempt to follow up 
be made, the tiger is generally found dead. 

In following up a wounded animal on foot, or 
even in looking for one which has gone on with 
a wound which the sportsman who has fired the 
shot believes to be a mortal one, the greatest possible 
caution is necessary. The first thing is to give the 
animal an hour or two in which to die. It may 
be that- luncheon and a pipe (or a cheroot) can 
conveniently fill up the time during this interval, 
or possibly the tiger has been wounded too late 
in the day to admit of giving him this time with 
any chance of recovering him that evening. In 
the latter case it is preferable to leave him for 
the night, and to follow him up on the next day. 
Even then he may be found full of ability both 
to travel and to fight on the morrow, and the 
wound, which the firer believed was a mortal one, 
may prove after all to be very badly placed. 

The next thing is, when the following-up process 
is begun, for a number of men to advance in a 
compact body (the guns of course being in front), 
and at this stage of the hunt, a few dogs, not 
plucky enough to seize, or to go in close, but 
sufficiently so to go ahead and to bark when they 
view the tiger, are invaluable. 

Men may be sent up trees met with en route 

125 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to look on ahead, but not a single one should 
be otherwise allowed to leave the phalanx, and 
they ought all to be warned that safety lies in 
retaining its formation, and that probable death 
to some of them will ensue should a deep growl, 
a roar, or even a charge induce them to scatter. 
In spite of all admonitions, however, scatter they 
usually will on the first intimation of real and 
tangible danger, and nearly every year several 
Englishmen, as well as a good few natives, lose 
their lives in this most dangerous, but most 
necessary operation, viz., the following up of 
wounded tigers on foot. 

A comparatively recent English victim in the 
Madras Presidency was the late Sir James Dormer, 
its Commander-in-Chief, who met with his death 
from injuries inflicted by a tiger whom he had 
wounded on the Nilgiri hills and had followed up 
on foot. 

It is very seldom that a European who has been 
wounded by a tiger recovers, even though his 
injuries be not very severe. A fatal result from 
blood-poisoning is the rule, recovery the rare 
exception. 

It therefore behoves all sportsmen, for the sake 
of their comrades, as well as of the men with them 
— quite as much as for their own — to abstain, when 
shooting with a party, from firing risky and un- 
certain shots at tigers ; for it is often,, not the man 
responsible for the badly placed bullet which has 
rendered following up necessary, who is killed, but 
one of his friends, companions, or native beaters. 

126 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

In following up, should the tiger be found alive 
and able and willing to show fight, nothing but 
nerve and straight shooting can be looked to in 
order to avoid a fatal result in the case of one or 
more members of the party. 

An extraordinary instance of indecision on the 
part of a tigress occurred a few years ago on the 
Nilgiri hills. Mr. H., of the police, in a beat, 
wounded a tigress which escaped into thick cover. 
He succeeded in getting her driven out once more 
towards the place where he was standing on the 
hillside above. He fired and struck her again, 
whereupon she immediately charged him, his second 
barrel missing fire. Mr. H. in desperation stood 
and shouted at her, and the tigress, when quite 
close to him, funked the last few yards, and retreated 
to cover, into which he followed her up, and there 
killed her. 

I have never had the opportunity of shooting in 
the Deccan, but I have heard much about the 
modus operandi in that magnificent tiger country 
from various acquaintances (military officers) who 
have shot there. 

Permission has to be obtained in the first place 
from the Government of the Nizam of Hyderabad. 
After this, shikarries are sent out in the cold weather 
with a number of cards bearing the name of the 
sportsman who is organising the shoot. It is their 
business to locate the tigers (tying up if necessary 
in certain cases), and to leave in each village, the 
vicinity of which they may desire to work during 
the succeeding hot weather, one of the said cards. 

127 



BULLET AND SHOT 

While that card remains there, no other shooting- 
party will interfere with the tigers in the neighbour- 
hood. 

From all accounts, the jungles in the tiger country 
of the Deccan are comparatively open, and it often 
happens that the beat is across an expanse of rocky 
and rather hilly ground, with low scrub jungle here 
and there. 

Extraordinary bags of tigers have been made 
in that province, and I have met a young officer 
of the 7th Hussars, who, during the first two hot 
weathers which he spent in India, was at the death 
of forty-two (including cubs) in that splendid tract 
of country for the sport. 

The shikarries of the Deccan know their work 
well, and frequently, year after year, tigers are 
killed from the same rock or the same tree. Water 
is scarce, and so it is easy to show the baits to 
any tigers which may frequent a given locality, by 
tying out near each pool in the neighbouring 
jungles. 

The heat in the Deccan during the hot weather 
is intense, and the days on which there is no 
khubber (information) drag along very wearily, 
there being little small game in the country. 

A member of a party of three guns, who col- 
lectively bagged thirteen tigers in one hot weather, 
told me that each of his tigers (I think that he 
personally shot five) cost him about ^50. That 
party, no doubt, disregarded expense and lived 
very luxuriously, for the officer in the 7th Hussars 
who is referred to above, told me that his expenses, 

128 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

while out shooting, amounted to less than they did 
while living with his regiment at Secunderabad. 

In Mysore, tiger shooting is very difficult and 
often extremely disappointing owing to the quantity 
of water in the country, and to the size, density and 
continuity of the jungles. 

It is always advisable, when out tiger shooting, 
to carry some fireworks, in case of an animal which 
has gone on wounded lying up in a dense thicket 
whence he refuses to budge. 

It is seldom in Southern India that a steady 
elephant which will face a tiger can be obtained, 
but if the sportsmen should be in a position to 
procure one, much risk, in the event of following 
up becoming necessary, might be avoided. An 
elephant which has not been well proved in this 
respect would, however, be most dangerous to try, 
since there could be little chance of escape for her 
rider should she turn tail and bolt in tree jungle, as 
he would probably be brained by a branch, or 
terribly lacerated by thorns, before his runaway 
mount had gone far. I would prefer to be charged 
when on foot by any animal yet created, than to 
be run away with by an elephant in thick tree or 
bamboo jungle^. ! 

For tiger shooting, it would be hard to beat the 
express rifle — of course, presuming that a suitable 
bullet be used. Tigers may be killed with expresses 
of '450, '500, and '577 calibres. Those which I 
have personally shot were bagged with a '500 
express, with the exception of one which fell to 
a i2-bore rifle. At first I used Eley's small copper- 

K 129 



BULLET AND SHOT 

tube papered bullets, and these are very deadly, 
provided that they are properly placed and do not 
encounter large bones. A much safer bullet, how- 
ever, is the one which I have for some time past 
always used for tigers in my '500, viz., the large 
canelured bullet weighing 440 grains. This has 
sufficient hollow lead for conveying the express 
shock, and also possesses a good solid base for 
penetration. Messrs. Holland and Holland re- 
commended this bullet for use upon tigers in the 
very powerful and accurate '500 express rifle which 
they built for me, and I found it most effective. 
I have not tried the Paradox gun on game, but 
believe it to be a splendid weapon for use upon 
tigers. 

WATCHING FOR TIGERS 

The only method, beside beating as above de- 
scribed, whereby tigers can be bagged in Southern 
India — except, of course, the very rare chance of 
coming across one accidentally when out shooting, 
(it has never happened to me when I had a rifle 
with me) — is by watching for the tiger's return to 
feed upon his kill. 

Watching is most unsatisfactory work, and 
although an unsuspicious tiger occasionally puts 
in an appearance while a sportsman is awaiting 
his return to a kill, the vigil is, as a rule, a fruit- 
less one. 

The usual plan is to have a mechan or platform 
put up in a tree overlooking the carcass, and for the 

130 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

sportsman to take up his post in it and watch for 
the marauder's return. If the kill be in an extensive 
tract of forest, too large to beat, the chance should 
a.lways be tried, though the sportsman must be quite 
prepared for numerous disappointments. 

There can be no doubt, in my opinion, that the 
tiger usually winds the sportsman, and so fears to 
approach his kill. 

Exercise all the care and judgment possible, and, 
even if you can tell to a certainty from which 
direction the tiger will approach, make the mechan 
so that if he thus advances he cannot possibly get 
your wind, yet you will be "done " time after time. 

The fact is that guns are so numerous in native 
villages, and the reward for killing a tiger so tempt- 
ing to a native, that most of the animals have 
already learnt the danger of returning to their 
kills without the exercise of great cunning and 
circumspection. 

My own impression is that a tiger who has pre- 
viously been frightened when approaching his kill — 
either by detecting the scent of man or by being 
fired at and missed by a native shikarrie — exercises 
exceeding caution in all future returns to feed upon 
cattle which he may have slaughtered, and I am 
forced to believe that, before venturing upon a near 
approach, he makes a complete circuit at some 
distance, when, should the peculiar effluvium of a 
human being reach his nostrils, he goes right away, 
and leaves that kill alone altogether — usually never 
again returning to it. 

Personally, I have never sat up all night for 

131 



BULLET AND SHOT 

tigers, nor would I do so. I have always gone 
home as soon as it became too dark to see the 
sights of my rifle, unless, indeed, there happened 
to be a brilliant and early moon, in which case I 
have occasionally waited for an hour or two after 
dark. 

It has very occasionally happened that a tiger has 
returned to feed upon his beef after I have gone 
back to camp, but much more frequently the carcass 
has been found in the morning untouched by the 
slayer. 

In a fairly quiet place, although it was close to 
cultivation, I have seen a tigress (which I shot) 
return as early as 4.30 p.m. on a bright day ; but in 
very sequestered localities the sportsman should 
take up his post much earlier than this — say at 
2 p.m. The ordinary time for the tiger's return is, 
however, just about or just after sunset, provided, 
of course, that the jungles are quiet by that time, 
otherwise he need not be expected during daylight. 

I remember upon one occasion watching a kill, 
which was in a very difficult position, near one bank 
of a large nullah. The only tree in which the 
mechan could be made stood between the nullah 
and the kill, and the wind's direction was from the 
latter towards the mechan, and the nullah behind it. 
The tiger had moved off up wind, and therefore if 
he were to return from the same direction, all would 
be well, but the tempting nullah behind was a 
pregnant source of danger. 

While watching, I distinctly heard the tiger 
"swear" at me from the nullah at my rear, and 

132 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

this noise was evidently emitted when he got my 
wind, and discovered that there was danger between 
himself and his prey. Of course I never saw him. 

Another time, when watching, I heard a tiger 
roar more than once and not far off, but he did not 
appear within sight of my mechan. My impression 
when I heard him roaring was that he was calling 
up a friend to the feast, but, as no tiger appeared, it 
may have been another mode of relieving his feel- 
ings on winding danger in place of the " Harrrh ! " 
which I heard so distinctly from the nullah behind 
me, as just related. 

I always made myself comfortable when watching, 
and, being a heavy smoker, I always smoke. As 
recommended by the late Mr. Sanderson, a mattress 
and pillows and a book should be taken up on 
to the mechan, and as I invariably drank soda- 
water, and not plain water, when in the jungles, 
I always took the precaution of opening a couple 
of bottles before beginning my vigil. 

The mechan must be built long enough for a man 
to lie comfortably at full length upon it, and no 
plaited bamboo should be placed over the poles 
composing it, owing to the liability of the latter to 
creak upon the smallest motion being made. 

Once the men who have accompanied the sports- 
man to his post have been sent away (they ought to 
retire talking loudly as they go) there must be no 
audible sound. I have always, in mechan shooting, 
sat alone, for fear of a native attendant moving, 
coughing, or otherwise emitting noises calculated to 
spoil sport if intruded at the critical moment (and 

133 



BULLET AND SHOT 

no one can tell when that instant will be), when 
death-like silence must reign. I have even been 
afraid of the beating of my own heart being heard 
once a tiger came in view, but this, of course, was 
unnecessary anxiety. 

I conceived, and began to put into execution just 
before I left Mysore, an idea of my own (which 
possibly some of my readers may be able to carry 
out with success) for bagging tigers by watching 
in large tracts of heavy forest, wherein beating 
would be hopeless. My plan was to have several 
mechans erected on paths likely to be included in 
the nightly wanderings of any tigers in the vicinity, 
(they have a penchant for paths), and to tie cattle 
out, one under each mechan, every beast being 
bound by a strong rope, or should a tiger once cut 
that, then fastened by a chain. I believe that this 
plan would be very often successful, since the tiger 
may be in the vicinity, and may even dog and watch 
any men who approach his kill during the daytime,. 
— more particularly in the large forests — and it 
would at least obviate the noise made in erecting 
a mechan after the bait had been killed. 

If the wind be at all changeable at the time, a 
second platform on the opposite side of the bait 
might be simultaneously erected before commenc- 
ing to tie the cattle, so that the sportsman could,, 
after a kill, take his post in the one which appeared 
to offer the best chance of success. 

It is not probable that a pu'rely forest tiger^ 
seduced from the paths of virtue — viz., game- kill- 
ing — by the obtrusion upon his path of a fine, fat,. 

134 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

young buffalo tied by a rope, would be forced by 
previous experience to employ the elaborate pre- 
cautions which his confrere on the borders of 
civilisation has found necessary for self-preserva- 
tion, and I opine that considerable success in 
watching, might, in suitable forests, be attained by 
this method. I present the idea to my readers. I 
had only just inaugurated it, and but one of my cattle 
had been killed, when I went on long leave without 
pay, in order to practise at the bar. In the case of 
that kill, the tiger did not appear between about 
2.30 p.m. and dusk, and though I subsequently 
heard that he returned during the night, I had 
arranged for a big beat on the following day, and 
therefore could not attend to him. He must, I 
imagine, either have winded me, or, having enjoyed 
a big feed elsewhere, was in no hurry for another 
meal. 

I have a decided preference in watching for a 
second day's kill, i.e.^ a kill off which the tiger has 
already supped on the previous night, and of which 
he has usually eaten the two hind-quarters, but I 
have always watched whenever I have had the 
chance — first day or second day — and on a few 
occasions (out of many) the tiger has come. 

Mosquitoes are often very troublesome to the 
sportsman on the watch, but tobacco smoke will 
keep them away from his face ; and he should wear 
boots, not shoes, otherwise he will be horribly bitten 
through his socks. His legs, too, ought to be well 
protected against these troublesome pests. 

A light cap, to exchange for the sola topee after 

13s 



BULLET AND SHOT 

5 p.m., is a great comfort. I agree with Mr. 
Sanderson, that watching is very far from un- 
interesting work, but after many fruitless vigils, 
Hope, the golden-winged angel, is apt to take flight 
— till next time. 

In the Ganjam district, my grandfather, the late 
Mr. G. E. Russell (afterwards senior member of 
the Madras Council, but then the Collector there), 
used to shoot tigers from sloping pits, dug near 
water, and so arranged that the sportsman reclined 
at ease, while his eyes scanned the surface of the 
pool. This is a mode of watching of which I have 
had no experience, and in a country in which 
artificial irrigation works are so wide-spread as 
they are in Mysore, its trial would not be worth 
one's while. 

Sportsmen intending to shoot tigers should en- 
deavour to enlist the sympathies of the district 
forest officer, who can, if he should choose to do so, 
render them very valuable assistance. 

The best localities for tiger shooting are the 
Deccan, Canara, and the Godavery district in the 
South; Central India; Maldah and Purneah, in 
Bengal ; the Nepaul Terai, and the Brahmaputra 
Churs, in the North of India. 

In the Sunderbunds, which are easily reached 
from Calcutta, tigers are numerous, including some 
man-eaters which take toll of the woodcutters 
working therein, but the country is very feverish, 
and the jungles exceedingly dense. 

A fair number of tigers exist upon the Nilgiri, 
and other hill ranges in Southern India, but such, 

136 



TIGER SHOOTING IN S. INDIA 

though occasionally bagged by beating, are perhaps 
even more frequently encountered accidentally. 

Captain Forsyth, in The Highlands of Central 
India, describes a method of tracking-up and shoot- 
ing a gorged tiger from the back of an elephant, no 
beaters or pad elephants being employed, but this 
plan is not practised in Southern India. 



^n 



CHAPTER IX. 

INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

THE first tiger which I ever saw (outside of 
a cage) was in Assam, over twenty years 
ago. I was then quite a novice, had not bagged 
even a single head of big game, and upon that 
occasion I missed a very easy shot. 

The cooHe women, on returning from work, 
had seen a tiger carrying a dead bullock (or cow) 
through the tea, and had raised a shout, where- 
upon the robber had dropped his prey, and had 
bounded through the tea bushes, across the estate 
road, and into a huge sea of high grass and reeds 
beyond. 

I went out at once on hearing the news, and 
had a charpoy (or native bedstead), formed of a 
coir rope network fixed in a wooden frame, put 
up in a tree not far from the carcass, and then I 
got up, lay on it, and watched. 

While it was still quite light, I suddenly became 
aware that there was something under me, and, 
looking through the coir network, I saw a little 
cub sniffing about the place where the men had 
erected two upright posts to support the front of 
the charpoy. 

138 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

The next moment I saw, what appeared to me 
an enormous tiger, walk slowly across my front. 
The animal seemed to me to be as big as a bullock, 
but it was probably only a tigress, the mamma of 
the cub which I had just seen. In my excitement 
I missed clean, and the beast bounded back into 
the huge expanse of grass whence she had come. 
The cub must have taken a line of its own, for 
I did not see it after I had viewed the big one. 

My feelings may be better 'imagined than 
described ! 

The opportunity was certainly a splendid one,^ 
and I had miserably failed to avail myself of it. 
It would indeed have been satisfactory had my 
first head of big game been a tiger ; but, alas I 
my own unsteadiness, from intense excitement due 
to extreme keenness, had alone prevented this 
desirable result. 

This was the only tiger which I saw during 
five years' residence in Assam and Sylhet, though 
I availed myself of every opportunity of watching 
for them, whenever I received news of a kill. 

In the autumn of 1881 I left Assam and went 
to Mysore, where I had been offered, and had 
accepted, an appointment in the Forest Depart- 
ment. 

I had previously met the author of Thirteen 
Years amongst the Wild Beasts of India quite 
accidentally in Calcutta, and first heard of his book 
(which, of course, I at once purchased) from him- 
self, and I was charmed at the prospect of going 
to a country where sport is obtainable on foot ; 

139 



BULLET AND SHOT 

whereas in Assam, without employing tame 
elephants, and consequently incurring much ex- 
pense, a sportsman can do nothing. 

In 1882 I had many opportunities of big game 
shooting, and I bagged my first elephant and 
some bison, deer, and pig, but did not even see 
a tiger. 

On the 14th December, 1883, on my return 
from inspection duty to my camp at Naganipur, 
news was brought me that a tiger had killed a 
bullock at no great distance. I hurried off to 
the spot, and sat on the ground on one bank of a 
shallow nullah in which the carcass lay, but up 
till dusk, when I returned to camp, the tiger did 
not appear. 

The next day I went to see if he had visited 
his kill during the night, and found that he had 
done so, and had moreover dragged the bullock 
to some distance, leaving it in a very dense, 
thorny thicket. 

I had a mechan put up in a tree near, and 
caused the carcass to be dragged from under the 
dense canopy of thorn, and left in the open in 
front of my tree. 

During my vigil, a jackal came and loafed round 
the kill in an aimless sort of way, and at some 
distance from it, as if he had not seen it at all, 
and then disappeared in the jungle. 

Presently, having obviously made a complete, 
or almost complete circuit, he reappeared from 
the direction in which he had first shown himself, 
walked up to within a few paces of the defunct 

140 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

bullock, and then jumped backwards, as if alarmed. 
He repeated this performance several times, going 
a little nearer to the coveted beef each time, and 
then craned out his neck as far as he could, and 
gradually and cautiously touched it. Directly he 
touched the kill, all his fears appeared to evaporate, 
as he evidently made up his mind that had the 
tiger been anywhere near, his preliminary acrobatic 
performances would have elicited at least a warning 
growl. He thereupon set to work in a very 
business-like way, and tore the stomach open, 
when a most fearful stench rose in the air and 
seriously incommoded me. I squirmed slightly 
on my mechan, the jackal gave one upward glance, 
bolted, and I saw him no more. 

At a little before six o'clock, while it was still 
quite light, I saw the tiger advancing slowly 
through the thicket in which the kill had been 
placed, and from which it had been dragged a 
few paces by my orders, so as to render the way 
clear for a shot should he come. He looked 
backwards oilly once, and then came right up to 
the kill. I was afraid of his seeing me and dashing 
off alarmed if I raised myself before his head was 
hidden by my mechan, but as soon as it was out 
of sight, I elevated myself and my rifle and fired 
down upon him. As the smoke cleared away, I 
saw him slowly disappearing, as if he were 
dragging himself along with difficulty, and I fired 
a snapshot, which apparently missed. I got down 
as soon as my men, hearing my shots, came with 
a ladder, and then I found that my first bullet 

141 



BULLET AND SHOT 

•had grazed a green stem on its way to the tiger, 
who, however, had evidently gone off severely 
wounded. 

I returned to camp, and wrote at once to Govern- 
ment requesting three days' casual leave, during 
which I hoped to bring the wounded beast to bag. 

I had two dogs in camp with me, one of which, 
"Carlo" by name, was a nondescript animal, re- 
garding whose origin, and the number of breeds 
contributing to whose composition, it would have 
puzzled the doggiest man alive to form even the 
faintest opinion. He was formerly the property 
of an Ootacamund native shikarrie, and had been 
much used in sport on the Nilgiri hills. He was 
kindly procured for, and presented to me by Mr. 
(now Colonel) N. C, the hero of the boxing 
match with the wounded bull bison which is else- 
where related. " Carlo " was a capital dog out 
shooting, in spite of his having lost an eye before 
he came into my possession — whether by the horn 
of a sambur stag, or by the quill of a porcupine, 
I never learnt. My other dog, or rather bitch, 
was a novice who rejoiced in the name of " Puppy," 
and she too was a mongrel, with a predominating 
touch of fox terrier in her. 

Next morning, accompanied by a good many 
men and by my two dogs, I set out to follow up 
the wounded tiger. We proceeded to the spot 
where he had been wounded, and followed up the 
blood trail, which led through terribly thick stuff, 
in which the danger was extreme, the advance 
being of course proportionately slow and cautious. 

142 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

We had in some places to even cut our way. 
Presently, we heard the tiger groaning in front, but 
could not see him. The tracks entered a lightly 
jungled ravine which debouched into a stream, the 
latter in its sinuous course permeating many por- 
tions of the Naganipur jungles. Telling the men 
to wait till I had got on ahead, and then to throw 
in stones and to loose the dogs, I went down to 
the spot where the ravine met the stream, and 
then I saw by the tracks that the tiger had already 
crossed, so we had to follow up again. After some 
distance they led into a very densely jungled, but 
narrow nullah, and I directed the men to let me 
get well ahead, and then to come along it on both 
banks, throwing in stones, and keeping the dogs 
at work, but on no account to themselves enter the 
ravine. 

I accordingly went ahead with a man carrying 
an 8 - bore ball gun, while I took my '500 
express, and making a detour, we struck the nullah 
bank some distance down, when, taking the pre- 
caution to relieve my attendant of the spare gun, 
I placed the latter resting against a tree. I stood 
on the bank and waited the issue of events. 

The beat began, and by -and -by I heard old 
Carlo barking, and very shortly afterwards, out 
came the big, round head of the tiger, on my side of 
the nullah, and only some twenty or thirty yards 
off. His head alone was visible, but he apparently 
wished to break out at the side, in which case he 
would have given me a broadside shot ; when, 
as bad luck would have it, my attendant, overcome 

143 



BULLET AND SHOT 

with fear, fell, and the tiger, his attention thus 
drawn to my direction, instantly spotted me, and 
with a " Woof ! " he started forward at me. I fired 
immediately, and he disappeared in the nullah. I 
at once shouted to the men to retreat, and then 
proceeded cautiously to the spot at which he had 
vanished. 

There I saw, in the erebean darkness caused 
by the dense shade, two fiery balls at the bottom 
of the deep ravine. I made sure these were the 
eyes of the tiger, and, aiming carefully between 
them, I fired, and then found that what I had thus 
mistaken for eyes, were but two gleams of sunlight 
which had penetrated the blackness of the gloom 
below, and that the tiger had gone back down the 
nullah. We followed, and found that he was in 
anything but an amiable temper, as he had en route 
picked up a thick piece of creeper stem and had 
bitten it, leaving blood upon it. We carried the 
tracks back across the stream until they entered 
a very dense thicket, and there I pegged a piece 
of paper to the ground to enable us to find the 
exact spot on the morrow, and then returned to 
camp. Heavy rain came on, and I almost 
despaired of our ability to distinguish the tracks 
next day as the rain would certainly wash away 
all bloodstains from the trail. 

Next morning we went to the spot at which we 
had left the tracks, and the men began cutting the 
jungle to enable us to get through, when, from 
close in front of us, we heard a heavy animal 
moving off. Taking the men with me, I made a 

144 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

detour, and we found, in front of the thicket whence 
the sound had proceeded, a small piece of perfectly 
open ground, in advance of which lay a dense patch 
of sigee thorn which came nearly down to the 
ground, and so allowed of no view. As we 
approached this second thicket, a deep growl 
sounded from under it ; I told the men to stand 
firm, and they behaved well. 

In front of the impenetrable cover flowed the 
stream, and I put the men up trees in a semi- 
circle, the extremities of which touched its banks, 
and directed them to give me time to cross its 
bed and to ascend the further bank, after which 
they were to shout, and fire shots from a shot- 
gun which I had placed in the hands of one of 
their number. 

I crossed and took up a position on the further 
bank, and the shouts and shots rang out without 
any effect ; and we then found, on examining the 
thicket, that the tiger, after growling at us, had 
crossed the stream and gone on, and that he was 
therefore not in the beat at all when our arrange- 
ments were completed. Under the thorny canopy, 
we found several blood-stained forms where he 
had lain during the previous night ; and he must 
have moved from this thicket to the one from 
which we heard him moving off (and at which 
we had left his tracks on the previous afternoon), 
after lying for a long time — probably all night — 
in the former. Evidently he was desperately 
wounded. We followed his trail for some distance 
after this, and found that he had crossed a small 

L 145 



BULLET AND SHOT 

hill, during his progress over which he had been 
obliged to lie down several times. 

That the tiger could not have got away, had 
I a steady elephant, was certain, but that we had 
no chance of bagging him, in the dense thickets in 
which he always took shelter after crossing a bit 
of fairly open jungle, was equally sure ; and that 
to press him at such a disadvantage would lead to 
a fatal accident, was most probable ; so that at last 
we decided to return to camp, and to send out 
thence to the neighbouring villages to procure all 
the nets which we might be able to obtain, with the 
aid of which we hoped to bring him to bag on the 
following day. I therefore went back to my tent, 
and that evening I sat on the ground in the jungle, 
with a kid picketed in front of me, and bagged a 
panther. 

Next morning, having succeeded in obtaining 
only a few nets, we went out and again took up 
the tracks, which soon led into a large and very 
dense thicket. Six or eight times the number of 
nets at my disposal would have been necessary to 
enclose the same, which was situated on the bank 
of the stream, where the latter made a bend at 
nearly a right angle. I therefore put up the nets 
across part of the base of the enclosed triangle as 
far as they would go, and from their termination 
stationed men up trees to the stream on the other 
extremity of the base, and also along the portion 
of the bank which was out of my sight, while I 
crossed the sandy bed and sat on the further bank 
at the apex of the triangle. Presently, shouting 

146 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

and firing of shots began, and continued with 
vigour for some time, but nothing appeared. 
Carlo, however, had gone off to perform a little 
personal investigation, and I soon heard him bark- 
ing vigorously under a tall banyan tree which I 
could see from my post. 

Upon this, as shouts and gun-shots were in- 
effectual to move the tiger, and thinking also that 
he might be lying dead under the banyan tree, I 
decided to go and look him up inside the thicket ; 
and so, taking my own position in the centre of a 
line of men armed with spears, I followed the still 
distinct blood-trail, the men with their spears beat- 
ing down the jungle as we advanced. After a 
time, from almost under the spears, up jumped the 
tiger, who went off with a loud " Woof! " Not one 
of us saw him in the dense cover, but the spear- 
men retired as if but one man ! After ineffectual 
attempts till evening to obtain a sight of the tiger, 
I had to give him up and to return to camp. 

On the following day — the last of my leave — 
I went again to the thicket, but the animal had 
left it, and we were unable to trace him, so I was 
obliged to abandon the wounded beast — very much 
to my chagrin. 

This was the 1 9th December ; the Christmas 
holidays began on the 24th idem, and I had 
determined to spend them at this camp in trying 
for tigers and panthers. 

I had occasion, in the interim, to go on duty 
to a place called Maddur, where there is a travel- 
lers' bungalow, which is some thirty miles from 

147 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Naganipur by road, but only about ten miles dis- 
tant across country. I therefore decided to march 
through the jungle, with my requirements for three 
days carried by coolies, and as I should have no 
time for shooting, took only my '500 express rifle 
with but six cartridges. 

On my way to Maddur, I rode through two or 
three villages, which, from their position, must, I 
imagined, suffer occasionally from the big striped 
cat's partiality to beef; but in answer to my 
inquiries in each, I received the same reply, 
viz., that there had not been a " kill " for months. 
I did not believe the villagers, but promised them 
a present if, in consequence of information received 
from any of them, I should bag a tiger, and pro- 
ceeded to Maddur which I reached in the evening. 

The next day I had a long day's work in the 
timber depot, and I also arranged to inspect 
another wood-yard seven miles off on the fol- 
lowing day. That evening, just after I had 
sat down to dinner, information was brought me 
that a tiger had killed a buffalo at a village about 
three miles off. 

As I had to go to a place seven miles distant 
on the next day, and also to inspect there, I was 
obliged to entrust a Mahomedan peon with the 
arrangements. I directed him to go to the spot 
and to put up a mechan, taking care, however, 
that the wind should not blow from it towards the 
direction in which the tiger's advance might be 
expected. 

Next morning early I rode out, did my work, 

148 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

and returned to Maddur, whereupon, after hastily 
swallowing some food, I rode to the scene of the 
kill. The dead buffalo was lying in jungle com- 
posed of large clumps of bamboo, and close to 
the edge of the cultivation. Both hind-quarters 
had been eaten. As there was no suitable tree 
handy, the mechan had been made by erecting 
four upright posts and then building thereon. I 
began my vigil at about 4 p.m. Half an hour 
after I commenced my watch, I saw the tigress 
{for so it proved to be) advancing to the kill across 
my 'left front. I seemed, in some subtle way 
which I cannot define, to have become aware of 
her presence even before I saw her. My first 
shot through the shoulder knocked her over, and 
she then got up and danced on her hind legs, 
whereupon I put in two more bullets, which 
finished her. Three out of the six cartridges 
which I had taken with me had thus been well 
expended ! 

Having bagged a tigress and a panther, and 
wounded and lost a tiger, all within a few days, I 
was very sanguine of further success at Naganipur 
during the Christmas holidays. This, however, 
was not to be, for though I sat over three tigers' 
and one panther's kills, and also watched with a 
kid picketed as a bait for panthers on each of seven 
evenings, I did not even see either tiger or panther, 
though one of the latter took poor old Carlo from 
close beside my tent which was pitched in open 
ground, one evening, while I was sitting over a 
tiger's kill, carried him off, and devoured him ; and 

149 



BULLET AND SHOT 

that same night, either this, or another panther killed 
a pony close to the village stack-yard ! I believe, 
from the servants' account of the canine tragedy,, 
that the panther came into a road near the tents, 
and that Carlo, seeing him, ran towards him and 
barked, whereupon the brute seized and made off 
with the poor old dog. I also tried a beat for a 
tiger during the holidays, but that too failed, as the 
animal had left the thicket in which we hoped that 
he might still be lying. 

Captain (now Colonel) W. (late of the 43rd 
Regiment) bagged a tiger in a very lucky way 
when he was in camp with me at Bandipur in 
the Mysore district. He was out after elephants, 
and, while following the tracks of two, came upon 
the remains of a bison calf which had been killed 
and eaten by a tiger, and, moreover, caught sight 
of the slayer moving off from the place. He 
followed the elephants, and came up with them 
when they were bathing in a mud hole, and found 
that only one of them had any tusks at all, and 
those were but poor specimens. 

He therefore returned to the remains of the 
bison calf, and making a screen of boughs on the 
ground, sat with his men and awaited the return 
of the tiger, who came at about 4 p.m. W. at 
once fired, the animal fell to the shot, but got up 
again and bolted. W. ran after him, loading and 
firing as quickly as possible, and soon reduced him 
to a sitting position. An old spaniel bitch of W.'s,. 
which was out with him, then ran round and 
headed the tiger, who put back his ears, snarled, 

150 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

and spat at her. W. now went in close, and the 
brute grinned at him, whereupon W. terminated 
his career by a bullet through the brain, and 
brought his head and skin into camp with him that 
evening. 

A '* globe-trotter " once had the extraordinary 
good fortune to bag a tigress out with me upon the 
very first day on which he ever attempted tiger 
shooting. 

At that time I was in camp at Hunsur in the 
Mysore district, where I had a quantity of work 
(subsequent to the sandalwood sales) which kept 
me there for some time. I had been tying out 
for tigers, one of my baits had been killed, and 
I had beaten for the tiger without seeing him. 

One day I received a letter from Colonel J. — the 
then forest officer on the Nilgiris, and the late 
popular master of the Ooty hounds, — asking me if 
I would help two young friends of his, who had 
but lately come out from home, to get some sport, 
requesting me moreover to telegraph my reply. 
I wired that it was the worst possible season for 
shooting in my district, and that there was nothing 
to be done then but snipe shooting, with just the 
off chance of a tiger, — however, they elected to 
come. 

I had returned to Mysore for a couple of days, 
having given orders before leaving Hunsur that 
tying up should be continued during my absence. 
The two "globe-trotters," S. and B., joined me at 
my headquarters, and I drove them to Hunsur, 
which is twenty-eight miles off. On our arrival 

151 



BULLET AND SHOT 

there, I was informed that one of my tied buffaloes 
had been killed on the preceding night, so I made 
all arrangements for a beat next day. 

There was a commissariat conductor stationed 
at Hunsur, and the best beaters were men under 
his control, who had been trained by Colonel M., 
a commissariat officer who formerly presided over 
the depot there ; so I asked the former to bring 
his men, and to come himself on the chance of his 
getting a shot at the tiger. 

We went to the place and viewed the kill, and 
I drew lots for posts amongst the guns. S. and B. 
drew the places on the extreme left and right 
respectively facing the beat. My post was next 
to S., while the conductor's was on my other side. 
We three were placed at only short distances apart, 
but B.'s post was far away on the right, in an arm 
of jungle along which the tiger might, it was 
thought, try to steal away. 

The beat began a long way off, and, for some 
time, the only sounds audible were the shouts of 
the beaters, and the tom-tomming and braying of 
their noisy musical instruments. Then a sambur 
belled loudly, but did not come on. While the 
beaters were still at a distance, a single shot rang 
out from S.'s post, instantly followed by strong 
tigrine language, I heard a rush — in the direction 
of my ladder as I thought — and expected every 
instant to see the wounded tiger break out in 
front of me. Nothing showed itself however, 
and I remained silent, for, from the tracks 
around the carcass of the buffalo, I was under 

152 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

the impression that two tigers had been feeding 
upon it. 

After a time S. called out to me, " I say, Russell, 
I have fired at the biggest tiger I have ever seen 
in my life ! " (He had never seen any before which 
were not behind iron bars.) It appeared at last 
as if nothing more were forthcoming, so I got 
down and walked over to his post. His ladder 
was placed against a date-palm tree facing an open 
sward, beyond which was dense jungle. 

The tigress (for such it proved) had walked 
along the open at the edge of the cover, whereupon 
S. fired at her and she fell to the shot, but recover- 
ing herself she had disappeared in the thicket. He 
told me exactly where he had hit her, viz., low 
down behind the shoulder. 

I went to the place where she had disappeared, 
and crawled under the thorny jungle on my hands 
and knees for a short distance, and then, having 
found blood, I went back, resolving to have lunch 
in order to give her time to die (should she be 
inclined in that direction) before following her up. 

While we were at lunch, we heard an extra- 
ordinary cry from the jungle, and the coolies, 
believing that the tigress was coming out upon 
them, fled helter-skelter in our direction, tumbling 
over one another in some cases in their hurry and 
fright. 
E After luncheon and a smoke, we proceeded to 

follow up ; I led the way and did the tracking, 
with S. and B. close on my heels. None of the 
natives would come in, nor would the conductor 

153 



BULLET AND SHOT 

do so. For a short distance I was able to follow 
the tracks by the blood, though the jungle in many 
places was very thick ; but at last I was unable 
to carry the trail any further, the blood having 
apparently stopped. I then went back to the men, 
and insisted upon two or three of them coming 
in to track, telling them that they might keep 
behind me. They came, and again hit off the 
trail, which led through rather less dangerous 
jungle, and being enabled once more to make it 
out and to follow it, I led the way, of course with 
both barrels of my rifle upon full cock. All of a 
sudden I was startled by B.'s calling out, " Come 
back, Russell ! Come back ! " This would have 
been a supremely risky move in the presence of 
danger, so, in place of retreating, I looked every- 
where in front in readiness to fire, expecting to see 
the wounded beast, either crouching preparatory 
to an attack, or in the act of advancing towards 
us ; but in the next breath I heard him say, " Oh, 
it's all right, he's dead"; and sure enough, in a 
small nullah close by on my left, lay the dead 
tigress, S. had hit her exactly where he told 
me, viz., low down behind the shoulder, and had 
thus upon the first occasion of his going out tiger 
shooting bagged a tigress with a single bullet — in 
a country too in which the successful prosecution 
of this sport is a matter of very great difficulty. 
He had certainly shot most creditably, but was 
very fortunate in obtaining so good a chance. 

I once had the luck to bag a tiger within — as the 
crow flies — about twenty-five miles from the large 

154 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

military station of Bangalore. I was in camp in a 
forest in which I had heard of several kills by 
tigers, and as three or four public holidays hap- 
pened to come together, I wrote and asked Major 
(now Colonel) C.-W. and Mr. (now Sir E.) K. 
(then both of the 21st Lancers) to join me for 
three days' chance beating. They accepted my 
invitation, but, as if by magic, all news of killings 
by tigers ceased, and if I could have prevented 
their coming, I would have done so, as I feared 
that they might make an unprofitable journey. 
However, there was no time to communicate with 
them, and they duly arrived at my camp. We 
beat on two days — just on the chance, without 
any kills — seeing nothing but a pig and a fine 
spotted stag, at which latter K. fired without 
effect. 

I decided to move camp to Magadi, and, whether 
one of my ties there were killed or no, to beat at 
a place about nine miles from the new camp on the 
day after our arrival at the latter. 

I had for some time been tying out about three 
miles from Magadi, but in the opposite direction to 
the blocks of jungle, to beat which arrangements 
had been made ; and after moving camp, the men 
brought In the two baits from the former locality, 
saying that it was of no use to tie them there, as 
no tiger was in the vicinity. 

C.-W. and K. then went out with their shot-guns, 
while I remained in camp to look after arrange- 
ments for our comfort. They had been gone 
perhaps half an hour, when a man came up in 

155 



BULLET AND SHOT 

great excitement, with the news that a village cow 
had been killed in the very same place whence my 
tied cattle had been brought back to camp pre- 
viously that afternoon. He was very anxious for 
me to go off with him at once to sit over the kill, 
but of course I refused, and told him that I would 
beat for the tiger or panther (I did not then know 
which it really was) early the next morning. I 
made arrangements for all the men available in 
the small village near to be collected and kept 
ready in the morning. 

I had already made somewhat elaborate plans 
for beating at the other place, nine miles from 
camp, in the opposite direction on the same day, 
and had ordered sixty beaters to be in readiness ; 
so, as it was too late to cancel those arrangements, 
I decided to beat first over the kill, and then to 
ride across country to the other tract of jungle and 
to try some chance beats there. 

Early next morning we started, being forced to 
begin the drive at a time which should not be 
chosen for the purpose, as it is better to beat in 
the heat of the day, rather than at any other part 
of it. Only some twenty or twenty-five men were 
available as beaters. The jungle to be worked was 
a piece of dense cover at the base of, and extending 
partially along the side of, a high, rocky hill, rising 
abruptly from the plain. We drew lots for the 
posts which the local authorities in jungle matters 
decided were the most likely. K. drew the one on 
the extreme right facing the beat, while I drew the 
centre, and W. the left. K. was posted on a rock 

156 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

at the base of the hill, while W. and I sat upon the 
rocky saddle. Above us was a cave situated higher 
up the hill whose crest towered above our post, and 
while I had to watch the right side, W.'s care was 
the left, and below his post the jungle extended up 
the valley to a point somewhat beyond him. 

On my side was dense jungle to within about 
forty yards of my post, and beyond it a piece of 
open ground. The portion of the saddle on which 
I sat rose perpendicularly from this open. 

Towards the direction of the beat there were 
rocks far more elevated than the saddle on which 
W. and I sat, and two or three men ascended the 
highest points and watched. Presently the latter 
signalled that a tiger or panther (we did not yet 
know for certain which animal had killed the cow) 
was coming on towards us, but the beat came nearer 
and nearer, and nothing appeared. At last W. 
moved over to my post, saying that the men had 
come right up the valley on his side, and that there 
was evidently nothing in that part of the jungle, 
so he would stay with me and help me in case of 
need. 

The beaters on the other side had got ahead of 
those on mine, and as they continued yelling, I 
feared that, if there were a tiger still in the beat 
on my side, their shouts might deter him from 
coming to my post, and I therefore asked W. to 
stop the noise. He moved across the saddle for 
this purpose, when I spotted a tiger inside, but close 
to the edge of the dense jungle just below my post. 
The animal gave vent to a loud " Woof! " and raced 

157 



BULLET AND SHOT 

across the open in front of me, like a greyhound, in 
the direction of the path leading to the cave. 

I fired twice, and as he stumbled under a banyan 
tree on the saddle, and about on a level with our 
posts, W. ran up and gave him a useful shot in the 
back, and I fired my spare rifle at him. This con- 
fused him, and, forgetting all about his cave, he 
turned round and went back, down the side of the 
hill which W. had been watching, into the valley 
below — all arms, legs, and bad language — right on 
the top of the beaters. It was indeed providential 
that no accident happened, for I saw him plunge 
into a bush close to a coolie, and W. fired two 
or three shots at him whenever he saw him, and at 
moving bushes when he did not^ and then the tiger's 
objurgations ceased, and all was still. 

A sandalwood tree growing in the dense cover 
below was a conspicuous object, and it was in its 
vicinity that I had heard the last " cursory 
language," so, as I had some fireworks with me, 
I caused some of these to be lighted and thrown 
into the cover. Not even a growl came in response, 
and I concluded that the tiger had either gone on, 
or was dead. We then went down, and I found 
him lying stretched out lifeless on a rock near the 
before-mentioned sandalwood tree. On examining 
the body, we came to the conclusion that I had hit 
him twice, viz., once between the shoulder and chest, 
— probably the first shot as he raced past me — and 
again in the foot, and that W. had given him a very 
serviceable shot in the back. 

K.'s post was a long way from ours, and he had 

158 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

a stiff climb to reach us ; but when at last he 
arrived, we learned that a second tiger had passed 
near him, but that he had not been able to get 
a shot at it. It would have been luck indeed had 
we succeeded in bagging the pair! 

We then rode about nine miles across country to 
the other place, but the beat was fruitless, and a pig 
which K. hit, though we followed it for some 
distance, till waning day compelled our return to 
camp, escaped. 

It is very seldom that chance beats, i.e., those 
undertaken without any certain knowledge of a 
tiger's whereabouts, are successful ; still, they are 
so occasionally, and upon the first two occasions 
(in 1895) ^'^ which I beat the Lakwallie teak 
plantations of the Kadur district of Mysore for 
spotted deer, I bagged a tiger and a tigress re- 
spectively. I beat them frequently afterwards, 
with much more elaborate arrangements and or- 
ganisation, without even seeing another of these 
felines. 

Upon the first occasion I was alone, and the 
initial beat was through a large extent of plantation 
between the Toonga Budra river and the Govern- 
ment road. My ladder was posted against a tree 
near the bank of the river, where the plantation 
ran out into a somewhat narrow tongue. Even 
from my ladder, the deep bank was out of my sight, 
and I had posted a stop down below it to prevent 
animals from passing along that way. 

The beat was a very tedious business, for not 
only was the piece of plantation to be driven a very 

159 



BULLET AND SHOT 

large one, but the men, before commencing upon it,^ 
worked a stretch of forest into the plantations, in 
order to drive into the latter any deer which might 
be in the former. After my ladder had been fixed, 
the men who brought it went off to take up their 
positions as stops ; but, on mounting it, I found 
that at the acute angle at which it had been placed, 
I could hardly have fired had a stag appeared (un- 
less he was directly under me), owing to my being 
bent forward in a most uncomfortable attitude. I 
was therefore compelled to call up the stop who 
was posted on the river bank, and to cause him to 
readjust the ladder, and place it at such an angle as 
would admit of my firing therefrom with comfort. 

This done, I sat and waited. After some time 
I heard the shouts of the beaters afar off, but their 
progress was very slow ; no deer appeared, and I 
was beginning to get very drowsy — even if I did 
not actually close my eyes — when, to my great 
surprise, I saw a large tiger walking along on my 
side of the river bank, about opposite to the 
position of the stop posted below the latter, and 
actually coming towards the direction of the beat. 
Raising my rifle and carefully aiming at him, I 
fired. The tiger fell at the shot, and I at once 
fired the second barrel at the little of him which I 
then saw, but, as I afterwards found, this shot 
missed. I then waited for some time, the tiger 
lying where he fell, making only a smothered groan- 
ing noise for some minutes, until at last this ceased. 
Presently, one of the stops came up to my post, and 
handing down my rifle to him, I descended, and 

1 60 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

advanced towards the tiger. While I was walking 
up to him, he struggled, raised his head, and tried to 
get up, so I fired at the back of his neck, and again 
he fell and lay motionless, and, as I thought, dead. 
I -went in close and pulled his tail, and he then 
began gasping and opening his mouth. I thought 
that he was just dying, so stood close to him, but 
did not think that another bullet was necessary — 
even for humanity's sake — but still the breathing 
and gasping went on after quite a number of the 
beaters had come up, so at last I fired another shot 
which finished him. 

This case affords a remarkably good illustration 
of the care which ought to be exercised in approach- 
ing a tiger which the sportsman believes to be dead. 
Many men have lost their lives owing to want of 
due caution in this respect. 

After the death of the tiger, I had luncheon, and 
then proceeded to beat (on the chance of deer) two 
other portions of the plantations, without, however, 
seeing anything worth shooting. 

About ten weeks later I was again at Lakwallie, 
this time accompanied by a friend — Captain (now 
Major) G. (of the Gunners) — and one day, while 
we were there together, I arranged to beat the 
plantations for deer, or anything worth bagging 
which might turn up. The first beat was the one 
in which I had shot the big tiger who would not 
die for so long a time, and that proved blank so 
far as anything fit to shoot was concerned, nothing 
but hinds and does appearing ; so we went on to 
the next beat — my first after lunch on the previous 

M l6i 



BULLET AND SHOT 

occasion. The men told me that one of us ought 
to be posted at the extreme end of the long, irregu- 
lar tongue of plantation, bounded by the river on 
one side, and a deep nullah on the other, which was 
to be driven, and the second gun at one side, only 
about half-way between the road and the junction of 
the nullah wfth the river. I had but a single shoot- 
ing ladder out with me, and this had been posted 
at the end of the plantation. I gave G. his choice 
between these two posts, and he chose the ladder at 
the end, while I took up a position on the ground 
amongst the young teak trees. There was a stump 
about two feet high at the place, and I stood on this, 
as it enabled me to see a little further. 

The beat began, and after a short time I caught 
a glimpse of the head of some animal moving 
steadily towards my position through the grass on 
my front. I at first guessed "wolf," but the next 
instant I saw that it was the head of a tiger. On 
my right there was no grass or undergrowth among 
the teak poles, which grew in even, parallel lines, 
and I decided to let the animal reach this space 
before firing. The tigress came steadily and slowly 
on, and was passing on my right front only twenty- 
nine yards off, when I fired and dropped her dead 
by a bullet through the neck. I fired the second 
barrel, but it was not required, and the bullet only 
grazed her as she lay. 

I had ordered a small boy, who had charge of 
my spare rifle, to crouch behind the stump on which 
I stood, and on no account to show himself, and he 
obeyed his instructions so literally that it was not 

162 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

until after she was dead that he looked up and saw 
the tigress. So very corpulent was she, that I 
thought she must be very heavily in cub, though 
I subsequently found that one small foetus — only 
some nine inches in length — was all that she 
contained. 

At Bandipur, on the 22nd July 1885, a tiger 
came rather nearer to me than was pleasant. 
Colonel (now Brigadiot-General) P. C. (of the 
Coldstream Guards) and Major M. (of the Rifle 
Brigade) were in camp with me. One afternoon, 
after 4 o'clock, when C. and M. were both out 
after bison (they had gone out early in the day), 
I had just started to go for a stroll with my rifle, 
when I met a man who told me that a cow of his 
had been killed in the forest on the previous day 
by a tiger. I at once called for my pony, and rode 
off to the place guided by the owner of the defunct 
cow. He was not very clear as to locality ; it re- 
quired a good deal of searching to discover the 
carcass, and when at last we succeeded in our 
quest, there were a number of vultures busily 
devouring it. Both hind-quarters and part of the 
meat on the ribs had already been eaten. I ex- 
pected that, should the tiger come at all, he would 
advance from the front, so I had some stems of a 
purple- flowered plant, which grew on the spot, 
hastily stuck in the ground on my front and right 
side, leaving my rear and left, in which directions 
the Government road ran, uncovered. I lay on 
the ground, with a forest peon who had charge of 
a spare gun. Our arrangements had to be very 

163 



BULLET AND SHOT 

expeditious, as the tiger might be expected at any 
moment. I sent away the other men and the pony 
at 5 p.m., telling the former to talk loudly as they 
went along. In about a quarter of an hour after 
their departure, out of the corner of my eye I saw 
the tiger advancing from my right rear. He came 
on and lay down under a tree on my right, and 
therefore as much out of my reach as if he had 
been invisible. The stems which had been put in 
to hide me were very short, and I could not possibly 
have turned without putting the animal to flight 
before obtaining any possible chance of a shot at 
him. He lay there for some time — a very long 
time it seemed to me — "so near, and yet so far," 
and I crouched as low as I could, merely watching 
him. 

He surveyed the whole surroundings, looking 
alternately towards the kill, my shelter, and every 
point within his sight, as he lay flat on the ground. 
At last, satisfied with his survey, he got up and 
walked, not towards the kill, which was some 
twenty-five yards off in front of me, but between 
me and it, and only eight or ten paces from me ! I 
could stand it no longer. He towered above the 
stems in front of me, and I began to raise myself 
from my prone position into a sitting one, in order 
to take my shot. He caught the motion on the 
instant, spun round, and swore just like a cat. 
I detected a glimpse through the screen of a bit 
of white (which I took to be the white hair on his 
chest), and hastily pitching and pulling, fired a snap- 
shot at him. Jumping to my feet, I saw the tiger 

164 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

bolting off uninjured through the forest. My second 
bullet, sent after him as he galloped off, also missed. 
I returned to camp terribly downcast, and very 
angry with myself. It was the height of folly to 
move while he was so close. I ought, like " Brer 
Rabbit," to have lain very low, and waited for him 
to turn his back to me and proceed towards the kill, 
when I could have shot him at my leisure. My 
only excuse was the intense pitch of excitement 
to which I had been worked up while the brute lay 
for so long on my right, in which direction I could 
not turn to shoot him. 

Whether it was this same, or another tiger which 
attacked my pony whilst I was riding him a few 
months later, viz., on the 26th November in the 
same year, I cannot say, but the latter event hap- 
pened in the self-same forest, and at a distance 
of only some three miles from the place where the 
incident above related occurred. 

I had driven the thirteen miles between Goon- 
dulpet and Bandipur early in the morning, and had 
on the way shot an undoubtedly rabid dog, which 
came slouching along the road with the aimless gait 
peculiar to mad dogs, and with a big bubble of foam 
hanging from his lips. I had also fired at, and had 
missed, a muntjac from the road. 

Men were ready, as ordered, to go out with me 
after bison, and we had a long hunt, with the result 
that I at last bagged a solitary bull. The bison 
had fallen on a slope, and lay against a young tree, 
so we could not turn him over. As, in addition 
to this disadvantage, I had forgotten on that 

165 



BULLET AND SHOT 

occasion to take out either a chopper or a small 
axe, the labour of cutting off his head was a very 
heavy one. However, by dint of hard work it was 
done at last ; and as my Pegu pony " Box " had 
been brought up after the death of the bull, I 
mounted him and started back with my men, four 
of whom carried the head slung on bamboos, and 
the others my rifles, luncheon bag, etc. 

The sun, though low, was still shining brightly, 
and before long we struck a cart-track made by 
rough country vehicles when hauling timber out 
of the forest ; and asking my men whether it went 
straight out to the high road, and receiving an 
answer in the affirmative, I cantered off along it 
at a good pace. The forest was intensely still, and 
the setting sun shone brightly through the deciduous 
trees now touched by the blight of autumn. It 
struck me, as I rode along, how often I had hoped 
that I might, when out with my rifle looking for 
deer, chance upon a tiger similarly engaged ; and 
how very awkward it would be, in my now unarmed 
condition, were one of these animals to mistake my 
pony's clattering hoofs for those of a sambur, and 
tr}*- to seize my mount. To prevent such a con- 
tingency I made a noise as I rode along. After 
riding some three or four miles at a good pace, 
I pulled " Box " up and permitted him to walk, 
while I took out my pipe and tobacco pouch, 
intending to smoke. I had my pipe in one hand, 
and my pouch in the other, " Box " meanwhile 
walking quietly along, and I was about to fill the 
former, when suddenly a slight rustle in the jungle 

i66 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

on my right front attracted my attention, and there 
I saw a tiger rushing towards me, crouched low 
along the ground as he advanced — after the manner 
of a cat when stalking a bird upon the lawn. I 
instantly pulled up, and at once turned " Box's " 
head towards the tiger, and shouted. The brute 
stopped, but did not offer to retreat, so I then 
moved towards him, still shouting. He turned 
round and retreated, but very slowly, looking back 
over his shoulder every pace or two ; and having 
retired to about thirty or forty yards, sat bolt up- 
right on his haunches like a dog. Fearing to turn 
my back upon him, I now charged straight at the 
tiger, shouting and ordering him off; whereupon 
he bolted, while I made the best time I could along 
the narrow cart-track till I reached the high road, 
though branches and thorns overhead rendered 
riding at any pace a far from easy or comfortable 
form of exercise. 

Of course, it was only "Box" whom the tiger 
wanted — not myself; but it would have been 
equally awkward for me had he sprung upon the 
pony, for the tiger's own fears at finding a man 
under him would probably have induced him to kill 
me too. 

A good instance of how undisciplined beaters 
may spoil a drive for a tiger was afforded in a 
beat which I had in 1895. One of my ties had 
been killed, but as I could not go to try for the 
slayer until the next dies non, I had a second cow 
tied, and it also was killed. My shikarrie reported 
that the villagers said that a tigress with two cubs 

167 



BULLET AND SHOT 

inhabited the vicinity. On the first non-working 
day I went over to the place to beat. The first 
drive proved blank, and we then proceeded to the 
second. 

My ladder was placed against a large, shady tree, 
on the bank of a wide, sandy nullah. The beat 
began a long way off; and at last, after the men 
had been at work for some time, but were still at 
a distance, I saw a small tiger cross the nullah 
some way off, with the evident intention of ascend- 
ing my bank. The animal went out of sight while 
covering a portion of the space to be traversed, but 
afterwards reappeared, and I fired at it with a 
i2-bore rifle. At the shot, the tiger rushed past 
my front, roaring, and very lame ; and I killed it 
within sight of my post. 

On hearing the shots, the beaters at once ceased 
to advance, and after a little while I heard them 
making a noise in such a direction as to cause me 
to understand very clearly that any other animals, 
which might be in the beat, would indubitably be 
driven back, in place of being brought on towards 
my post. 

I got down and examined the slain beast, which 
proved to be a handsome female, about two-thirds 
grown. 

Had the beaters only kept their formation, and 
come on in line after the shots, I might have 
secured both the tigress and the other cub. 

I am always most careful about the beaters, and 
I told the men before beginning the drive on this 
occasion, that should a wounded tiger break back, 

i68 



INCIDENTS IN TIGER SHOOTING 

I would at once shout to them to leave the cover ; 
but that if I did not do this after firing a shot — or 
shots — they were to continue beating without any 
fear. 

I was very angry with them for thus needlessly 
ruining so good a chance after my special instruc- 
tions on the subject given to them that same 
morning, but they were quite strangers to me, 
and in fact did not even belong to my own district. 



169 



CHAPTER X. 

THE PANTHER {Felts Pardus), THE LEOPARD, OR 
HUNTING CHEETAH {Felis Jubatus), THE SNOW- 
LEOPARD {Felis Uncia), THE CLOUDED LEOPARD 
{Felis Diardii vel Macrocelis), AND THE INDIAN LION 
{Felis Leo). 

THE PANTHER {Felis Pardus) AND 
PANTHER SHOOTING 

THIS beautiful, yet cruel and treacherous wild 
cat, occurs all over India, — alike on high hill 
ranges, as in the low -lying and torrid plains — 
wherever in fact there are sufficiently extensive 
covers to afford him safe retreats. He is by no 
means exacting in his requirements as to residence. 
Large timber forests, light scrub jungles, rocky hills 
clad with very little vegetation, and the dense reed 
and grass expanses of Assam, Bengal, and the 
Terai, all seem to suit him equally well. 

It is not surprising that so accommodating an 
animal should be liable to considerable variation — 
particularly in size ; and, until quite recently, many 
authorities held that there were two species, 
respectively termed by Sterndale in his edition 
of the Natural History of Mammalia published 
in 1 884, Felis pardus, and Felis panthera. There 
is, in spite of laborious efforts on the part of some 

170 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

writers to draw the above distinction, not so much 
difference in size and shape between a large and a 
small panther as there is between a Leicester sheep 
and a black -faced highlander, and infinitely less 
than exists between different breeds of dogs. All 
the diversity in the case of the "pard" is in size, 
and in size only ; but of course this very point of 
difference limits the prey of the smaller specimens 
to dogs, sheep, goats, donkeys, calves, and ponies, 
while the larger ones can kill in addition full-grown 
cattle, and even buffaloes. 

I have shot a panther which measured in length 
between uprights (by the method described in a 
previous chapter on tiger shooting as giving the 
least possible measurement) no less than 7 feet 8^ 
inches, and I have also bagged a full-grown female 
of only 6 feet, while many mature animals of the 
same species are very much less than the latter. 

To call the one a panther, and the other a 
leopard, would be most misleading ; for not only 
are the two animals identical, but the true leopard 
is the hunting cheetah [Felis jubata) — an entirely 
distinct species, I must therefore take leave to 
dissent from Sterndale's division into Felis pardus 
and Felis panther a of an undoubtedly single species. 

The panther varies in the shade of the ground- 
colour of his skin, as also in the density and depth 
of colour of his rosette -like black markings ; but 
analogous variation is also very evident in the 
case of the tiger. 

In both panther and tiger the ground-colour of 
the skin is generally paler in large animals than 

171 



BULLET AND SHOT 

it is in small ones ; while the spots or stripes, as 
the case may be, are nearer together in the case 
of the latter than in that of the former. 

The claws of a panther are those of a true cat, 
being retractile, and the skull is long and low. 

The most extraordinary boldness — amounting 
to sublime impertinence — and the most subtle 
cunning are found combined in the case of this 
animal. He will dash into a house or a tent to 
carry off a dog, but he is very clever in detecting 
danger when means are being taken to effect his 
destruction. 

Panthers, like tigers, can be bagged by beating, 
but the natural acuteness of the animal often saves 
one of the former, when a tiger would, in the 
majority of cases, go forward to the guns. 

One day I was posted on a shooting ladder on 
the bank of a small nullah in which a pony had 
been killed by panthers. There was only a narrow 
strip of jungle, but this was bushy and thick. The 
beat had hardly begun, when the head of a large 
panther appeared for a moment from a thicket in 
front, staring up directly towards me, and was 
instantly and silently withdrawn. As the men 
came on, I confidently expected a shot, but the 
animal did not reappear. He must have seen 
me, and immediately decided that danger lay with 
mCy and not with the yelling mob of beaters. 

On another occasion in a beat, I saw a few 
square inches of a panther's skin through a bush 
— too far off for a shot upon so limited a view — 
but the beast slipped away, though how he 

172 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

managed to escape without my seeing him again 
I know not. 

In a beat at Hunsur, when several guns were 
posted, a panther entered a bush in front of one 
of them, but did not come out of it. The beaters 
came on, but the animal failed to show. 

At last, after all the sportsmen had descended 
from their posts and had handed their rifles to 
their peons and horse -keepers, the young officer 
who had seen the panther, not being satisfied on 
the point, crawled into the thicket on his hands 
and knees, whereupon the panther bolted right 
through the crowd, and made good his escape. 

At Hunsur, when I knew it, there was but one 
resident European, Mr. H. (a Scotchman), whose 
health obliged him to live on the Mysore plateau, 
since he suffered from consumption. He made 
bone manure for supply to the planters of Coorg, 
and carried on a general commission agency, also 
at times performing contract work for my depart- 
ment in a most satisfactory and reliable manner. 
He lived with his wife and children in a fine 
house standing in a large compound. One dark 
night, just after dinner, while the servants were 
still going backwards and forwards between the 
cook-room and the house, Mr. H.'s attention 
having been attracted by a suspicious noise, he 
went out to see what had become of a pet sheep 
which was tied just outside the house, a servant 
following him with a lantern. He stooped down 
to feel for the rope by which the sheep was tied, 
when suddenly a panther, which had killed the 

173 



BULLET AND SHOT 

former, stood up (his face quite close to Mr. H.'s), 
and then silently retired. 

Mr. H. took a position inside the house, and 
having fastened up a lantern to see to shoot by, 
he watched through a small window ; the panther 
soon returned, and was at once shot dead. 

On another occasion at Hunsur, two panthers 
got in amongst a large flock of sheep, shut up in 
a yard of the old Government tannery, and killed 
all but one of them. 

Panthers are very fond of sheep, goats, and 
dogs, and a deadly method of shooting them is 
to picket a kid in front, and to conceal oneself in 
a thicket in the evening, and wait. If a panther 
should hear the bleating of the kid, it will most 
likely come to investigate, though, of course, if 
it should chance to approach from the wrong 
direction, and thus get the wind of the sportsman, 
it will not put in an appearance. 

I shot a very large one in this way only some 
four miles from my house in the large town of 
Mysore. Overlooking that town is a high, rocky 
hill, several miles in length, known as " Chamundi " 
from the goddess of that name. One day, a member 
of the Mysore royal family told me that there was 
a large panther inhabiting the rocks of a certain 
part of the hill, and he offered to show me the 
place, adding that he had already tried for him 
without success. This panther used to kill cattle 
freely, and was evidently a fine specimen. The 
native gentleman drove me out along the road till 
we were under the pile of rocks referred to, where 

174 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

I actually saw the panther on the boulders far 
above us. 

On a certain morning, I sent a peon to collect 
all the goats which he could find in the villages 
near the place, and told him to have them herded 
all day in the scrub jungle at the foot of the hill 
below the spot where I had seen the panther. In 
the afternoon I drove as near as possible to the 
place, selected an ambush, sent away all the goats 
with the exception of one kid which I had picketed 
in front of me, and watched. At about a quarter 
to six in the evening, when it was still broad day- 
light, the panther dashed across an open space in 
front, and seizing the kid, lay down with it beneath 
his paws. I was sitting on the ground, and there 
was sufficient intervening grass to prevent my 
seeing more than part of the panther's head, but 
he was very close, so I fired at what I saw, and 
knocked him over. The kid, which was quite 
unhurt but very much astonished, jumped up and 
retired to the end of its tether. As I approached 
the panther, he began to show signs of coming to 
life again, and a Mahomedan peon who was with 
me advised me to give the beast another shot, so 
I finished him by a bullet in the vitals. 

When I had got the skull of the panther cleaned, 
I found that there was not even a scratch of lead 
upon it, the bullet — a hollow one from a '500 
express rifle — having merely made an outside flesh 
wound, unduly tearing the skin, and only stunning 
the beast. This shot is a good illustration of the 
danger of firing head shots at the felicUe. I do 

175 



BULLET AND SHOT 

not say that such should never be taken, but they 
should, whenever practicable, be avoided. 

It is very common for panthers to kill cattle, 
and even buffaloes tied out as baits for tigers ; 
and occasionally a beat for the slayers proves 
successful, though far more often it results in 
failure. 

In some places, where there are rocky hills full 
of caves, panthers may be shot by stalking them 
from above when they are out sunning themselves, 
and they may also occasionally be smoked out 
of their caves, and then shot. The " French 
Rocks " in Mysore is a place where these animals 
have been bagged by both methods. 

I once had a favourite dog carried off by a 
panther before my eyes. I was returning to camp 
after beating unsuccessfully for a tiger, and was 
at the time riding a very excellent little Pegu 
pony, two natives on horseback accompanying 
me, while the coolies with my rifles were following 
on foot at some distance. 

We were riding along a cart-track through scrub 
jungle, my dog running in front, when, all of a 
sudden, in a sandy nullah which was densely 
wooded, and which was itself in the midst of a 
large tract of jungle, a dark form appeared and 
seized the dog, and I saw a long tail on end in 
the air. I at once shouted, and charged down upon 
the panther which however carried the dog away 
into the jungle. As soon as I could stop and turn 
my pony, I rode back to the men, hurried them up, 
took my express rifle, and, making a d6tour, stood 

176 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

on the nullah bank, and waited, having previously 
instructed the men to beat the nullah and the 
adjacent jungle up to my post. Nothing appeared, 
but as one of the men declared that he had seen the 
panther in the drive — in which event it must have 
gone back — I told them to beat back again, while I 
hurried off and stood on the cart-track where it 
passed through the ravine at the place where the 
dog had been seized. Again no panther appeared, 
but my dog was found. Poor thing ! She was in a 
terrible state, with very deep fang-wounds in her 
throat, and I made a man carry her to camp. I 
had her wounds syringed frequently with a weak 
solution of carbolic acid, and, in spite of her very 
severe injuries and the resultant swelling, she even- 
tually quite recovered. 

I once shot a panther when it was so dark that 
I could not see the sights of my rifle. I had been 
sitting on the ground watching a kid which was 
picketed in front of me in a likely place, but it had 
grown dusk, and I was about to give it up and 
return to camp, when, from the jungle on my left 
front, out bounded a panther which seized the kid, 
the long tail of the robber standing straight up 
in the air. Being unable to see my sights, I aimed 
low and fired, and very fortunately broke the spine 
of the marauder, whereupon I finished her off. She 
proved to be a very handsome, though small female. 

As an illustration of the importance of using a 
rifle which fits one really well, I will relate an 
unsuccessful shot which I once made when it was 
pitch dark. 

N 177 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Information was brought me in camp that a 
village buffalo had been killed by a tiger. I ordered 
amechan to be put up, and later in the day went 
to the place. As soon as I saw the spot, I made 
sure that the slayer was not a tiger, but a panther. 
The jungle was very poor, the place close to a 
village, and an examination of the kill confirmed 
my belief 

Thinking that as the village was so near, and 
the jungle so low and thin, the panther might 
not come to the carcass till after dark, I had a 
live kid brought and picketed, in the hope that 
its bleating might hasten the robber's return. I 
told my men to go away, and to return with a 
ladder so soon as it should become too dark for 
me to see the sights of my rifle — a very powerful 
and accurate "500 express by Messrs. Holland 
and Holland, and one which fitted me perfectly. 

When it had got dusk, the men returned for 
me, but I decided to watch a little longer, so 
sent them away again. It soon got pitch-dark, 
and then I suddenly saw what looked like an 
upright column of smoke — far too high to be a 
panther — pass slowly and shadow -like across the 
place where the dead buffalo lay. The kid, which 
was picketed just in front of my mechan, had ceased 
bleating, and all was still. Suddenly the kid gave 
vent to another "baa," there was a rush directly 
under me, and I heard the tiny bait being seized 
by the panther, though I could see nothing. At 
last I managed to make out what looked in the 
darkness like an indistinct grey mass lying where 

178 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

the kid had been, and I inferred that this must 
be a mixture of panther and kid, so putting up 
my rifle whose sights were quite invisible, I fired. 
At the shot, the panther rushed off in a great 
fright, and after the men had come up with torches 
and a ladder, and I had descended from my post, 
I found that the kid had been nearly cut in half 
by the hollow express bullet, which had struck 
it only a few inches from the fang marks in its 
throat. 

Some time afterwards, when I was in the same 
neighbourhood, the villagers told me that they had 
found blood-stained places where the panther had 
lain down, so that the latter appears after all to 
have got some of the splash of the bullet after 
it had broken up in the kid. It was certainly a 
narrow shave for the robber, but had not my rifle 
fitted me perfectly, I could not, in the pitchy 
darkness, have placed the bullet anywhere near him. 

As an instance of the almost sublime imperti- 
nence often displayed by panthers, I will relate 
the doings of a pair which committed much havoc 
in and around the large town of Mysore. 

During my absence from the station, a donkey 
was killed within a few yards of a sentry-box just 
outside the wall of the gaol. One of the residents, 
accompanied by a sporting parson who had come 
out to India to see the country, and for a change, 
and who was staying with his brother-in-law (the 
then civil surgeon of Mysore) sat on the gaol 
wall in the evening and watched. The panther 
-came to the kill and was fired at, but missed. 

179 



BULLET AND SHOT 

After this, anxious if possible to show the parson 
some sport, I purchased four donkeys with the 
intention of tying thein up in likely places as baits 
for the panthers. They were tied out on one or 
two nights with no further result than that one 
of them was lost, or stolen, when duty rendered 
it necessary for me to go out into the district and 
to remain there for some time. When I returned^ 
it was only for a few hours, since I drove in twenty- 
eight miles in the morning and wished to reach a 
travellers' bungalow twenty -seven miles off in 
another direction that same evening. 

My house was a corner one, situated at the 
junction of four roads, and on one side was a 
street — often far too noisy to be pleasant — beyond 
which, in that direction, lay the thickly populated 
native town. 

The compound was a diminutive one, surrounded 
by a high wall, and to small silver oak trees therein 
the donkeys were nightly tied. 

The panthers had been killing domestic animals 
about the outskirts of the town, and one evening 
an old English gentleman, walking along the road, 
saw one of them leave the latter, and walk across 
the little park in which the tennis-courts were 
situated. 

On the night following the day on which I had, 
as above described, returned to Mysore for a few 
hours only, and had again left for camp, my wife 
heard her mare neighing in the stable, and won- 
dered why the animal did so. In the morning, 
when the ayah (female servant) came with my 

I So 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

wife's early tea, that menial exclaimed, " O, missis, 
one cheetah done kill three donkeys ! " My wife 
said, " Don't talk nonsense, ayah," whereupon the 
woman asked her to look, and she got out of bed, 
looked out of the window, and there, true enough, 
were the carcasses of the three donkeys lying at 
their pickets ! 

That evening his Highness the late Maharajah 
of Mysore, accompanied by the then civil surgeon 
of the station (Surgeon- Colonel B.), sat up in the 
verandah between the bungalow and the compound, 
and watched ; but they commenced their vigil far 
too early, and went away long before any chance 
of success could be looked for. During that night, 
two panthers came and fed upon the donkeys, and 
on the following morning yet another carcass lay 
beside the three first slain, viz., that of a pariah 
dog, which the panthers must have caught in the 
act of regaling himself upon their prey, and so had 
killed him too ! 

Had I been in the station, I should not have 
expected the panthers to return in such a situation 
until the dead of night, when all would be still. 
After this, during my absence in camp, great efforts 
were made to destroy these panthers, and they were 
eventually disposed of by natives. 

In my early days in India, while in Assam, I 
once rode close to one of these animals, which took 
no notice of me as I passed by. It was evening, 
but still fairly light, when I saw some animal 
running along the rough path in front of me. 
I guessed that it was a jackal, until, as it jumped 



BULLET AND SHOT 

off to one side, I saw a very long tail ; and as 
I passed the spot, there was a beautiful panther 
sitting in one of the depressions caused by the 
removal of soil to form the rough road, looking 
perfectly unconcerned, and sitting bolt upright on 
his haunches like a dog. Luckily for me, my pony 
did not see the brute, or I should probably have 
come to grief, for he was both hard-mouthed and 
a stumbler, and would certainly have fallen upon 
such a road, had he bolted with me. 

In Assam, too, I heard one night the death-yell 
of a favourite dog which had rushed out barking, 
after a " pheeaow " had been uttering his unearthly 
cry, and also after a " shikar cry " from the coolie 
lines had proclaimed the presence of a wild beast. 
I tried in vain in this instance to avenge the poor 
dog. 

Owing to their extraordinary cunning and mar- 
vellous agility and dexterity, man-eating panthers, 
are even more to be dreaded than are man-eating 
tigers. 

Sterndale mentions one, in the Seonee district, 
which established a perfect reign of terror over a 
tract eighteen miles in diameter, and which in three 
years' time killed over 200 people. 

The only one of which I have heard in Mysore 
was killed, or had died, long before my time there. 
He flourished in the Shimoga district, where he 
killed a number of people, including a personal 
servant of the then Deputy-Commissioner (Colonel 
W. H.), who was marching ahead of his master 
with the advance guard of his camp. The colonel,, 

182 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

though not a shooting-man, on arrival at the spot 
and after hearing- of the occurrence, very pluckily 
went down into the ravine, to which the victim had 
been dragged, and recovered his remains. 

I have upon two occasions obtained panther cubs. 
In the first, the animal was captured when he had 
gone with his mother to feed upon a beast which 
she had killed. This cub was large and savage, 
and I was obliged to cage him. In the second 
instance, the cubs, three in number, were very 
young kittens, and I handed them over to a 
Sholaga woman to feed from a bottle. One 
survived, and I took him after some time to my 
house when he was about the size of a half-grown 
domestic cat. I let him loose in the dining-room, 
and after he had investigated all the corners, he 
went to a big spotted deer's skin on the floor, 
seized it by one of the hoofs, and tried to drag 
it away ! I afterwards handed him over to the 
doctor of the station, who eventually had to de- 
stroy him. 

Panther cubs are useless as pets. Their instincts 
are so strong, that no humanising influence has any 
permanent effect upon them. If caught very young, 
they can be kept tame and safe for a considerable 
time, but with growing adolescence, nature asserts 
her sway, and they become unsafe in the extreme. 

Colonel W. (of the 43rd O.L.I.) once killed a 
panther, not full grown, in an extraordinary way in 
Cashmere. He had taken with him a powerful 
bulldog, and one day, with the aid of the latter 
and of an alpenstock, he bagged a panther which 



BULLET AND SHOT 

had ensconced itself under a rock. The dog seized 
the animal by the nose and palate, and held on, 
in spite of severe punishment, until W. wels able 
to kill him by thrusting the alpenstock down his 
throat and into his brain. Ye gods, what language 
that panther must have used ! 

I would recommend all beginners, who may wish 
to shoot panthers, to try the plan of picketing a 
kid and of concealing themselves either in a thicket 
on the ground, or about twenty-five yards off on a 
mechan. 

If, however, as often happens, news should be 
brought of a kill of a loose pony or cow in an open 
field, the best plan is to have a pit dug, and for the 
sportsman to conceal himself therein with his eyes 
scanning the surface of the ground. Personally, I 
have found watching panthers* kills very unsatis- 
factory work ; still I have often done it, and it must 
be sometimes attempted, otherwise a chance may be 
lost. 

In the case of watching a kill, I strongly recom- 
mend a mechan in preference to a seat on the 
ground, since there is so much less probability in 
the former case of the sportsman being detected by 
the animal's sense of smell. 

When a panther advances to seize a live kid 
whose bleating he has heard, he is so excited, and 
so intent upon catching it, that he is far less likely 
to spend time in precautions than when he is return- 
ing to the carcass of an animal which he knows to 
be dead, and therefore unable to escape. 

Should a panther be wounded, great caution must 

184 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

be exercised in following him up. Do not despise 
him because he is smaller than a tiger. He is 
smaller, it is true, but he is even more likely to 
fight than is a tiger ; his teeth and claws are very- 
formidable weapons ; and his agility is marvellous, 
and surpasses that of the larger feline. 

Natives — sometimes several at a time — are 
frequently mauled, and even killed by panthers 
when the villagers have found one of the brutes 
in a garden, or in a sugar-cane field, and have 
set to work to mob him. 

Mr. B. (of the Mysore Revenue Survey) had 
often heard that panthers do not fear a lantern, put 
up on the mechan and throwing a light upon the 
kill, on a dark night when shooting would otherwise 
be impossible. He tried it one night, and had 
shots at two panthers before eight o'clock, bagging 
one and missing the other. 

This method is practised with great success in 
the Himalayas, as it is related by " Mountaineer." 

My own impression is that a panther is so cunning 
an animal that he reasons a little beyond himself 
sometimes (animals do reason), and so occasionally 
comes to grief. 

How otherwise can we reconcile "Mountaineer's" 
bagging of panthers by tying up a bait and setting 
a light close by .-* It may be argued that the 
panther is accustomed to prowl round villages and 
to see lights ; but it may also be as reasonably sug- 
gested that he reasons within himself that where 
there is a light, no preparations have been made to 
do him any harm. It may also be the result of 

185 



BULLET AND SHOT 

experience to this effect, for it is wonderful how 
soon wild animals (and even fish) profit by the 
latter, and I cannot doubt that they have means 
of communication with one another, for which men, 
as a rule, do not give them credit. It is possible 
that the light trick, though very paying where it is 
quite novel, might soon cease to be effective in any 
one locality after a few animals had been missed, or 
slightly wounded, in attempting it. On the whole, 
however, I would recommend the beginner to give 
the panther credit for reasoning powers, and to 
neglect no chance of trying to make him reason 
wrongly. 

A tiny pet terrier bitch of my wife's very recently 
afforded a remarkable instance of reason as opposed 
to instinct in animals. While I was practising at 
the Bar, and during our absence for the two months, 
annual recess (the courts close for that period), 
"Midge" was left in charge of a lady — Mrs. M., 
who lived at a distance of twenty-seven miles from 
our then residence in Madura. 

This lady had been staying in Madura some time 
before, in a house about three-quarters of a mile 
from our own, the former being usually unoccupied, 
and " Midge " had often accompanied my wife when 
she went to see Mrs. M. while the latter was there. 

Some time after our return and "Midge's" res- 
toration to us, Mrs. M., accompanied by her husband 
and children, came to Madura for a few days, and 
" Midge " and the children (who were close friends} 
met, with great mutual delight, at the club one 
evening. Next morning, after she was let out of 

i86 



PANTHER SHOOTING 

our bedroom, " Midge " was missing, and upon our 
sending out to search for her she was found at 
Mrs. M.'s. The last time "Midge" had seen the 
children, they were living at a distance of twenty- 
seven miles from the town. 

As an illustration of the caution which should be 
exercised in following up a wounded panther, I will 
relate an episode which occurred in the Hunsur 
jungles of the Mysore district. I had gone out 
with another gun to beat, purely on the chance, as 
we had no definite information of tigers or panthers 
at the time. Two or three beats had proved fruit- 
less, nothing fit to shoot having been seen, and we 
had arrived at the last beat for the day. I was on 
the right, and my companion about fifty yards off 
to my left. The beat came on, and at last I heard 
a shot from the left, instantly followed by strong 
language from a panther who was quite invisible, 
but was evidently rushing across between us. Then 
all was still. I got down and went over to my com- 
panion's post. He was a man whose nerves did not 
admit of his being on the ground when there was 
any fear of a wounded feline being yet alive. He 
stuck to his elevated post, but told me what had 
occurred. I went a little way into horribly thick 
stuff to investigate, and found blood. I then 
decided to try a cast round in more open jungle, 
in order to ascertain whether the wounded beast 
had left the place or no. I made a tour of explora- 
tion by myself, but kept to open ground, and, 
finding no track leading out, I went back and 
called up the men — my companion then came — and 

187 



BULLET AND SHOT 

we proceeded to make a methodical search ; where- 
upon we found the panther lying dead only just 
beyond the spot, at the edge of the open and com- 
mencement of the thicket, at which 1 had terminated 
my solitary reconnaissance. Now, had the panther 
been alive and physically capable of so doing, he 
would almost certainly have charged me, from 
within a few paces, and at terrific speed, and I 
should most probably have been at the least 
severely clawed. So difficult is it to see the skin 
of a panther in jungle — brilliant and conspicuous 
though it be in the open or in a room — that too 
great caution cannot be exercised in following up 
a wounded animal. 

, The vernacular names for the panther are — 

Hindustani — Tendwa, Chita, Chita- bagh, Chota- 
bagh. 

Canarese — Kirba, Ibba, (large specimen Dod- 
Ibba), Mutt-naie, (naie literally means dog, but 
owing to superstitious fears of naming dangerous 
animals, the tiger is often alluded to in Canarese as 
" dod-naie," or big dog, and the panther as " mutt- 
naie," or spotted dog). 

Mahrathi — Chinna-puli. 

Telegu — Burkal. 

Gondi — Bay-heera. 

In the Himalayas — Tahr-hay. 

Thibetan — Sik. 



THE BLACK PANTHER 



THE BLACK PANTHER 

After weighing the evidence pro and con the 
theory of the black panther being a distinct 
species, I am of opinion that there is no reason- 
able doubt that it is but an accidental variety of 
the common panther. Just as albino and melanoid 
freaks of nature are by no means uncommon 
amongst birds of many different species, so I have 
every reason to believe that the black panther 
is only an occasional melanoid variety. Apart 
from the fact that there is no structural difference 
between the two, we know that in the same litters 
both varieties have been represented ; and just 
as the common blackbird, for example, has an 
occasional inclination to albinism, so has the 
common panther a still more frequent tendency 
to melanism. 

Black panthers are more common in Java than 
they are in any other country ; but there, on the 
other hand, panther skins are very frequently of 
such various intermediate hues as to strengthen 
my contention. 

I have but once seen a wild black panther, and 
that was on the Travancore hills in 1896. I was 
staying with a cousin resident there on an estate 
situated in a deep valley, upon the high hills above 
which we could — sometimes with the naked eye 
and at others not without a telescope — see the 
fine wild goat, misnamed the Neilgherry (or 
Nilgiri) ibex, nearly every day. 

189 



BULLET AND SHOT 

One evening my cousin and I had, from the 
bungalow, been watching ibex upon the opposite 
ridge, when just above the place where they had 
been feeding, he spotted a black object upon the 
sky-line to which he called my attention, and 
the telescope showed that it was a black panther. 
The freebooter, disappointed in his quest, wandered 
about for a short time, looking unsuccessfully for 
the ibex, and then disappeared in the dense jungle 
lower down the hill. There was no chance of 
obtaining a shot at the brute — it would have taken 
half an hour at least to reach the place where we 
saw him — and we had to be content with watching 
him through the glass until he had reacjied the 
cover and was perfectly safe. 

THE CLOUDED PANTHER {Felis diardii vel macrocelis) 

Of this rare and beautiful animal, Sterndale says 
that it is found in Nepaul, Sikkim, Assam, Burmah, 
and down the Malayan peninsula to Sumatra, 
Java, and Borneo. I have never seen it, and for 
the following description of its points of difference 
from the ordinary panther I am indebted to Doctor 
Jerdon's work, The Mammals of India : — "Ground- 
colour variable, usually pale greenish - brown or 
dull clay-brown, changing to pale tawny on the 
lower parts and limbs internally, almost white how- 
ever in some ; in many specimens the fulvous or 
tawny hue is the prevalent one ; a double line of 
small chain-like stripes from the ears diverging 
on the nape to give room to an inner and smaller 

190 



THE HUNTING CHEETAH 

series ; large irregular clouded spots or patches on 
the back and sides, edged very dark and crowded 
together ; loins, sides of belly and belly marked 
with irregular small patches and spots ; some black 
lines on the cheeks and sides of neck, and a 
black band across the throat ; tail with dark rings, 
thickly furred, long ; limbs bulky and body heavy 
and stout ; claws very powerful." 

Jerdon gives the length of one as 6 feet 6 inches, 
but he states that it grows to a larger size. In 
build it is shorter in the leg than the common 
panther, and less graceful in motion than the latter, 
owing to the shortness of its legs as compared with 
its heavy body. The upper canines are said to be 
the longest by comparison of all the felidse. 

It appears to be extremely rare, and probably 
but very few sportsmen have ever seen a specimen. 

Doctor Jerdon states that he obtained a young 
one in the neighbourhood of Darj heeling, and 
Sterndale mentions two cubs which were owned 
by Sir Stamford Raffles, and he also refers to a 
very fine specimen which was once in the Zoo- 
logical Gardens in London. 

THE HUNTING CHEETAH {Felis jubata) 

The hunting cheetah is the true leopard. As the 
word leopard implies, it was regarded by the 
ancients as a leonine edition of the panther (or 
pard), and having once seen some cheetahs in the 
wild state, I can quite appreciate the applicability 
of the name. 

191 



BULLET AND SHOT 

This animal is found in Central, and part of 
Southern India, and in the north - west from 
Kandeish, through Sindh and Rajpootana, to the 
Punjab. In Jeypur and in Hyderabad, it is said 
by Sterndale to be most common, but it does not 
seem to be numerous anywhere. 

It stands high on the leg, is tucked up at the 
flanks, and has dog-like, and only semi-retractile 
claws, which are moreover very small ; its spots 
are round, black, and unbroken by colour, and 
it has a slight mane on the back of the neck. The 
general ground-colour is bright rufous-fawn. The 
skull resembles that of a dog, being short and 
rounded. 

Jerdon, and Sterndale apparently following him, 
gives the length of the cheetah as 7 feet, but as there 
is a beautiful (or the reverse) uncertainty about the 
measurements of even so comparatively common 
and well-known an animal as the tiger, it would 
be satisfactory to know what method of measure- 
ment is employed in each case. 

The cheetah is, for a short distance, the swiftest 
of the larger animals in the world. Its wonderful 
speed is taken advantage of by native nobles, who 
keep tame ones for the purpose of catching antelope. 
It is only animals which have been caught after 
they have attained their full growth that are of any 
use for this work ; and Sterndale, quoting from The 
Asian, gives in extenso an interesting account of the 
capture of two cheetahs by means of snares set close 
to, and all round, a certain tree upon which they 
were in the habit of whetting their claws. The 

192 



THE HUNTING CHEETAH 

animal is extremely rare in Mysore. Sanderson 
never saw one there, and I encountered it upon 
only one occasion, viz., in August, 1882, when out 
shooting in the Berrambadie forest of the Mysore 
district ; and this was a wonderful piece of luck 
to fall to the lot of a beginner. Unfortunately my 
capacity for shooting straight was less in those 
days than it afterwards became, and I failed to 
take full advantage of my opportunity. 

I had gone out bison shooting after a very wet 
night, and was walking with my men through the 
jungle, when, in an open glade of high forest, I 
suddenly saw five cat-like creatures sitting up 
together and looking at us. I at first guessed 
them to be panthers, and lost no time in firing at, 
and then running after, them. Although I fired 
several shots at them, I bagged only one, and I 
never had another chance at a hunting cheetah. 
I noticed particularly the peculiar way in which 
they carried their long tails, the tips of which 
curved upwards. The slight mane, too, was con- 
spicuous, and the animals looked more like small 
lionesses than panthers when in full view. The 
cheetah bagged was a young male measuring be- 
tween uprights 5 feet 6 inches in length. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Hindustani — Chita. 
Bengali — Kendua-bagh. 
Telegu — Chita-puli. 
Canarese — Chircha, Sivungi. 



o 



193 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE SNOW PANTHER OR OUNCE {Felts undo) 

This beautiful animal has its home in the Hima- 
layas, to which, and to the highlands of Central 
Asia, its range is confined. 

The following is Sterndale's description of it : — 
" Pale yellow or whitish isabelline, with small spots 
on the head and neck, but large blotchy rings and 
crescents, irregularly dispersed on the shoulders, 
sides, and haunches ; from middle of back to root 
of tail a medium irregular dark band closely 
bordered by a chain of oblong rings ; lower parts 
dingy white, with some few dark spots about middle 
of abdomen ; limbs with small spots ; ears externally 
black ; tail bushy, with broad black rings." 

It is said to reach about 6|- feet in length, but no 
measurements of really undoubted accuracy are 
forthcoming. Colonel Ward believes that Jerdon's 
statement of its length, viz., 7 feet 4 inches, is 
excessive. 

The ounce is very rarely met with. Even General 
Kinloch, who continually spent very frequent leave 
in Cashmere, never met with it ; and Colonel Ward, 
the author of The Sportsman s Guide to Cashmere 
and Ladak, only saw it twice. He describes it as 
less rare than hard to encounter, on account of its 
nocturnal habits. From his account, it is an animal 
which, if bagged by a fortunate European sports- 
man, is usually met with quite by chance, and one 
which cannot with any certainty be specially sought 

194 



THE INDIAN LION 

for. It is found more frequently than elsewhere 
upon the Thibetan side of the Himalayan range. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Thibetan — Stian, Iker. 

Bhotia — Sah. 

Lepcha — PhaM. 

In Simla hills — Burrel-hay. 

In Kunawur — Thurwag. 

No doubt, by every Hindustani-speaking native 
outside of the localities above mentioned, it would 
be called by the vernacular, generic name of "bagh," 
or " chota-bagh," just as is the panther. 

THE INDIAN LION {Felis leo) 

This animal, which used to frequent the North- 
West Provinces, Central India, and the Bombay 
Presidency, is now, alas! almost extinct, being found 
at the present day, so far as I am aware, only 
very rarely in Guzerat, and possibly in Cutch. 
Doubtless the reasons which have led to its almost 
total extinction, are the ease with which it can be 
shot, on account of its preferring comparatively 
open ground to thick forest ; and its want of that 
cunning which renders the tiger, and still more the 
panther, so difficult to bring to bag. When the 
late Duke of Clarence was out in India, he had 
a beat for lions, and two or three were seen, but 
not one was secured. 

The Indian lion appears to differ from the African 
only in the mane of the former being less developed 

195 



BULLET AND SHOT 

than that of the latter, and in the fact of the black 
mane, sometimes seen in African lions, never appear- 
ing in the case of their Indian cousins. 

There seems to be no reason for believing that 
the lions of India and of Africa belong to different 
species, the slight diversity between them being 
easily and satisfactorily accouhted for by the 
difference in the nature of their haunts in the two 
countries. 

Sterndale gives the length of the lion as SJ to 
9|- feet ; and Mr. Selous records the length of two 
lions shot by him in Africa, and measured between 
uprights, as 9 feet 11 inches and 9 feet i inch 
respectively. 

It is sad to reflect that in a few years the lion 
will be as extinct in India as is the wolf in England,, 
but it is indisputable. 

The vernacular names for the lion are — 

Hindustani — Sher, Singh, Sher-babbar. 
In Guzerat and Cutch — Oontia-bagh. 



196 



CHAPTER XI. 

THE CHIEF BEARS OF INDIA 

THE INDIAN BLACK SLOTH BEAR {Ursus Labiatus) 

THIS bear derives its specific name from its 
long snout, and the general "lippy" appear- 
ance of its muzzle. It is common in suitable 
localities all over India proper ; though, according 
to Blyth, it is not found in Burmah. 

The sloth bear is often seen when beating for 
tigers in the Deccan, but is generally allowed under 
such circumstances to pass unscathed, for fear of 
a shot alarming the more coveted animal, should 
he be in the beat, and so of causing him to break 
back through the beaters in place of coming on 
to the guns. In length this bear measures from 
5 to 6 feet, and stands about 3 feet in height. 

Bears possess certain idiosyncrasies which are 
very characteristic. For instance, they are very 
liable to attack when unwounded if suddenly 
encountered at close quarters. Again, on a female 
bear accompanied by her young being disturbed 
when out feeding, the cubs jump on to their 
mother's back, and hold on by her thick, shaggy 
hair while she beats a hasty retreat. 

If two or more bears together be encountered, 

197 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the wounding of one of them is usually the signal 
for a free fight between the animals, owing to the 
wounded one " going for " the unwounded. 

Bears are very fond of sweet things, and they 
ascend the toddy trees in Mysore to drink the juice 
of the date palm, which is collected in earthen pots 
suspended below incisions made in the crowns of 
the trees. They are devoted to honey, and in 
Central India to the sweet flowers of the mohwa 
tree (Bassia latifolia), and they are also very partial 
to sugar-cane, and to both wild and cultivated fruits. 

The sloth bear is moreover insectivorous in his 
habits, and in jungles frequented by him stones 
will be found upturned, and white ants' nests dug 
up, in his search for larvae and grubs of sorts. He 
is said to occasionally eat carrion, but this is foreign 
to his usual habits. 

In parts of Assam, where bears are numerous, 
natives are often attacked by them without any 
provocation ; and, as the bear always strikes at 
the face, they are frequently horribly disfigured 
by these animals. 

Sterndale says : — "There is frequently an element 
of comicality in most bear hunts, as well as a 
considerable spice of danger ; for, though some 
people may pooh-pooh this, I know that a she-bear 
with cubs is no despicable antagonist. Otherwise 
the male is more anxious to get away, than ta 
provoke an attack." 

I can only say that the first bear which I ever 
saw in the jungle — an old male — allowed his angry 
passions to get the better of his prudence. We 

198 



THE BLACK SLOTH BEAR 

had followed his tracks for a considerable distance, 
at first in the low country, and then up a rocky hill. 
The men, having lost the tracks, were searching for 
them, when, from under a boulder which we had 
already passed, proceeded some very strong ursine 
language. In two or three seconds more the bear 
appeared on the top of the boulder, advancing 
towards us in a very bad temper indeed, when a 
bullet from my '500 express in the neck killed him. 
Had this bear only run away down the hill, I could 
not even have seen him on account of rocks ; but 
being a "three-cornered" brute, he preferred to 
show fight on no more provocation than that of 
being disturbed while enjoying his siesta. I have 
reason therefore to question Mr. Sterndale's dictum 
on this point, and I believe that the natives who 
have been mauled by bears which they have 
suddenly encountered have been injured alike by 
males, as by females, with or without cubs. 

The Indian sloth bear measures from 5 to 6 feet 
in length. The male possesses a unique bone, out 
of which a paper-cutter may be made. 

There are several methods whereby bears may 
be brought to bag. 

In some localities, they may be driven out of 
jungle by beaters, precisely as are tigers. In such 
cases it is merely a question of a steady shot just 
behind the shoulder, should the bear be passing the 
sportsman's post ; or through the yellowish or white 
horse-shoe mark in the centre of the chest, should 
he be coming towards the rifle. Bears often show 
remarkable vitality so far as body- shots are con- 

199 



BULLET AND SHOT 

cerned, but if wounded and followed up, though 
very liable to charge, they can be easily brained by 
a bullet when within a few paces from the rifle. 

In jungles little disturbed by man, bears may 
be found in wet weather, when their tracks are 
rendered visible, by following them up to their 
lairs — often mere depressions or forms in the shade 
of bamboo clumps, or hollows under overhanging 
rocks ; and in the mornings, and in the afternoons 
also on cool, cloudy days in the monsoon, they are 
often come upon by chance when they are out 
feeding, and while the sportsman is in quest of 
other game. 

Sometimes bears are to be found in high, rocky 
hills with no other superficial cover than huge 
boulders and a little scrub jungle, but in such 
cases there are usually deep caves which form 
the lying -up places of the animals during the 
day. In the latter case, they may he shot in 
one of two ways. Either the sportsman must 
ascend the hill frequented by them so early as to 
reach a position above a favourite cave before 
earliest dawn, and shoot them on their return 
from their nocturnal wanderings ; or, should the 
caves be shallow enough to admit of it, he may 
shoot them in the day-time by rousing them out, 
by means of stones or fireworks thrown into the 
mouth of each much -frequented hiding-place. Of 
course, in so doing, he should, if it be practicable, 
take up his position above the cave. 

The traffic and signs at the mouths of the caves 
will indicate which of them are most commonly used 

200 



THE BLACK SLOTH BEAR 

by the animals. Bears wander a great deal, and, 
unless in the case of a female with very young cubs, 
they do not seem to confine themselves to any one 
home in particular. 

They make a hideous noise when wounded, and 
I have heard one, which the late Brigadier-General 
A. and I encountered accidentally when we were 
following the tracks of bison, and which when 
disturbed rushed through long grass closely pur- 
sued by us (we could not see it on account of the 
cover) grunt just like a pig. It was not until the 
bear, embracing a tree with one paw, stood upon 
its hind legs, that the General or I obtained even a 
glimpse of it, whereupon a bullet from his rifle 
knocked it over, though such was its vitality (al- 
beit but a small female and rendered absolutely 
hors de combat by the first shot) that it required 
two or three more bullets to put the beast out of 
pain. Bears sometimes, when playing or quarrel- 
ling, make a noise which can be heard a long 
distance off. 

In the Mysore country, in the district bearing 
that name, the best spots which I know for bears 
are the tract at the foot of the Billiga Rungun 
hills, near Punjur, in the Chamraj-Nagar taluq ; and 
the hills called Gopalsawmy, Kurdeebetta, and 
Sigeebetta, near Maddur, in that of Goondulpet ; 
but they are also found occasionally in most of the 
large forests. In the Kadur district of the same 
province, the vicinity of Sacrapatam is a good 
locality for them, and there are some also near 
Tarikere, and in many other places. A tent may 

20I 



BULLET AND SHOT 

be taken and pitched near the lyenkerray tank^ 
which is also a good locality for spotted deer. 

In the Bangalore district, bears are to be found 
sparingly near Bidadi, and also near Closepet, both 
on the railway line between Bangalore and the town 
of Mysore, and also in other localities. 

Bears are very fond of hilly ground — particularly 
where there is a good deal of rock — and though 
seldom found in any number in any one tract, 
places in which two or three are known to frequent 
a certain area occur in all large stretches of suitable 
jungle. 

Two or three specimens of this bear will prob- 
ably satisfy any sportsman who has come out from 
England to bag Indian game with but limited time 
at his disposal. 

The vernacular names for the Indian black sloth 
bear are — 

Hindustani — Bhalu, Reech, Reench, Adamzad. 

Canarese — Kurradee. 

Telegu — E lugu. 

By the Gouds — Yerid or Asol. 

By the Coles — Banna. 



THE HIMALAYAN BLACK BEAR 
( Ursus Torquatus vel Tibetanus) 

This bear is black all over, with the exception of 
a white chin, and a white V-shaped mark on the 
chest. Its head is rounder and handsomer than 
is that of the Indian black bear, and it lacks the 

202 



THE HIMALAYAN BLACK BEAR 

ugly snout-and-lip-development of the latter. It 
is also larger and heavier than the preceding, being 
found up to seven feet in length, though, generally 
speaking, even the males measure less than six 
feet. 

It is found all over the Himalayas in British 
India as well as in Cashmere, but it apparently 
does not occur in Thibet, so that one of its 
specific names is a misnomer, and ought therefore 
to be abandoned. General Kinloch and Colonel 
Ward differ somewhat in their respective opinions 
as to the favourite habitats of this animal, the 
former stating that it is perhaps more numerous 
in parts of Cashmere than elsewhere, while the 
latter is of opinion that more are to be found in 
parts of British India — such as Ghurwal and 
Chumba, etc. In summer it is often found at high 
elevations close to the snow. 

Unless shot between the middle of March and 
the middle of May, or in November, the skin is 
worthless. 

The menu of this bear is a comprehensive one, 
and very little edible matter appears to be omitted 
from it. Wild and cultivated fruits, berries, crops 
(especially maize, buckwheat, and barley), acorns, 
roots, insects, honey, cucumbers, pumpkins, and 
carrion are all included. Occasionally it kills 
domestic animals, not sparing even cattle. It 
sometimes shows fight when wounded, but more 
often tries to escape. Frequently, when suddenly 
disturbed at close quarters, it will attack men 
without further provocation. Its sense of smell is 

303 



BULLET AND SHOT 

acute, and care must be taken to approach it up 
wind. 

This bear is fond of forest, and when the culti- 
vated fruits and crops are ripe, jungled ravines in 
the vicinity of cultivation are his favourite haunts, 
where during the day-time he lies up in a thick 
clump, a hollow trunk, or amongst rocks. 

He is often shot by moonlight in, or on his 
departure, at earliest dawn, from orchards when the 
fruit on the trees is ripe, but he may also be beaten 
out of cover, and is sometimes encountered, stalked, 
and shot when feeding in the open, just like any 
other hill game. He hibernates, but occasionally 
during the winter goes out on a foraging expedition, 
and is not blessed with good eyesight. 

The vernacular names for this bear are — 

Hindustani — Bhalu, Reech. 

Lepcha — Sona. 

In Cashmere — Harpat. 

THE BROWN, RED, OR SNOV^ BEAR {Ursus Isabellinus) 

This bear is the largest and finest of the Indian 
Ursidse, and his skin, when the fur is in condition, 
either in November or in the spring — say till about 
May 15th — is well worth obtaining and preserving. 
He is found only upon the Himalayas, where in 
summer he often ascends to great elevations, and 
may be found close to the snows. Both this bear 
and the preceding have become much scarcer than 
they once were, and the large bags of these animals, 
formerly made by men who devoted their time 

204 



THE BROWN, RED, OR SNOW BEAR 

to this particular game, are now things of the 
past. 

He appears to attain seven feet or more in 
length, but individuals vary much in size as well 
as in colour, the fur of some being of a very much 
lighter shade than that of others. 

The brown bear strictly hibernates, his lair being 
often covered several feet deep in snow, and he 
emerges from his winter retreat about April. 
Roots, insects, fruit, acorns, grass and grain form 
the food of this bear, who is, however, when usually 
encountered, viz., in the spring, practically restricted 
to a diet of roots, grass, and insects. 

Like his black cousin, his sight is poor, but his 
sense of smell acute. The brown bear is usually 
stalked and shot when out feeding in the open, 
endeavouring to compensate for his fast of several 
months' duration. Occasionally, but rarely, he has 
been known to charge after being wounded. 

In parts of Cashmere, in Gurwahl, in Chumba, 
and elsewhere in the Himalayas, there are still a 
fair number of bears. Colonel Ward mentions 
that, as a rule, they are not found at a lower 
elevation than 8000 feet. 

The vernacular names for this bear are — 

Hindustani — Lai Bhalu, Reech. 
In Cashmere — Harput. 
In Ladak — Drin-Mor. 



205 



CHAPTER XII. 

THE INDIAN ELEPHANT {Ekphas Indicus) AND 

ELEPHANT SHOOTING, 

WITH NOTES FOR BEGINNERS 

THE Indian elephant is too familiar an animal 
to require any detailed description. It may 
however be remarked that it is very seldom that 
a wild elephant appears of any other colour than 
a rusty-brown — a very different hue from that of 
the deep-black bun-eater of the Zoological Gardens, 
the menagerie, and the circus. The reason for 
this is that the wild animal loves to cover himself 
with mud, as a protection against the attacks of 
insects from which he suffers much irritation ; for, 
although his skin is thick, the black epidermis 
thereof is very thin, and immediately beneath the 
latter lies a vascular net- work ; consequently, flies 
of about the size of, and very like, the common 
English horse-fly, can draw blood freely from the 
animal, and they worry him exceedingly. 

Tame elephants are washed frequently, and hence 
the remarkable difference in appearance between 
the former and their wild congeners. 

Owing to his being protected by the Govern- 
ment, which permits the destruction of only such 

206 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

individuals as from their habits have become 
dangerous to human life, or habitually destructive 
to property, the Indian elephant is still numerous 
in most of the large hill and forest tracts of suitable 
character, from as far north as the foot of the 
Himalayas, to the extreme south of the peninsula. 

Elephants are gregarious, and are found in 
assemblies of exceedingly variable proportions ; 
the herds themselves often subdividing — as the 
exigencies of fodder may render necessary — into 
small groups, each consisting of only a few in- 
dividuals. A large herd consists of from fifty to 
one hundred, and a small one of some fifteen or 
twenty animals. It is, however, very common to 
find a single male elephant, or even a pair of 
males, wandering alone at some distance from 
the nearest herd. When these solitary animals 
are mucknahs (or males without tusks) it is probable 
that they may have been compelled to lead single 
lives on account of the bullying of the tuskers, of 
whom they stand in great awe ; but frequently, even 
the lord of the herd — a magnificent creature of 
great stature, and possessed of very formidable 
tusks — is found leading temporarily, and entirely 
from choice, a life apart from his harem. He no 
doubt knows where the ladies are to be found, 
and visits them at intervals ; but he appears to 
prefer alternate solitude and company, to the un- 
interrupted society of the herd. It may well be 
that he dislikes continual noise, and is worried 
by the constant trumpeting and squeaking of the 
females and young ones. Often too a young male 

207 



BULLET AND SHOT 

elephant is seen alone, and this is probably due 
to certain ivorine hints given him by the master, 
when the youngster has shown himself somewhat 
inclined for flirtation with some member of the 
sultan's harem. Solitary elephants, or male ele- 
phants when temporarily leading a single life, 
often become much bolder and more aggressive 
than are others. They are very apt to trespass 
into crops at night, in which case the damage 
done by them is enormous ; while they find the 
living so much to their taste, that, if driven off, 
they speedily return for another succulent feed. 

The ryots, watching their crops from platforms 
erected in trees, or upon uprights in the fields, 
are apt to fire at them with whatever fancy may 
suggest as a telling pattern of projectile {e.^., I 
have read of a screw-nut in one case, and a por- 
tion of a military ramrod in another, having been 
found in the heads of rogue elephants subsequently 
slain with suitable weapons by the European 
sportsman). The wounds thus inflicted by the 
native seldom do much real, permanent bodily 
harm to the animal, but they are calculated to 
seriously affect his temper ; and to them is probably 
due the fact that a solitary elephant, who formerly 
did no more harm than destroying and devouring 
crops, sometimes develops into that most dan- 
gerous brute, a " rogue," who, regarding man as his 
implacable enemy, attacks him on sight, and, if 
he can do so, ruthlessly kills him. 

Only in the case of a " rogue " can the sportsman 
ordinarily hope for permission to shoot an elephant 

208 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

in British India. In some of the native states, 
however, as also in zemindaries, leave to shoot 
a tusker may occasionally be obtained, but such 
opportunities are very exceptional. 

Wild elephants shirk the sun as soon as it has 
got high — say at about lo a.m. — from which time 
till 2 p.m. or so (unless, indeed, the day should 
be cloudy, or wet and cool) they retire to rest in 
dense shade. 

Grass, leaves, wild fruits, and bamboo shoots 
form the staple diet of this animal, and the amount 
of fodder which he gets through in twenty -four 
hours is prodigious. He is very particular as to 
what he eats ; and when grazing upon grass which 
comes up by the roots as he gathers it with his 
trunk, he carefully bites off and throws away the 
lower portions of the stems with their attached 
rootlets. 

Wild elephants feed and He down alternately 
during the night, and they also graze in the 
early morning, and again in the afternoon and 
evening. 

It may, I think, be taken as proved that the 
height of ten feet at the shoulder is never attained 
by the Indian male elephant (which is, of course, 
much larger than the female), though large animals 
grow to very little short of that height. Out of 
many hundreds measured by the late Mr. Sander- 
son — who probably knew more about elephants, 
their capture and their training, than any European 
who has ever had to deal with them — the three 
largest males were 9 feet 10 inches (one) and 
p 209 



BULLET AND SHOT 

9 feet 8 inches (two) respectively, while the two 
tallest females were 8 feet 5 inches, and 8 feet 
3 inches in vertical height at the shoulder. 

Not only did Mr. Sanderson capture an immense 
number of wild elephants during many years at 
the work, but he also travelled long distances to 
personally measure any tame ones whose height 
was reported to him as being out of the common. 

Needless to say, elephants look vtxy much taller 
than they really are ; and the first wild rogue which 
the sportsman, who has never before killed one, 
may encounter in the jungle, will appear to him 
as an animal of enormous proportions. 

The extraordinarily accurate idea which may 
be formed of an elephant's height by the measure- 
ment of the track of his forefoot, is very useful 
to the sportsman. Roughly speaking, the animal 
will be found to measure in height six times the 
diameter thereof. If therefore a footprint will 
admit the forearm of a man of a little above 
average size from elbow to tip of the extended 
middle finger, the elephant which made it stands 
about nine feet at the withers. 

The brain of this animal is very small as com- 
pared with his size, and it lies low and far back 
in the head. The beginner should, if possible, 
examine a skull in a museum or elsewhere (in 
the Colombo museum there is one sawn in halves, 
showing the brain cavity), and he will at a glance 
see how small a space the brain-pan occupies in 
the huge head. After this, he should carefully 
study the head of a live, tame elephant, and take 

210 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

imaginary angles to the brain from different points 
of view. 

In order to kill an elephant by the head -shot, 
it is necessary that the brain should be penetrated 
by the bullet ; if that be missed, very little harm 
will be done to him, unless if by a very bad shot 
his jaw should be broken, in which deplorable 
event the poor creature might die a lingering 
death from starvation ; or except in the case of 
an animal standing on lower ground than the 
sportsman and facing him, in which case the bullet 
might go through the head and into the neck, 
and so eventually cause death. 

It will be seen that what has to be done is first 
to calculate the spot upon the huge head which 
the bullet must strike in order to cut its way into 
the brain, and then to hit that spot. The sports- 
man must, in fact — often with very little time for 
calculation — ^judge the angle to the brain, which 
varies according to the position of the head, with 
every motion of the latter, and also with the 
relative height of the ground upon which the 
elephant and he are respectively standing, and 
then shoot with extreme accuracy. 

The simplest rule is, I think, to imagine a line 
drawn through the head from one ear-hole to the 
other, and then to try to place the bullet so that 
it will pass just in front of the centre of that 
imaginary line if the side shot be taken, or through 
its centre if the elephant be facing directly towards 
the sportsman. 

If the ground upon which both hunter and 



BULLET AND SHOT 

quarry are standing be level, and the latter be 
facinor the former with his head held in the normal 

o 

position, a bullet striking the bump, six inches 
above a line drawn between the eyes, will penetrate 
the brain and cause instant death. If, however, 
the elephant should be standing in the same 
position, but on a steep slope below the sportsman, 
the aim must be very high, and of course the 
converse is equally true. If the elephant's position 
be exactly at right angles to the sportsman, a shot 
through the side of the head, in or just in front 
of the ear-hole, in a line to pass through the 
opposite ear-hole, or a little in front of the latter^ 
will pierce the brain. 

The third typical shot is that behind the ear, 
which is taken at an angle of about forty -five 
degrees from behind. The aim should be just 
above the large bump behind the ear when the 
elephant swings the latter forwards, and so renders 
the mark visible. 

It is obvious that if the animal's position be 
three-quarters, half, or one-quarter face on to the 
sportsman, in place of full face on from the front, 
or if he be standing not at right angles, but at a 
greater angle from the side, the lines to the brain 
are altered, and the necessary calculation and 
allowance must be made. 

The sportsman must always be on his guard 
against firing too high, and in taking the shot 
behind the ear, he must be careful to take it at 
no less an angle than forty-five degrees ; otherwise 
the bullet, if the aim be accurate, will pass in front 

212 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

of the brain. Similarly, should the angle be 
greater than forty-five degrees, the aim must be 
proportionately in front of, in place of at, the 
bump behind the ear. In the case of an elephant 
charging with his trunk coiled up in front of him 
and his head held high, the proper aim is at the 
curled trunk in a line with the brain. 

The question, then, which the beginner in 
elephant shooting must ask himself before firing 
is, " What spot upon the outside of the head 
must I hit in order that my bullet may reach the 
vital spot.'*" The answer is not nearly so simple 
as it may appear, since very few men nowadays 
can get practice enough at elephants to enable 
them to kill these animals with anything approach- 
ing to the certainty which was exhibited by the 
practised hands of the old days, who received 
rewards from Government for their destruction. 

I have not gone in for shooting elephants be- 
hind the shoulder, and the late Mr. Sanderson, 
after giving this method a fair trial, denounced it 
as needlessly cruel. I shall therefore confine 
myself to the usual Indian method of firing only 
at the brain. Personally, I do not believe that a 
shot damaging the top of the latter is necessarily 
fatal — in fact, judging by analogy, I am almost 
certain that such is by no means sure to cause 
death, but if shot through the middle or lower 
portions of that organ, the animal dies instan- 
taneously. 

Very frequently a bullet passing through the head 
very close to the brain, or possibly through the top 

213 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of it, floors the creature, who may lie stunned for a 
short while, or may at once get up again. 

The sportsman must be on the look-out for this, 
and never trust to an elephant being defunct until 
the fact is beyond all question. Generally speaking, 
an animal which has been only stunned and floored 
(not brained) falls quickly and with a loud crash, 
while one which has been shot dead sinks down 
slowly and quietly, making very little noise, unless 
the carcass should crush dry branches or bamboos 
in its fall. 

As soon as an elephant has fallen to the shot, the 
sportsman should run in close ; and if he has any 
doubts regarding the animal's extinction, should 
continue firing into his head at an angle calculated 
to reach the desired spot. The surest sign within 
my knowledge that a male elephant has been 
brained, is that, in a very short time after the fatal 
bullet has been fired, an organ which is usually 
hidden is extruded, and a general evacuation 
ensues. Previous to this, I counsel no faith in 
the creature's demise. 

If the elephant be not brained, he will soon 
begin to struggle, and attempt to rise. Happy, 
then, is the sportsman who is accompanied by a 
gun-bearer upon whom he can rely to stand by 
him with his second rifle or gun ; for it is often 
exceedingly difficult to finish off an elephant which 
is floundering about and trying to get up! In the 
last trip which I made after these animals in a 
zemindary in the Madura district (Southern India) 
it took a learned (and sporting) judge and myself 

214 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

all we could do to bag an elephant which had been 
floored, though I was armed with a double 4-bore 
and a double 8-bore, and my friend with a double 
eight, and though moreover the men stood firm. 
The animal very nearly escaped us, and once, when 
I was unloaded, he got well on to his legs, and I 
thought that he was off, but fortunately a useful 
shot from the judge dropped him again, though he 
instantly began trying once more to rise. Even- 
tually a bullet from the 4-bore reached his brain, 
and he was ours. 

Elephants are usually found by following their 
tracks, which is often not so easy an operation as 
might be imagined. Frequently, if the ground be 
hard and dry, only really good trackers can follow 
the trail of a single animal. Generally speaking, 
unless the object of pursuit should be found be- 
tween 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on a hot day — in which 
case he will be standing nearly motionless in thick 
cover — the sportsman will hear him breaking 
branches or bamboos, or flapping his ears, while 
still some little way off; and directly he does so, he 
must take every precaution to prevent the animal 
getting his wind ; since, should the taint in the air 
proclaim, to the brute's sensitive nasal organ, the 
presence of man, he will either dash off alarmed, 
or advance to attack. If the hunter should keep 
the wind in his favour, an approach to within 
twelve or fifteen paces can usually be made, and 
this is the ideal range for elephant shooting. He 
should keep on testing the wind when approach- 
ing the game, as any inequalities in the ground 

215 



BULLET AND SHOT 

may set up a current contrary to its prevailing 
direction. 

Usually there is absolutely no good in attempting 
to follow an elephant which has got right away 
from the place with only head-shots. However 
slowly he may have gone off, his pace will improve 
as he proceeds, bleeding will soon cease, and he 
will cover a very long distance before halting. I 
have only once come up again with a wounded 
elephant which had got away, and that was an 
exceptional case, the animal being apparently ren- 
dered unusually stupid by my first shot. He was 
going off slowly, and we could hear him blowing. 
Presently, I got up to him standing in open bamboo 
cover, and gave him both barrels of my 8-bore rifle, 
the second of which nearly caused him to subside ; 
but, discovering us, he cocked his ears and faced 
us, and would probably have charged, had I not 
at once given him another shot from a spare gun 
(8-bore), which sent him off. Though we followed 
till we were obliged to return to camp which 
we did not reach till 8.30 p.m., we saw him no 
more, nor when we went out again to look for him 
on the next day did we succeed in encountering 
him. 

The best weapon for elephant shooting is, in my 
opinion, a light 4-bore. Until my last trip in 
pursuit of this game, I had never used one of the 
latter upon these animals, but I now think that 
there is nothing to compare with it for the purpose. 
I formerly used, first a double 8-bore rifle, and then 
that rifle in conjunction with a double 8-bore gun, 

216 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

with my '500 express, loaded with extra long, solid 
bullets, in reserve. I wounded and lost a number 
with my 8-bore, and probably had I used a much 
smaller weapon should have bagged more than I did. 

An 8-bore lacks the handiness of a lighter gun, 
and does not possess the tremendous power of a 
4-bore. 

If elephants never charged, probably a 12 or 
16-bore rifle would be the best weapon for use 
upon them ; but it would not be anything like as 
effectual in stopping a charge as is a heavy bullet 
fronv a larger bore. My 4-bore is a double-barrelled 
gun, weighing a little over 18 lbs., i.e., only about 
3 lbs. more than my old 8-bore rifle. It is accurate 
at elephant-shooting range, and is a splendid 
knocker-down ; in fact, a 4-bore bullet seldom fails 
to floor a tusker, whether the latter be brained or 
no ; and this is a great advantage, more particularly 
in case of a charge. I use only ten drachms of 
powder in It, but I believe this allowance to be 
ample. The gun is hammerless, is fitted with 
an anti-recoil heel pad, was built by Dixon, of 
Edinburgh, and cost ;!^42. 

I could not desire a better weapon for elephant 
shooting than the above. Of course I took it in 
hand only when close to the game. 

One caution I must give beginners regarding 
8-bores and 4-bores, and that is to get into the 
habit of invariably firing the left barrel first. All 
the heavy guns which I have had would, if the 
right trigger (2>., the trigger of the right barrel) 
were first pulled, frequently let off both barrels 

217 



BULLET AND SHOT 

together; but this has never happened in my 
experience in the case of the left. 

In my last trip after elephants, in the Vursinaad 
valley of the Madura district before referred to, 
a female (unwounded) charged my friend and 
myself, her head coming through the cover 
only ten paces off, as she rushed at us with ears 
cocked, after making the short, sharp trumpet 
" prut ! prut ! " which elephants generally utter 
before charging. I had had no big game shooting 
for a long time, and quite forgot in my hurry to 
pull the left trigger of my 4-bore. The result 
was that I pulled the right, both barrels went off, 
and I was thrown on my back several paces off, 
but luckily quite unhurt except by thorns. The 
elephant fortunately was also floored, and was very 
glad to take herself off after recovering her legs. 

The 4-bore is also a capital weapon for use upon 
bison where the cover is dense, and I would re- 
commend the beginner in elephant shooting, to, if 
possible, procure a double 4-bore gun similar to my 
own, and a double 8-bore rifle or gun as a spare 
weapon, that is, if he is likely to have a good many 
opportunities of enjoying the sport. If however, as 
is probable, his opportunities for elephant shooting 
are likely to be few, an 8-bore Paradox, which would 
be useful in rhinoceros and bison shooting, would 
be preferable as an all-round large game weapon. 

Theoretically, the number of any given bore 
means the number of spherical bullets fitting that 
calibre which weigh one pound avoirdupois. Prac- 
tically, however, the heaviest spherical bullet which 

218 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

my 4-bore will carry is only 3^^ in place of 4 ounces 
in weight. This is on account of the thickness of 
the cartridge case, whose internal diameter is less 
than that of the bore. 

A European would have but a small chance of 
escape by flight if attacked by an elephant on the 
ground usually frequented by the latter. He would 
indubitably be caught by thorns or bamboos, or 
tripped up by branches or fallen canes hidden in 
the grass ; and it is therefore advisable to have 
a second big gun in reserve, and, if practicable, 
to engage a man who will stand by his master with 
it (but who will never dream of firing himself),, 
relying, if attacked, solely upon powder and heavy 
lead. If unloaded when charged, the sportsman 
should, if possible, get out of sight behind cover, 
or into a nullah (if one should be handy), and 
rapidly reload, and he may then obtain a good 
chance while the elephant is searching for him, 
though it is wiser never to be quite defenceless, 
but to always keep one barrel in reserve in case 
of accidents, which, with two big guns, can 
generally be managed. 

Elephants often charge upon very slight provo- 
cation — sometimes no more than that caused by 
the smell of man — and females with young calves 
are particularly liable to do so. I have been 
charged by quite a small male upon no graver 
cause than my accidentally trespassing "between 
the wind and his nobility." I was on the track 
of bison at the time, and, seeing the elephant at 
some distance off, went up near enough to him 

219 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to estimate his quality, and then finding that he 
was a Httle beast with very small tusks, I left him 
alone, and again took up the tracks of the bison. 
After we had gone on a short distance, we got to 
windward of the elephant, when, suddenly, one of 
the men said in his own language, " The elephant 
is coming " ; and, sure enough, there was the brute 
coming down on us in full charge ; but an 8-bore 
bullet in the head staggered though it did not 
floor him, and the precocious and combative 
youngster executed a rapid strategic movement 
to the rear, looking very foolish. 

All wild animals, but more particularly elephants, 
should they be suddenly startled, and so led to lose 
their heads and make a blind rush, are liable to 
run into, instead of away from, the very danger 
which they are seeking to evade. I have had a 
tusker, who had not the slightest intention of 
charging, rush so straight in my direction, after 
I had given him both barrels of my 8-bore and 
was defenceless (the men with my spare guns 
having bolted), that I had to get out of his way 
to avoid being accidentally run over. 

This happened in the open, and the tusker was 
a solitary animal, but I have twice in one trip seen 
herd elephants, alarmed at getting our wind, bolt 
straight in our direction. I was then accompanied 
by a good sportsman and pleasant companion (now, 
alas ! no more), the late Brigadier-General A., who 
had received permission from the Mysore Govern- 
ment to shoot two tuskers. Upon one of these 
occasions we had gone out after bison, and were 

220 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

on our way through the forest, when we came 
across a herd of elephants feeding in a valley. We 
did not interfere with them, not wishing to shoot 
animals in herds. The General, moreover, had 
shot his two tuskers (one with a single bullet and 
the other with my aid), so we continued our course 
down the valley. When we had put, perhaps, two- 
thirds of a mile between ourselves and the herd, 
we got into the wind of the latter, and saw them 
stampeding in the opposite direction. We walked 
on, until, all of a sudden, a crashing down the hill- 
side above revealed the fact that the animals were 
rushing straight upon us. On our right, in the 
direction from which the elephants were coming, 
stood a thick bamboo clump, and to this I took 
the General and the men, and we stood behind 
it to let the elephantine avalanche sweep by. 

The herd was steering to pass the clump on our 
left, but one cow came round on the right and 
pulled up and faced me. She was so close that her 
head was within three or four feet of the muzzle 
of my rifle when I levelled it. There was no time 
to ask her further intentions, and, moreover, we 
were between her and her companions, so I shot 
her dead. 

I was very sorry to have been obliged to shoot 
a cow, but under the circumstances it was in- 
evitable. 

Upon the other, and previous occasion in the 
same trip, a friendly tree was our shelter, and the 
herd, which had got our wind, filed past on our 
right within a few paces, and without seeing us. 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Had there been a shootable tusker in it, this would 
have been a grand chance for the General, who 
had not, when this incident occurred, bagged the 
two elephants, to shoot which he had permission ; 
but the herd was a small one, and the only male 
in it was not fit to shoot and was therefore allowed 
to pass unscathed. 

It is a curious and unaccountable fact, that, while 
mucknahs are the exception in India, a tusker 
is an exceedingly rare animal amongst male 
elephants in Ceylon. 

Female elephants have no tusks, only short 
tushes which are generally broken off before the 
animal arrives at middle age. I cannot understand 
how Doctor Jerdon's book. The Mammals of India, 
can contain this astounding statement in his de- 
scription of the Indian elephant, "tusks large in the 
male, small in the female." 

The fact is that while the tushes of the female 
elephant are mere superficial prongs, only a few 
inches long, and placed nearly vertically, the tusks 
of the male are deeply embedded — usually for about 
half of their total length — in sockets of bone which 
terminate only just below the eyes. 

Tusks vary greatly in length and thickness ; some- 
times one is altogether wanting, and usually where 
both are present, one is shorter and more worn by 
use than is the other. 

An elephant with an enormous tusk was bagged 
in 1863 by Sir Victor Brooke and Colonel Douglas 
Hamilton in the Billiga Rungun hills in Mysore. 
This animal had but one perfect tusk, the other 

222 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

being broken off short and much diseased. The 
sound one measured 8 feet in length, of which 
2 feet 3 inches was embedded in the socket, 
while the portion showing outside taped 5 feet 
9 inches ; its greatest circumference was nearly 
17 inches, and its weight 90 lbs. The other 
(broken) tusk showed but 15 inches outside the 
socket, and 2 feet i inch of it in length were 
embedded, yet it weighed 49 lbs. — even this 
latter being a great weight for a single tusk of 
an Indian elephant. Rowland Ward quotes 102 
and 97^ lbs. respectively as the weights of the 
tusks of King Thebaw's sacred white elephant. 

I have never personally bagged an elephant with 
tusks exceeding 63 lbs. the pair, and this was the 
first which I ever shot ; but two very large tuskers 
were killed in Mysore by friends out in camp with 
me. One of these was bagged by Captain (now 
Colonel) W. (late of the 43rd Regiment), and I 
append the measurements and weights of the tusks. 

Length. Greatest girth. Weight. 

Inches. Inches. lbs. 

Right tusk . . 6gl ... i6| ... 63 

Left „ . . 6y ... i6f ... 60 

Weight of the pair, 123 lbs. 

The other was shot while we were out together, 
and with my rifle, by Captain (now Colonel) B. of 
the Gunners, and was the first elephant at which 
that good sportsman had ever fired. His tusks 
measured and weighed as follows : — 





Length. 


Greatest girth. 


Weight of the pair. 




Inches. 


Inches. 


lbs. 


Right tusk 


. 86 


... i6f 




Left „ 


. 88 


17 (over) 


127 



223 



BULLET AND SHOT 

A very large pair of tusks was bagged many- 
years ago in the Vursinaad Valley, Madura District, 
by Mr. Fischer of Madura, which measure — 



Length. 
Inches. 


Greatest girth. 
Inches. 


72 

66 


... i8i 
... i8i 



Longer tusk 
Shorter tusk 

and weigh 72^ and yo lbs. respectively, or 142^^ lbs. 
the pair. I personally measured and weighed all 
these three last-mentioned pairs, and can vouch for 
the accuracy of the measurements and weights. 

Elephants, in common with bison and deer, 
appreciate salt in wet weather, and they therefore 
frequently visit salt - licks in the monsoon ; and 
sometimes, when one of the latter is situated in a 
nullah, a good idea of the size of the tusks of an 
elephant which has visited it may be obtained from 
their impressions in the soft earth of the bank. 

A similar approximation may also be sometimes 
made if a place in which the elephant has lain down 
to sleep should be found, provided only that the soil 
be sodden — as is usually the case during the mon- 
soon, which is by far the best time for elephant 
shooting in Mysore. 

It is, owing to the restriction before mentioned, 
by no means easy to advise a sportsman who may 
wish to shoot an elephant how to obtain the 
required permission. 

Before the Mysore Government reintroduced the 
capture of elephants in kheddahs, leave to shoot a 
tusker was often granted upon application ; but now 
that the same are working, it would, in the absence 

224 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

of powerful interest in high places, probably be 
refused, unless a really troublesome ** rogue " should 
prove dangerous to human life, or habitually de- 
structive to property. 

After an elephant has been bagged, the tusks 
must be taken out as soon as possible, unless, 
indeed, time be no object, and where there is no 
danger of their being stolen if left, in which latter 
event they may be left in the carcass and drawn out 
after decomposition has loosened them, some ten or 
twelve days later. In extracting the tusks, the 
skin and muscles covering the tusk-cases must be 
removed, and the latter split up with a small axe, 
great care being taken not to break the thin upper- 
most portions of the trophies. The latter must then 
be emptied of the red pulp which fills their hollow 
portions, and be thoroughly washed. In packing 
for travelling, to prevent breakage, the thin upper 
portions may be filled each with a large plug of 
wood which just fills the cavity. Each tusk may 
then be completely enveloped in straw ropes tightly 
and closely wound round it and secured with string. 

If it be desired to preserve the feet, which make 
very nice trophies, they should, as soon as possible 
after the animal has been bagged, be cut off at the 
required height — say i8 or 20 inches — and men at 
once set to work upon them. Two men should be 
told off to each foot, and they must, with sharp 
knives, remove all the flesh and bones right down 
to the gristly sole, and then pare the latter down 
as thin as possible. This done, and the skin 
thoroughly cleansed of all adherent muscle and 

Q 325 



BULLET AND SHOT 

other matter, the inside of the skin, and the sole, 
right into the interior of the toe-nails, must be well 
coated with arsenical soap (which should be obtained 
in India, not in England), after which the foot may 
be filled with dry sand well rammed in ; and after 
the whole of the outside of the skin has been 
painted over with arsenical soap, it may be daily 
put in the sun to dry, the sand being often rammed 
in to keep the skin extended. When partly dry, the 
sand may be removed, another inside coating of 
arsenical soap given, and the skin folded down as 
much as possible to reduce bulk, and again put in 
the sun till quite dry and hard. 

Great care must be taken in using arsenical soap. 
The sportsman should on no account allow a 
servant either to apply it, or to handle anything 
which has been coated with it. He must person- 
ally apply this poison, and personally handle the 
trophies to which he may apply it, carefully 
cleansing his hands after he has touched any 
such. He must, moreover, be very careful, should 
he have a cut on one of his fingers, that not a 
particle of the preservative touches that spot. 
Arsenical soap should be kept locked up in a box 
of which the sportsman himself keeps the key. 
Elephants' fore-feet make handsome footstools, 
and they can also be fitted with internal divisions 
and lids, and made into liqueur cases, etc. 

The hill ranges of the native state of Travancore 
abound in elephants which are very destructive, 
and formerly, if leave to shoot one or two tuskers 
was applied for, it was granted. Recently, however, 

226 



THE INDIAN ELEPHANT 

the Travancore Government has not been so liberal 
in this respect, though it seems probable that as the 
planting industry upon those hills is advancing by- 
enormous strides, the complaints of the planters 
regarding the damage done by elephants may 
induce the Government to grant occasional per- 
mission to shoot a few tuskers. 

In jungles owned by private individuals, leave 
from the proprietor is all that is required, but 
there are not many such in which elephants exist, 
the zemindary of Guntamanaikanur, in the Madura 
district of the Madras Presidency, being a notable 
exception. 

The vernacular names for the elephant are — 

Hindustani — Hati. 

Bengali — Gaj. 

Tamil, Telegu, Canarese, and Malabari — Anay. 

Burmese — Shanh. 



227 



CHAPTER XIII. 

EPISODES IN ELEPHANT SHOOTING 
A MAN-KILLING MUCKNAH 

I CERTAINLY began big game shooting at 
the wrong end, i.e., before becoming a steady- 
shot by practice at black buck and spotted deer,, 
etc. ; I had virtually to commence with elephants 
and bison. The result was that I failed to bag 
many animals which wt>uld certainly have been 
mine had I sown my wild oats of over-anxiety to 
bag, and keenness, upon more commonplace and 
less exciting game. 

The first occasion upon which I ever saw wild 
elephants was in Assam, and by moonlight. One 
night, after dinner, I was told that they had invaded 
the tea estate on which I was then working as 
assistant -manager, and that they were near the 
tea-house. Taking an 8-bore rifle, I went out to 
look for them. Just behind the tea-house, when 
I got near to the latter, I saw some shadowy sterns 
disappearing in the gloom, and hastily pitching and 
pulling, I fired at one of them, and accelerated the 
retreat of the trespassers. 

I then went to bed, and had fallen asleep when 
I was awakened by a man who told me that the 

228 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

elephants had returned. Fringing the tea, was a 
narrow belt of jungle and bamboo, and beyond it 
lay low ground covered by a great sea of high reed 
and grass — at that season standing in water. I 
went out again, and could hear the elephants in 
the narrow belt, and, approaching the sound, sat 
down behind a tea bush to await the appearance 
of one of the animals. Before long the head of a 
tusker emerged from the bamboo, and I fired at his 
temple. A great crushing in the jungle ensued, 
followed by a tremendous splashing, squelching, 
and popping, as the elephants floundered through 
the wet, muddy swamp full of high reeds and grass, 
accompanied by the tusker, who was little, if any, 
the worse for the scare which he had experienced. 

The next occasion upon which I fired at an 
elephant was shortly after I had joined the Mysore 
Forest Department. I had at the time never 
bagged a single head of running game bigger than 
a jackal. 

In January, 1882, I left Mysore with H., of the 
Forest Department ; and upon the fifth day of our 
trip I met with an adventure which nearly brought 
my big game shooting days to an abrupt conclusion 
ere they had well begun. 

H. and I had been encamped in tents in the 
Metikuppa forest. The water supplies in the interior 
of that forest had nearly all dried up, and our camp 
was pitched beside a filthy pool, from the mud 
beneath which, if a stick were thrust down into 
it, bubbles of gas arose to the surface. Fortunately 
H. had brought a cask of good water mounted 

229 



BULLET AND SHOT 

on a cart, and we had plenty of soda-water with us. 
Frequenting this, and the adjoining forest of Kar- 
kenkotta which is bounded on the south by the 
Cubbany river, was a large and dangerous rogue 
elephant, a mucknah, who had killed several people, 
and whom, in the interests of forestry, it was 
advisable, if possible, to destroy. * 

He was not then in the Metikuppa forest, as we 
soon ascertained, so on the 27th January we moved 
camp to Karkenkotta, marching through the jungle 
in the hope of finding tracks of the rogue en route. 

In this we were successful, for we came upon the 
fresh tracks of a large single elephant. H. and 
I dismounted from our ponies, and sending the men 
who were loaded with camp requirements on to 
Karkenkotta, and accompanied by Kurrabas to track 
and to carry our spare guns, ammunition, etc., we 
set off to try to find the rogue. The forest consisted 
of high timber, now bare and leafless, alternating 
with bamboo of different ages, the youngest forming 
dense thickets, and the mature an open jungle 
of large clumps, with clear spaces between. So 
hard and dry was the ground, that tracking was 
very difficult, and after a good deal of very arduous 
and hot work, we lost the tracks. The men were 
quite at fault, but making a detour, they struck a 
nullah, in the now almost dry bed of which a little 
water still lingered in the deepest pools. Their 
judgment proved correct, for here again we found 
the tracks, and ere long we came upon hot dung, so 
that we knew that the object of our pursuit was 
now very near to us, and a little further on we 

230 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

heard a crashing of bamboos. Thinking that the 
elephant had discovered us and was running away, 
I took the 8-bore and ran up, in order to, if possible, 
intercept him, when, to my surprise, I saw the rogue 
standing beside a bamboo clump, in high open 
jungle, on a gentle slope above me. The dry, 
crackling leaves which strewed the ground made 
noiseless progression impossible, even to a Kurraba, 
and there was no cover beyond sparsely scattered 
bamboo clumps. Half running and half walking, I 
closed in quickly and alone, the elephant meanwhile 
standing facing me, and apparently staring at me. 
About twenty-five or thirty yards from him, a thin, 
dead trunk leant at an angle of about forty-five 
degrees. It occurred to me that this might be 
useful as a breastwork in case of a charge, so I 
pulled up behind it, and aiming at the elephant's 
forehead, I fired. Both barrels went off simul- 
taneously, owing to my having pulled the right 
trigger, and the elephant, after tottering for a few 
seconds, fell over with a crash like that of a falling 
tree. He lay prone, only slightly and convulsively 
moving his legs. H. then joined me with the men, 
and I reloaded and went in nearer to the elephant, 
who began to struggle and try to rise. H. there- 
upon fired both barrels of his "577 express, and ran 
away, the men with my spare guns and cartridges 
following suit. I got back to the leaning trunk 
and waited until the elephant had finished flounder- 
ing about and had regained his legs, when I again 
fired at his head ; and once more both barrels went 
off, whilst the animal stood, swinging slightly from 

231 



BULLET AND SHOT 

side to side, and looking very shaky. I had but 
two more cartridges left in my pocket, and I now 
put these into the rifle, and fired again. For the 
third time both barrels went off, and immediately 
after the report the elephant came down upon me. 
I was now quite defenceless, and had to run for 
it, which I did obliquely, turning a bamboo clump, 
round which, to my horror, the rogue followed me. 
I then set off at my best pace down the most open 
glade which I could see, the elephant gaining on 
me at every stride, when I suddenly saw H. stand- 
ing behind a bamboo clump, whose shelter he had 
gained after he ran away upon the elephant's 
attempting to rise. I thought, of course, that he 
must have reloaded, and making a final effort, I 
reached the clump, with the elephant almost on my 
heels, and turning it sharp, pulled up beside him. 
The elephant stopped for a moment, H. said, and 
twisted his trunk about to smell, but fortunately he 
had received sufficient punishment ; for, having lost 
sight of me, he went on at a great pace, and crossed 
the frontier into Coorg. H., I found, was still 
unloaded, and he told me that his cases had stuck, 
so it was lucky that the rogue did not prosecute 
a search for me. I was somewhat amused at H. 
asking me (rather indignantly) what I had come to 
his clump for ! 

Now here was a case in which, in my ignorance 
and inexperience, I had made a great mess of it ; but 
then it should be remembered that had I killed that 
rogue, he would have been my first head of big game, 
as I had not then bagged even a deer or an antelope. 

232 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

In the first place, I was in error in supposing 
that the animal was staring at me before I fired at 
him, and in firing hastily in consequence of that 
supposition. Then, directly the elephant fell, the 
crash with which he came down should have led 
me to suspect, had I had experience, that he was 
not brained, while the moving of his legs as he lay 
would also have afforded conclusive proof of this 
fact. I ought, of course, to have gone up to within 
twelve or fifteen paces before firing, and, having 
floored the elephant, to have run in close to his 
head, and endeavoured to brain him before he could 
regain his legs. 

After this I wounded and lost several elephants, 
and it was not until the 24th August in the same 
year (1882) that I succeeded in bagging my first. 



MY FIRST ELEPHANT 

In the Berrambadie forest in Mysore, I was 
following up a herd of bison, out of which I had 
already bagged one, when I saw an elephant walk- 
ing rapidly along in front. The wind was right, 
and I followed him, waiting for a chance. Pre- 
sently I heard the Noogoo river in front, and felt 
sure that the elephant would halt there, nor was I 
disappointed, for, on topping the bank, I saw him 
standing in the stream, and throwing water over 
himself. I took the shot behind the ear, and the 
elephant fell, but was not shot dead, for he tried to 
recover his footing, and as his head bobbed past me 

233 



BULLET AND SHOT 

(the rest of his body being under water) I fired 
both barrels of my 8-bore down into it. A jet of 
blood spouted forth at each shot,, and I hastily re- 
loaded, whereupon, as the elephant tried to get up 
the bank, just in front of me, I brained him. He 
sank back, some bubbles rose from the tip of his 
trunk, and I had bagged my first elephant. I had 
shot a bison and an elephant before 1 2 o'clock ! 

I was terribly afraid that the river might rise 
during the night and the carcass be carried away, 
so I sent for stout ropes, and had it securely 
fastened to trees. Cutting out the tusks was, under 
the circumstances, a work of great difficulty, and 
it took a large number of men procured the next 
morning, and working hard from then until late 
afternoon, to extract them. I was obliged to 
abandon all idea of preserving the feet. The 
tusks of this elephant showed about 2^ feet outside 
of the gum, and when extracted proved to be re- 
spectively 4 feet 10 inches, and 4 feet ii|- inches in 
length, and 15 inches in greatest girth. They 
weighed 63 lbs. the pair. 

In 1883 I bagged three elephants. The shooting 
of the first two was unaccompanied by any incident 
worthy of relation, but that of the third was some- 
what extraordinary. 



234 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 



THE VANISHED ELEPHANT 

A friend, W e, who is short-sighted and uses 

an eyeglass, was in camp with me in the Mysore 
district, intent on shooting. 

We had just marched from Rampore to Kalkerra 
in the Ainurmarigudi forest, when the news was 
brought that a tusker had been found for us only 
three miles off. We proceeded to the place, and 
saw the elephant in the distance. 

W e now asked me to halt for a few minutes 

while he mopped his face, and wiped his eyeglass, 
which had become misty from perspiration. Then 
we advanced, but the elephant was no longer visible, 
and we went cautiously, closer and closer, until I 
wondered what could have become of him — still not 
a sign of him did we see. When we had viewed 
him, he was moving about in a nullah in which 
there was much high reed, but now he was quite 
invisible, and appeared to have vanished into thin 
air. At last, just in front of us, we saw the ele- 
phant lying on his side in a swampy place, his 
head pillowed on dry ground on our side. We 
got up to within less than five paces, and then 

W e fired. At the shot the elephant got up, 

and as he was crossing our left front in a great 
hurry, I dropped him dead by the temple shot. 



235 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE INSANE TUSKER 



An extraordinary adventure occurred in the case 
of Colonel and Mrs. G., who were in camp with me 
in the Berrambadie forest in 1884. In that year 
I had made all arrangements for catching elephants 
in a kheddah in a pass under the Billiga Rungun 
hills. Most unluckily the rains failed, there was 
no fodder, and I had great difficulty in providing 
food for the few tame elephants which had been 
placed at my disposal for the work. It was most 
annoying. I had taken a great deal of trouble, and 
had constructed a large enclosure, with a small one 
for roping opening off it, and all was ready, even to 
the gate of the latter (well studded with sharp nails 
on the inside), which was lashed up ready for use. 
It was so arranged that, after the entrance of the 
elephants, one stroke from an axe or chopper, 
severing a rope, would cause the gate to fall into 
position, and effectually cut off all retreat. I 
had imported jute, from which large numbers of 
elephant ropes had been made, and nothing was 
required but the advent of elephants into , the 
vicinity of the kheddah. As I have said, however, 
when the time for the latter to appear had arrived, 
the rain had not, consequently there was nothing to 
induce them to come into the low-country jungles. 

Sick and tired of continued disappointments and 
enforced inaction, I decided to move the tame 

236 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

elephants into the Berrambadie forest, where there 
was, I heard, more grass, rig up an impromptu 
kheddah there, and try to capture at least a few 
animals. 

I was in camp at Moluhollay, where, as I have 
mentioned, Colonel and Mrs. G. came for a few 
days, in order that the former might try for bison. 

Even here the grass which had sprung up had 
withered, and the ground was hard on account of 
the drought. 

I set to work in real earnest, selected a suitable 
spot, and got a stockade ready. One day, when 
I was going out on this work, I suggested to 
Colonel G. to take his wife on one of the tame 
elephants and show her the forest, and he did so, 
the lady riding a very large tame tusker. On my 
return to camp from work in the evening, some 
Kurrabas, who had been out with Colonel G., came 
from him to tell me that a wild tusker had been for 
a long time, and was still, following the tusker 
on which Mrs. G. was mounted. The situation 
appeared to me to be a very perilous one for the 
lady. The Kurrabas said that the wild elephant 
wanted to fight with the tame one, and indeed, 
apart from that hypothesis, it was not easy to 
understand the wild animal's object in following 
a tusker. The men told me that the Colonel 
wanted me to bring tame elephants and ropes, and 
to try to secure the intruder. Taking my 8-bore 
rifle, and passing through the space in which the 
tame elephants were picketed, I gave the necessary 
orders, and then went on to join the Colonel, whom 

237 



BULLET AND SHOT 

I met quite close to the camp. The sight was a 
very strange one. First came the tame tusker 
carrying the lady ; next the Colonel, rifle in hand, 
on foot with the men ; and last of all, walking 
sedately and quietly behind, followed the wild 
tusker at a distance of only some thirty yards 
from the tame elephant. 

Directly afterwards, the tame females met us, 
and the wild tusker became uneasy, and went off 
a little way. I then sent two females to attempt 
to lead him away, while Mrs. G. on her tusker went 
to her tent. The wild animal, after some hesitation, 
followed the females, and I kept close behind him, 
determined, if he should attempt to escape, to shoot 
him, since there was very great danger lest he 
should return at night and attack the tame elephants 
at their pickets. There was also no certainty as to 
what so strangely behaved an animal might, in a 
nocturnal visit, do to the tents, so I had fully made 
up my mind to catch him if possible, and, failing 
that, to shoot him. 

There had been no time for any preconcerted 
plan. The only thing to be done was for the tame 
females, avoiding the camp, to lead the tusker into 
the kheddah, where he could be at once secured. 

The idiots of mahouts who were riding the tame 
females led, however, straight towards the camp, 
with tents, horses, servants, etc., around, and the 
tusker began to make off I ran up to try to turn 
him, but he held on, increasing his pace, and just as 
I had reached the high road which the elephant 
crossed, and as the latter, going at speed, was 

238 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

about to enter the jungle on the other side, I 
dropped him by a lucky shot behind the ear, and 
with two more bullets killed him. This elephant 
appeared to be mildly insane. He had followed 
the same tusker for hours, taking no notice of the 
Colonel and the men on foot, though he must often 
have got their wind. The men on cutting out his 
tusks found seven or eight huge maggots in his 
brain, and it is possible that the presence of these 
irritating pests might account for this animal's 
extraordinary behaviour. 



A FIGHTING TUSKER 

In 1882 Captain (now Colonel) W. (late of the 
43rd Regiment) was in camp with me at Bandipur, 
and one day a brother officer of his, who had done 
very little shooting, and who had never seen a wild 
elephant, joined us. Next morning W. and his 
friend went out together and came upon the tracks 
of a large, solitary male elephant. They followed 
them up to the Mysore boundary, and then, finding 
that the elephant had crossed into her Majesty's 
territory, where W. had no permission to shoot him, 
the latter sent one or two jungle men round to give 
their wind to the animal in the hope of driving him 
back into Mysore. This stratagem was successful, 
and the elephant returned. W.'s battery consisted 
of a double '577 express rifle, taking a charge of 
6^ drachms of powder, a double '450 express, and 
an old, though accurate, single 6-bore muzzle- 

239 



BULLET AND SHOT 

loading rifle carrying a belted ball, while his friend 
was armed with a double 1 2-bore rifle. 

The elephant became very uneasy before W. had 
got in as close as he wished to do, and he had to 
fire hurriedly with the "577 ; the single 6-bore being 
behind, and not within reach at the time. Away 
went the elephant, with W., who had given him 
both barrels, in hot pursuit, reloading as he ran. 
As soon as he got fresh cartridges in, he fired one 
barrel behind the ear, but without effect ; and then, 
as a last chance, he directed the other bullet at 
the elephant's leg. He was just putting in fresh 
cartridges after this shot, when he heard the short, 
sharp war-trumpet of the tusker, and saw the 
latter, with trunk coiled up and ears cocked, 
charging straight back at the cloud of smoke. 
There was no big tree behind which to step, so W. 
took a couple of strides to one side behind a sapling, 
and gave the elephant the contents of one barrel 
in the face, and a bullet from the other in the ear, 
as the tusker brushed past him so close that W. 
said he could have struck him. Most fortunately, 
the enraged brute, failing to see W., went on, 
"going for," and severely punishing, a bamboo 
clump, behind which his friend and the men, who 
had, however, escaped from it long before the tusker 
got there, had been hiding. 

W. then followed the elephant up, and he found 
that the leg shot had deprived him of all travelling 
power, for after punishing the bamboo clump, he 
struck off at an angle, and came to a halt in a 
thicket. W. then discovered that the caps for his 

240 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

big gun haid, by an oversight, been left at home, 
and that there was only the one cap on the nipple 
of the loaded piece. He obtained some small caps, 
however, from his friend's 12-bore cartridges, and 
by cutting these open, he got them to fit the nipple 
of the 6-bore. 

A great fight then ensued. W. used his own 
weapons and also his friend's rifle, and he gave the 
elephant, who charged twice more — but not home — 
many shots, until at last a ball from the big gun, 
the third which he had fired from it, laid the tusker 
low. The elephant was of the largest size and 
very old, and his tusks (the measurements of which 
are given in the preceding chapter) weighed no less 
than 123 lbs. the pair. 

GRAND TROPHIES 

In July, 1886, I was in camp at Karkenkotta, 
on the road from Mysore to the western coast, with 
Captain (now Colonel) B. of the Gunners. B. had 
never fired at an elephant, nor had he a weapon fit 
for the purpose, though he had obtained permission 
to shoot one. I had leave to shoot "rogues" only, 
and one of these was reported as frequenting the 
Karkenkotta forest at the time. It was therefore 
arranged that we should go out together, and that 
I should endeavour to bag the rogue, while B. 
should try for any other tusker. 

On the morning of July 7th I sent out men in 
pairs in different directions to try to find the rogue, 
and news that he had been discovered having 
R 241 



BULLET AND SHOT 

reached camp, B. and I went out. The elephant 
was, however, very badly placed, and he discovered 
us before I had got well up to him, and a hastily 
fired shot failed to stop him. 

We then went on the tracks of another single 
elephant, which we followed for a long distance. 
At last we knew from the signs that the quarry 
could not now be very far ahead, and we soon 
saw him moving slowly across our left front. I 
saw no tusks, and whispered to B, — to whom I 
had allotted my 8-bore rifle, while I retained my 
gun of similar bore in case of emergencies — to 
take care that he was not a mucknah, and B. 
replied, " No, I can see his tusk." The next 
moment, I saw a foot or so of thick tusk, the 
rest being hidden in the grass. B. put up the 
rifle, took a steady aim, and fired, and down went 
the tusker. We ran in to his head at once, and, 
by my advice, B. gave him two or three more 
shots to make sure, but I believe that he was a 
dead elephant when he fell. 

His tusks were a truly magnificent pair, weighing 
127 lbs., and their measurements are given in the 
previous chapter. So long and incurved were they, 
that one overlapped the other at the tips. 



A STUNNED TUSKER 

As an instance of the advisability of making 
quite sure that an elephant is really dead, I may 
quote an experience of Colonel — now Brigadier 

242 



ELEPHANT SHOOTING 

General — P. C. (of the Coldstream Guards) who 
was shooting in Mysore. He had floored a fine 
tusker which he believed had fallen dead, and 
was admiring his prize, and patting his shikarrie 
on the back in his delight at his triumph, when 
the latter suggested that his master had possibly 
better reload. Before he could do so however, 
the elephant recovered his legs, and, despite the 
Colonel's efforts to detain him, made good his 
escape. 

A LUCKY CHANCE 

Although elephant shooting frequently entails 
much hard work before the game is encountered, 
it sometimes happens that the sportsman chances 
upon a tusker very unexpectedly. I well remember, 
many years ago, bagging a tusker when out for 
an evening stroll in search of spotted deer behind 
the travellers' bungalow of Karkenkotta in Mysore, 
but, as is so often the case in elephant shooting, 
there was nothing remarkable attending the cir- 
cumstances of his death beyond the luck of the 
rencontre. 

I have personally shot, and have assisted friends 
in shooting other elephants at various times, and 
have had considerable experience of the sport, 
though I have (alas ! ) drilled holes through the 
heads of a good many of these animals which 
have escaped, and I regard elephant shooting as 
a very difficult branch of sport, and also as a 
highly exciting amusement. 

^3 



CHAPTER XIV. 

THE DEER OF INDIA AND THE HIMALAYAS 



T 



HE deer of India and of the Himalayas 
consist of the following species : — 



1. The sambur (Rusa Aristotelis). 

2. The spotted deer {Axis maculatus). 

3. The hog deer {Axis porcinus). 

4. The swamp deer {Rucervus Duvaucellt). 

5. The Cashmere stag {Cervus Wallichii vel 

Caskmirianus). 

6. The Sikkim stag {Cervus affinis vel Wal- 

lichii). 

7. The brow-antlered, or Eld's deer {Rucei'vus 

vel Panolia Eldii). 

8. The muntjac {Cervulus cuireus). 

9. The musk deer {Moschus Mosckiferus). 
10. The mouse deer {Meminna indica). 

THE SAMBUR {Rusa Aristotelis) 

This fine deer is, on account of his very wide 
distribution, entitled to the premier position 
amongst the many members of his tribe in India. 
Standing, as he does, some thirteen to fourteen 
hands in height at the shoulder, with a fine, full, 

244 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

shaggy mane enveloping his neck and throat, he 
looks truly a noble animal as with long, widely spread- 
ing horns, he stalks proudly in the midst of his 
seraglio ; or at times when, a bachelor's life possess- 
ing greater charms for him, he emerges alone at 
eventide into a forest glade, or on to some grassy 
slope, from the dense cover in which he loves to 
dream through the hot hours of an Indian day. 

In colour he is dark brown, with yellow on the 
chin, on the inner surface of the limbs, under the 
tail, and on the buttocks, the hinds and young 
stags being of a lighter hue. 

The sambur is found in all large forest tracts and 
upon all considerable hill ranges, from well within 
the Himalayas, to the extreme South of India. He 
affects impartially both hill and plain, and is equally 
at home in both. 

The normal horns of this species have each but 
two points on the top and one brow-antler, but 
occasionally additional points occur. The stag 
does not grow his full number of points until he 
is four years old, and his horns require to increase 
for at least three or four years after that age before 
they will be worth bagging. Once the latter have 
attained their full development, they are, with but 
rare exceptions, shed annually in the spring with 
remarkable simultaneity. By about October or 
November in most localities, the new horns have 
been rubbed free of velvet, and then the rutting 
season begins. 

Upon one occasion in Mysore I killed, by a 
running shot, a large sambur stag who was so near 

245 



BULLET AND SHOT 

shedding, that, as he rolled over once or twice on 
the hillside on which he fell, one of his horns came 
off from the pedestal of bone. At another time 
I stalked a fine stag upon the Nilgiri hills, until> 
upon arriving within very close shot of the animal, 
I found that he had but one horn having shed the 
other, whereupon I contented myself with throwing 
a stone at him. 

Sambur may be bagged by stalking in the hills, 
and by still hunting in the plains, as well as by 
beating covers in case of both. 

I have enjoyed capital sport when stalking 
sambur upon the Koondahs (the higher ranges of 
the Nilgiri hills in Southern India) ; the only draw- 
back to it being the fact that the big stags, where 
they are much hunted, become almost nocturnal in 
their habits, and so can be found in a position for 
a stalk only very early in the mornings and late in 
the evenings. 

The best plan is to start before daylight, the 
shikarrie carrying a lantern (which may also be 
useful for the return to camp at night should the 
sportsman be kept out late). When no longer 
required, the lantern can be deposited at any point 
which it is certain will be traversed on the way 
home. Then, as dawn is breaking, the point of 
vantage whence the sportsman hopes to view a 
stag should be reached, and as the light increases 
the telescope must be brought into play, and all 
the grassy slopes and valleys outside any covers 
within sight examined, in the hope of finding a 
stag out feeding. Should one with a head worth 

246 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

bagging be viewed, the next thing is to try to 
stalk within shot before the animal retires to cover 
for the day, and in this, particularly if the stag" 
should have been discovered a long way off, or the 
wind necessitate a long detour, frequent failure 
may be expected. The morning stalk over, deer 
will not again become visible till the afternoon, but 
upon the Koondahs and other hill ranges in the 
south, the intervening time may be pleasantly spent 
in looking for, and in stalking if found, that fine 
wild goat known to sportsmen as the " Neilgherry 
ibex." 

In all hill stalking, the wind is the factor which 
requires the most careful study. The multiplicity 
of gullies, and the general configuration of the 
ground often set up very eccentric currents, which, 
though running in a totally different direction to 
that of the general course of the wind at that time, 
will, should the sportsman get into one of them, 
infallibly betray his presence to the game, and not 
only render his stalk futile, but seriously frighten, 
and render even more cautious for the future, an 
already sufficiently wary and cunning animal. 

In stalking a stag, it is a great advantage, in all 
cases in which it may be practicable to do so, to 
keep him in view as much as possible during the 
approach, so that, should he change his position, 
the sportsman as he draws near may be aware of 
the animal's whereabouts. 

As far as possible, the stalker should keep well 
above his quarry, avoid the sky-line, remain motion- 
less should an animal raise its head until it resumes 

247 



BULLET AND SHOT 

grazing, and take advantage of all cover which may 
be available. By keeping well above a stag, and 
by advancing only when the latter has his head 
down in the act of feeding, it is wonderful what 
bare ground the sportsman may often traverse with- 
out detection if only he keeps the wind in his 
favour. 

In the low-country forests of Mysore, it is but 
seldom that a sambur stag in hard horn offers the 
chance of a shot. The reason for this is that it is 
only during the monsoon (or rainy season) that 
noiseless progression is possible in those forests, 
the dry leaves strewing the ground (which crackle 
" like tin boxes " when trodden upon), rendering it 
impossible at other times to get near game without 
being heard by the latter long before there is any 
chance of seeing it, or of obtaining a shot. Now 
it is precisely during the time when game can be 
approached with facility in the Mysore forests that 
the stags are out of horn (and therefore not worth 
shooting), so, except in hilly country, or by beating, 
a sambur's head worth shooting is seldom bagged, 
or even seen in those forests, though fine heads 
exist there. Of course, in flat forests, the only 
chance of obtaining a shot at sambur is for the 
sportsman to move about as quietly as possible, 
endeavouring to catch sight of the deer before they 
have detected his presence. 

Sambur are supposed to drink only every third 
day, though in so well-watered a country as Mysore 
I have had no means of personally testing the 
accuracy of this dictum. 

248 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

In length of horn, the heads from the North-West 
and Central India show a marked superiority over 
those from the South. Horns up to 46J inches in 
length (Rowland Ward's Horn Measurements) have 
been bagged, but upon the Nilgiri hills a 36-inch 
head is nowadays very rare. 

Sambur venison is, in my opinion, quite worthless, 
but the tongue is good, and I have even tasted good 
soup made of the meat. 

These deer form a favourite item in the tiger's 
menu, and many a fine stag falls a victim to the 
jungle tyrant. A planter, on the Billiga Rungun 
hills in Mysore, once had the luck to be in just 
after the death in this way of a stag with a fine 
head, and to bag the tiger on the spot. 

Sambur-leather is soft and pliable, and is very 
useful in making leggings, cartridge-belts, cartridge 
bags, etc. 

Noted localities for this deer are the Sewalik hills 
and the Terai in the North, the forests of Central 
India, the Nilgiri hills, and the Eastern and Western 
Ghauts. 

Sambur are tough animals, and I prefer the large 
canelured '500 express bullet for use upon them. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — 

Hindustani — Sambur. 

In the Himalayas — Jerai and Jerao. 

In the Terai — Maha. 

Mahrathi — Meru. 

Gondi — Ma-00. 

Canarese — Kadavi. 

249 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Telegu — Kannadi. 
Burmese — Schap. 

In Eastern Bengal — Ghous or Gaoj, female 
Bholongi. 

THE SPOTTED DEER {Axis maculatus) 

This, one of the most beautiful animals in exist- 
ence, is also one of the commonest of the larger 
Indian fercB naturce. There is no more pleasing 
sight, which the heart of a sportsman can desire, 
than a herd of spotted deer grazing and browsing, 
ignorant of danger, in some lovely forest glade in 
the early part of the monsoon, when forest nature 
has donned her brightest attire, and when the fresh, 
new grass rivals the emerald in hue. Should there 
be in the herd a stag with horns of more than 
average size, the sportsman must be blasd indeed 
whose heart does not beat the faster when he 
beholds him, and if a novice, he is very apt to 
miss altogether from sheer excitement ; for he 
covets those splendid horns, as well as that 
dappled hide, shining like burnished gold flecked 
with snowflakes, in the rays of the morning sun, 
which has, for the nonce, dispelled the monsoon 
clouds, and is shining forth in glory to add the 
one finishing touch required to complete a picture 
of loveliness almost too consummate for earth. 
At the shot, the scene is changed ; a few glimpses 
of dappled forms fast disappearing in the forest, and 
the deer have gone ; — all, that is, except the big 
stag, who, if the aim was true, will probably be 
found lying dead either upon the spot, or witliin 

250 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

about one hundred yards, though for the moment,, 
he too has vanished. Nature's setting still remains, 
radiant as before, but the gems have disappeared 
from it, and with them much of the beauty of the 
panorama. 

The height of the spotted stag at the shoulder is 
from 36 to 38 inches. Although the bright chestnut 
ground-colour, thickly studded with spots of snowy 
white, would seem to be sufficient adornment, nature 
has added other diversities of colouring to complete 
the elaborate attire of this singularly ornate animal. 
A very dark streak runs from neck to tail, the 
muzzle is dark, the throat white, the ears brown,, 
the tail long for a deer, and white underneath, the 
under parts also being whitish. 

The horns, like those of the sambur, have each 
(normally) but two points on the top and a brow 
antler, but small abnormal points are not unfre- 
quently thrown out from the base of the last. A 
stag with 30-inch horns is worth shooting, but fine 
heads are to be had up to 36 or 37 inches in length. 

The horns are shed, probably annually, but 
without any regularity whatever, stags in hard 
horn, in velvet, and without horns being found 
simultaneously. 

The spotted deer is widely distributed throughout 
India, but is not found to the east of the Bay 
of Bengal, nor in the Punjab. It is somewhat local, 
but occurs in suitable localities from the foot of the 
Himalayas to the extreme south of the continent, 
and is very partial to well- watered forests. Its 
proper habitat in Mysore and Malabar is the lighter 

251 



BULLET AND SHOT 

belt of jungle between the large timber forests and 
the cultivation, but I have often, when in pursuit 
of elephants and bison in the heavy forests, met 
with and shot this deer in the latter. 

In the south, spotted deer are bagged by noise- 
lessly searching for them in open glades and likely 
feeding-grounds in the mornings and evenings — 
" still-hunting," in fact — but in the north, where the 
height of the grass and reeds renders shooting on 
foot impracticable, the animals are usually shot 
from elephants. 

When spotted deer are somewhat alarmed, yet 
not sufficiently so to cause them to seek safety in 
precipitate flight, they often keep up a loud, shrill 
bark which can be heard at a considerable distance. 
This call frequently denotes the presence in the 
vicinity of a beast of prey, and it is well worth 
the sportsman's while to approach a barking animal 
in the hope of catching sight of the striped or 
spotted (as the case may be) disturber of the 
sylvan peace. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — 

Hindustani — Cheetul, Chitra. 
Bengali at Rungpore — Boro-khotiya. 
In Gorukpore — Buriya. 
Canarese — Sarraga, Jate. 
Telegu — Dupi. 
Gondi — Lupi. 



252 



THE DEER OF INDIA 



THE HOG DEER {Axis porcinus) 

The only place in which I have seen this deer 
is Assam, where, as in Burmah and in parts of 
Bengal and the Terai, it is abundant. 

Jerdon's description of it runs thus : — " General 
colour a light chestnut or olive-brown with an eye- 
spot, the margin of the lips, the tail beneath, limbs 
within, and abdomen white. In summer many 
assume a paler and more yellow tint, and get a 
few white spots ; and the old buck assumes a dark 
slaty colour. The horns resemble those of a young 
spotted deer, with both the basal and upper tines 
very small, the former pointing directly upwards 
at a very acute angle, and the latter directed back- 
wards and inwards nearly at a right angle, occasion- 
ally pointing downwards." 

"Average length of a full-grown buck, 42 to 
44 inches from muzzle to root of tail ; tail, 8 ; 
height at shoulder, 27 to 28 inches ; average length 
of horns, 15 to 16 inches." 

The hog deer is not found in Southern India, 
but is abundant in the north, and in Bengal. Its 
habitat is high grass, and it is usually shot from 
elephants. Unlike most of the deer tribe, this 
species is not gregarious. 

The horns are shed in spring, and the new ones 
attain their full growth by the autumn. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — 

H industani — Para. 

In Nepaul terai — Khar-laguna and Sugoria. 
In parts of Bengal — Nuthurini-haran. 

253 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE SWAMP DEER {Rucervus Duvaucellt) 

This fine deer stands about eleven or eleven and 
a half hands in height. It is, in winter, of a dull 
yellowish -brown colour, changing to chestnut in 
summer, with the under parts at all seasons white. 
The does are lighter in colour, and the fawns 
spotted. 

Swamp deer are found in forest tracts at the foot 
of the Himalayas and in Nepaul, are very abundant 
on the Brahmaputra churs (islands in the river) in 
Assam, are found in large herds in open, park-like 
country, and in the saul forests in various portions 
of Central India, and occur also in the eastern 
Sunderbunds of Bengal, 

In the Dehra Doon, the Nepaul Terai and 
Assam, this deer is usually shot from elephants, 
but in Central India, where it inhabits more open 
country, it can be stalked and shot on foot. 

The swamp deer is frequently called the bara- 
singha (literally twelve horns) on account of each 
perfect mature horn usually carrying six points, 
but Jerdon mentions having seen as many as 
seventeen points upon some old heads, and states 
that fourteen and fifteen are not uncommon. 

Rowland Ward gives 41 inches as the length 
of the longest horn within his knowledge, and 
twenty-three as the largest number of points upon 
a head. Such a length is, however, very unusual, 
anything over 30 inches being good. The head 

254 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

bearing twenty-three points is of course very unique. 
The horns are shed in the spring. 

The vernacular names of this deer are — 
Hindustani — Barasingha. ^ 
In the Nepaul Terai — Baraya. 
In parts at the foot of the Himalayas — Maha. 
In Central India — Male, Goen or Goenjak, 
Female, Gaoni. 



THE CASHMERE STAG 

{Cervus Wallicliii vel Cashinirianus) 

This stag resembles the Scotch red deer, but is 
superior in size to the latter, and also carries larger 
horns. It stands from twelve to thirteen hands in 
height. Its habitat is the pine forests of Cashmere, 
at an elevation of 9,000 to 12,000 feet in summer, 
but in winter it descends to low levels. 

With regard to colour, this stag is thus described 
by Jerdon : — "In summer the pelage is bright 
rufous passing into liver -brown, or bright pale 
rufous chestnut. The belly of the male is dark 
brown, contrasting with the pale ashy hue of the 
lower part of the flanks. The legs have a pale 
dusky medium line. In females the whole lower 
parts are albescent." 

The long shaggy hair on the lower part of the 
neck of an old stag adds to the rugged nobility 
of his appearance. 

This stag, like the swamp deer, and for the same 
reason, is generally known as the barasingha, though 

255 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the majority of the heads which are bagged, and 
which are well worth securing, carry but ten points. 

In Rowland Ward's Horn Measurements, the 
five finest heads quoted are one of 48, and four 
of 47 inches each in length on the outside curve, 
one of the latter bearing no less than sixteen points. 
Colonel Heber Percy considers that an average 
good head should measure 2^"] inches in length, 
6 inches in girth above the brow antler, and should 
carry the full complement of twelve points. 

Colonel Ward gives the following measurements 
in detail of the two finest heads which he has seen, 
both of them from the Sindh valley. 



Length of 
Horns. 


Girth above 
brow antler. 


Divergency at tips. 
Greatest. Least. 


Number of 
points. 


47 ins. . 


.. 7f ins. ., 


.. 56 ins. 29 ins. 


... 13 


49 » • 


.. 8 „ .. 


.. 50 „ 32 „ 


... 12 



The Cashmere stag sheds his horns late in March 
or early in April, and then retires to remote soli- 
tudes, where he roams apart from the hinds which 
he has left behind him, the ladies for the most 
part remaining in Cashmere. After the new antlers 
have attained their full growth, and the season of 
courtship and of war approaches, the stags return 
to Cashmere, and once more seek the society of 
the hinds. 

It is then that the sportsman has the best chance 
of securing a few trophies, as the stags at this time 
betray their whereabouts by " calling." Colonel 
Ward states that the calling season extends from 
about September 20th (the date of commence- 
ment being dependent upon the weather, and 

256 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

being earlier the warmer it may be) till October 
15th or 20th. He also mentions that the finer 
the weather, the more frequent will be the calling, 
and that during the commencement of the rutting 
season, the bellowing is heard only at night. Stags 
are nowadays very scarce and hard to obtain, 
and Mr. Stone, in his book In and Beyond the 
Himalayas, considers his bag of two stags with 
very ordinary heads, and two brown bears, "a 
good reward for three weeks of very severe and 
continuous work." 

Not only are the animals themselves few and 
far between, but in the pine forests which form the 
autumn quarters of a large proportion of the deer, 
they are not easy to find, or if found, to shoot. 

No one should attempt to seek the Cashmere 
stag without first procuring and attentively studying 
Colonel Ward's Sportsman s Guide to Kashmir and 
Ladak, etc. 

With the best of information at his disposal, a 
sportsman will be fortunate indeed if he should 
procure two or three sizeable heads during the 
calling season. 

An officer whom I knew (Colonel A. of the 52nd 
Regiment O.L.I.) who had gone to Cashmere on six 
months' leave the previous year — when he bagged 
both ibex and markhor (including a 46-inch head 
of the former) — returned there on four months' 
leave in the following autumn, with the special 
object of trying for stags, but came back to 
Bangalore without having even seen one. 

Heavy snow drives the stags down to low 
s 257 



BULLET AND SHOT 

elevations, and granted a severe winter, sport may 
at that season be obtained with them. 

Colonel (then Captain) W. spent a winter in 
Cashmere some sixteen years ago. He saw stags 
but once, and then encountered six or seven of 
them all together in a glen during a blinding snow- 
storm. Being a magnificent shot, than whom few 
men could do more with the rifle, he made the 
most of his opportunity, and bagged no less than 
four of them, the last being, he told me, shot at 
a range of at least 400 yards. 

Colonel Ward and General Kinloch agree in 
stating that the incursions of tame buffaloes have 
been steadily ousting the deer from their former 
haunts, and forcing them eastwards in the direction 
of Kishtwar, Badrawar and Chumba. 

So fine a trophy, as a large and well set up head 
of this stag, must tempt every sportsman who may 
have the opportunity of seeking him with any 
prospect of attaining his object, to exercise con- 
siderable patience, and to spend upon his quest 
as much time as he can spare till success has 
rewarded his efforts. Colonel R. Heber Percy, 
in the Badminton volume dealing with the large 
game of India, states that he prefers the higher 
and more open ground, to the gloom of the pine 
forests at lower elevations, as the field of sport 
during the first part of the calling season, but 
adds that about October ist, if snow has been falling 
on the higher hills, and frost at night has set in, 
the deer should be followed down into the pine 
forests. The admirable directions of this author 

258 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

should be carefully studied by anyone who may 
intend to go in search of this stag. 

From the accounts given by all the authors who 
have had much practical experience of the sport, 
it is obvious that, reprehensible though it be to 
bag small and therefore useless heads of any large 
game, it behoves every sportsman to exercise the 
greatest possible forbearance in the case of this 
stag, which owing to ruthless slaughter by natives 
in the winter, has become so scarce. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — 

In Cashmere — Hangul or Honglu. 
Hindustani — Barasingha. 



THE S'IKKIM STAG {Cervus affinis vel WalKchit) 

Jerdon states that this large stag stands from 
4^ to nearly 5 feet at the shoulder, and that his 
coat, which is pale rufous in summer, becomes of a 
fine, clear grey colour in winter, the white disc 
being "moderately large." 

Hodgson's description of the horns of this stag 
is quoted by both Jerdon and Sterndale. It runs 
thus : — " Pedicles elevate ; burrs rather small ; two 
basal antlers, nearly straight, go forward in direction 
as to overshadow the face to the end of the nasal ; 
larger than the royal antlers ; median or royal 
antlers, directed forward and upwards ; beam with 
a terminal fork, the prongs radiating laterally and 
equally, the inner one longest and thinnest." 

The bifurcation of the top of the beam, in lieu 

259 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of the usual trifurcation in the case of the Cash- 
mere stag, is a marked point of difference between 
the horns of the two species, and in the horns of 
the Sikkim stag, the beam is more bent at the origin 
of the median tine. 

The habitat of this stag is the eastern Himalayas, 
and according to Jerdon, who quotes Dr. Campbell, 
the Choombi valley on the Sikkim side of Thibet. 

The horns of this stag are magnificent, and those 
of the three best heads mentioned in Rowland 
Ward's Horn Measurements measure in length 
55i. 54f. 55f ; and in girth 6|, 6f, 6|^ inches 
respectively. The first of these heads carries 
thirteen, and the second and third ten points, 
each. 

The vernacular name for this stag is — 
In Thibet — Shou. 



THE BROW-ANTLERED OR ELD'S DEER 
{Rucervus vel Panolia Eldii) 

Of this deer, the "thamine" of Burmah, Stern- 
dale says that it stands from twelve to thirteen 
hands, that in colour it is in summer "a light 
rufous brown, with a few faint indications of white 
spots ; the under parts and insides of ears nearly 
white ; the tail short and black above." He adds 
that it is said to turn darker in winter. 

Eld's deer was discovered only some seventy 
years ago. Its great peculiarity lies in the extra- 
ordinary shape of the horns in which the burr is. 

260 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

almost wanting, the largely developed brow antlers 
extending down the face, and appearing as if they 
were prolongations of the beams, the latter being, 
seemingly, almost sessile upon the skull. From 
below the top of each beam arises a royal tine, 
and from the somewhat flattened top of the former 
spring a number of small points. 

Eld's deer is found in Burmah (it is rarer in the 
upper portions of the province than in the lower), 
in Manipur, the eastern Himalayas, Terai, Siam, 
and the Malay Peninsula. It does not affect dense 
jungles, and even when disturbed it seeks safety 
by flight, not into thick forest, but into the open. 

Major L., late of the 21st Hussars (now Lancers) 
bagged a specimen of this curious deer in Borneo. 
Thamine are shot either by the use of beaters, or 
from the backs of tame elephants. 

Natives, as related by Colonel Heber Percy, 
approach these animals at night by the use of a 
light, accompanied by the jingling of bells — a com- 
bination which appears to daze them. 

In Horn Measurements, the three largest heads 
measure in length 42, 41, and 39!, and in girth 
from 5 to 5|- inches ; the number of points being 
five, ten, and twenty respectively. Another head 
has a girth measurement of 6J^ inches, and carries 
no less than thirty-five small points. A head of 
32 inches and over is a good one. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — 

In Burmah — Thamin. 

Elsewhere where it is found — Sungrai or 
Sungnaie. 

261 



BULLET AND SHOT 

An interesting article, which appeared in The 
Field of December 31st, 1898, by G. R. Radmore, 
upon this comparatively little-known animal has, 
by the kind permission of the editor and of the 
author, been reproduced in extenso in the Appendix 
to this volume. 



THE MUNTJAC {Cervulus aureus) 

The muntjac, rib-faced, kakur or barking deer,, 
which is widely distributed throughout India, is 
a small animal measuring only some 26 or 28 
inches in height. The two curious folds of skin 
down the face, to which the second appellation 
is due, are bright red in colour, the creases 
between being dark brown ; the general colour of 
the head and the upper part of the body and sides 
is bright red, with the chest, under parts, and 
under the tail white. 

The horns are small, and are elevated on bony 
pedicles which are covered with hair. Each horn 
consists of but a beam, and one tine which springs 
from just above the pedicle. In place of horns, 
the female has two small knobs. Two formidable 
canine teeth, or tushes, in the upper jaw of the male 
project outside the lips, and on the Neilgherry 
hills, and elsewhere where dogs are employed to 
drive muntjac out of the sholahs, the former are 
often very badly cut by the latter's sharp little 
weapons, and a terrier of Colonel Ward's was, he 
mentions, killed by a wounded buck. 

Whenever the muntjac suspects danger, he keeps 

262 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

up an incessant hoarse bark, until he has either 
been able to determine its nature and locaHty 
whereupon he seeks safety in flight, or has decided 
that no further reason for fear exists, in which case 
he relapses into silence. Generally speaking, the 
barking is due to the animals having obtained a 
hint of the presence of man, but occasionally it 
is caused by the proximity of a beast of prey. 
Colonel Ward mentions the good service done 
him by one of these animals, to whom he was 
indebted for the location of a man-eating tiger 
which the Colonel duly bagged. 

This deer is found at very low elevations, and 
also up to (according to the same author) a height 
of about 7000 feet in the Himalayas. In Southern 
India it is found in the low-country jungles and 
also on the hills, and although the lighter belt of 
forest outside the state reserves is its proper home, 
it is also common in the latter. I have frequently 
shot the muntjac when walking through the forests 
quietly in search of other game (still-hunting), and 
have also been out beating for it upon the Neil- 
gherry hills. 

Colonel Ward, out of sixty specimens shot by 
him, obtained two, whose horns, clear of the 
pedicles, measured 7^ inches in each case. These 
are very exceptional heads, and were bagged — one 
in the Kotli Dun, and the other near Mussoorie. 
A head of 5 inches is a good one. I have always 
shot muntjac with a '500 express rifle (the smallest 
weapon which I ever took out in the forest), but 
a smaller bore would be preferable for use upon 

263 



BULLET AND SHOT 

them, as the '500 bullet makes a terrible hole of 
exit in the case of a small animal shot at close 
quarters. 

The muntjac is fond of water, and need not 
be looked for at any great distance from the latter. 
It is usually solitary, but occasionally two adult 
animals are found together. 

The vernacular names for this deer are — - 

Hindustani — Kakur, Jungli-buckra. 
Bengali — Maya. 
In Nepaul — Ratwa. 
Canarese — Kard-Coorie. 
Gondi — Gutra, Gutri. 
Mahrathi — Baikur or Bekra. 
Telegu — Kuka-gori. 
Burmese — Gee. 



THE MUSK DEER {Moschus Moschijerus) 

This tiny deer, which measures in height, accord- 
ing to Kinloch, not more than 20 inches, though 
Colonel Ward allows him 22 inches, is found in 
suitable localities at an elevation of over 8000 feet 
throughout the Himalayas. Owing to the posses- 
sion by the male of an abdominal or praeputial 
gland secreting musk, which is worth in the case 
of a good " pod " (according to Kinloch) at least 
ten rupees, this animal is constantly snared, netted, 
and shot by natives ; and Colonel Ward says of 
him that "he is more hunted than any other animal 
that inhabits the Himalayas." This gland is fullest 

264 



THE DEER OF INDIA 

in the rutting season, and then contains about one 
ounce. 

In colour, the musk deer appears to be some- 
what variable, but Kinloch describes him as 
'* brownish grey varying in shades on the back, 
where it is darkest, so as to give the animal a 
mottled or brindled appearance." In shape, it is 
peculiar, the hind-quarters being elevated. Musk 
deer are hornless in both sexes, but the male is 
armed in the upper jaw with a pair of tushes which 
attain a length of some three inches. 

Musk deer may be shot either by still-hunting 
or by driving. Although they occur in different 
sorts of ground, Kinloch found more of them in 
the birch forests than elsewhere. He considers 
the flesh excellent, though it bears a faint odour 
of musk. 

The principal vernacular names for the musk 
deer are — 

Hindustani — Kastura. 

In Cashmere — Rous, Roos, and Kasture. 

Thibetan — La-lawa. 

Ladakhi — Rib-jo. 



THE MOUSE DEER {Meminna indica) 

This diminutive, hornless animal, which weighs 
only five or six pounds, and measures in height 
only lo or 12 inches, is found in large forests all 
over India. Although it is very common in the 
forests of Mysore, as was testified by the presence 

265 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of its tiny footprints no larger than a man's finger- 
nail, I seldom saw it, and then only when beating 
for large game, when, of course, I could not run 
the risk of alarming the latter by firing. It is 
somewhat variable in colour, being either yellowish 
or brownish-grey above, with yellowish-white spots 
in lines along the sides, the under parts being white. 

An experienced forest officer and sportsman 
(since deceased) told me of a deadly method where- 
by this little creature may be brought to bag. 

His procedure was to go out with a shot-gun, 
after a forest had been burnt, and the mouse-deer 
therefore driven to take shelter in any patches of 
grass which might have escaped the fire, and to 
stand at the end of one of the latter, causing his 
men to set fire to it from the further side, whereupon 
the animals, being driven out by the flames, were 
forced to leave their shelter. 

The vernacular names for this creature are — 
Hindustani and Mahrathi — Pisuri, Pisora, and 
Pisai. 

In Central India — Mugi. 
Gondi — Turi-maoo. 
Bengali — J itri-haran. 
Ooria — Gandwa. 



266 



CHAPTER XV. 

THE NEILGHERRY (OR NILGIRI) IBEX 
{Hemitragus Hylocrius) 

THE wild goat, which is, by a misnomer, termed 
the " Neilgherry Ibex," is an animal allied to 
the tahr of the Himalayas, but, as by the name of 
" ibex " he is known all over Southern India, it is 
inadvisable in his case to attempt more rigid 
nomenclature. 

The Neilgherry ibex is found only upon the hill 
ranges of Southern India, and is a very local 
animal, possessing but a limited range of distri- 
bution. 

The Neilgherries, Anaimalais, Western Ghauts, 
Pulney Hills, and a few smaller ranges which are 
spurs of the above, form the habitat of this splendid 
wild goat, which rejoices in precipices, and can 
move at speed over ground which, even with the 
greatest care and circumspection, no man could 
traverse. 

Although the Neilgherry ibex prefers the open 
grassy slopes for grazing purposes, he will, when 
alarmed, betake himself to forest without hesitation ; 
and cunning old bucks — particularly in localities in 
which they have been much disturbed — are very 

267 



BULLET AND SHOT 

partial to precipitous hillsides, well clad with vege- 
tation, upon which they are very hard to detect, 
and where, though the grass be of inferior quality, 
they can still find plenty to eat in almost perfect 
security so far as any danger at the hands of man 
is concerned, though, of course, the animals run 
greater risks from their most destructive foe, the 
panther, in such situations than when out on the 
open hills. 

Ibex usually retire to a precipice when they wish 
to lie down, and are fond of shade for the enjoy- 
ment of their midday siesta ; but in remote localities 
they may be found taking their rest upon the open 
hillsides. 

In colour the adult male is very dark brown, 
inclining to black, with a lighter patch, or "saddle- 
mark," on the back. The hair on this saddle-mark 
grows lighter with age, until, in the case of a 
very old buck, it becomes nearly grey. The females 
and young are much lighter in colour. In size, an 
adult male far surpasses the members of his harem, 
and he is really a large animal, standing from 41 to 
42 inches in height at the shoulder, and being, 
moreover, stoutly and heavily built. He differs 
from the true ibex, in that he lacks the beard, and 
long, knotted horns which are characteristic of the 
latter. 

The record head of a Neilgherry ibex is 17^ 
inches, but anything over 14 inches is good, 15-inch 
horns being but very rarely bagged in these days. 

It was during my earliest shooting trip upon the 
Neilgherry Hills that I saw an ibex for the first 

268 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

time, but hot until I revisited them upon a sub- 
sequent occasion did I succeed in bagging one. 

In 1886 I went out for a few days' shooting 
to Neilgherry Peak, a fine sambur-ground and a 
locality in which ibex were sometimes to be found. 
I had taken out a small tent which was pitched in a 
sholah (or dense cover) near a clear stream of good 
water. I hoped to obtain a little sambur shooting, 
and I knew also that there was a chance, but only 
a chance, of my seeing ibex, since they merely 
occasionally visited the locality which I was about 
to work. This ground I had been over only a few 
days previously from the bungalow of a relative 
(who lived a lonely life upon an estate a few miles 
off), but upon that occasion I failed to obtain either 
a shot at sambur or even a glimpse of an ibex. 

One misty afternoon, I went out from camp and 
proceeded towards a tract where the open grass 
hills, with sholahs in the dips between, sloped down 
to the large forest, which, interspersed with rocky 
precipices, and everywhere exceedingly steep, 
stretched sheer down into the low country of the 
Wynaad (or Malabar). Here, in the evening, I 
hoped to see sambur emerge from the dense 
sholahs, or from the edge of the large forest, to 
graze in the open. 

I was making my way to a commanding knoll, 
when I suddenly discovered that I had forgotten 
to bring my pipe, or my tobacco, I forget which, 
and I therefore sent one of the two men out with 
me back to camp to fetch the missing article, but 
as he was a long time in returning, and since I 

269 



BULLET AND SHOT 

feared that he might lose me in the heavy mist, I 
shortly afterwards sent the other one also to hurry 
him up. Meanwhile I seated myself on the high 
top, and when the mists temporarily lifted, carefully 
examined through my telescope all the ground 
below and before me. No sambur were visible — 
in fact, it was yet too early in the afternoon to 
expect to see them out at graze. But what was 
that animal standing motionless, with all four feet 
close together, apparently upon the sky-line of a 
low ridge running at a right angle with the hill 
upon which I was seated, and extending down 
towards the precipitous and forest-clad descent to 
the Ouchterlony valley? I knew that it must be 
an ibex, though I had never before seen one in the 
flesh. 

The mists soon rolled over all the hillsides in 
front of and below me, and obscured the view, and 
I sat, and {I am afraid very impatiently) awaited the 
time when they might again remove their unwel- 
come mantle from the coveted game which had 
just been viewed. Upon the clouds once more 
lifting, there stood the ibex, quite motionless, and 
in the same attitude as before, apparently gazing 
intently down into the valley where the coffee 
plantations and the planters' bungalows were 
clearly visible, and whence I could hear the 
sound of the factory gongs. 

This alternation of all-obscuring mist and its 
temporary removal was again repeated at least 
once, when, after what seemed to me an inter- 
minable and unreasonable delay, to my great 

270 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

delight my men returned. We then set off at 
once to try to stalk the ibex. To reach the place, 
we had to pass over ridges of grass hills lying 
at the foot of a high mountain which terminated 
on our side in a precipice ; and it was on a sloping 
spur at right angles to this, and far below it, that 
I had seen the game. At last we reached the 
ridge on which, as I thought, I had carefully 
marked the ibex, but on looking cautiously over 
it I could see nothing of him. One or more 
similar spurs running parallel to this one then 
came into view, and I wondered whether I had 
made a mistake and had seen him on a further 
one. 

We crossed the intervening valley, and I looked 
over the next ridge in vain, and then proceeded 
towards a steep precipice on the edge of the sheer 
height above the deep gorge. It was very strange, 
and I could not imagine where on earth the ibex 
had got to, when all of a sudden, as if he had 
dropped from the clouds, there stood the noble 
buck, on the very edge of the precipice, and only, 
as I estimated, about 250 or 300 yards off. I 
instantly lay flat, and made my shikarrie do the 
same (I had left the other man behind in a valley 
to wait for us), and, not daring to move hand or 
foot, intently watched the game. His curved horns 
looked splendid through my glasses, and he ap- 
peared to be just the colour of an ordinary Mysore 
black buck (in Mysore black buck do not usually 
attain the jet-black hue of the same animal in the 
north-west) with the exception of wanting the very 

271 



BULLET AND SHOT 

white belly which pertains to the latter. I dared 
not move, nor attempt to approach him, until the 
now-desired mist should again curl up «and render 
an advance possible. 

The ibex, after gazing at the edge of the pre- 
cipice for a time, came forward a few yards and lay 
down under a rock. Between my position and his 
own was a drop down about ten feet of rock, with 
a narrow strip of stunted trees on my left front, and 
a few scattered rhododendrons directly opposite me. 
If once I could attain the shelter of that narrow 
strip, I believed that the ibex lying on the grassy 
stretch beyond would be mine, but I dared not 
attempt to negotiate the drop down the rock in 
front until the mists should obscure me from the 
game. 

At last the wished - for moment arrived, and 
leaving the shikarrie to lie flat where he was, I 
descended the rock, and successfully gained the 
shelter of the trunk of a rhododendron tree before 
the mists again cleared off and revealed the ibex, 
who was then standing up and grazing. Thinking 
that he was still too far for certainty, I determined 
to wait till he should go over the edge of the pre- 
cipice, when, by running up, I hoped to get a shot 
at close quarters below me. The animal made this 
move sooner than I expected, but as he went 
slowly, I did not think that he was alarmed, and 
waiting only until he disappeared over the edge, I 
ran up, meeting two monkeys on the top, but the 
ibex was nowhere to be seen, though I saw below 
me various forms in which he had been lyings 

272 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

whence I inferred that he had for some time been 
inhabiting the locality. 

Cruelly and grievously disappointed, I retraced 
my steps to where I had left my shikarrie, but to 
my amazement he was nowhere to be found. Dusk 
was approaching, and not knowing the ground, and 
seeing nothing of the man, I was obliged to shout 
for him, although extremely unwilling to disturb the 
place by so doing. My calls, however, elicited no 
response from the fiend in human shape, who, as 
now seemed probable, must have designedly dis- 
turbed the ibex, and prevented my bagging him ; 
though they did from the coolie who had been left 
in a hollow, as before related, to wait for us. I had 
fortunately made the latter bring a lantern with him, 
and we eventually reached camp. If I remember 
rightly, the scoundrel who had deserted me arrived 
there after I myself did, and without being able to 
give any satisfactory explanation of his conduct. 
It seems probable, however, that as a "saddle- 
back," or old buck ibex, is a great and a rare 
prize upon the Neilgherry hills, the villain, who had 
accompanied me as shikarrie, wanted to save this 
animal for some local and constant patron, rather 
than permit me, a casual visitor, to bag it. He 
must have got up and walked up the hill in full 
view of the ibex, while I was making my stalk, 
and then, fearing the consequence of his villainy, 
have considered it advisable to keep out of my way 
as long as possible. In many years' experience of 
big game shooting, this is the only instance of such 
conduct on the part of a shikarrie with which I 
T 273 



BULLET AND SHOT 

have ever met. Once, and only once, I have 
reason to believe that some trackers, who were 
then quite new to me, deceived me by apparently 
intentionally failing to properly make out the tracks 
of some bison ; but if so, fear of the animal, should 
one be wounded, was the sole possible motive in 
their case. 

Upon returning to camp, I learned that, during 
my absence, a whole herd of ibex had passed along 
the face of a hill just above my tent and in full 
view of the men. I spent all next day out after 
ibex, but saw none ; and I had to return to the 
plains without viewing another of these splendid 
wild goats, though I enjoyed some small success 
with sambur. 

Upon hearing my account of the animal which 
I had seen, my relative (who as I before mentioned 
was then living near the place where I saw the 
buck) had no doubt from my description that I had 
seen, and been very near bagging too, that greatest 
prize of the Neilgherry sportsman, a "saddle-back"; 
and I could not help regretting that, since my 
virtuous conduct in refraining from firing a long 
shot at him had gone unrewarded, I had not risked 
it, and made at least a bid for so coveted a trophy. 

It happened that in the Christmas holidays of 
the same year, when I was accompanied by a friend 
(D.), I was able to spend ten days upon ibex 
ground. 

We had sent on our kit (including a hill tent), and 
also our servants, days beforehand ; and leaving the 
plains upon the first day of the holidays, arrived at 

274 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

Ootacamund. Here we found that our belongings 
had, by the good offices of a relative, been des- 
patched upon sixteen pack ponies to a camping 
ground called " Banghy Tappal " on the bridle-path 
to Sispara. One more pony was needed for the 
few requirements which we had brought with us ; 
and these seventeen ponies, two local shikarries, 
six coolies, and our servants, constituted our follow- 
ing. We reached the tent next evening after a 
long ride from Ooty, and found all ready for us, 
and dinner in course of preparation. 

My right foot was sore, owing to an internal 
bruise incurred (apparently) while traversing stony 
ground in pursuit of antelope on the plains ; and 
I doubted my capacity for the steep hill -walking 
which I should have to undertake in order to 
achieve success ; and as moreover I have a very 
bad head for precipitous ground, my chances of 
bagging an ibex — the game on which my heart 
was chiefly set — seemed poor indeed. I hoped, 
however, to at least shoot some sambur stags. 

For nine days D. worked very hard, and I myself 
as persistently as the tender condition of my foot 
would permit, but upon the ninth evening D.'s total 
bag was one stag with horns of about 3i|- inches 
in length, and mine two young buck ibex shot out 
of a herd met with on the first day on the open 
grass hills. 

Bad luck had dogged us throughout, though I 
had seen ibex upon three occasions, and upon each 
had fired at them. D. had but once seen these 
animals, and then came upon them — far away 

275 



BULLET AND SHOT 

from their usual haunts — near the top of a high 
grass hill in sambur ground, to which I was, one 
afternoon, wending my way in hopes of seeing a 
stag, and of enjoying an evening stalk, in the 
innocent belief that D. was working the ibex-cliffs 
a good distance off. He had been so doing, but 
having left them, went across to the same sambur 
ground, and there saw the ibex as above stated. 
When I reached the ridge overlooking the valley, 
in which, later in the evening, I hoped to see 
sambur emerge from the forest, I spied D. and 
his men proceeding towards a commanding hill 
across the valley in front of me. What they were 
doing, and where they were going to, I had no 
means of knowing, and it was not until we met 
in camp in the evening that the horrible truth in 
all its nakedness was exposed. D., having in vain 
tried the ibex ground, had proceeded to the valley 
wherein I saw him, to look for sambur ; and while 
on this quest he spied a herd of ibex on the high 
grass hill across the valley, and amongst them was 
a patriarchal " saddle -back." D., who had never 
seen ibex before, described the saddle -mark, as 
viewed through his glasses, as a yellow patch upon 
the black ground of the rest of the animal. It then 
happened that while D. was laboriously stalking 
down the hill -face opposite to the ibex, they 
suddenly dashed off and disappeared from view 
over the brow. He was at first at a loss to 
understand the reason for this move upon their 
part, but soon discovered it in the shape of myself 
and my men on the sky-line of the opposite hill 

276 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

down which he had been cautiously creeping, and, 
up till this unlooked-for disaster occurred, with 
perfect success so far as being undetected by the 
game was concerned. We, not having seen the 
ibex, and ignorant of the cruel disappointment 
which we had caused, took up a position to watch 
for sambur, but saw none, and returned to camp. 
I was greatly disgusted and vexed with myself 
when I learnt the mischief of which I had been 
the unwitting cause, and D.'s good temper, in 
giving vent to not even so much as one "cursory" 
remark over so grievous a contretemps, struck me 
as beyond all praise. 

If our luck with ibex had been bad, it had in 
the case of sambur been but little better. We had 
seen plenty of hinds and fawns, and some brockets, 
but the big stags were almost invisible, apparently 
coming out to feed too late at night, and retiring 
to cover too early in the morning, to give us any 
opportunity of stalking them. I had, however, 
seen two really good stags, at one of which I had 
fired two long shots without effect. We had tried 
everything — had shifted our camp from Banghy 
Tappal to a place further on, and again moved back 
to the former ; we had even so far condescended, 
and lowered ourselves, as to attempt two days' 
beating, but, on the evening of our last day but 
one, our total bag consisted of one stag and two 
ibex. 

The next day — our last chance of shooting — we 
decided to send our camp to Avalanche on the 
return journey to Ootacamund, and, going together, 

277 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to try the Iguindy precipices en route to the 
former. 

We started in the morning and had a long walk 
before we reached the crags for which we were 
bound. When at last we arrived at the place, we 
found a deep valley with precipitous sides running 
up at right angles into the hilly ground on which 
we stood, and there terminating in a wide bluff of 
rock. In front, down the main valley, all was open 
grassy down, but on the left, in a small intersecting 
nullah, the precipitous hillsides on either hand ran 
— here and there as bare rock, and here and there 
as abrupt slopes covered with grass and scrub — far 
down below into the forest-clad country at the foot. 
First, from the left hand side, we carefully examined 
the opposite slopes and precipices with our glasses, 
but could make out nothing ; then, from the rocky 
bluff at the head of the nullah, we examined both 
sides with no better success, and afterwards pro- 
ceeded to ascend a high grass hill, which rose on 
our right hand from the nullah's precipitous edge. 
We had accomplished perhaps three-quarters of 
the ascent of this hill, when, under some short 
rhododendron trees with low-hanging branches on 
our front, D. and one of the shikarries saw a 
branch, which had evidently been moved by some 
animal, sway back towards us. We supposed that 
a sambur had gone off, but we saw nothing, and 
proceeded to complete the ascent of the hill. This 
being accomplished, we were descending the other 
side (and so going parallel to the course of the 
before-mentioned nullah), when we came to a 

278 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

branch ravine, jutting out from it at right angles, 
whose sides were precipitous, and beyond and to 
the right hand lay open downs. Suddenly, on the 
expanse of short grass before us, and perhaps 300 
or 350 yards off, I saw a single buck ibex running 
towards the precipices which lay to our front 
beyond the intersecting ravine. He was evidently 
alarmed, but how, or why, or whether he had seen 
us, or had winded us, I did not know. 

He stopped and stood, and I whispered to 
D. to put up the highest • sight on his rifle and 
try him, which he did, but missed. As the buck 
dashed off, I fired both barrels without effect, the 
animal, having crossed the grassy downs, being 
lost to sight over the edge of the precipice. I felt 
that we had, alas ! seen the last of him ; but I was 
mistaken, for in a few seconds, and to our great 
surprise, we saw him returning along the edge of 
the nullah, having evidently failed to find a way 
down the steep bluff, and he then entered and 
rushed down the opposite face of the intersecting 
ravine near which we stood. I fired two long 
shots, and D., who had a smgle-barrelled rifle, 
one, as the ibex dashed down the abrupt slope, 
but all three shots missed. Hastily reloading, as 
he ran almost directly below me, and about 400 
yards off, I fired once more, heard the welcome 
"thud," and saw the ibex rolling over and over, 
out of sight, far down below. I felt quite sure that 
he was dead, but I entertained great anxiety as 
to whether the men would be able to negotiate the 
steep descent. To my unpractised eye, the place 

279 



BULLET AND SHOT 

looked almost, if not quite, inaccessible, and besides, 
I did not know how much further he might have 
rolled after we had lost sight of him. The men 
went off, and we watched them descend without 
difficulty to the spot where we had last seen 
the ibex, and a thrill of exultation stirred me as 
I saw the shikarrie hold up his hat, and heard him 
give a shrill whistle as a signal that they had found 
him. My self-congratulation and joy were, how- 
ever, but short-lived, for, to my unspeakable horror 
and dismay, I next instant saw the ibex running off 
in front of the men till he again disappeared from 
view, as did his pursuers, once more to reappear 
with the same result. 

I felt very anxious, but there was nothing to be 
done but to await the issue of events, so we sat 
down and discussed our tiffin in anything but an 
exultant frame of mind. I was in terrible dread 
lest we should lose the animal after all, and I ate 
my luncheon with a heavy heart indeed ! 

By-and-by a coolie came up from below, and 
told me that they wanted a rifle, that the ibex was 
a very big "saddle-back," and that he had only a 
hind leg broken. This was too much for me, for, 
in spite of my natural dislike to steep ground, I did 
not want to entrust them with my rifle, and still less 
did I wish that the ibex should be bagged only 
partly by me ; and so, assisted by the coolie, I 
succeeded at last in accomplishing the descent, 
while D. remained on the top to await my return. 
I found the shikarrie (Chinniah) crouched close 
into the hillside, watching the ibex which was 

280 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

lying down on the other side of a small nullah, 
only some thirty or thirty-five yards off. Sitting 
down, to enable me to take a steady shot after the 
great exertion which I had undergone, I fired, and 
the buck rolled over and over down below. To so 
nasty a place had he now fallen, that neither of our 
two shikarries could manage the descent, but, as 
good luck would have it, one of our coolies, who 
was an expert cragsman, succeeded in getting down, 
and in bringing up to us in turn, first the head, 
and then the skin of my coveted prize which was 
just beginning to be entitled to the honorific title 
of "saddle-back," since light hairs were com- 
mencing to show over the dark ground-colour of 
his loins. All this had occupied a considerable 
time, and the skinning of the slain appeared to 
me — sitting, very ill at ease, on very little of the 
steep hillside — to be an interminable operation, but 
at last I started to make the ascent. It would, I 
suppose, have been easy enough work to anyone 
possessed of a good head for, and accustomed to 
climbing ; but to me, with my slippery, smooth- 
soled boots, it was difficult and "jumpy" enough 
work in places, and I needed constant aid from 
Chinniah. What toil it was ! Every few feet I 
had to sit down, and the perspiration simply poured 
from my face, though the temperature was suffi- 
ciently cool, more especially since a thick mist 
had come on enveloping everything in its cold, 
wet blanket. 

At last, quite done up, I reached the top, and 
flung myself down on the grass, while I sent 

281 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Chinniah to where I had left D. and the tiffin 
bag, to bring me some whiskey and water ; and 
then, much refreshed, I rejoined D., who had 
been marvelling at my long absence, and won- 
dering what he had better do, should it prove 
that I had come to grief and been smashed by 
a fall down a precipice. 

The horns of my buck measured 14J inches, 
and though one of them had been somewhat 
broken in the course of his various involuntary 
somersaults, it was satisfactorily mended by the 
taxidermist who set up the head. The ibex 
had received the first successful bullet in his hind 
leg, which it had broken at the hock-joint ; and 
so great was the distance, that the ordinary hollow 
Eley's express bullet extracted therefrom had not 
broken up at all, and was only slightly flattened 
at the head where the copper tube had been driven 
into the body of the bullet. The charge of powder 
used was 4f drachms. 

We had a long tramp to the Avalanche bun- 
galow, and it was not until some time after 
darkness had set in that we arrived there. On 
the next day we returned to Ooctacamund, and 
thence to our duty in the plains below, looking 
forward to the time when we might once again 
hope to enjoy the fine sport of ibex shooting on 
the lovely, cool heights to which, for the present, 
we were compelled to bid adieu and au revoir. 

The hot weather of 1888 found me once more 
upon the Neilgherry hills, bent upon a shooting 

282 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

trip of a month's duration, and accompanied by 
my wife and by my cousin R. 

Fond as I am of room and comfort in camp, 
my trip with D. in the Christmas hoHdays of 1886 
showed me that a hill tent was far too cumbersome 
a piece of equipage for porterage in a country 
where carts cannot be taken, and where pack ponies 
and coolies must be solely relied upon for transport. 

We had therefore determined to do with as light 
tents as possible, and so took only a field officer's 
Cabul tent for my wife and myself, a ridge-pole tent 
of slightly larger dimensions for my cousin, and 
a rowtie for the servants. 

We left Ooty on the 3rd April, and intended 
to spend the first night out at the Avalanche bun- 
galow — a traveller's bungalow in a picturesque spot 
on the way to our first shooting ground which we 
hoped to reach the next day. This bungalow 
consisted of one centre dining-room, and two large 
bedrooms with bathrooms attached. Off the front 
verandah were two small pantry -rooms without 
bathrooms. 

A month's trip away from civilisation necessarily 
entails a good many preparations, and as we did 
not wish to waste time in Ooty, ours were rather 
hurried, and we did not leave that station until 
somewhat late in the day. It was not until after 
dark that we reached the Avalanche bungalow, but 
as our servants and kit had long preceded us, we 
hoped to find all ready, and to be able to have 
dinner and go to bed in good time with a view to 
an early start for our shooting grounds next morning. 

283 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Little did we anticipate the indescribably un- 
pleasant, and to us quite unique, experience of 
the next few hours. 

On arrival at the bungalow, while R. went off 
to the stable to look after the accommodation of 
our steeds, my wife and I found that all the 
habitable portion thereof was occupied by a general 
officer and his wife and by a sporting parson. 

To our utter disgust and horror, we found our 
baggage all lying strewn upon the gravel in front 
of the door, while we were met by a servant in 
the front verandah, who, putting his back against 
the door of the dining-room in which the trio were 
then seated at dinner, informed us that we could 
not go in there, but that one of the small pantry- 
rooms off the front verandah was available for 
us. (The other was being used as a pantry by 
the other travellers' servants, but we soon made 
them vacate it, on finding that no other second 
room was available.) The situation was certainly 
a difficult one. 

To make a long story short, however, we had 
to put up with great inconveniences that night, 
and at earliest dawn repacked our kit, and pro- 
ceeded on our way to the shooting grounds. 

That day we pitched our camp at Banghy 
Tappal, and thence, three days later, when out 
upon a high hill at some distance from camp, we 
viewed a large number of ibex upon an opposite 
precipitous bluff, a wide, deep valley, quite in- 
accessible in view of the necessity for reaching 
camp before nightfall, dividing us from them. 

284 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

On the next day, we moved our camp to 
Bhowany, from which, both the hill on which we 
had seen the ibex, and the one from which we 
had viewed them, were easily accessible. 

It was not until the ninth day after we began 
shooting that I fired my first shot at ibex, though 
I had, in the meantime, bagged three stags. 

On that morning (April 13th) I went to the hill 
on which we had seen the ibex on the seventh 
idem, and I disturbed first a herd, and then four 
fine bucks which were together on our side of the 
hill, without getting a shot, and all the animals had 
gone towards the precipice, which lay on the 
further face where we had previously seen them 
from across the Bhowany valley, as above related. 
I found them in the rocks just below the brow, 
and fired a hasty shot at one as it bolted. The 
shikarrie went down to see the result of this shot, 
which he reported a miss ; while I went a little 
further along the hillside, and there, far down 
below — almost at the bottom, as it seemed when 
viewed from above, and on a little plateau — stood 
an ibex, broadside on. 

I examined it through the telescope, and its 
horns swept back so far that I decided that it was 
a buck, but at first I would not fire at it, since the 
distance appeared an impossible one. Two or 
three times I aimed at it, and still the animal stood. 
At last I determined to attempt the shot, and did 
so, allowing a little for a high wind which was 
blowing across the precipitous hill face. At the 
report, the ibex fell, rolling over and over, but 

285 



BULLET AND SHOT 

trying to recover itself, so I fired another shot 
(which I think missed), and it then disappeared 
amonofst bushes in a ravine. 

The shikarrie and one of the coolies went down 
and brought up the head and skin, and they, and 
the other coolies, then went off to eat their mid- 
day meal (which they had brought with them), and 
as no water was to be had near our position at 
a great elevation, they were away for a considerable 
time. This was a source of great annoyance to 
me, since I was relying upon their bringing me 
water, that which I had taken with me having been 
almost boiled in the sun, and tiffin under the 
circumstances being a difficulty. While they were 
away, I saw three or four more ibex below the hill 
in the act of coming up it, and I fired at the 
largest. The muzzle of my rifle was, however, 
not clear of a rock in front of me, and the bullet 
knocked a piece off it and went — I know not 
whither — and my second, I think, missed also. 
Running to a grassy spur which commanded a 
view of the precipice to my right, I saw some ibex 
crossing a sheer sheet of rock, so nearly perpen- 
dicular that nothing but a wild goat could have 
crossed it, and I fired at what I thought was the 
largest, and sent it sliding down the rock far below, 
till it disappeared from view. I went myself, as 
I had already done before, to search for water, 
but found only a spring full of black, peaty mud, 
which was cut up by tracks of the wild goats ; and 
it was only with great difficulty, and by the use 
of the cup of my flask, that I managed to skim 

286 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

off a few drops at a time pure enough to drink 
at a moment of distress. 

During one of these expeditions, I had seen 
two little kid ibex, which had come over the top 
of the hill, and which ran only a short distance, 
and then lay down on the rocks, making a soft 
bleating which sounded like the mewing of 
a cat. 

The shikarrie and coolies returned at last, 
bringing water for me, and while they busied 
themselves in recovering the head and skin of the 
second animal, I went on a prospecting expedition 
to the right-hand side of the hill, and there, on 
a little piece of flat near its bottom, I saw six 
or seven ibex. One was conspicuous amongst 
them in size, and I knew that it was a buck. 
Sitting down, and taking a steady aim, I fired, and 
the animal fell and lay kicking where he had been 
struck. I watched him for a minute or two to see 
if he required another bullet, but as he soon lay 
quite still, I started to again go back over the brow 
of the hill in order to try to find the shikarrie and 
coolies. After ascending a few yards, I saw the 
ibex give another kick, and I again watched him, 
but he showed no further signs of life. Suddenly, 
from the jungle below, appeared a fine dark- 
coloured buck, who looked larger and duskier than 
the one just shot. He stared at his slain friend, 
and started, shying off like a pony, and then stood 
looking sideways with a startled air at the dead 
buck. Sitting down, I took a steady shot at 
his back, and fired, and to my satisfaction I saw 

287 



BULLET AND SHOT 

him tumble over and disappear in a nullah 
below. 

The shikarrie was soon found after he had 
brought up the spoils of ibex No. 2, and I des- 
patched him on his third downward journey to 
bring up those of the two big bucks just slain ; 
and well content, I ere long set off for camp with 
the trophies of the four animals. The heads of 
the first two bagged were small, and in the case 
of one of them the horns at their bases were 
so thin that it was undoubtedly a doe, in spite 
of the shikarrie's asseverations that all the animals 
were bucks. The length of its horns, as viewed 
from the side, had deceived me in this one case. 
The heads of the two last slain formed handsome 
trophies which I was very pleased to obtain. 

I remained in camp a month in all, but got only 
two more ibex— one a big dark buck with a slight 
commencement of the saddle-mark, and the other 
a brown buck. I missed some chances, however, 
and during the whole time I did not once see a 
real "saddle-back." The heads of the two best 
were, however, little inferior in length to that 
of the "saddle-back" previously mentioned, while 
one of them considerably surpassed it in thickness, 
and I was fortunate in obtaining such good heads 
on the very much over-shot Neilgherries. 

On another occasion, upon the selfsame hill, I 
was greatly entertained by three pretty little ibex 
kids. I had disturbed a herd, which had bolted 
and disappeared from sight down below, when I 
heard, on some rocks in front, the mewing noise 

288 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

which the two kids had made on the previous 
occasion. I soon discovered the engaging Httle 
animals, and they came towards us out of curiosity. 
They came near, and, hiding behind a rock, I tried 
to bleat like a goat and to call them up, while I 
sent my men to make circuits from both right and 
left simultaneously, and to close in and attempt 
to catch one of them. Tame as they appeared 
to be, however, they were far too wide-awake for 
this, and dashing off, they crossed steep, rocky 
ground at speed, and disappeared down below. 

By-and-by I again came upon two little kids on 
the top of the hill, and though I called one of them 
up to within about fifteen or twenty yards of me, 
all attempts at effecting a capture resulted in failure. 

They were very entertaining little beasts, with 
soft, fluffy hair, and I hope that their mammas soon 
returned and took charge of them, and kept them 
out of the way of the prowling hill panther, whose 
penchant for ibex is as pronounced as is that of his 
low-country congener for the domestic goat and its 
young. 

Ibex were rare upon the Neilgherry hills at 
that time, and it was very seldom that a buck 
with a fair head was seen upon them. This was 
a very great pity, for the sport of pursuing them 
is a most fascinating one, entailing as it does hard 
exercise in a lovely climate amongst beautiful 
scenery, while the game itself is so vigilant and 
hard to approach, that it is well worthy of pursuit 
by the most experienced and skilful sportsman. 

For some years, however, ibex have been strictly 
u 289 



BULLET AND SHOT 

preserved upon the Neilgherries, and the higher 
ranges of those hills now contain a goodly number. 
I have comparatively recently stalked these animals 
in the Travancore hills, but the "saddle-backs" were 
not with the herds at the time, or apparently much 
at all upon the ground which I was working, and 
I met with no success. 

The beginner who is in search of ibex must 
remember that the animal is possessed of extra- 
ordinary powers of vision, that he is also endowed 
with extremely keen olfactory nerves, and that the 
necessity which exists for him to be ever on the 
watch against surprise on the part of his deadly 
and watchful foe, the panther, renders him extremely 
wary. 

Ibex, like all other animals, seldom look up hill 
unless their attention be attracted by some sound, 
as, for instance, that made by a loose stone rolling 
down the hillside ; consequently the sportsman's 
aim must be to, if possible, get above the game. 
Patience is highly necessary in ibex shooting ; the 
binoculars or the telescope must be kept in constant 
use as long as any likely ground is in sight, for, 
though none may be visible, it is quite possible that 
they are not very far off, concealed by bushes and 
grass on the ledges of any of the neighbouring 
precipices. As in deer stalking, the main object 
is to see the game before it has discovered the 
sportsman, and having seen it, to plan the stalk 
with due attention to the configuration of the 
ground, the direction of the wind, and the cover 
available for concealment during the approach. 

290 



THE NILGIRI IBEX 

It is far better not to attempt to stalk in too 
close to the game. One hundred yards is quite 
near enough, and if it be necessary to approach 
within half of that distance before it becomes visible, 
the very greatest caution must be exercised, and 
the sportsman must pay all possible heed to his 
feet, avoiding the loosening or crushing of a single 
stone or the breaking of a twig as he walks. Once 
within range, a bullet well placed, on or behind the 
shoulder, will bring the animal fired at to bag ; but 
for humanity's sake long shots should be avoided, 
as an ibex shot too far back, or with a broken limb, 
often escapes to perish miserably. 

There is much ibex ground upon the Koondahs, 
as the higher ranges of the Neilgherries are called, 
upon the Anaimalais, the Travancore hills, and the 
Western Ghauts, as well as upon other hill ranges 
of minor importance in the South of India. 

The Government has, however, commenced 
granting land for coffee cultivation upon the Anai- 
malais, so that in course of time the ibex upon 
these fine hills, plentiful though they now are, will 
■doubtless soon become comparatively scarce. 

This has been their fate upon the Travancore 
hills, which have of late been much opened up for 
cultivation. 

The Tamil names for the Neilgherry ibex are 
Warra-adu and Warri-atu, and sometimes plain 
Adu (goat). 



291 



CHAPTER XVI. 

BRIEF NOTES ON THE WILD GOATS OF 
CASHMERE AND LADAK 

THE HIMALAYAN IBEX {Capra Sibirica) 

THIS splendid wild goat is found throughout 
the higher ranges of the Himalayas, except 
upon the extreme southern slopes, and portions 
south and east of the Sutlej river, where it does 
not occur at all ; and numbers of sportsmen ga 
annually to Cashmere with the object of securing 
specimens of this and of other Himalayan game. 
General Kinloch gives his height as about ten 
hands, and describes his colour as a dark chocolate, 
varied by patches of dirty white. He has a long, 
flowing, shaggy black beard. Both sexes have 
horns, those of the female being very small — only 
about a foot in length — while the male's are long, 
thick, scimitar-shaped, and heavily knotted, forming 
most imposing and ornamental trophies. Though 
horns up to some 56 inches have been bagged 
(Rowland Ward quoting thirteen heads of 50 inches 
and more), the sportsman who nowadays is lucky 
enough to secure a head of 46 or 47 inches may 

292 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

consider himself indeed a favourite of Fortune. 
Two acquaintances of my own have in compa- 
ratively recent years bagged heads of this calibre, 
but any horns of over 40 inches are well worthy 
the expenditure of much time and labour to 
secure. 

Colonel Ward writes that April and May are 
the best months for ibex shooting, though June 
also, he says, is a good month for it. Colonel 
Ward's The Sportsman s Guide to Cashmere and 
Ladak gives details as to localities, and this, as 
well as General Kinloch's grand work, should be 
purchased by any sportsman who may intend to 
shoot ibex and other game in Cashmere. But the 
new hand at this shooting must bear in mind that 
many of the localities mentioned in Colonel Ward's 
book have long since been played out so far as 
heads worth shooting are concerned, and that, as 
time goes on, sportsmen must make up their minds 
to penetrate further and further into the interior, 
and to seek nullahs which have been but little 
shot over, if they be determined to bag fine 
trophies. The same remark applies to all Hima- 
layan game. Unless a sportsman who intends 
coming out from home on a shooting trip to 
Cashmere, or one in India who has never been 
in Cashmere before, can obtain from friends really 
reliable recent information as to localities, his best 
course, having first studied Ward's and Kinloch's 
books, is to reach Srinagar very early in April, 
and ascertain upon the spot what had been done 
in the previous season, and where the best bags 

293 



BULLET AND SHOT 

had been obtained, and then, if possible, to go 
still further afield/ 

A friend of mine — Major G., R.A. — only a few- 
years ago, made a splendid bag of ibex upon the 
occasion of his very first expedition to the '* happy 
valley." He, however, ran considerable risk in 
crossing a very high pass before it was safe, and 
carried his life in his hand during the perilous 
journey. He brought back eleven heads, of which 
the largest measured 47, and the smallest 36 inches. 
This sportsman adopted a plan of which I have 
never read in any book on Himalayan sport. In 
place of going out day after day and looking for 
the ibex himself, he used to send out his Kashmiri 
shikarrie to inspect the ground, and, when he 
ascertained from the latter that a herd with one 
or more good heads in it was frequenting a certain 
locality, he made his plans for endeavouring to 
obtain an interview at close quarters with the game. 

Another friend — Major D., of the 52nd O.L.L — 
some years ago, had a very disastrous start, though 
in the end he did well. 

In crossing a high pass, some eight marches 
beyond Srinagar, a heavy snowstorm came on. 
His shikarrie did not think that it would long 
continue, so recommended the Major to descend 
to a lower elevation, leaving his camp standing, 
and taking with him only his rifles and ammunition. 

' In the latest edition of his book, Colonel Ward takes a very 
despondent tone with regard to Cashmere sport, and has even altered 
its title, considering the Cashmere of the present day less a paradise 
for the sportsman, than a fine field for the tourist. 

294 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

He acted on this advice, but the snowstorm lasted 
for three days and three nights, the whole camp 
being buried beyond hope of recovery until the 
snows should melt. Major D. had therefore to 
return to Srinagar to obtain new tents and a fresh 
outfit. Cholera was raging at that place at the 
time, and his shikarrie (one of the best in Cash- 
mere) contracted the disease and died, his coolies 
moreover running away ; while another sportsman 
pressed on, and occupied the splendid nullah for 
which he was bound. 

Such a combination of misfortunes was sufficient 
to dishearten the keenest votary of Diana, but 
Major D. pluckily persevered, and, crossing the 
Indus and working in the direction of Skardo, 
he made a good bag. 

The etiquette in Cashmere is that a nullah 
belongs to the first occupant so long as he may 
choose to remain in it, and great is the racing to 
secure the more coveted localities should two or 
three men have made up their minds to try to 
secure the same hunting-ground. 

Camp life in Cashmere is cheap, but the sports- 
man must make up his mind to rough it, and to 
eschew most luxuries, on account of the difficulty 
of transport, coolies only being available for the 
purpose there. 

Splendid ibex and markhor heads have lately 
been bagged on the Gilgit side. This part has 
long been closed against casual sportsmen, on 
account of the turbulence of the tribes inhabiting 
it, but military officers on duty there have recently 

295 



BULLET AND SHOT 

had magnificent opportunities of bagging aged ibex 
and markhor in a practically virgin locality. By 
the time that it will have become settled, and safe 
for ordinary sportsmen, the vicinity of Gilgit will 
probably be played out so far as large heads of 
both of these wild goats are concerned ; and anyone 
who may desire large heads will have to go beyond 
the area hitherto shot over to find such. 

The country inhabited by ibex consists of rocky, 
precipitous hills at high elevations, and, in the most 
favourable season for shooting the game, just above 
the snow-line is the point at which to look for it. 
The animals, lying up in the rocks and snows 
above, descend in the evenings to crop the new 
growth of herbage springing immediately after the 
melting of the snow below. 

In shooting all hill game, it is desirable to at 
least spot it from above. The situation may be 
such that a shot from the same level, necessitating 
the sportsman's descent before he can take it, may 
afford more chances of keeping the game, once it 
be disturbed, in view, in order to obtain several 
consecutive shots ; but the tendency of all wild 
animals is to look down-hill, and it is advisable 
to sight the game from a point of high vantage, 
to avoid the fatal alternative of being first observed 
by the keen-sighted wild goats. 

Needless to say, the wind plays a most important 
part in this, as in all other kinds of hill stalking, 
and in all hill ranges the wind is often very tricky. 
Any of my readers, who are fond of target shooting 
at long ranges, will clearly gather my meaning, even 

296 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

if they have not been out shooting in the hills, 
and have not seen the eccentric currents caused by 
the configuration of a mountainous country. One 
golden rule, which a sportsman who had shot in 
Cashmere and Thibet laid down to me, is this, viz., 
that "Wind will always blow up-hill if it can," 
which fact affords a further reason for keeping well 
above the game. 

Ibex have of late years generally been shot with 
expresses of '500 or "450 calibre, but the ibex 
weapons of the present and the future are undoubt- 
edly the '303 sporting rifle and the '256 Mannlicher, 
the flat trajectory of both giving them an enormous 
pull over all other sporting rifles yet invented. 
This advantage — a great one anywhere — is enor- 
mously accentuated in the case of shooting in the 
hills, where accurate judgment of distance is often 
extremely difficult. 

The vernacular names for the ibex are — 

In the Himalayas — Sakin, I skin, Skeen. 

On the Upper Sutlej — Buz. 

Kashmiri — Kale. 

In Kulu — Tangrol. 

In Ladakh — (male) Skin, (female) L'Damuo. 



THE IBEX OR WILD GOAT OF ASIA MINOR 
{Cafira ^gagrus) 

This wild goat extends from Asia Minor into 
Sindh and Baluchistan, and is also found in 
Afghanistan. In colour, its short coat is brown, 

297 



BULLET AND SHOT 

becoming, however, lighter in summer, with an 
almost black line along the back. The male has 
a black beard. The females and young are lighter 
in hue. The animal is smaller than the Himalayan 
ibex, and is found at very much lower elevations. 
The difference between the horns of this species 
and those of any other of its tribe is well described 
by Lieutenant-Colonel R. Heber Percy in " Indian 
Shooting," in one of the two volumes on Big Game 
Shooting in the Badminton Library, in the following 
words : — " Instead of having a flat front and being 
thinner behind than in front, as most other ibex 
horns are, these horns have the edge in front, a 
scimitar-like ridge running up the front of the horn, 
wavy but unbroken for about one-third above the 
head, and then represented by knobs which spring 
up at some distance apart for about another third, 
when the ridge appears again, but rapidly dies 
away towards the point. The sides of the horn, 
too, are smooth, the outer side rounded and the 
inner flat, the knobs not running down the sides 
as in other ibex." 

This animal has been shot with horns of over 
50 inches in length, but anything approaching 40 
inches is well worth shooting. 

The sportsman who may wish to shoot this 
animal should read the account given of it in the 
above-mentioned volume of the Badminton Library, 
and 'also Sterndale's notice of it in his Natural 
History of Indian Mammalia. 



298 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 



THE SEVERAL VARIETIES OF MARKHOR 
{Capra Falconeri^ vel Megaceros, vel Jerdoni) 

Of all the wild goats in the world, the markhor 
carries by far the finest trophies. This splendid 
animal varies, not only in appearance and size, but 
also in habits, in the different localities wherein he 
is found ; so much so that General Kinloch con- 
siders that the two most divergent types, viz., the 
spiral-horned and the straight-horned, even if they 
possess a common origin, are now entitled to be 
considered different species. 

In his winter coat, the general colour of the 
markhor is dirty bluish grey or bluish white. He 
carries a long, black beard, and his shaggy, white 
mane, extending down to his knees, enhances his 
imposing appearance. In summer his coat has a 
reddish tinge. He is a powerfully built animal, 
standing about ii hands at the shoulder. 

General Kinloch, besides the two widely diver- 
gent types mentioned above, describes also two 
intermediate forms. 

His classification is as follows : — 

I. Spiral-Jiorned. — Extreme type the Kashmir 
Markhor {Capra megaceros) : horns " flat and 
massive, and rising in a fine open corkscrew form 
with widely diverging tips to a length of upwards 
of five feet measured along the spiral, and with 
three or four twists." (This variety he considers 

299 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the finest of all.) It is found on the Pir Panjal 
and Kaj-i-nag ranges. Rowland Ward quotes one 
head of this type measuring 63, and many between 
50 and 60 inches respectively in length. 

2. Straight- horned. — Extreme type the Sheik 
Budin Markhor (Capra Jerdoni) : found on the hill 
of that name, and upon other hills in its neighbour- 
hood, viz., on the right bank of the Indus. 

Horns perfectly straight, round at base, with a 
spiral groove running round them from base to 
tip. This animal is considerably smaller than the 
preceding, and his beard and mane are less de- 
veloped. 

General Kinloch believed, when he wrote his 
book, that the largest head ever obtained on the 
Sheik Budin hill measured only 32 inches. He 
considers a head of 24 inches a fair specimen. 

3. Spiral- horned. — The Markhor of Astor, Gilgit, 
Chilas, etc. Spiral much more open than No. i, and 
with seldom more than one complete turn. The 
animal is somewhat larger than No. i. Horns of 
both No. I and No. 3 measure much the same, 
viz., from 40 inches (good head) up to upwards of 
5 feet in length, though it is but very rarely in these 
days that horns above 50 inches in length are 
bagged. 

4. Straight-horned. — The Markhor of Northern 
Afghanistan. Horns heavier and longer than those 
of Sheik Budin, and the twist more accentuated. 
This animal is larger than his congener of Sheik 
Budin, and is more like Nos. i and 3 in general 
appearance. 

300 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

Horns iip to 39^ inches are recorded b>" 
Rowland Ward, as also a single horn of 48^^ 
inches, but heads of 30 inches and over are worth 
bagging. 

Rare as are large heads of markhor in the 
localities inhabited by them which are open to 
European sportsmen, the difficulties of the chase 
of this fine animal are greatly enhanced by the 
fact that not only does he inhabit the most 
dangerous ground, but he delights, in Cashmere 
at least, in precipices amidst rocky forests in which 
it is extremely difficult to see him. 

Writing so long ago as 1883, with reference to 
markhor shooting, Colonel Ward states that he 
should consider himself "well repaid by obtaining 
one fair shot for each fortnight on the shooting 
ground." 

The Sheik Budin markhor, however, is far less, 
difficult to find, since the hills which he inhabits are 
practically destitute of forest ; but there, too, exists, 
plenty of ground so dangerous that, should the 
markhor take to it, the sportsman cannot follow 
them. 

The Astor markhor frequents open ground for 
the most part, but very little of the country in- 
habited by him is free to European sportsmen, and, 
of course, Afghanistan also is impenetrable by any- 
one who values his life. 

The sportsman who may desire to bag markhor 
should read General Kinloch's and Colonel Ward's 
books mentioned in dealing with ibex, and should 
also bear in mind that only by the exercise of 

301 



BULLET AND SHOT 

infinite patience and perseverance, can he venture 
to hope for success. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 
In Afghanistan, Cashmere, etc. — Mar-khor. 
Ladakhi — Ra-che or Ra-pho-che. 

THE TAHR {Capra vel Hemitragus Jemlaicus) 

The tahr is a fine wild goat which stands from 
9 to lo hands in height at the shoulder. In colour, 
the male varies from light yellowish brown to dark 
brown ; he has no beard, but he carries a splendid 
mane which springs from the fore-quarters and 
neck, and hangs down to (occasionally) as far as 
the knees. 

The smell of the male is extremely potent and 
most disagreeable. 

The female is much smaller than is her consort, 
and in colour she is reddish brown above, and 
whitish below. Her horns are but small. 

The horns of the male are triangular in shape, 
with the sharp edges to the front. They seldom 
exceed 14 inches in length, even in the largest 
specimens, and a head of 12 inches is worth 
preserving. 

Like the markhor, the tahr is fond of forest-clad 
precipices, and so he is not easy to find ; and as, 
moreover, he inhabits very difficult and dangerous 
ground, while his trophies bear no comparison with 
the magnificent spoils of the markhor and the ibex, 
he is not nearly so much sought after as are the 
two latter. 

302 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

The tahr is found throughout the Himalayas, at 
high elevations, from Cashmere to Bhootan. It is 
plentiful in Chamba and Gurwahl. Judging from 
General Kinloch's experience, it is a tough beast, 
and well-placed lead is necessary in order to bring 
it to bag. 

The same author names as . the best times for 
bunting tahr, the early spring when fodder is scarce, 
and the rutting season, at both of which periods the 
old males come out upon the open slopes. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Near Simla — Tehr and Jehr. 

In Nepaul — Jharal. 

In Cashmere — Kras and Jagla. 

In Kulu — Kart. 

In Kunawar — (male) J hula, (female) Tharni or 
Thar. 

On the Sutlej, above Chini — (male) Esbu, 
(female) Esbi. 

THE GOORAL {Nemorhcedus Goral) 

The gooral, or Himalayan chamois, is found 
throughout the Himalayas, at low elevations not as 
a rule exceeding 8000 feet. It is fond of heat, and 
inhabiting, as it does, the lower portions of the 
valleys, is found in very steep and difficult ground, 
the cover clothing the slopes at low elevations 
imposing an additional difficulty upon its pursuit. 
Gooral are not gregarious, but two or three are 
often found together. 

303 



BULLET AND SHOT 

This animal is only some 26 inches in height, 
and as its horns do not often exceed 8 inches 
in length, it is not much sought for, being 
consequently found at no great distance from 
various hill stations and in the close vicinity of 
villages. In colour, it is brownish grey with a 
dark line down the spine. Both sexes having 
small horns, the white spot on the throat, which 
is more marked in the male than in the female, 
is said to be the most distinguishable mark for 
determining the sex of these animals when seen 
at even a short distance off. 

The pursuit of the gooral is recommended as 
training both in cragsmanship and in shooting, 
for, as well as inhabiting very difficult ground, it 
affords but a very small mark for the rifle. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Pahari — Goral. 

Kashmiri — Pijur, Rein or Rom. 

In the Sutlej valley — Sah or Sarr. 

Lepcha — Suh-ging. 

Bhootia — Ra-giyu. 



THE SEROW {Nemorhoedus Bubalinus) 

Of this rare animal — no doubt more seldom seen 
because he leads a solitary life, and is partial to 
steep rocky forests — General Kinloch says : — " The 
Serow is an ungainly -looking animal, combining 
the characteristics of the cow, the donkey, the pig, 
and the goat. It is a large and powerful beast,. 

304 



THE WILD GOATS OF CASHMERE 

considerably larger than a tahr, and longer in the 
leg. The body is covered with very coarse hair, 
which assumes the appearance of a bristly mane 
on the neck and shoulders, and gives the beast 
a ferocious appearance, which does not belie its 
disposition." 

" The colour is a dull black on the back, bright 
red on the sides, and white underneath, the legs 
also being dirty white. The ears are very large, 
the muzzle is coarse, and the two singular circular 
orifices are situated two or three inches below the 
eyes." 

In height this animal measures about, or a little 
more than three feet at the shoulder. It has short, 
annulated horns, of about the same length in both 
sexes ; and the longest horn of which I can find 
any authentic measurement is Mr, A. O. Hume's 
head of I2|- inches, quoted as the record by 
Rowland Ward in his latest edition. 

The serow is seldom found when looked for, 
and perhaps is but seldom specially sought, being 
generally met with, and occasionally bagged, when 
the sportsman is in pursuit of other game. 

General Kinloch made one short trip into Cash- 
mere with the special object of shooting serow, 
and bagged but one. An injury to his foot, 
however, laid him up for a fortnight of the best 
time which he spent upon the ground. He, Colonel 
Ward, and other writers all agree that the serow, 
when wounded, will fight, and so due caution 
should be exercised when dealing with a wounded 
animal. 

X 305 



BULLET AND SHOT 

A serow, when disturbed, invariably gallops down- 
hilFand travels for a long distance before stopping. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Pahari — Serow or Serowa. 

On the Sutlej — Eimu. 

Kashmiri — Ramu, Halj, and Salabhir. 

Leesaws of the Sanda Valley — Nga. 

The Shans — Paypa. 

Chinese of Burmo — Chinese frontier — Shanli. 



v^ 



CHAPTER XVII. 

SOME BRIEF NOTES ON THE WILD SHEEP OF 
INDIA AND THE HIMALAYAS 

1. The Ovis Ammon or Nyan {Ovis Hodgsoni) 

2. The Burhel {Ovis Nahura vel Burhel) 

3. The Shapoo {Ovis Vignei) 

4. The Oorial {Ovis Cydoceros) 

THE OVIS AMMON OR NYAN {Ovis Hodgsojii) 

THIS Splendid wild sheep, which is so closely- 
allied to other similar forms inhabiting North- 
ern and Central Asia, as to suggest that the differ- 
ences between them and it are no greater than can 
be accounted for by diversities in habitat and in 
food, is found in austere Thibet. The flesh of this 
sheep is tender, and excellent for the table. 

General Kinloch thus graphically describes the 
country inhabited by this animal : — 

" On the wild, bleak uplands of Thibet, where for 
hundreds of miles not a tree is to be met with ; 
where in every direction, as far as the eye can 
reach, there is nothing but a vast expanse of barren 
soil, rock, and snow ; where there is no shelter from 
the glare of a cloudless noon, nor from the freezing 
winds that sweep the naked hills with relentless 

307 



BULLET AND SHOT 

force towards the close of day ; here in the midst 
of solitude and desolation, where animal life has 
apparently to struggle for existence under every 
disadvantage, is the home of this great wild 
sheep." 

The same author states that "a full-grown male 
stands upwards of 12 hands at the shoulder," and 
is superior in size to the Ovis Poll of Central 
Asia, the horns of the latter being longer and 
thinner than those of the nyan. 

He further states that "the colour of the upper 
part of the body is a dark earthy brown, becoming 
lighter towards the lower parts. The rump is light- 
coloured, and the tail is only about an inch in length. 
The throat and chest are adorned by a white ruff, 
the hairs of which are considerably lengthened ; 
those on the body being short, brittle, and very 
close set." 

The record head of an Ovis Ammon is, according 
to Rowland Ward, a magnificent trophy whose 
horns along the curve measure no less than 57, 
their girth being 1 8f , and the distance between the 
tips 29 inches respectively. This head came from 
Ladak. 

The next largest quoted by him, which was 
obtained near the Pangong lake, measures only 50J 
inches along the curve. He produces, however, a 
long list of heads of 40 inches and over. General 
Kinloch states that "the average size of a full- 
grown ram's horns may be stated at about 40 
inches by 17," — viz., the size of the largest head 
bagged by him. The female carries small horns. 

308 



THE WILD SHEEP OF INDIA 

The white ruff of the male is a striking feature 
which can be seen at a great distance. Ovis 
Ainmon are extremely wary animals, and so in- 
tensely acute is their sense of smell, that they are 
most difficult to stalk on account of the treacherous 
nature of the wind in Thibet. 

Colonel Ward recommends patience in working 
ground, to reach which the sportsman has marched 
some hundreds of miles, and which ought not, 
therefore, to be disturbed on cloudy or gusty 
days. 

General Kinloch, with his vast experience in 
stalking Himalayan game, considers a male nyan 
as by far the most difficult animal amongst them 
all to circumvent. In addition to the difficulty of 
approaching within shot of nyan which have been 
viewed, it is further very hard to find the old rams 
in the summer as they exhibit a strongly-marked 
penchant for certain pet spots, so that the sports- 
man may pass near their haunts without seeing the 
game of which he is in search, though females and 
young may be daily met with. At this season the 
old rams, leaving the ewes to their own devices, 
live apart from the latter in their favourite, often 
circumscribed, localities. 

Any sportsman who may contemplate an ex- 
pedition in search of nyan, should obtain and 
carefully study General A. A. A. Kinloch's Large 
Game Shooting, Thibet and Northern India ; as 
well as Colonel Ward's, The Sportsman s Guide to 
Kashmir and Ladak, etc., under the chastening, 
and I trust pessimistic, light of the latter's The 

309 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Tourist's and Sportsman's Guide to Kashmir and 
Ladak. 

The Thibetan names for this sheep are — 
Hyan, Nuan, Nyan, Niar, Niaud, or Gnow. 



THE BURHEL {Ovis Nahura vel Burhel) 

The native name applied in the Himalayas to 
this wild sheep is thus variously anglicised by 
different authors — by General Kinloch as "Burrell"; 
by Jerdon, Colonel A. E. Ward, and Sterndale as 
" Burhel " ; by Colonel Heber Percy as ** Burrel," 
and by Rowland Ward as " Bharal." 

The habitat of the burhel in the Himalayas is 
from Ladakh to Bhootan, and Kinloch states that 
it is probably not found below 10,000 feet elevation; 
he personally knows that it inhabits Ladak, Spiti, 
Gurwahl, Kumaon, the vicinities of the Niti and 
Chor Hoti passes, and the valleys towards the 
upper waters of the Indus and Sutlej. Burhel 
are found at as high an elevation as 17,000 feet, 
and Colonel Heber Percy has seen this sheep 
and the Himalayan ibex in the same place, and 
he states that they are generally found upon broken 
ground at no great distance from rocky cliffs, and 
are moreover adepts at climbing. 

Kinloch says, " In a word, what they delight in 
is good grazing ground in the immediate vicinity 
of rocky fastnesses, to which they can imme- 
diately betake themselves when disturbed." 

Burhel are found in herds, though in summer the 

310 



THE WILD SHEEP OF INDIA 

majority of the males separate from the females. 
Sterndale's description of this animal is as follows : — 
** General colour a dull slaty blue, slightly tinged 
with fawn ; the belly, edge of buttocks, and tail, 
white ; throat, chest, front of forearm and cannon 
bone, a line along the flank dividing the darker 
tint from the belly, the edge of the hind limbs and 
the tip of the tail, deep black ; horns moderately 
smooth, with a few wrinkles, rounded, nearly touch- 
ing at the base, directed upwards, backwards and 
outwards, the points being turned forwards and 
inwards. The female is smaller, the black marks 
smaller and of less extent ; small, straight, slightly 
recurved horns ; nose straighten The young are 
darker and browner." 

General Kinloch's description, which differs con- 
siderably from Sterndale's, is: — "The colour is a 
light bluish grey above, and white beneath. The 
chest and throat, the legs, and a line along the 
side separating the grey from the white, are jet 
black." 

The burhel stands from 30 to 36 inches 
in height, the females being disproportionately 
smaller than the rams. Although burhel frequent 
bare ground carrying no cover with the exception 
of rocks, their colour assimilates so well with that 
of their surroundings, that they are very hard to 
detect when they are lying motionless. 

Colonel Ward points out the great utility of a 
pair of good Baltistan dogs in recovering wounded 
burhel ; and the Sportsman s Guide gives many 
localities for this sheep. The meat of the burhel 

3" 



BULLET AND SHOT 

is excellent, both Kinloch and Ward speaking of 
it in highly laudatory terms. 

In Horn Measurements, the best head of 
which detailed information is forthcoming is one 
from Ladakh, measuring 3i|- inches in length of 
horns, the girth of the latter being 13^ inches, but 
a head of 23 inches and above is a fine one. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

In the Himalayas — Burhel, Buroot. 

In Thibet and Ladakh — Napu, Na or Sna. 

In Nepaul — Nervati. 

On the Sutlej — Wa or War. 

THE SHAPOO {Ovis Vignei) 

This animal, which is called the "Oorin" in 
Boonjie and Astor, inhabits Ladakh and Little 
Thibet at elevations varying between 12,000 and 
14,000 feet. 

It stands from about three feet to a little more 
in height. 

In colour the shapoo is brownish grey, growing 
paler below, till it meets the belly, which is white. 
It is sometimes termed by sportsmen the "red 
sheep," in contradistinction to the burhel or "blue 
sheep." 

Colonel Heber Percy in the Badminton volume 
gives a good description of the extreme restless- 
ness which pervades the nervous economy of this 
creature, regarding which he says, "there is not 
an animal in the whole of the Himalayas so vexa- 

312 



THE WILD SHEEP OF INDIA 

tious to hunt." Shapoo can travel over rocky, 
rough ground with ease. 

Colonel Ward's Sportsmans Guide should be 
consulted for localities. The migration of these 
animals in the winter from Astor to the Boonjie 
plain, renders the latter a sure find in April. 

The best head quoted in Horn Measurements 
measures in length of horn 39, in girth of same i if, 
and in distance between tips 15^ inches respectively. 
Colonel Ward considers an average horn about 
26, and a good one anything above 29 inches in 
length. The female has small horns. 

The vernacular names for this sheep are Sha and 
Shapoo. 

THE OORIAL {Ovis Cycloceros) 

This animal, sometimes known as " the Punjab 
wild sheep," is found upon the Salt range, the 
Suleiman range, the Hazarah hills, etc., in that 
part of India. In the ravines of the low rocky 
hills frequented by this creature, Kinloch describes 
the heat in summer at midday as probably as 
great as could be found anywhere in the whole 
world, " the temperature frequently attaining some- 
thing very like furnace heat." The cold weather 
from November to end of January should therefore 
be chosen for the pursuit of oorial. 

The male stands about three feet at the shoulder, 
the female being very much smaller. 

The following is Sterndale's description of this 
animal: — "General colour, rufous brown; face 

313 



BULLET AND SHOT 

livid, side of mouth and chin white ; a long, thick 
black beard mixed with white hairs from throat 
to breast, reaching to the knees ; legs below knees 
and feet white ; belly white, a blotch on the flanks ; 
outside of legs and a lateral line blackish. The 
horns of the male are sub-triangular, much com- 
pressed laterally and posteriorly ; in fact, one may 
say concave at the sides, that is, from the base 
of the horn to about one half; transversely 
sulcated ; curving outwards, and returning inward 
towards the face ; points convergent. The female 
is more uniform, pale brown with whitish belly ; 
no beard and short, straight horns." 

The ground frequented by this sheep is usually 
bare and stony, occasionally supporting scrub 
and bushes, and sometimes precipitous. The 
country inhabited by oorial is also used by the 
native shepherd for grazing his sheep, so that 
the wild animals are kept pretty much on the 
move. 

As in the case of the other wild sheep, the males 
to a great extent separate from the females in 
summer. Colonel Heber Percy says that "a 
30-inch ram on the Salt range is now a rarity," 
and the largest head mentioned by Rowland Ward 
is one which measures in length 39, in girth 
lof, and between the tips iS^ inches respectively. 
This head came from the Punjab, but the precise 
localitv is not stated. 

Several fine heads, running from one inch less 
than the above down to 30 inches are quoted ; but 
the largest from the Salt range measures but 33^ 

314 



THE WILD SHEEP OF INDIA 

inches. Any head of 24 inches and over is worth 
bagging. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

In the Punjab — Oorial or Ooria. 

In the Suleiman range — Roch or Ruch. 



31S 



CHAPTER XVIII. 

THE INDIAN AND THIBETAN ANTELOPES 
AND GAZELLES 

THE INDIAN ANTELOPE {Antilope BezoarHcd) 

THE mature male of the Indian antelope, or 
Sasin antelope {^Antilope Bezoartica), which is 
called the "black buck," is one of the most beautiful 
and most graceful animals in India — in fact, in the 
world. He is found under suitable conditions in the 
plains in many portions of each of the presidencies 
of our vast dependency. His spouse — the homely, 
hornless, fawn - coloured doe — is not nearly so 
conspicuous an animal as is her black-robed lord, 
the snowy whiteness of whose under parts stands 
out in glaring contrast to the ebon hue of the 
remainder of his body, and whose artistically- 
twisted and closely-ringed horns — which are of 
great length in comparison with the size of the 
animal, whose height is only about 32 inches — are 
a fitting finish to the handsome attire of this most 
elegant and very striking creature. 

Whether we see him lying down taking his ease 
in the midst of his harem, or walking proudly, 
with head erect, occasionally pursuing and driving 
off a younger buck who has exhibited an in- 

316 



• 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

cHnation for flirtation, chasing a member of his 
own seraglio, or bounding along in the rear of the 
alarmed herd (for his superior weight enables his 
wives to outstrip him in speed), he is ever 
graceful, ever conspicuous, and a perfect Adonis 
amongst animals. 

Personally I have shot black buck in only two 
parts of India, viz., a large number in Mysore ; 
and eight in a single trip of only one whole, and 
two half-days' shooting, at Point Calimere on the 
south coast. 

In both of these localities, the horns run very 
small as compared with the magnificent trophies 
obtainable in the North- West Provinces, and far 
better heads are to be found even in the district 
of Bellary which adjoins Mysore, than in any 
portion of the latter. 

The biggest horn ever shot by me in Mysore 
measures only igf inches, and I got that, and others 
very nearly as long, in the Chitaldroog district of 
that province. 

In the district of Mysore (so called from the 
capital town of that name), where I was stationed 
for seven years, and in which I shot many buck, I 
never succeeded in bagging a longer horn than 
17 inches, and I got only two animals with heads 
attaining that length. The average in that district 
was about 14 inches. 

Heads measuring even a shade over 28 inches, 
are reported as having been shot in Northern 
India, but nothing approaching this extraordinary 
size has ever been bagged in any part of the South. 

317 



BULLET AND SHOT 

The best Southern India head which I have per- 
sonally measured is one shot by Mr. M. (then 
of the 19th P.W.O. Hussars), who had previously 
killed only some three or four antelope, and was 
moreover quite a novice at game shooting with 
the rifle. This head was bagged at Guntakul, on 
the Southern Mahratta Railway, and it measured 
22^- inches. 

Black buck horns are measured straight from 
base to tip, without following the curves, conse- 
quently a much curved horn, though often actually 
longer in the spiral than a very straight one, will 
show a smaller measurement than the latter. 

Usually one horn is slightly longer than the other, 
and the measurement of the longer one is that 
accorded to the head. 

In Mysore, an average herd of antelope consists 
of from ten to fifteen animals, including, as a rule, 
only one black buck and one or two young males 
as liofht in colour as the does. 

The herds have their own beats, and, unless 
disturbed, are usually to be found upon the places 
generally frequented by them ; but it is only very 
early in the morning that the sportsman can count 
upon their being in their usual haunts. He may, 
when later in the day he comes upon a favourite 
resort of the game, find a herd of cattle or sheep, 
with attendant noisy children (who yell vociferously 
as soon as they see antelope), upon the ground 
which he expected to find occupied by the objects 
of his pursuit. Needless to say, in such an event 
he may have to traverse a considerable area in his 

318 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

search for the errant herd, and may after all fail to 
discover it. 

In many localities which I know in the Mysore 
district, the herds are few and far between. The 
areas of uncultivated land frequented by them are 
moreover large. Sometimes a single herd frequents 
the waste land around the base of one of the low 
rocky hills which form so striking a feature of the 
Mysore country, or it may be that there are two 
or three such pieces of waste, a mile or more apart, 
with but one herd of antelope between them. 

The wonder is, not that the antelope are com- 
paratively scarce in Mysore, but that any of them 
exist at all, considering the number of natives 
belonging to meat-eating castes, and the constant 
war of extermination waged by them upon the 
unfortunate animals. 

Just as in the District forests and parts of the 
State forests in Mysore, deer are being continually 
butchered by natives for the sake of their meat 
and skins, so in the open plains, by shooting and 
by snaring, the slaughter of antelope, without any 
regard to age or sex, goes on, unremittingly, 
merrily, and profitably so far as the poachers are 
concerned. 

Of course the State is mainly to blame for this 
condition of affairs, since a wholesome check ought 
long ago to have been imposed upon indiscriminate 
slaughter by a little very necessary legislation. 

When, in addition, one takes into account the 
number of wolves which, in the Mysore district at 
least, frequent the same ground as the antelope, it 

319 



BULLET AND SHOT 

is obvious that they, too, must take pretty heavy 
toll of the latter. Then again, the new-born kids 
are in danger of being killed by jackals and pariah 
dogs. Altogether, considering all his enemies, and 
the fact that he is continually being disturbed and 
moved about by cattle-herds and goat-herds as 
well as by villagers crossing the plains, or working 
in their fields at the edge of the latter, the life 
of a black buck must be rather too exciting to 
rouse the envy of anyone but a veritable fire- 
eater ! 

Although they inhabit tracts wherein they daily 
— sometimes hourly — see human beings, antelope 
are very wary animals, and as a rule require careful 
stalking. Still, it is occasionally possible to get a 
shot without making any attempt at concealment, 
where the ground is of such a nature as to render 
it impracticable for the sportsman to get out of 
sight. In such a case, he should walk boldly on, 
as if he were going to pass the herd at a distance, 
and gradually edge nearer and nearer, never stop- 
ping, and never looking at them (except out of the 
corner of his eye) until he is within range, when, 
having previously calculated the distance, he must 
take his shot without delay. Personally, I never 
fire a shot at such small game at a considerable 
range without sitting down. By sitting clown, 
pressing the heels together, keeping the knees 
apart, and resting one elbow upon each knee, great 
steadiness can be obtained, and in firing running 
shots at antelope I prefer to assume this position, 
even after the game has commenced to bolt. When 

320 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

shooting at the running deer at the Southern India 
Rifle Meeting, in Bangalore, I always shot in the 
sitting position, and I won a good many prizes at 
that target (unlimited entries), including at one 
meeting a highest possible in the single-barrel 
contest (seven single shots at lOO yards), upon 
which occasion I used a Government Martini- 
Henry rifle ; and also, in the same meeting, a 
highest possible in the double-barrelled event (three 
pairs of double shots), in which I used a '500 
express rifle. The bull's-eye was six inches, but 
the deer was certainly running very slowly, whereas 
at the Bisley Meeting it travels at a high rate of 
speed. 

Some few men are very steady shots in the 
standing position, as, for instance. Colonel W., 
so often mentioned in this book, who won the 
then Daily Graphic Seventy Guinea Cup at one 
Bisley Meeting with a score of thirty-four points 
out of a possible thirty-five, the distance being 200 
yards, and the position standing. To beginners in 
game shooting, but experts at target shooting in 
the standing position, I would say by all means 
take the shot standing, for the act of sitting down 
may, though more often it does not^ become the 
signal for the flight of the antelope ; but all 
ordinary shots will do well to run the risk, and 
to take their shot at the game in a sitting position. 

There is not much to fire at, the animal being 
very lightly made ; and the sportsman should re- 
member that a black buck is exceedingly tough, 
and if hit too far back, or if only a leg be broken, 

Y 321 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the wretched beast often escapes to die a lingering 
death. 

Very early in my antelope shooting days I had 
an extraordinary experience of their vitality, for 
which, to this day, I find it difficult to account. 
I was out shooting near Kadakal, which is only 
nine miles from the town of Mysore, and had 
ascended a hill rising abruptly from the plain, from 
which, with a telescope or binoculars, antelope can 
often be seen a long way off. With the naked eye 
we could see, far away in the plain, little clouds of dust 
rising first in one place and then in another, and 
the men said that these were due to bucks fighting, 
while the glass showed that such was the case. 
Descending the hill, I made a good stalk in, but 
arrived, rather too much pumped for steady shoot- 
ing, within easy shot of the pair of bucks who were 
fighting most viciously and persistently. I fired at 
one and missed ; they then bolted, and I fired again 
as they ran and hit one of them. Greatly to my 
surprise, the antelope ran only a short distance and 
then pulled up, and once more set to fighting 
furiously. So engrossed were they in their deadly 
duel that they allowed me to walk in quite close, 
and I then fired at and dropped one of them (I 
subsequently found that this was the one first 
wounded) ; and the other one, taking no notice 
of the shot, delivered another thrust with his horns 
at the fallen foe, whereupon I fired again and killed 
him also. Imagine my surprise when I found that 
both my bullets were most accurately placed upon 
the shoulder of the first buck slain, and either 

322 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

of them would have sufficed to at once kill an 
antelope under ordinary circumstances. How that 
animal, thus wounded by a hollow express "500 
bore copper-tube bullet, could run a short way, pull 
up again, and continue fighting like a demon, I 
cannot understand. I can only surmise that the 
fact of his extreme rage enabled him to support 
a wound which would have floored him at once 
under ordinary conditions. But this has been a 
long digression, and I will now return to the 
subject of how to bag antelope. 

It often happens, particularly in Mysore, that 
these animals are found on ground broken by 
ravines and nullahs, in some places clothed with 
bushes, and under such circumstances very pretty 
stalking can be enjoyed. A good pair of binoculars 
(or a telescope) to be carried by one of the men, 
and a pair of " Lilliput " binoculars, which can be 
taken in the sportsman's own pocket, are very 
necessary for use in antelope shooting. 

The sportsman may need an aid to vision after 
he has left the men under cover (or in a nullah) 
while he proceeds by himself to stalk the game, 
and he will then find the " Lilliput " binoculars 
extremely useful. 

In some places, the ground is so flat and bare, 
and the antelope so wary, that in order to circum- 
vent them it is necessary to use a covered bullock 
cart. Antelope are quite accustomed to seeing 
cattle and carts, so that, unless they have learnt 
the trick, they will generally allow a cart to go 
•quite close to them. I have only in two trips 

323 



BULLET AND SHOT 

adopted this somewhat poaching device, and that 
was on ground over which a friend in the Gunners 
had previously shot, and upon which he told me 
that I should have to employ it in order to obtain 
sport. 

It was certainly very deadly in my first trip, one 
October, when in seventeen days' shooting I bagged 
twenty-four black bucks, one buck chinkara, and 
two bustard (the bustard being shot with the rifle). 
When, however, I went over the ground again, 
some two months later, the antelope would not let 
a cart approach anywhere near them ; and I had 
hardly any sport, and what little I obtained was on 
foot. I believe, however, that this wildness of the 
game upon the occasion of my second trip, was due, 
not to their remembrance of my previous use of a 
cart, but to the alleged fact that a large gang 
of antelope netters and snarers had, just before my 
second visit, been harrying the ground and driving 
the animals about until they were ready to run from 
anything ; and of course they could see a cart 
much farther off than they could detect a man. 

The modus operandi in using a cart is, first, to 
put in some brushwood or straw, then a thick 
mattress and some pillows, and to cut two holes, 
one on each side, in the bamboo matting which 
forms the roof and sides of the covering, to serve 
as windows. The cart then goes lumbering along 
across country in places where antelope are likely 
to be found ; and it is extraordinary what rough 
ground and what ticklish nullahs, a bullock-cart, 
if well driven, can cross without upsetting. 

324 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

When a herd of antelope has been sighted, the 
cart should be headed as if to pass them on one 
side, and should they show any uneasiness and an 
inclination to move off, it should pursue a course 
as if to pass ahead of them, making the necessary 
detour for the purpose. Sometimes, animals, which 
have shown some alarm at the first approach of a 
cart, subsequently lose fear and afford an easy shot. 

When the antelope have gained confidence, or 
should they have shown no alarm at the cart pass- 
ing them in the first instance, the sportsman must, 
when approaching within range, drop out of the 
back of it when the bullocks' heads are turned 
towards the game ; the cart should then turn off at 
an angle, while he advances under cover of its side. 
When near enough for a good shot, he should sit 
down while the cart goes on, and as soon as he has 
taken aim at the buck, fire at the shoulder of the 
latter. 

Some beginners are very apt to " pull off" in the 
act of firing. If such will make a practice of using 
the middle finger put well round the trigger, in place 
of the forefinger, they will probably find a great 
improvement in their shooting. A bullet placed 
anywhere on or just behind the shoulder, though 
not too far back, will drop the buck either in his 
tracks, or after he has run but a short distance. 

If, owing to a badly-placed bullet, the animal 
goes off wounded, it is far better, should the 
country admit of it, for the sportsman to watch 
him through his glasses, rather than at once pursue 
him. Then, if he should see the wounded animal 

325 



BULLET AND SHOT 

lie down, or enter a field of standing crop, the wiser 
course is to sit quiet for a time and watch, rather 
than risk losing the buck, as may easily happen 
should he press on and disturb the latter before 
his wound has had time to stiffen. 

Sometimes, a small band, consisting entirely of 
young bucks, is met with, and occasionally also 
a fine old black male, who, from choice or from 
necessity, leads a single life, and such a one is 
usually exceedingly wary. 

At times, too, a herd (or a single buck) may be 
found in such a position, that, while stalking is out 
of the question, there is a possibility of the game 
being driven to the sportsman. Perhaps the latter 
may have found the herd in the same place before, 
and have noticed the line which the animals took 
when disturbed. In such an event it is worth 
while to try a drive, the sportsman concealing 
himself behind any cover which may lie in their 
former line of retreat. Driving, however, except 
in preserves, is seldom successful, but the main 
point to impress, upon the two or three men wha 
may be sent to perform the manoeuvre, is that they 
should make a vejy wide circuit, and get far behind 
the game before attempting to advance towards it 
with the object of driving it forward. 

Directly a buck has fallen to the shot, the sports- 
man should run up, and seizing him by one horn, 
turn his horns down backwards, and cut his throat. 
If he desires to preserve the head for subsequent 
mounting, he should take care to cut low down, 
so as to leave a long neck. He must, while 

326 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

administering the coup de grace, avoid standing 
in such a position that the animal, if it be still 
alive, would be able to kick him. 

Length of horn appears to be no criterion of 
age in the case of antelope. Frequently young 
brown bucks have fine horns — better sometimes 
than those carried by the majority of their black- 
coated brethren in the same locality. 

A horse or pony is a very useful aid to the 
sportsman when out antelope shooting. Walking 
long distances over the hot plains is very trying, 
and frequently many miles must be covered in a 
day. Some men have ridden down a wounded 
buck till the latter has dropped from exhaustion, 
or have speared him from horseback, but I have 
personally never attempted either of these courses. 

I have shot black buck chiefly with a double 
•500 express rifle, using generally Eley's hollow 
copper-tube small bullet, weighing 340 grains ; but 
I have also shot about twenty with a friend's double 
•360 express rifle, and I found that the latter killed 
them well and cleanly. Upon this point, however, 
the experience of a Major in the -19th P.W.O. 
Hussars (who has shot a great number with his 
•360) is somewhat at variance with my limited 
experience of antelope shooting with that bore, his 
opinion being that the "360 is scarcely powerful 
enough to kill them satisfactorily. Sir Samuel 
Baker recommends a '400 bore rifle for this 
game. 

Though I have not yet used the weapon, except 
in a few entries one meeting at the running deer 

327 



BULLET AND SHOT 

target at Bisley, I have no doubt that a sporting 
double '303 is the antelope gun of the future. 

I once, with my Holland double "500 express, 
made an extraordinary shot at antelope. Upon 
that occasion, a herd which I was attempting to 
stalk took alarm and fled, but as they took off down 
a nullah on my right, I saw a chance, by running, 
of cutting them off and obtaining a shot. I failed 
to do the former, for the herd had passed before 
I reached the nullah, but they pulled up to gaze. 
I was terribly breathless after my run, but knelt 
down and fired at the shoulder of the buck of the 
herd. At the shot he fell, as did also another buck 
standing behind him ! I saw no other male with 
this herd. Upon that occasion I was using the 
large canelured copper-tube express bullet with a 
solid base, which weighs 440 grains, and is far 
superior in penetration to the ordinary hollow 
copper-tube bullet weighing 340 grains, for, while 
its front portion breaks up, its solid base carries on. 
In this particular instance, the bullet had smashed 
up upon the further shoulder, while the solid base, 
after going clean through the animal, broke the 
spine of buck number two who was standing behind 
the former. 

I have killed a number of bucks by running shots, 
but have of course missed very many more. The 
great thing to remember in firing running shots 
at antelope is that you are hardly likely to miss 
in front, and that you can scarcely fire too far 
ahead of a buck going at full speed — say 200 or 
250 yards off — across you. At a range of only 100 

328 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

yards, the allowance necessary is less, and the 
chance a much better one. Success in running 
shots can only be attained by a combination of 
practice, observation, judgment and luck. Such 
attempts in the case of antelope are very instructive, 
since the sportsman can frequently see a cloud of 
dust knocked up by each bullet, and thus ascertain 
in which direction his error lay. 

I once killed a single buck with my seventh shot, 
at very long range, as he was going off at full 
speed. He had started in another direction, but 
turning back on meeting a villager, came past me 
again, and the fatal bullet caught him just as he 
was disappearing from view. 

If it be intended to preserve the head of a black 
buck for mounting, the removal of the mask should 
be effected with as little delay as possible. The 
only incisions required after the head has been 
severed from the body — of course leaving a long 
neck — are one up the back of the neck to the 
centre of the top of the head, and, from its termina- 
tion, two very short ones, viz., one to the base of 
each horn. The skin can then be removed without 
difficulty, care being taken, however, not to allow 
the knife to slip through the skin near the eyes, 
nostrils and lips. All adherent muscles must then 
be removed from the skin, and either arsenical soap 
or carbolic acid applied to all these parts both inside 
and outside. The mask can then be dried in the 
sun, being occasionally turned so as to dry both 
surfaces, a wisp of straw or hay being meanwhile 
placed inside to keep it open. 

329 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Whether it be intended to preserve the head for 
stuffing, or only to keep the skull and horns, the 
latter must be removed from their bony cores, and 
this cannot be done till a few days after the animal's 
death. The best plan, as soon as the horns can be 
removed, is to rinse them out with common, cheap 
carbolic acid, and also to paint the cores with the 
same. Care must be taken, in boiling the head in 
order to remove the flesh, that the water is not 
deep enough to cause immersion of portions of the 
horns, and the boiling should be carried no further 
than is necessary for effecting the object in view. 
Of course, should it be intended to preserve the 
head for mounting, the lower jaw-bone must be 
carefully kept. The body -skin of an antelope, if 
pegged out in the sun, will dry in a few hours. 
Nothing need be applied to it, except a coating of 
wood ashes, while it is lying exposed with its raw 
side uppermost. This could not safely be done 
under a hotter sun than that of Mysore, as in 
the plains at lower elevations all drying of skins 
must be done in the shade. 

The best locality for black buck in the Mysore 
province is the Chitaldroog district. This can be 
easily reached from the various railway stations on 
the Southern Mahratta Railway between Adjampur 
and Devangere. Other good localities in Southern 
India are parts of the Bellary district where the 
horns run larger than they do in Mysore. It would 
not, however, be worth the while of anyone who may 
intend later on to go to the north, to waste time in 
shooting antelope anywhere in the South of India. 

330 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

The North- West Provinces generally, and par- 
ticularly the Bikanir desert between Rajputana 
and the Punjab, are the home of the finest black 
buck to be found in India, and in the Hissar dis- 
trict, according to Jerdon on information received 
by him, vast herds, calculated at from 8,000 to 
10,000, have long ago occasionally been seen in 
the Government cattle farm. Jerdon says that he 
has seen herds of some thousands together in the 
vicinity of Jalna in the Deccan. 

Guzerat, in the Bombay presidency, is, I gather 
from private information received from a brother 
sportsman, a great place for antelope as well as for 
chinkara. 

In the postscript to his splendid work. General 
Kinloch mentions having actually bagged a head 
on the borders of the Bikanir desert some ninety 
miles from Ferozepur, the horns of which measured 
26f inches ; and adds that amongst a herd con- 
taining some 1,500 animals, he saw a buck with 
horns far surpassing any which he has bagged or 
seen elsewhere, and states that he believes that he 
is quite within the mark in estimating them at not 
less than 29 inches. R. Ward quotes one head of 
28f, another of 28:^, and two of 28 inches respec- 
tively. 

The venison of a Mysore black buck is excellent, 
in fact, far superior to the mutton of that country. 

The principal vernacular names for this animal 
are — 

Hindustani — (male) Harna, Harin ; (female) 
Hirni. 

33* 



BULLET AND SHOT 

In Tirhoot — (male) Kala ; (female) Gorla. 

In Behar — (male) Kalsar ; (female) Baoti. 

In Bhagulpur — Bureta. 

In Nepaul — Barout and Sasin. 

Canarese — Hoolay-Kerra, Jinki. 

Mahrathi — Hiru. 

Telegu — Jinka, and (male) Irri ; (female) Sedi. 



THE INDIAN GAZELLE 
CHIKARA, OR RAVINE DEER {Gazella Bennetti) 

This pretty little animal appears to be more local 
than is the Indian antelope, but in many places is 
found upon precisely the same ground, though the 
chikara usually confines itself to such portions 
thereof as may be covered by bushes, or in 
which ravines occur. Its height at the shoulder 
is only about 2 feet 2 inches in the case of a buck, 
and the latter's horns vary from 12 to 14 inches in 
length. They are annulated, but are not spiral as 
in the case of the black buck, and, unlike those of 
the latter, they curve forward at the tips. In 
colour the chikara is deep red-fawn, with the lower 
parts and buttocks white. 

Personally, I have never seen more than three 
or four together, but my experience of chikara is 
limited to two trips in a part of Mysore in which 
these animals and antelope occupy the same 
ground. 

At first sight, a buck chikara might be mistaken 
for a young buck antelope, but he is in reality 

332 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

easily distinguishable by the redder colour of his 
skin, and by the perpetual motion of his tail which 
he is continually wagging. 

Chikara appear to be far more fidgety and restless 
than are antelope, and it is often difficult to get a 
shot at them when found in high bushes. They 
should, however, always be followed up, as they 
may give a chance even after having been more 
than once alarmed. Unlike the doe antelope, which 
is hornless, the female gazelle has tiny, thin horns — 
as a rule only 4 or 5 inches in length — which are 
not ringed like those of the buck. 

When a chikara has gone off wounded (and the 
vitality of this animal is wonderful), I have found 
it a very difficult matter to get another shot at him, 
in spite of profuse bleeding, and although he has 
been obliged to lie down at frequent intervals, on 
account of the jungled character of the ground 
which he inhabits. 

The vernacular names for the Indian gazelle 
are — 

Hindustani — Chikara, Kal-punch. 

Canarese — Chit-hoolay, Sunk-hoolay, Tiska,. 
Budari. 

In Punjab — Hirni. 

Mahrathi — Kal-sipi. 

Telegu — Barudu-Jinka. 



333 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE NILGHAIE {Portax pictus) 

The male of this antelope stands from 13 to 
14^ hands at the shoulder. He carries but an 
insignificant trophy, his horns being but from 8 to 
10 inches in length. The male is of a blue-grey 
colour, and hence its name of nilghaie (e.g., blue 
cow), while the female is of a sandy or tawny 
hue. 

The nilghaie is generally distributed over India, 
but is not found in Mysore and other parts of the 
extreme south. His habitat is open country, with 
scrub or sparse tree jungle, and he is not worth 
shooting. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

Hindustani — Nilghao, Nilghaie, Lilghao, Lil- 
^haie. 

Canarese — M arav i. 
Goudi — Guraya. 
Telegu — Manupotu. 

THE THIBETAN ANTELOPE {Pantholops Hodgsonii) 

This antelope is found on the desolate, dreary 
plains and valleys of Thibet, at very high eleva- 
tions. The buck is a larger and heavier animal 
than is the black buck, and varies in colour from 
whitish or light fawn to pale red, while the puffy, 
swollen muzzle gives him a very peculiar appear- 
ance. 

334 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

The Chung Chenmo valley in Thibet and its 
neighbourhood, is the locality wherein this antelope 
is generally shot by English sportsmen. 

Colonel Ward has never seen it at a less eleva- 
tion than 14,800, or at a higher one than between 
18,000 and 19,000 feet. 

The does are hornless, and are much smaller 
than the bucks. The horns of the buck are jet 
black, close grained, and deeply notched on their 
anterior surfaces. 

Colonel Ward's best head carried horns measur- 
ing 26^ inches in length, and General Kinloch's 
best, out of twenty-five heads bagged, measured 
two inches less. The latter heard of a pair of horns 
measuring 28^ inches, but, as he did not see them 
himself, this is hearsay evidence. Rowland Ward 
quotes horns up to 2']\ inches; while Colonel 
Ward, who also writes with great authority, does 
not think that the average length of the horns of 
a mature buck can be considered as exceeding 
22 inches. The skin is useless. 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

In Nepaul — Chiru. 

In Thibet — Isos, Isors, and Choos. 

THE THIBETAN GAZELLE {Gazella picticaudcita) 

This beautiful little gazelle, which stands only 
about two feet in height, is in winter, when the 
hair is long, grizzled-fawn in colour, with dirty- 
white under parts ; while in summer, when the coat 
is short, it is much darker in hue. 

335 



BULLET AND SHOT 

The goa, as this animal is called in Thibet, 
inhabits barren, bleak uplands at very high eleva- 
tions, the vicinity of the Tsomoriri lake along the 
Chinese frontier in Ladak, and Hanle, being named 
as localities for it by Kinloch and Ward. 

From 13 to 13^ inches is the measurement of a 
good pair of horns of this species. 



THE FOUR-HORNED ANTELOPE 
(Teiraceros quadricornis) 

This antelope has a wide distribution throughout 
India from the foot of the Himalayas to the 
extreme south. In Mysore, the two -horned 
variety, known as Elliott's antelope, is more 
common than is a perfect head with the four horns 
developed, though both forms occur there. 

In a fine specimen of the perfect type, the 
posterior horns measure 4 or 5 inches in length ; 
while the anterior do not exceed i^ inches, and 
are usually much less. 

This antelope measures only 2 feet, or 2 feet 
2 inches in height at the shoulder. It is, in 
Mysore, met with alike in the dense tree and 
bamboo forests of the low country, as in the 
lighter jungles clothing the slopes of hills. It is 
very frequently allowed to pass unscathed, owing 
to its being accidentally encountered when the 
sportsman is in pursuit of larger game. It is 
always well worth shooting when there is no 
objection to firing a shot for fear of disturbing more 

336 



INDIAN ANTELOPES 

worthy game, owing to the excellent quality of 
its venison. It is, when at some little distance, 
easily mistaken for the muntjac (or barking deer), 
but it is yellower and less ruddy in hue than is the 
latter, and is also somewhat smaller. 

I have found four-horned antelope both singly 
and in pairs, and it is obvious from the collections 
of dung found in any particular place which one 
of these animals may have chosen as his home, 
that he returns to the same place for the purpose 
of defecating — a peculiarity which, so far as I am 
aware, is shared by no other wild animal except 
the rhinoceros. 

A '500 express hollow bullet makes a terrible 
mess of one of these little antelopes, but the 
sportsman has seldom anything very much lighter 
with him when shooting in the jungles which they 
inhabit. 

The vernacular names for the four - horned 
antelope are — 

Hindustani — Char-singha, Chou-singha, Jungli- 
buckra. 

Canarese — Kard-coorie. 

Telegu — Konda-gori. 

Gondi — Bhir-kura (male), Bhir (female). 

Note. — The names Jungli-buckra and Kard-coorie are 
in Mysore applied indiscriminately to this animal and 
to the muntjac {Cervulus aureus). 



337 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE TAKIN {Budorcas taxicolor) 

This curious animal, though at present but little 
known to European sportsmen, inhabits, amongst 
other places, the Mishini hills on the northern side 
of the valley of Assam. It is also found in Chinese 
Thibet, and in the Akha hills north of Assam. 
Specimens have been procured from the Mishinis 
near Sudiya on the Assam frontier. It inhabits 
precipitous ground, is heavily built, and stands 
about 3^ feet in height at the shoulder. It is, at 
least in one stage, of a tawny ground colour, with 
legs, tail, muzzle, and dorsal stripe black. 

The horns are very peculiar in shape, twisted 
into a somewhat bovine form, with a strong super- 
ficial suggestion of a resemblance to those of the 
gnu of Africa. They are very thick, and measure 
up to about 24 inches in length. 

Mention is made here of this animal only because 
some portions of the area inhabited by it may at 
any time become accessible to sportsmen, though at 
present it would be suicidal for an Englishman to 
attempt to penetrate it. 

The vernacular names for the Takin are Takin, 
or Takhon, pronounced nasally. 



338 



CHAPTER XIX. 

THE RlilNOCEROTID^ AND SUID^ OF INDIA 

THE GREAT INDIAN RHINOCEROS 
{Rhinoceros Indicus) 

THIS huge animal measures, in the case of a 
large male, from 5 to 6 feet in height, and 
the single horn, which is common to both sexes, 
though rarely as much as 2 feet in length, seldom 
attains more than one half that size. 

It inhabits the Terai, at the foot of the Hima- 
layas, from Bhootan to Nepaul, and is very abundant 
in Assam and the Bhootan Dooars, frequenting 
swampy ground and dense jungles. It has a habit 
of depositing its dung in the same spot, of which 
fact the native shikarrie takes a somewhat mean 
advantage. 

The peculiar tuberculated hide, with its huge 
folds and plates, irresistibly calls to mind the plated 
armour of bygone ages. 

In the valley of Assam, where the soil is all 
alluvial, and stones conspicuous by their total 
absence, the mighty Brahmaputra river is at the 
present day, as in the ages that have passed, con- 
tinually shifting its bed. What is this year a high 
sandbank clothed with dense jungle, may not im- 

339 



BULLET AND SHOT 

probably, in the floods of next rainy season, be 
washed away, and the place thereof become part 
of the bed of the river. 

Great fertility is the natural result, and in con- 
sequence a very high, dense growth of reeds and 
grass covers all the low-lying portions of the valley, 
often presenting a huge unbroken expanse over a 
very large area, and reaching in places a height 
of twenty feet or more. Then too, there are large 
and densely jungled churs (or islands) left in the 
river when the latter has fallen to its dry season 
level, and these often afford excellent shooting. 

Assam is par excellence the home of the great 
Indian rhinoceros, and in suitable localities his large 
three-toed and unmistakable track will generally be 
found. 

Owing to the nature of the jungle, and the great 
height and density of the huge seas of reed and 
grass (often matted with creepers) which cover 
the low -lying portions of the valley, rhinoceros 
can, as a rule, be hunted with any prospect of 
success only by sportsmen mounted upon elephants, 
with a number of those animals in attendance to 
act as beaters. Of course, a great variety of game 
is met with and shot while beating these vast 
expanses and the churs, since not only rhino, but 
tiger, buffalo, panther, pig, and deer of several 
species are found therein. 

The best season for sport in Assam is the cold 
weather — say from November ist to January 31st 
— and that period is a very pleasant one there. 
Of course, though the nights and mornings are 

340 



THE INDIAN RHINOCEROS 

chilly, the sun is very hot by day, and a big, 
thick sola topee is essential as a protection to 
the head against its rays. The best advice which 
I can give to any sportsman who may desire 
to shoot in Assam, and who knows no one there, 
is to go up to the hill-station of Shillong about 
October, call round the station, make inquiries, 
visit any planters or officials in the valley below 
of whom he may hear as being keen upon sport 
(he will find the planters a fine, manly, hospitable 
and kindly set of men), and try to join some one 
of the parties which may be going out. The 
journey is an easy one from Calcutta, and rail 
and steamer will take him almost to the foot of 
the Cossya hills on which Shillong stands. He 
can go either up or down the valley by steamer, 
and from Dibrugarh in Upper Assam, to Sudiya 
on the frontier, there is a line of rail which 
has been constructed since I left that part of 
India, 

Of course this method of shooting is expensive 
owing to the number of elephants which must be 
employed. The more elephants there are, the 
longer the line, and the wider the area which 
can be beaten. 

I have heard of very fine bags of tigers made 
upon the Brahmaputra churs. A pair of 8-bore 
Paradox guns is the best battery for rhino. 

R. Ward quotes one horn of 24, one of 19!^, 
one of 19, and two horns of female specimens 
as measuring 16^, and 16 inches respectively. 
These are all very large measurements, and a 

341 



BULLET AND SHOT 

specimen of 12 inches in length is well worth 
baororino-. 

00 o 

The vernacular names for the rhinoceros are — 
Hindustani — Genda, Gonda, Ganda, or Genra. 
Assamese — Gor. 



THE JAVAN RHINOCEROS {Rhinoceros Sondaicus) 

This animal, though called by Jerdon " the lesser 
Indian rhinoceros," is of much the same height as 
Rhinoceros Indicus. It inhabits parts of India, 
e.g.^ the Sunderbunds, Burmah, and Tipperah, and 
according to Sterndale, who cites Pollock as his 
authority, Assam. Of this species only the males 
are horned. 

Sterndale mentions two other species of rhino- 
ceros, viz.. Rhinoceros Lasiotis, inhabiting Arakan 
and Tenasserim,and Rhinoceros Stc7natrensis,2i small, 
yet very long-horned species inhabiting Tenasserim, 
Burmah, Siam, the Malayan peninsula, and Sumatra. 
Both of these two, unlike Rhinoceros Indicus and 
Rhinoceros Sondaicus which each have but one 
horn, are two-horned. 

Jerdon, excluding Rhinoceros Lasiotis alto- 
gether, mentions Rhinoceros Sumatrensis, which he 
calls ''Rhinoceros Sumatranus^' and about which, 
as regards India, he only says that it "is suspected 
by Blyth to extend as far north as Assam." 

The vernacular names for the Javan rhinoceros are 
the same as for the last, with the following additions : 
Burmese — Khyen-hsen. 
Malayan — Badak. 

342 



THE WILD BOAR 



THE WILD BOAR {Sus Indicus) 

This animal, perhaps the most courageous, 
determined, and short-tempered of all the denizens 
of the Indian jungle, is found throughout the latter 
at all elevations from zero up to (according to 
Jerdon) 12,000 feet. The largest boars stand some 
36 inches or more in height, and their for- 
midable and extremely sharp tushes, which often 
attain the length of 9 inches, have (according to R. 
Ward) been even obtained as large as i4f 
inches. These, the animal can use with terrible 
effect, as many a tiger has discovered to his cost 
when he has ventured to try conclusions with an 
old boar, whose wives and progeny form a very 
favourite and succulent food of the jungle tyrant. 
In these encounters, the tiger has often been 
worsted, and even occasionally killed by his well- 
armed and powerful antagonist. 

General Kinloch relates a terrible experience of 
his own when out " pig-sticking," and his recovery 
was little short of marvellous, since he was horribly 
ripped, and covered with some fifty wounds from 
the tusks of a boar which had upset his horse, 
and then devoted his energies to the dismounted 
officer. 

In parts of India, in which, from the nature of 
the ground, spearing boars from horseback is prac- 
ticable, the latter is the only way in which a 
European will kill them. In fact, in such localities 

343 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and their vicinities, shooting a pig is as serious a 
crime in the eyes of sportsmen as vulpicide in a 
hunting county at home ; and pig-stickers, Hke 
fox-hunters, become so sentimental upon the sub- 
ject, that nothing short of self-preservation would 
induce them to shoot their favourite game anywhere, 
however impossible the country might be for the 
prosecution of the legitimate sport. 

The late Sir J. D. G., who was a good all-round 
sportsman and devoted pig-sticker, was upon one 
occasion beating sholahs with a friend of mine 
on the Neilgherries (where pig-sticking is never 
attempted) for sambur and muntjac. 

During one of the beats, a big boar dashed 
straight down the path on which Sir J. was 
posted, and directly towards him. Sir J. could 
not bear the idea of shooting the animal, but he 
well knew that the pig would not move an inch 
out of his way, but would, if permitted, certainly 
cut him over ; so when the owner of those wicked, 
little, twinkling eyes, and dentine razors, was close 
upon him, he shot him dead, thus incurring a good 
deal of subsequent chaff, I believe, since his opinions 
upon the subject of pig-shooting were well known, 
as he did not hesitate to express them. 

I have, upon more than one occasion, when bison 
shooting, at times too when to have fired a shot at 
other game would inevitably have ruined my chance 
of success with the nobler animal, been menaced 
with a charge by a boar, which, however, in the two 
instances which occur to my memory, went off at 
last without attacking me. Had the beast in either 

344 



THE PIGMY HOG 

instance charged me, I should of course have been 
compelled to shoot him. 

Some vernacular names of this animal are — 
Hundustani — Soor, Bara-janwar, Kala-janwar, 
Canarese — Hundi. 
Mahrathi — Dukar. 
Telegu — Pandi. 

THE PIGMY HOG {Porcula salvania) 

This tiny animal, which is said by Mr. Hodgson 
to resemble in size and shape a young one of the 
preceding species of about a month old, weighs 
only from seven to ten pounds. Its habitat is the 
saul forests of Sikkim, and the Nepaul Terai. 
Hodgson says ''the colour of the animal is a black 
brown, shaded vaguely with dirty amber or rusty 
red." According to the same author, the pigmy hog 
goes in herds, and the males will courageously attack 
intruders, " charging and cutting the naked legs of 
their human or other attackers with a speed that 
baffles the eyesight, and a spirit which their straight, 
sharp laniaries render really perplexing, if not 
dangerous." 

The vernacular names for this animal are — 

H industani — Chota-soor. 
N epaulese — Sano-banel. 



345 



CHAPTER XX. 

POACHERS AND NUISANCES 

IN this list, various animals which prey upon 
others will not be included ; some because they 
themselves afford coveted trophies, and are there- 
fore amongst the most valued game of the Indian 
sportsman, as the tiger and the panther ; others, 
again, are omitted on account of their rarity, which, 
however bloodthirsty and successful a poacher each 
individual may be, renders the total damage to 
game, which is perpetrated by the whole species, 
of small comparative practical importance. Take, 
for instance, the Indian and Thibetan lynxes, and 
also the Thibetan wolf (or chanko), which last is, 
moreover, so well supplied with tame mutton, as 
to rarely trouble himself to hunt for the sparsely- 
distributed and extremely wary game animals 
which roam the vast, inhospitable wastes of bleak 
Thibet. 

Of the multitude of poachers which harry the 
many species of large and small game in the con- 
tinent of India, I am doubtful whether I ought 
to award the palm for destructive power to the 
Indian wild dog {Cuon rutilans), or to the class 
of native whose object it is to slay, by any means 

346 



POACHERS AND NUISANCES 

in his power, and utterly regardless of both sex and 
age. any animals, the flesh of which may command 
a ready sale in his vicinity. The injury done to 
the head of game by both is incalculable ; but, 
inasmuch as the native is always at work, quietly 
and unostentatiously, slaying, without, as a rule, 
driving the game out of the sphere of his operations, 
while the terror which is inspired by a pack of wild 
dogs, hunting in any particular tract of forest, is 
such as to denude that tract temporarily of all its 
fe7'ce natures and so to necessarily limit the opera- 
tions of the canine poachers to an occasional visit, 
I am inclined to think that the human poachers are 
even greater curses to the sportsman than are the 
dogs. I will therefore deal first with the poaching 
native. Generally he possesses a gun — an anti- 
quated, long-barrelled weapon as a rule, but one 
which, when loaded with several irregularly-shaped 
chunks of lead, a handful of slugs, or two bullets, 
does terrible execution at close quarters — and a 
native has far too keen an eye to the retention 
of what he possesses to risk even a charge of powder 
and lead unless he is morally certain of scoring. 
With his bare feet he can walk almost as noise- 
lessly as a cat ; practice has rendered both his 
eyesight and his sense of hearing exceedingly 
acute ; he knows every water-hole, salt-lick, and 
glade in the jungles near his home (and his opera- 
tions do not usually take him far afield) ; and this 
knowledge, together with his intimate acquaintance 
with the habits of the game, added to an unlimited 
store of patience, and a total disregard of the value 

347 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of time, constitute, with his afore-mentioned anti- 
quated weapon and a few charges of powder and 
lead, a stock-in-trade which is amply sufficient for 
his purpose. For hours he will lie in ambush 
watching a water-hole, at which, in the hot and 
dry season, deer are wont to slake their thirst ; or 
a salt-lick, whither they repair, especially in wet 
weather, to eat the salt earth ; but let even a gravid 
hind or a young fawn approach his hiding place 
so close that to miss is well-nigh impossible, the 
murderous charge is launched, and the exulting 
poacher secures an animal whose flesh can be sold. 

The time has undoubtedly come when a check 
should be put on this state of things by the im- 
position of gun and game licences, priced sufficiently 
high to prevent the majority of these poachers from 
incurring the expense of so large an outlay. In 
Mysore, as I have elsewhere stated, there is nothing 
to prevent anyone from entering even the State 
forests (except during the fire season) for the pur- 
pose of shooting ; and the ridiculous cost of a gun 
licence (about fourpence) and the absence of any 
game regulations, enable the poacher to make a 
very comfortable living at the cost of very little 
exertion, and at an outlay in cash of almost nil. 

There are many other human poachers, par- 
ticularly gipsy-like wandering tribes, who do not 
use guns, but who are extremely expert in every 
conceivable device for capturing game, both large 
and small, and whose methods often combine great 
simplicity in form, with consummate ingenuity in 
design. Antelope are sometimes captured by the 

348 



POACHERS AND NUISANCES 

turning out, on ground inhabited by wild herds, of a 
tame buck with nooses fastened to his horns. The 
natural pugnacity of a wild buck induces him to try 
conclusions with the intruder, with the result, of 
course, that the former's horns are entangled, and 
he is then easily despatched. 

By this method, bucks only are taken, but another 
plan for the wholesale capture of the animals, with- 
out regard to sex or age, is practised with only too 
much success in parts of Mysore. A large number 
of natives, each with a long cord, to which at 
intervals nooses of strong gut are attached, proceed 
together to a place towards which the configuration 
of the ground renders it probable that a herd 
inhabiting the vicinity may be successfully driven. 
The cords are then firmly pegged down in a long 
and often double line (the second some yards 
behind the first), and the men, by making a very 
wide circuit, endeavour to get round the herd, and 
to drive it in the desired direction, when, should 
the operation prove successful, several of the 
animals are often caught by the legs, and promptly 
butchered by the poachers. Pit-falls, dead-fall 
traps, nooses set in various ways, and numberless 
devices, too manifold to enter upon here, are 
employed with variable success to reduce wild 
animals into possession ; while the wholesale 
capture (by highly successful methods) of all 
edible game birds and wild fowl, forms a never- 
failing source of income to the professors of the 
art. 



349 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE WILD DOG {Ction rutilans) 

Next, after the human poacher, the most de- 
structive is the wild dog. This animal hunts by- 
scent in packs, running mute ; and seldom, indeed, 
is it that an animal upon whose track a pack of 
dogs has started, escapes. Unlike the wolf, the 
wild dog is quite untameable. I have seen a pack 
running upon a scent just like a pack of hounds, 
but quite mute. I fired at one, and hit it, and in 
following it up found a hind leg — which had 
evidently been shattered by the '500 express bullet, 
and then bitten off by the wounded animal above 
the hock joint — lying on the track, but the dog 
escaped. I have a found a pack, out of which I 
shot one, in an open glade in the early morning, 
apparently enjoying the rising sun. 

I have only upon one occasion seen a single dog 
by itself, but I once saw only four or five together 
upon the high road, though of course there may 
have been others belonging to the same pack in 
the adjoining jungle. 

The wild dog stands from 17 to 20 inches in 
height, is of much the same general colour as a 
fox, and possesses a bushy red tail, though the 
latter is devoid of the white tip which forms so 
strikinsf a finish to the brush of our " little red 
rover." The effect upon the game, of the advent 
of a pack of wild dogs in any tract of forest, is 
magical. As soon as a few head of deer have 

350 



POACHERS AND NUISANCES 

been run down and eaten, all the game leaves the 
vicinity ; and even the tiger — his food supply- 
having moved off — is also forced to take his 
departure. 

The wild dog attacks the flank of its quarry with 
the object of disembowelling it, and should the 
victim be a male, the testes are also a favourite 
point (Tappui. Terrible, indeed, is the destruction 
of game by these scourges, and considering that 
the bitch gives birth to half a dozen pups in each 
litter, while, so far as I am aware, nature has 
imposed no limit whatsoever, except that of food 
supply, upon the increase of this most pernicious 
animal, it is high time that the Government should 
offer for the destruction of each wild dog, a reward 
sufficiently tempting to induce native poachers 
to turn their natural ingenuity into a legitimate 
and useful channel. The giving of rewards for 
killing tigers, panthers, wolves, etc., might well 
be discontinued, and a good price set instead upon 
the head of the wild dog. I have never known 
a case of man being attacked by these animals, 
but two instances in which their demeanour 
towards him has been uncomfortably contemptuous 
and menacing have come within my knowledge. 
In one of these a very experienced and intrepid 
English sportsman, Colonel G., of the Mysore 
Revenue Survey, who was alone, and with no 
other cartridges besides the two in his gun, and 
in the other a horse-keeper of my own, who, with 
another native, was conducting my pony along a 
path through the forest, were respectively much 

35* 



BULLET AND SHOT 

relieved when the episodes terminated without an 
attack on the part of the dogs. I believe that a 
pack of wild dogs is quite capable of dispossessing a 
tiger of his kill by forcing the big beast to retire ; 
and I know a case in which wild dogs came to feed 
upon a cart bullock, which had been killed by a 
tiger for whose return Mr. (now Colonel) N. C. 
was watching, when the freebooters came on the 
scene. 

THE INDIAN WOLF {Canis palUpes) 

This animal is found throughout India, but does 
not occur on the Himalayas. In colour it varies 
a good deal, the different tints being dependent 
upon climate and season, as well as upon age. 
Some are of a reddish hue, others grizzled, a few 
dark brown, while very old specimens are quite 
grey. The Indian wolf stands 26 inches in height 
at the shoulder, and though he is a bloodthirsty 
and ferocious animal, is also an arrant coward. In 
spite of the fact that wolves are plentiful in the 
Mysore district, of the forests of which I was for 
seven years in charge, I never heard of a case of 
their attacking human beings, or even of their 
carrying off native children ; though elsewhere — 
and particularly in the Central Provinces — many of 
the latter are said to fall victims to the rapacity of 
these animals. I frequently saw wolves, sometimes 
singly or in pairs, and I have also seen as many as 
six or eight together, on ground frequented by 
the Indian antelope. They have been observed, 

352 



THE PARIAH DOG 

as related by Captain Baldwin, to hunt their prey 
in accordance with an obviously preconcerted plan, 
some members of the pack posting themselves at 
intervals behind cover, while the remainder went 
round to drive the antelope — or gazelles, as the 
case might be — towards their ambushed con- 
federates. Sheep, of course, form a favourite and 
easy prey of this animal, which is also partial to 
dogs, foxes and hares. Although it is generally 
stated that foxhounds cannot run down a wolf, I 
have known two instances in which the pack 
formerly kept by the late Maharajah of Mysore 
successfully performed this feat. In each of these 
cases it is probable that the animal was gorged. 



THE PARIAH DOG 

The numbers of half- starved, often cruelly- 
mutilated, and frequently ownerless dogs which 
frequent the purlieus of every Indian village, and 
which live mainly upon garbage, offal and carrion, 
are very destructive poachers in the case of new- 
born fawns, young leyerets, and the young of game 
birds before the latter have attained powers of 
flight. Nothing that these brutes can circumvent 
and seize is overlooked by them, and they are 
always hungry, and ever ready to frighten and 
to drive away any game the capture of which is 
an impossibility for them. In their keenness to 
do as much damage as possible to helpless young 
animals and birds, the efforts of these pernicious 
2 A 353 



BULLET AND SHOT 

brutes are emulated by the jackal, who, though he 
lives chiefly upon carrion, will neglect nothing 
edible, living or dead, which he may come across. 

MINOR POACHERS 

Of the enemies of Indian feathered game — 
after the native poachers who have been already 
mentioned — several species of wild cat and of 
mongoose are the chief delinquents amongst the 
small mammalia ; whilst kites and crows (both of 
which are in their legions), and in a less degree, 
eagles and many species of falcons, hawks, and owls 
account for vast quantities of the young of game 
birds, as well as (in the case of some of the feathered 
poachers) of the mature birds themselves. Snakes 
and rats, moreover, as well as the mongoose, take 
toll of the eggs of the unfortunate birds ; and it 
is wonderful how, in the absence of all protection, 
feathered game is able to exist at all in spite of 
so many voracious and ever- vigilant foes, in the 
case of so many of whom nature appears to have 
omitted to place any adequate limit upon re- 
production and multiplication, 

NUISANCES IN INDIAN SHOOTING 

In addition to the list of poachers, all of whom 
in a greater or less degree are of course nuisances 
to the sportsman, there are two or three nuisances 
which are entitled to special mention. 

One of these is the " did-he-do-it " plover, so 

3SA 



• NUISANCES IN INDIAN SHOOTING 

called from its startling strident note when disturbed. 
This troublesome bird is very partial (for nesting 
purposes) to little open spaces in the jungle, and 
the sportsman who may, while moving stealthily, 
with rifle on full cock, through a likely part of the 
forest in search of deer, have had the misfortune 
to start one or a pair of these birds, knows well 
that every animal within hearing of that eerie cry 
has as surely taken the alarm as if it had itself seen 
the human intruder. Another unmitigated nuisance 
to the sportsman in Thibet is the kyang or wild 
ass, whose irritating curiosity leads it to gallop 
round a stalker as soon as it has perceived his 
presence, and by its absurd antics to communicate 
the alarm to the game which he is endeavouring 
to approach. 

Monkeys, too, are often to blame by chattering 
when they see a sportsman, and thus drawing the 
attention of all other animals within hearing to the 
fact that an enemy is on foot ; but as they often 
do the sportsman a service by indicating in the 
same manner the whereabouts of a tiger or a 
panther, it is comparatively easy to forgive them 
for an occasional indiscretion. 



355 



CHAPTER XXL 

SOME SMALL INDIAN ANIMALS WORTH SHOOTING 

SO extremely numerous are small animals in 
India which fall within this category, that I 
shall attempt to deal with only such of them as I 
have personally shot, or seen. Sterndale mentions 
no less than thirty-six different species of squirrels^ 
and the skins of many of these are well worth 
preserving ; but very few of these are found in 
the forests of which I have had most experience, 
so that my list will be but a very short one. 



THE BLACK MONKEY OR NEILGHERRY LUNGOOR 
{Senmopithecus vel Presbytes jubatus) 

This beautiful monkey is found upon hill ranges 
in the South of India. I have personally seen it 
upon the Neilgherry and the Travancore hills. 

It is covered all over with long hair, which is 
deep black in colour, except on the head and nape 
of the neck, where it is reddish brown, Sterndale 
states that the length of the head and body is 
26, and that of the tail 30 inches. 

This animal utters a weird, unearthly cry, which 
can be heard a long distance off. It is very wary, 

356 



THE BENGAL LUNGOOR 

and therefore somewhat difficult to shoot. The 
skins form splendid rugs, and strips cut from them 
make a most effective edging for a tiger's skin. 

THE BENGAL LUNGOOR {Presbytes entellus) 

This large monkey is common in the forests of 
Mysore, where I have often shot it. Jerdon gives 
the length of a male specimen as 30 inches to the 
root of the tail, the latter being 43 inches, but 
states that it exceeds these measurements. 

In Mysore, where it is termed Musya, some 
old males have very beautiful silver-grey skins, 
the hair being fine and long, while in females 
and younger animals there is much admixture of 
slaty and dirty brown hues, the hair of such 
being shorter, and their skins not worth preserving. 
The hands, feet, and face are deep black. I did 
not like shooting these animals on account of the 
rarity of a really beautiful skin, but the Kurrabas 
eat them, and often begged me to shoot one for 
them. 

Like the preceding species, this monkey utters 
an uncanny, loud, and long- protracted cry, which 
may frequently be heard resounding through the 
timber forests of Mysore. It is in that country 
a very timid animal, inhabiting only the large 
forests at a distance from villages. It is gregarious, 
and often a considerable number may be found 
together. Its agility is wonderful, and it can jump 
from the branch of one tree to that of another with 
unerring accuracy. If this should, on account of 

357 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the distance between, be impracticable, it will 
descend the trunk and run along the ground ta 
the next suitable tree. I but once succeeded in 
capturing a young one, which gave me and my 
men much trouble ere we secured it. The 
Kurrabas sometimes kill these animals by driving 
some of them into an isolated tree, and then felling 
the latter. 

THE MALABAR SQUIRREL {Saurus indicus vel Malabaricus)- 

I have often shot this large and beautiful squirrel 
in Mysore. In colour it is chiefly of a dark maroon- 
red above, and orange-yellow below, the tail being 
black with a yellow tip. The head and body are 
about 20, and the tail 15 inches respectively in 
length. It is found in heavy forest, and is said to 
make excellent soup, though I have not personally 
tested this, as I acknowledge a dislike for gas- 
tronomical experiments. 

It appears to pair, since two are often found 
together. Skins of this species are well worth 
obtaining and preserving, but the animals are of 
course frequently met with when the sportsman 
is in search of large game, and when he is neither 
provided with a suitable weapon, nor, if he had 
one with him, would dare to use it, for fear of 
spoiling his chances of finding the larger animals. 
A charge of number 5 shot is quite sufficient to 
bring it down. 



358 



THE BROWN FLYING SQUIRREL 



THE BLACK HILL SQUIRREL {Sciurus giganteus) 

This large species measures, according to Stern- 
dale, head and body about 15, and tail about 16 
inches. It is not found in Southern India, but I 
remember shooting a specimen of it in Assam 
many years ago. 

The following is a small part of Anderson's 
description of it, the whole of which is quoted 
by Sterndale : — " This species has well-tufted ears ; 
the upper surface is either wholly black or reddish 
brown without any trace of white ; the tail is 
generally jet black, also the outside of the fore 
and hind limbs, and the upper surface of the feet ; 
an elongated black spot is almost invariably found 
below the eye from beyond the moustache, and the 
eye is encircled with black." 



THE BROWN FLYING SQUIRREL {Pteromys oral) 

This curious creature inhabits the large forests 
of India. Being nocturnal in its habits, it is seldom 
seen by the sportsman, though not infrequently 
captured and killed by wood -cutters, from whom 
skins might, on promise of payment, be obtained. 
In colour it is dark grey. One which was brought 
alive to me was about the size of a small domestic 
cat. Sterndale states that the head and body 
measure 20, the tail 21, and the breadth across 
the extended parachute-skin 21 to 24 inches. 

359 



BULLET AND SHOT 

I once saw a flying squirrel in the day-time, in 
the act of making quite a long flight, in a glade 
in one of the Mysore forests. 

THE INDIAN FOX {Vulpes Bengalensts) 

This pretty little animal is very common in 
Mysore, where it frequents the open plains which 
are also the home of the antelope. I used 
constantly to see it when out shooting black buck, 
but have never specially sought for it. In colour 
it is mainly grey and reddish grey. Its size, 
according to Sterndale, is : — " Head and body 20 
to 21 inches; tail 12 to 14 inches; weight 5^ lbs." 

Except for coursing with greyhounds, this animal 
affords no sport. I have often been tempted into 
firing ineffectual running shots at it with a "500 
express rifle, when there was no danger of alarming 
the game of which I was in search. 

THE WILD CATS OF INDIA 

Of these there appear to be about eight species 
found in various parts of the empire. They are 
not very often seen, and still less frequently shot, 
since if one of them should come forward in a 
beat for the larger felines, it would not be fired 
at so long as any hope remained of the appearance 
of one of the former. 

I shot a beautiful cat upon one occasion, but 
am unable to identify the species to which it 
belonged. I did not keep the skin, which had 

360 



THE BLACK-NAPED HARE 

been terribly damaged by the "500 express bullet 
with which I shot it. 

A forest officer in Malabar, in whose house I 
once spent several days, possessed at the time a 
tame specimen of the very handsome leopard cat — 
so at least my friend, who was a sportsman, and 
to some extent a naturalist, termed it. Sterndale 
says that the leopard cat [Felts Bengalensis) is 
untameable, and he quotes Jerdon, Blyth, and 
Hutton in support of this dictum. The cat I 
refer to agreed in colouring with the description 
of that species given by Sterndale, but it was 
quite tame, wandered about the house and grounds 
at will, sometimes absented itself for several days, 
but always returned. One peculiar, and rather 
disgusting, habit of this animal was always to 
select a wash-hand basin of water, for the purpose 
of defecating. 

THE BLACK-NAPED HARE {Lepus nigricollis) 

This hare, which in size and colour approaches 
more nearly to the blue, or arctic, species in its 
summer coat than to the familiar English brown 
hare (albeit lighter and yellower in colour than the 
former), is common in Mysore, where I occasionally 
shot it in large forests, in scrub jungles, on the 
plains, and when snipe -shooting in dry grass 
adjacent to the wet land. 

Hares, as food, afford a pleasant variety in a 
country which does not offer a great diversity of 
viands, and are therefore worth shooting. They 

361 



BULLET AND SHOT 

are easiest obtained in scrub jungles by the employ- 
ment of beaters. 

THE COMMON FLYING FOX {Pteropus Edwardsii vel medius) 

This large bat is very common in India generally; 
and in Mysore vast colonies of them are to be seen 
hanging by day, with wings closed, on some large 
tree, and at dusk flying overhead on their way to 
search for the fruits on which they feed. In colour 
they are rusty black, with the neck and shoulders 
yellow. 

Sterndale's measurements are: — "Length 12 to 
14 inches; extent of wings 46 to 52 inches." A 
few specimens of this species may be procured for 
the purpose of preservation as curiosities. 



36: 



; CHAPTER XXII. 

INDIAN SNIPE SHOOTING 

ALTHOUGH the continent of India, with 
its marvellous range of elevation and 
diversity of climate, is the home of an enormous 
number of species of game birds and wild-fowl, 
there is no bird amongst them all which is at once 
so widely distributed, so generally popular amongst 
sportsmen, and so welcome an addition to the 
somewhat circumscribed Indian menu, as the 
ubiquitous snipe. From his peculiar cry when 
he rises, the Mahomedans term this bird the 
" Cha-ha," in fancied imitation of the former. 

Not only is the snipe found during about half 
the year nearly everywhere in suitable localities 
all over our vast Indian empire, but he also 
generally occurs in sufficient numbers to make 
it worth the sportsman's while to encounter the 
burning rays of the tropical sun, and the fatigue 
resulting from severe toil thereunder. Indian snipe 
shooting is often a very laborious exercise, owing 
to the depth of the yielding mud through which 
the sportsman must plod. 

The snipe is a sporting bird when flushed, and 
his swift, uncertain flight, and diminutive size unite 

363 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to render a combination of rapidity in the use of 
the gun, with straight shooting on the part of the 
sportsman essential for the achievement of success 
in his pursuit. 

Most people seem to think that the Indian bird 
is slower and less gyratic in his flight than his 
confrere in the United Kingdom ; but, although 
this is doubtless true under certain conditions, 
considering the frequently arduous nature of the 
walking, the terrible heat of the Indian sun (and 
the combined effect of these upon the sportsman), 
and contrasting such with the comparatively 
pleasant and easy conditions under which snipe 
are shot at home, I deem the Indian shooting 
by far the more difficult of the two. Throughout 
a long day, in which a large bag of snipe is made 
in India, I am strongly of opinion that a sportsman 
who shoots for a bag, and not for an average, does 
really well if he has one bird to show for every 
two and a half cartridges expended. Lost birds, 
wounded birds which rise again, and long shots, 
all help to swell the total of ammunition expended ; 
and in my experience, very few men indeed who 
try to bag everything within possible (which of 
course includes some shots at almost impossible) 
distances, can average more than one bird brought 
home for every three cartridges used during the 
day. At home, on the other hand, I should 
consider such an average at snipe as ve7'y poor 
indeed. Personally, I find that I can make a far 
better average at a small number of snipe at home 
than I ever could in India over bags of from 

364 



INDIAN SNIPE SHOOTING 

twenty to sixty couple per diem. It is quite true 
that, in the heat of the day, snipe in India often 
sit close and fly lazily, but I have also seen them 
every bit as wild as their wildest congeners at 
home, even when the latter are met with on a wet 
marsh, on a wild day, and when the birds are 
sufficiently numerous to warn one another by their 
cries as they get up. 

I have upon two occasions in India seen about 
two hundred birds in the air at the same time ; and 
when shooting there, as I have sometimes done, in 
rain, I have found the Indian snipe well-nigh un- 
approachable within possible range, while his speed 
and eccentricity of flight in no way fell short of 
those displayed under similar conditions by the 
English bird. 

Three common species of snipe are widely 
distributed throughout India, viz., the Fan-tail, or 
common snipe, which appears to be identical with 
the British bird ; the Pin-tail, which so closely 
resembles the former that a tyro would not observe 
any diversity between the species ; and the Jack, 
which appears to be the same bird as is known 
by that name in the United Kingdom. A species, 
wrongly named the painted snipe since it is not 
a snipe at all, is frequently met with and bagged 
when snipe shooting, and is counted in the bag. 
A brief description of these four birds may 
advantageously be inserted in this place. 



365 



BULLET AND SHOT 



I. THE FAN-TAIL, OR COMMON SNIPE 
{Gallinago coelestis) 

This bird is widely distributed all over the 
greater part of the empire in suitable localities. 
It is impossible, where both species are often found 
frequenting the same area in almost equal pro- 
portions, to lay down any hard and fast rule ; but 
it may be safely said, speaking generally, that he 
is found in somewhat more humid spots (even upon 
the same stretch of wet land) than is the pin-tail. 
He is considered to be wilder, and to possess a 
sharper and more erratic habit of flight, and is 
moreover just a trifle larger than the latter, with 
a rather longer bill which is slightly more flattened 
at the tip than is that of the other species. 

The principal food of this snipe consists of 
earth-worms, with small molluscs and other water- 
insects, etc. 

The common snipe breeds in the Himalayas and 
Thibet, and migrates to India proper each autumn, 
remaining there until spring (and in some cases as 
late as the month of May) of the following year. 

The average weight of both sexes calculated 
by Mr. Hume (Hume and Marshall's Game Birds 
of India) after numerous weighments of individuals, 
works out as 4^ oz. per bird, the largest recorded 
by him being a female which weighed 5J oz. 

The most striking point of difference between 
this species and the pin-tail lies in the number and 
form of the tail feathers. Hume states that the 

366 



THE PIN-TAIL SNIPE 

feathers which compose the tail of the common 
snipe are fourteen in number, occasionally sixteen, 
and very rarely only twelve. These are broad, 
and are similar to those found in the caudal appen- 
dage of the English bird. The pin-tail, on the 
other hand, has but ten broad tail feathers, on 
either side of which are from five to nine very 
narrow, pointed, stiff ones from which the bird 
derives his name. 

In some localities the first species predominates, 
and in others the second ; while in many places 
both occur in almost equal proportions. I have 
only occasionally taken the trouble to examine the 
tails of a bag of snipe (the pin feathers in the pin- 
tail lie underneath, and are concealed by the broad 
ones), and I have kept no record of the relative 
proportions found in different districts. 

The common snipe practically has it all its own 
way in the North -West Provinces and part of 
Oudh, the other species not favouring those 
localities. 

II. THE PIN-TAIL SNIPE {Gallmago Sthenura) " 

Although in the North- West and parts of Oudh 
this bird is very rare, in some localities he appears 
in far greater numbers than does the preceding 
species. Like the common snipe, this bird is 
migratory, and arrives in India a little before the 
former. 

His menu comprises the food of the common 
snipe, and in addition insects, such as grubs and 

367 



BULLET AND SHOT 

caterpillars inhabiting drier ground than those com- 
posing the ordinary diet of the other bird. 

The females of this species are large and possess 
longer bills than do males of the same age. Hume, 
after compiling the results of the examination of 
nearly one hundred specimens, thus states the 
range of variation : males, 3^ oz, to 4f oz. ; females,. 
3f oz. to ^\ oz. Average of both sexes, 4 oz. 



III. THE JACK SNIPE {Gallinago gallinula) 

This bird too is migratory, and, although found 
all over most parts of India where wet land occurs, 
is rare in many places largely resorted to by the 
two preceding species. He is further more fas- 
tidious in his choice of localities, and in some 
seasons, in the same spots, is far more common 
than in others. I have often found jacks in places 
which were too wet for the other birds, but I do 
not remember having ever shot more than three 
or four couple in a day amongst a large bag of 
snipe. 

Jacks, as a rule, lie very close, and rise and go 
off with a comparatively slow but erratic flight, 
and they are perhaps more often missed than are 
their larger cousins. When fired at and missed, 
they can usually be marked down — often not far 
off — and, once flushed, generally come into the 
bag. 

This tiny bird, which is considered by epicures 
to surpass the other species in delicacy of flavour,, 
weighs only from i\ oz. to 2\ oz. 

368 



THE PAINTED SNIPE 

THE PAINTED SNIPE {Rynchcea Capensts) 

This species, which is wrongly termed a snipe 
only on account of its inhabiting the same ground, 
and being somewhat of the same size as, and shape 
of the common snipe, remains and breeds in India. 
It is a very beautiful bird of truly tropical richness 
of hue. The female is larger than the male, and 
far more brilliantly plumed, the lovely dark green 
hue of the back and wing coverts being strikingly 
relieved by the rich chestnut-coloured spots in the 
wing feathers. In flight this bird is slow, and, 
flapping along like an owl, is often missed when 
it rises before a man who has been making good 
practice at the far more rapidly flying species. I 
have shot it in Assam and Sylhet, in Mysore, near 
Madras, and in the Madura district, but I have 
never found it common anywhere, though a large 
bag of snipe of all sorts has usually contained from 
one or two, up to half a dozen " painters." 

Hume gives the weight limits of this species as — 
males, 3^ to nearly 5 oz. ; females, 4f to nearly 
6 oz. 

The painted snipe is found over most of India 
except the Himalayas, but it is rare in many parts. 

The breeding season is August and September. 
It is, in my opinion, a very good bird when cooked, 
though it has been disparaged in this respect by 
others. 

The only other species of snipe which deserve 
mention are the Wood — and Solitary snipes, and 
they are too rare to merit any special notice. 
2 B 369 



BULLET AND SHOT 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

Snipe occur in more or less abundance, according 
to local conditions, both in natural swamps, and in 
the enormous areas of artificially irrigated land 
devoted to the cultivation of rice and other crops 
requiring moisture. 

For the purpose of irrigation, chains of tanks 
(or artificial reservoirs) some distance from each 
other, and with a fall from the top one to the 
next, and so on, supply water to the wet land 
(which is usually cultivated with rice) lying below 
each of them, the surplus fluid being conducted into 
the tank next below. 

Any portion of the irrigated land, as well as of 
the waterspread of the tank, may, when it is in 
condition for them, and at the proper season, be 
expected to hold snipe if the locality is a favourite 
one with the birds. Snipe have preferences and 
dislikes for localities which only one of themselves 
could explain, and though doubtless food -supply 
is their main factor, the birds usually shun places 
in which the mud is mixed with gravel, or is gritty. 

Too much water is a very common cause for 
disappointment, when the sportsman has perhaps 
ridden or driven some miles to a favourite ground, 
only to find the greater part of it submerged, and 
therefore untenanted by the birds. 

Deep, soft mud, if covered with a growth of 
short grass, is very suitable for the requirements 
of "snipe, and such is often to be found both in 

370 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

the waterspreads of the tanks, as well as in any 
rice fields which may be lying fallow for the season. 
Very often, while the rice (or paddy) is still short — 
more particularly if it has partially failed and is thin 
— numbers of snipe may be found in the crop itself. 
They need not, however, be looked for in high, 
thick paddy, though even when the crop is approach- 
ing maturity, I have found a fair number of birds 
upon the divisions (or bunds) between the little 
fields, where it would not, however, be ordinarily 
worth while to seek them. 

In one portion of the Mysore province, a goodly 
number of the inhabitants are engaged in the 
growth of silk, and it was in mulberry fields 
below a tank, that I one day found the bulk of 
the birds which yielded a bag of sixty -one and 
a half couple to my own gun. This was at 
Chinnapatna, on the line of rail between Bangalore 
and Mysore. 

At Yedatore, about twenty -two miles from the 
town of Mysore, a friend and I once made a bag of 
sixty-nine and a half couple in a day, fifty couple 
of which fell to my own gun. The shooting upon 
this occasion was obtained mainly in the water- 
spread of a tank and in fallow rice fields. 

My largest bag of snipe in one day single-handed 
was sixty-three couple, and was made a few miles 
from Madura (in the Madras presidency), where I 
enjoyed the best snipe shooting which I have ever 
had. On the last eight occasions upon which I 
went out for this game from the town of Madura, 
I averaged almost exactly thirty couple per diem 

371 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to my own gun. There was no single bag of much 
over forty couple, and one of the eight totals 
contributing to form the above -stated average, 
consisted of only two couple and a half ! The 
reason for this last was that I had, upon a ground 
at some distance, seen a large number of birds 
some time before, and wishing to ascertain whether 
they were still on that ground, I sent a native to 
inspect and report. On his returning with the 
news that birds were still there, I made sure 
that I should make a large bag. Imagine my 
disgust, on arriving at the place, to find it quite 
dried up, and the birds all gone ! The rascal 
whom I had sent had evidently saved himself the 
trouble of going, and had trusted to luck (and to 
lying) to see him through. He had certainly quite 
spoilt my day, but as he accompanied me, and as I 
was very far the reverse of amiable towards him, 
I am sure that he did not greatly enjoy his own ! 

Before going out shooting, a native shikarrie — 
a reliable man, if possible — should be sent to scour 
the country, to visit different places, and to ascertain 
which of the latter will best reward the sportsman's 
energies. It may be that two or more distinct 
grounds lie at no great distance apart, and may 
thus be shot over, if not too extensive, on the same 
day. 

The earliest date on which I have seen snipe 
in any appreciable number in Mysore, was on or 
about the 20th September, in one year only. This 
is extraordinarily early for the arrival of the birds 
in that province, though upon that occasion I 

372 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

bagged about thirteen couple. It was, however, 
seldom much worth while to look for snipe in that 
country till the 15th or 20th of October, and I made 
my heaviest bags there much later in the season. 
In Madura, I have seen a good many birds towards 
the end of September, but I seldom looked for 
them so early, the heat then being very severe. 
In snipe shooting, it is a great advantage if the 
sportsman can be accompanied by at least one or 
two natives who have been out shooting with him 
before, and who know how he wishes the men with 
him to act. The best plan is for him to place two 
or three men, a few paces apart, in line on each side, 
himself taking the centre, the distance between 
each man in the line of course depending upon the 
nature of the cover, and upon whether the birds 
are lying very close, or rising freely, and often 
requiring variation in different portions of the 
same stretch of ground. The object is, of course, 
to put up all the birds on either side of himself 
which can be comfortably commanded by the 
sportsman's gun, without springing those which 
would be out of shot before he could fire at them, 
as would be done were the line employed to be too 
long. In working a wide stretch of ground, the 
line must be wheeled at the end, and as many 
beats across and across taken as may be necessary 
to cover the whole — just as in walking up partridges 
in turnips in England. The men should be warned 
to carefully mark all fallen birds, but on no account 
to leave the line to pick up one of them unless 
specially ordered so to do. 

373 



BULLET AND SHOT 

It frequently happens, when the men employed 
are new to the work, that some excited dunder- 
head, rushing forward to pick up a bird which 
has been shot, puts up a number of others out 
of range, most of which would have afforded 
chances had the line advanced without any such 
exhibition of undesirable zeal. If a bird should 
fall in front and in the beat over which the line 
is about to pass, it should be picked up during 
the advance ; but should it have dropped in a 
portion already beaten, the line should halt while 
one or more men are sent to retrieve it. If, on 
the other hand, a shot bird should be lying in fresh 
ground which will not immediately be traversed by 
the line, it is better, if there is the least doubt as to 
subsequent easy recognition of the place, to call a 
halt, while the sportsman goes with one or two men 
straight to the spot, so that, should other birds rise, 
they too may be added to the bag. 

When the ground is very wet, and the birds 
rising very wild on account of their hearing the 
noise made by the men splashing through the 
water, it is often necessary for the sportsman to 
walk in advance along one of the dry bunds, 
causing the men to walk at some distance behind, 
also upon bunds. This manoeuvre on a wild, wet 
day, when it is very hard to get within shot of 
the birds, will often enable a small bag of snipe 
to be made, most of the birds being shot at longish 
range, and being to the full as curly and rapid 
on the wing as are their most wideawake cousins 
in wet weather at home. 

374 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

I remember being delighted with one such bag 
of only some sixteen couple which I made under 
these conditions, very few of the birds composing 
it being shot at a less distance than forty yards, 
and many being stopped considerably further off. 

Snipe are generally wild early in the morning, 
and unless the ground to be worked is very 
extensive, it is better not to begin shooting too 
early in the day. By about ten o'clock the sun 
will be well up and hot, and, in the case of a 
limited area of ground, that hour is quite early 
enough for beginning shooting. I have shot snipe 
from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., with short halts for refresh- 
ment during the day ; and where the ground is 
sufficiently extensive to afford it, should advise 
others to do the same, provided only that they 
are physically capable of standing the toil and the 
sun. 

Snipe shooting in Mysore, where the sun is far 
less trying than it is in the vicinity of Madras 
and in Madura, and where the climate is so 
favourable, is far less exhausting than in the latter 
localities ; and yet in the former, I have (once) 
drunk a full dozen bottles of soda-water during a 
day's shooting, and I always took out a dozen 
in case of need. In shooting from the various 
stations down the South Indian Railway from the 
city of Madras, and also in Madura, I always 
took out a box of ice, and cooled my soda-water 
bottles therein. Without ice, I do not think that 
I could have endured a long day's toil under the 
fierce sun of those parts. In Mysore, however, 

375 



BULLET AND SHOT 

ice out shooting is not required, the soda-water 
bottles, if carried in a basket with straw wrapped 
round each, and the whole kept wet, being rendered 
quite cool. 

A splendid " pick-me-up " after severe toil, is a 
tin of hare, or some other thick soup, at luncheon 
time. This is easily procurable at a few minutes' 
notice, if a tin of soup be opened before starting 
from home, turned into a wide-necked glass bottle, 
and carried in the tiffin-bag, together with an etna 
ready-charged with methylated spirit, and a soup 
plate ; and personally I can swallow soup when 
too much overcome by heat and exertion to care 
about sandwiches, however well made and appe- 
tising under other conditions the latter may be. 
(I prefer sandwiches of pdti de foie gras and 
sardines to any other.) It has never fallen to my 
lot to shoot in places where, and at times when, 
very heavy bags of snipe were procurable ; but 
in many places, granted favourable conditions, bags 
far in excess of anything possible within my own 
experience may be obtained, and, only two or three 
years ago, a single sportsman shooting within reach 
of Calcutta by rail, and in the same season, made 
several bags of over one hundred couple each. 
The season was the second of two characterised 
by abnormal drought, and a huge area of swamp — 
usually too wet to be practicable — was in good 
order for snipe, and afforded feeding ground to 
vast numbers of birds which had been driven to 
it owing to the drying up of their usual haunts. 
A bag of over. ninety couple has, within my own 

376 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

knowledge, been made in the Madras Presidency 
by Captain the Honourable E. B., who was on 
the staff of the then Governor — Lord Wenlock. 

Burmah is a great snipe country, and Colonel 
W. (late 43rd O.L.I.) once made a notable bag 
at Tonghoo. He brought home one hundred and 
sixty-three snipe, and had not expended the whole 
of the two hundred cartridges which he took out 
with him. This may seem a "tall order" to 
sportsmen who do not know Colonel W., but 
I know that it is a fact, and I consider it less 
extraordinary than some of the same sportsman's 
public performances with the rifle, both at the 
running deer target at the National Rifle Asso- 
ciation meetings, as well as his score (already 
mentioned elsewhere) of one point less than the 
highest possible at Bisley for the " Daily Graphic 
Cup," the distance being two hundred yards, the 
bull's-eye an eight-inch circle, and the position 
standing ! 

The man who is good at standing targets is 
rarely remarkable at running game, flying game, 
and with the revolver, yet W. excelled in all 
branches of shooting. 

I have — more particularly in parts of Mysore — 
seen snipe seek the shade of trees and bushes 
during the heat of the day, and sometimes the 
birds did not return to their feeding grounds until 
dusk. 

In India I preferred No. 8 shot for snipe. At 
one time I used No. 10 in the right barrel, and 
No. 8 in the left, but I soon gave up the use of the 

377 



BULLET AND SHOT 

former, as I found that it sometimes only wounded 
birds which the larger shot would have brought to 
bag. Recently, however, in Ireland, a batch of 
cartridges loaded with No. 9 shot (I had ordered 
No. 8) gave such highly satisfactory results, in use 
on snipe, that I intend using this size in future 
shooting at these birds at home. I use Schultze 
powder, and am well satisfied with it. A light 
i2-bore is, in my opinion, the best gun for snipe 
shooting. The beginner in this sport must not 
be discouraged by missing, and should try to 
cultivate a proper style of shooting, regarding 
misses with as much philosophy as may be 
possible. 

There is no royal road to good shooting, and 
although some men are quicker in acquiring the 
art than are others, practice, and the acquisition 
of a good style will usually enable any man who 
is blessed with good eyesight to become at least 
an average snipe shot. 

If a man, who has had no previous experience 
in the use of the shot-gun, wishes to begin upon 
snipe, he should strive to pitch his gun as quickly 
as possible, pulling the trigger the instant that the 
butt touches his shoulder. There must be no 
attempt to " poke," or aim at the bird. Hand 
and eye must work together, and with rapidity 
too, for good work at this game ; and they will 
with practice act harmoniously if a proper style 
of shooting be adhered to. 

Of course, in the case of a crossing shot, the gun 
must either be pitched at space in front of the bird, 

378 



SNIPE SHOOTING 

or swung with it (the former for choice), and only- 
practice will teach the tyro how much allowance, 
dependent of course upon pace and distance, should 
be made in each case. In snipe shooting, the 
sportsman should either personally kill each bird 
which may be picked up alive, or see that one of 
his men does so directly it has been recovered, for 
natives are horribly callous as regards the sufferings 
of animals, and would, if permitted, put the poor 
birds alive upon the snipe-stick (or game carrier), 
which is always used in this form of sport. 

In order that full justice may be done to this 
really excellent little bird from a gastronomical 
point of view, he should be cooked for dinner on 
the day of his death, be lightly and rapidly roasted 
before a very quick fire, brought up to table under- 
done, and gracefully reposing upon a piece of well- 
buttered toast. Snipe soup, either thick or clear 
as may be preferred, is truly delicious, and, with 
the whole of the meat pounded up and incorporated 
in the case of the thick kind, resembles hare soup 
in consistency, but is greatly superior in delicacy 
of flavour to the latter. An allowance of two birds 
for each person is ample for soup. 



379 



CHAPTER XXIII. 

BRIEF NOTES ON SOME OF THE GAME BIRDS 
AND WILD-FOWL OF INDIA 

ALTHOUGH the snipe is, par excellence, the 
L game bird of India, since he affords inex- 
pensive sport to all sorts and conditions of men, 
in suitable localities, all over the vast continent, 
from Cashmere in the north, to Cape Comorin in 
the extreme south, a multitude of other species 
of game birds and of wild-fowl also inhabit the 
country. Some of them merit a short description, 
and a few notes upon their range, habits, and 
capabilities from a sportsman's point of view,' since 
they offer more or less opportunity for the exercise 
of their favourite sport to many lovers of small 
game shooting in different parts of India. 

It is impossible, within the limits of a single 
chapter, to deal otherwise than very generally and 
briefly with even the more important of these ; but 
in the hope that the novice may find them of 
service, I will attempt to supply him with some 
short notes upon the principal game birds and 
wild-fowl of India. For weights and distribution 
of these, and for other information also, I am 
much indebted to Hume and Marshall's Game- 
Birds of India. 

380 



THE INDIAN BUSTARD 



THE INDIAN BUSTARD {Eupodotis Edwardsi) 

This fine bird weighs from 17 to 22 lbs., 
and is, in my opinion, excellent upon the table. 
I have bagged bustard in Mysore, where they 
are not uncommon, both with the rifle and with 
an 8-bore shot-gun. They are also found in the 
Bombay Presidency, Kathiawar, the Deccan, Berar, 
Rajputana, the Punjab, etc. In Mysore, bustard 
frequent the same ground as the Indian antelope, 
but exhibit a marked preference for such parts of 
it as are well clad with short scrub, or bushes. 
The white neck of the cock is a conspicuous 
object, even when all the body of the bird is 
hidden by a bush, and it can be seen, a long 
way off, overtopping the scrub. The bustard 
possesses but three toes, and greatly prefers the 
use of his powerful legs to that of his wings, but 
when put up and forced to use the latter, he fre- 
quently flies for two or three miles before alighting. 
Bustard are very wary birds, and it is not easy 
to stalk near enough to one for an ordinary 1 2-bore 
gun to suffice to bring him down ; but if the 
direction of their flight when put up on any par- 
ticular favourite spot be noted, and the sportsman 
on a subsequent day conceal himself in that line, 
sending his men round to drive the ground towards 
him, he may obtain a good shot at a bird passing 
overhead well within range of that weapon, since 
the bustard usually flies low. 

In Mysore, bustard are generally found solitary 

381 



BULLET AND SHOT 

or in pairs, and occasionally in small parties of 
three or four ; I once, however, saw a great gather- 
ing of them, numbering, if memory serves me 
truly, about twenty-seven. 

In Canarese the bustard is called Arlkugina 
kukki, i.e., the bird which calls like a man, on 
account of the noise which he makes, and which 
is audible at a great distance. By the use of a 
covered bullock cart, it is usually practicable to 
approach bustard within easy range for a rifle, 
and I have shot them thus, when antelope shooting 
with a '360 express. Bustard are polygamous, the 
breeding season varying in different parts of India 
from October to March. The hen apparently lays 
but one &gg. 

THE HOUBARA {Hotibara Macgueent) 

This small bustard, which weighs only from 
4 to 5 J lbs., is migratory, not breeding in India 
proper. It is found in the Punjab, Rajputana, 
Northern Guzerat, Cutch, Northern Kathiawar, 
and Sind. Large bags of houbara are sometimes 
made from the back of a camel driven in ever- 
decreasing circles round and round each bird which 
has been viewed. 

THE BENGAL FLORICAN {Sypheoiis Bengalensis) 

This fine game bird is akin to the bustard, 
possessing, like the latter, only three toes. It is 
found in Eastern Bengal, Assam, the Bhootan duars, 
and parts of the North -West Provinces. I have 

382 



THE LESSER FLORICAN OR LEEK 

shot the large florican in Assam, where it frequents 
expanses of rough, coarse grass (ooloo grass), 
provided that the latter be not too dense, and 
that there are plenty of open spaces distributed 
through it. In Assam, it is known as the "ooloo 
mohr," i.e., the ooloo-grass peacock. 

The florican is much appreciated as a table 
delicacy, and is on this account always shot when 
met with. I used, when shooting florican, to put 
a number of men in line, and walk with them 
through the grass until a bird rose — usually out 
of shot of me — when I marked it down (the first 
flight is generally a short one), and then, walking 
up quietly and alone, or with only one or two men, 
to the spot, nearly always approached it within 
easy distance before it got on the wing. Florican 
fly slowly and heavily, and there is no possible 
excuse for missing one of these birds if within 
range. 

Though a large bird, the florican's weight is 
but 3 J to \\ lbs. according to Hume, though 
Jerdon makes him heavier by three-quarters of a 
pound. 

THE LESSER FLORICAN OR LEEK {Sypheotides awuta) 

I have shot this little florican, which weighs only 
from I lb. 2 oz. to i lb. lo oz., in Mysore when out 
snipe shooting. It is uncertain in its appearances 
in different localities, being plentiful in some seasons 
and very rare in others. The Tumkur district of 
the Mysore province contains good lesser florican 
ground. The Bengal florican is not found in the 

383 



6ULLET AND SHOT 

south of India, and the lesser species is very rare 
in the north. It is fond of dry grass, and is best 
found and flushed by a Hne of men. 



SAND GROUSE 

Various species of sand grouse, some of them 
local and rare, are found in India. I have 
personally shot representatives of only two — both 
in Mysore — viz., the common {Pterocles exustus) 
and the painted (Pterocles fasciatus). Of these, 
the former is found throughout India in suitable 
localities, while the latter, though widely distributed, 
is somewhat local. 

The common sand grouse prefers open plains 
with a sparse growth of scrub and bushes, and 
the painted, stony forest tracts, and the bases of 
low, rocky, bush -clad hills. The name "grouse" 
is quite undeserved by the various species, which 
resemble the pigeon more than they approximate 
any other bird. Sand grouse always go to drink 
at from 8 to lo a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m. (according 
in each case to the season), and if the sportsman 
should station himself near the water to which they 
resort, he may bag a number of them either morning 
or evening. 

THE GREY PARTRIDGE {Ortygornis pondicenanus) 

This bird is found in most parts of India. I 
have frequently shot, but have seldom specially 
sought it. It is too partial to scrub jungle to afford 

384 



THE CHUKOR 

good sport, and is not worth cooking when bagged. 
I always avoided eating these birds on account of 
their uncleanly habits in the matter of their food. 



THE BLACK PARTRIDGE {Francolinus vulgaris) 

This bird belongs to the north, and to Bengal, 
and is not found in the south of India. I have 
met with and have shot it in Assam. In parts 
of Bengal, black partridges afford very pretty 
shooting when beaten out of high reed jungle. 



THE CHUKOR {Caccabis Chukor) 

This fine species is found throughout the 
Himalayas, including Thibet, and also in the salt 
range of the Punjab. In different localities, it is 
found at all elevations from sea-level to at least 
16,000 feet. 

It is fond of well- wooded hills, provided that 
cultivation and plenty of water be in the vicinity. 
It is also found in deserts, and on barren, rocky 
ranges. 

The best month for shooting chukor on the 
lower hills is October, when the young birds are 
strong and in good condition. They are found 
in coveys of from ten to fifteen, or even more, 
birds. On being flushed, they fly down hill, 
scatter, and at once begin to call, and if followed 
up, a number of them may generally be bagged. 
The chukor exhibits considerable difference in size, 
2 c 385 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and Hume states the extreme range of variation 
as from 19 to 27 oz. in the case of males, and 
from 13 to 19 in that of the females. 



THE COMMON PEA-FOWL {Pavo Cristatus) 

This familiar bird is found inhabiting the 
forested area near cultivation, in suitable localities, 
all over India. It prefers to combine cover, water, 
cultivation and quiet. I have bagged pea-fowl 
in Mysore with both rifle and shot-gun, and 
consider a young bird as a welcome addition to 
the larder. A second species, which differs from 
the common one, occurs in Burmah. 



THE KALEEGE PHEASANT {Euplocamus) 

There are four well-marked species of kaleege, 
all of which inhabit the north of India. I have 
shot the black-breasted species {Euplocamus 
Horsfieldi) in Assam, where it is called the 
"derrick." It is a good bird for the table, but 
does not usually afford much sport, except where 
isolated patches of jungle are separated by cultiva- 
tion from the large continuous forest, in which case 
any birds in the former can be beaten out just as 
pheasants are at home. In the large forest itself, 
the only way to shoot derricks is to use a dog to 
put them up, whereupon they rise and perch in 
trees, and may then be shot sitting. So dense and 
tangled is the Assam jungle, that were the 

386 



THE MOONAL PHEASANT 

sportsman to make the bird fly from the tree, 
he would be unable to obtain a shot. 

The brilliant, glossy black of the cock bird 
is a strikingly handsome plumage ; but the hen 
is, like the female of most of the pheasants, a 
homely brown bird. The natives, taking advan- 
tage of the pugnacity of the cocks, capture 
numbers by using a male bird as a decoy, with 
running nooses set in proper positions all round 
him. The derrick is found in the Coosya and 
<jaro hills up to an elevation of 4,000 feet. 

THE GREY PEACOCK PHEASANT 
{Polyplectron Thibetanuiti) 

This beautiful but rather rare bird is found in 
the hills above the valley of Assam, and in Hill 
Tipperah, Chittagong, Arakan, etc. 

THE MOONAL PHEASANT {Lophophorus impeyanus) 

This magnificent bird is found throughout the 
Himalayas in suitable localities. The cock is a 
gorgeous exposition of metallic colours of diverse 
and striking hues, and weighs up to 5J lbs. in 
the case of a large specimen. The hen, whose 
plumage is brown, is rather smaller than her 
consort. 

The moonal requires forest as well as high 
elevation. For shooting this bird, the spring is 
the best season. The sportsman, sending his men 
to walk in line on the hillside above him, must 

387 



BULLET AND SHOT 

shoot the pheasants as they are darting downhill 
at a very high rate of speed. Moonal breed in 
May and June. 

THE INDIAN CRIMSON TRAGOPAN {Cerioruis Satyrd) 

This is another pheasant whose male is gor- 
geously attired, and which inhabits parts of the 
Himalayas, of Gurwahl, Sikkim, Nepaul, and 
Bhootan. Like the moonal, it affects wooded 
ranges at high elevations. Unless it be called up 
to the sportsman by his shikarrie, dogs are required 
to put up this bird. Cocks weigh from 3J- lbs. 
to 4 lbs. 10 oz., hens being considerably lighter. 

THE KOKLASS PHEASANT {Pucrasia Macrolopha) 

This Himalayan pheasant is, according to Hume,, 
the best of the Indian species, both for sport and 
for eating. The middle of November is the most 
favourable season for shooting the koklass, whose 
favourite habitat is wooded valleys at an elevation 
of from 7,000 to 8,000 feet. It is not found much 
lower than 4,000, and occurs as high as 14,000 feet. 
Well-trained spaniels are useful in this shootings 
and trained men to mark the birds are required 
for success in the sport. 

The breeding season is the spring and early 
summer. The cock weighs from a little over 
2 up to nearly 3 lbs. 



388 



THE GREY JUNGLE FOWL 



THE RED JUNGLE FOWL {Gallus ferrugineus) 

This bird is very like, but rather larger than, a 
red game bantam. It is common in the valley 
of Assam where I frequently shot it, and also on 
the Cossya, Naga, and Garo hills, Cachar, Sylhet, 
Eastern Bengal, the Sunderbunds, Aracan, etc., 
and is found also in the eastern portions of the 
Central Provinces. Its southern range terminates 
at the Godavery river, but it occurs in Ganjam, 
Vizagapatam, and part of the Godavery district. 

It may be looked for at sea-level, and also at 
all elevations up to 3,000, and even, in summer, 
5,000 feet. Where it can be successfully beaten 
out, as for instance when it is found in detached 
hills or in covers of manageable size, this jungle 
fowl affords very sporting shots. It is fond of 
cultivation at the very edge of the forest. Its 
breeding season varies with locality from January 
to July. The cocks weigh from if lbs. to 
2\ lbs. 

THE GREY JUNGLE FOW^L {Gallus Sonnerati) 

This beautiful bird is the j'ungle fowl of Southern 
India. It extends to part of the Central Provinces, 
but is not found north of the Godavery river. It 
is fond of hill tracts, and is also abundant on the 
Mysore plateau in the forests of which I used 
often to shoot it. It is, on the hill ranges of the 
Nilgiris, Western Ghauts, Anamalais, etc., found 
at considerable elevations, and its range extends 

389 



BULLET AND SHOT 

from sea-level to about 6,000 feet. Jungle fowl 
may be beaten out of ravines, small covers, etc., 
and may also be met with on any roads which 
are made through forest tracts. It is the cock of 
this species which supplies us with the beautiful 
hackles which enter into the composition of so 
many salmon flies. The grey is a trifle larger 
than the red jungle fowl. 

THE COMMON OR GREY QUAIL {Cotumix Communis) 

This bird is migratory, and arrives in India from 
Central Asia, Persia, Arabia, Africa, etc., in the 
autumn. The numbers which come over in each 
migration vary considerably, as also do the localities 
in which the birds are most plentiful, in different 
years. If food be scarce in the north, many of 
them push on towards the south. 

Frequently enormous numbers of quail are found 
in March in Northern India, the birds having been 
attracted there from the south and east by the 
ripening of the crops. They are usually shot in 
standing crops, and Hume mentions a device em- 
ployed in quail shooting in the north whereby the 
birds are put up with the minimum of damage. 
A thin cord, forty or fifty yards in length, is 
furnished at each yard with a white feather. Two 
men, one at each end, drag this cord over the 
field, the sportsman walking just behind its centre. 
As many as one hundred couple have been bagged 
in a day by one gun. Quail fly swiftly, but 
straight, and thus afford very easy shooting. 

390 



THE WOODCOCK 

In Mysore, the black -breasted or "rain quail" 
is more abundant than the common species, and, 
unlike the latter, it breeds in India, the eggs being 
laid in August and September. 

Other common Indian quails are the various 
species known as bush, bustard, and button quails 
— all very small but beautiful birds, the last-named 
not exceeding about an ounce and a half in weight. 

As a table bird, I personally do not think much 
of the quail, but many people like him, and a good 
deal depends upon how he is cooked. 

Hume, who suffered from gun headache after 
firing a number of cartridges filled with ordinary 
loads, employed, for bush-quail shooting, cartridges 
thus loaded — 

One drachm of powder, then a thin wad with 
sawdust above it to partly fill the case ; then 
another thin card wad followed by half an ounce 
of No. lo, or of dust-shot, and a cardboard wad 
above the shot. 



THE WOODCOCK {Scolopax rusticola) 

The woodcock occurs on the Himalayas and 
other hill ranges in the north, being found thereon 
at even above 10,000 feet elevation, as well as in 
tracts at the foot of those hills, and on the Nilgiris, 
Shevaroys, Anamalais, and other hill ranges in the 
south. I have, in India, personally shot it only 
upon the Cossya hills. Woodcock shooting is 
one of the recognised forms of sport upon the 
Nilgiris, and though the bags obtained are but 

391 



BULLET AND SHOT 

light, it claims many ardent devotees. I have 
heard a story of an old colonel, who, on being 
informed by his companion that the latter had 
seen a fine sambur stag, exclaimed, " Damn the 
stag! Where's that woodcock?" In woodcock 
shooting, a number of coolies must be employed 
to beat the sholahs — unless, indeed, the sportsman 
should possess a team of well-trained spaniels. 

The Indian bird is of smaller average size than 
the English woodcock, and weighs only from 7 to 



12^ oz. 



WILD GEESE 



The ^-rey lag goose (Anser cinereus), a large bird 
averaging 7, but sometimes reaching 9 lbs. in 
weight; and the barred-headed goose {Anser indicus), 
a smaller bird than the former, and weighing 
only from 4 to nearly 7 lbs., are both cold- weather 
visitors to India. 

Just as their congeners elsewhere, wild geese in 
India are adepts in the noble art of self-preservation, 
and are difficult of access. I have never shot the 
grey lag, and but once a specimen of the smaller 
species. Hume recommends the use of a boat, in 
which the sportsman must lie flat, pushed from 
behind by a man who keeps himself well concealed ; 
and he also mentions another plan, viz. — the sports- 
man lying in ambush on their feeding grounds after 
dusk, and waiting for the arrival of the birds — as 
one which is frequently very successful. 

Even such naturally wary and suspicious birds 
as wild geese become wonderfully tolerant of the 

392 



WILD DUCKS AND TEAL 

presence of man if systematically protected from 
all interference. I well remember how tame were 
the barred-headed geese which frequented the tank 
which occupies the centre of the Civil Station of 
Sibsaugor, in Assam. A public road ran all round 
the tank, and along the former were the Europeans' 
houses and the official buildings. The geese were 
perfectly at home, were never molested while on 
the tank, and would approach its edge quite 
fearlessly, regardless of passers-by. But this tame- 
ness lasted only so long as the birds were in their 
sanctuary, viz., the said tank. When met with 
elsewhere on their feeding grounds, they were as 
hard to approach as are any other wild geese. 

WILD DUCKS AND TEAL 

Out of the many species of wild ducks and teal 
which are found in India, a few only merit special 
notice. 

The mallard (Anas boscas) is almost entirely 
restricted to the far north, and is but very occasion- 
ally found elsewhere. 

The ruddy sheldrake, or Brahminy duck 
{Casarea rutila) is a very handsome bird, but is 
not at all good upon the table. I have shot this 
species in Assam and Sylhet, where it was common, 
but I have never seen it, as far as I remember, 
in Southern India. 

The grey or spotted-bill duck (Anas poeciloryncha) 
is a splendid bird, which even Lucullus would have 
welcomed as an addition to his bill of fare. Most 

393 



BULLET AND SHOT 

unfortunately, this duck (which lives and breeds, 
in India) is addicted to the culpable habit of 
selecting the snipe -shooting season for laying its 
eggs preparatory to rearing its second brood. It 
is in size very similar to the mallard, if not slightly 
heavier, a large drake sometimes attaining a weight 
of 3;J lbs. I often shot this duck in the Mysore 
country, etc. 

The shoveller (Spatula clypeata) is found nearly 
all over India. 

The pin-tail duck (Dafila acuta) is a large and 
handsome bird. A drake of this species sometimes 
weighs as much as three pounds. It is common in 
Mysore. 

The common teal (Querquedula crecca) is found in 
most parts of India, and is migratory, arriving in 
the autumn and leaving in the spring. Although 
I have shot this bird both in Assam and also in 
Mysore, I have not found it anywhere as plentiful 
as is the garganey teal in the latter province. 

The garganey or blue-winged teal (Querquedula 
circia) is a migratory species which is widely 
distributed. It visits the Mysore country, and the 
south of India generally, in large flocks, and, like 
the common teal, than which it is just a shade 
larger, is an excellent bird to eat. 

The whistling teal (Dendrocygna Javanica) is 
common in most parts of India. It is fond of trees, 
as its scientific name implies. It is not worth eating. 

The cotton teal (Nettopus coromandelinus) is 
found nearly all over India. It is in reality a 
very tiny goose, and, curiously enough, it perches 

394 



DUCK AND TEAL SHOOTING 

and roosts in trees — frequently nesting in holes in 
the latter. It is much smaller than the common 
teal, and is, in my opinion, a good bird on the table. 
Many other species of ducks, teal, and pochards are 
found in the empire, and a big bag of web-footed 
fowl often contains a great variety. 



DUCK AND TEAL SHOOTING 

Except in a desultory way, I did not go in 
much for duck shooting, the (to me) far superior 
attractions of the curly-flighted long-bill inclining 
me to devote my spare time in the cold weather 
to the latter rather than to the former. I shot 
duck and teal when I came across them, and even 
on occasion have gone out specially to shoot these 
birds, but have thus exclusively devoted com- 
paratively little time to the web-footed fowl. 

Where duck and teal are found frequenting a 
large tank fringed with high reeds, if several guns 
go out together, taking up positions amongst the 
latter at a considerable distance apart, while a 
native, going on the tank in a boat, keeps the birds 
on the move, a large bag may often be made. 
A collapsible Berthon or other folding boat is a 
very useful adjunct in duck shooting. 

Personally I prefer No. 5 shot for duck, though 
many sportsmen use a larger size. It is advisable 
to have as many pellets as is consistent with 
sufficient penetration in the charge, on account of 
the greater chance of striking a vital spot, and 
everyone who has shot duck knows what a number 

395 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of winged birds are lost. No. 5 shot will kill 
at a considerable distance, and a charge of it 
contains, of course, more pellets than does the same 
weight of larger shot. If a strong wind should 
be blowing across the large tank, the lee shore 
should be searched after all the shooting is over, 
and as late as possible before leaving the ground, 
as duck often carry on after being mortally 
wounded, die in the water, and are drifted by the 
wind to the shore. 

I will give a brief account of my best day at 
this class of sport. I was alone in camp at Hunsur, 
and, being lame from a temporary injury to one 
foot, was unable to utilise a holiday in pursuit of 
my favourite small game, viz., snipe. About nine 
miles from Hunsur lay a chain of small tanks, on 
which, when snipe shooting, I had seen a number 
of teal, and these, when disturbed on the lower 
tanks, flew up, I observed, to a very small one 
which was the uppermost in the chain. I arranged, 
therefore, to send natives with muzzle-loading guns 
and powder, one to each of the lower tanks, with 
instructions not to permit the teal to remain upon 
them, but to keep them moving. With a tennis 
shoe on my wounded foot, I rode some nine miles 
to the small tank at the head of the chain, under 
the embankment of which stood, in a convenient 
position, a splendid, shady tamarind tree. I took 
the precaution of posting two natives, at some 
distance apart, on the grassy sward beyond the 
tank, and not too close to the latter. These men 
had orders to remain where they were unless and 

396 



DUCK AND TEAL SHOOTING 

until they should see my head appear above the 
embankment, when they were to close in to the 
edge of the tank, and so put up any teal which 
might have settled upon the latter out of shot 
from my post. 

The whole plan worked admirably, and I had 
lots of shooting up till lunch time, after which my 
chances were few, the birds having been driven 
by the firing to more distant tanks, where they 
could rest undisturbed. From my post by the 
tamarind tree, I bagged that day forty-four teal 
and one duck. The teal were all of the garganey 
or blue-winged species, with the exception of a 
single Q. crecca. 

I once had a day with the late Mr. U., of the 
19th P.W.O. Hussars (recently, alas! killed in 
action) on a very large tank in the Chitaldroog 
district of Mysore, which, though the bag of duck 
was small, dwells in my memory as a very enjoy- 
able one. The tank was so extensive that a 
number of guns would have been required in order 
to do justice to it ; whereas U. and I, with the 
assistance of Mrs. U., who remained on the 
embankment and kept firing shots from a 28-bore, 
had to do the best we could in the reeds by 
the margin. Wild geese and flamingoes were on 
the tank, but these, rising high in the air, departed 
at the commencement of operations. We had no 
boat, and when the duck and teal sought safety 
in the centre of the huge sheet of water, I fired 
bullets from my express rifle to stir them up. Up 
to lunch time, we shot round the tank, and after- 

397 



BULLET AND SHOT 

wards went to look for snipe. Our bag for the 
day was eighteen ducks and teal (one of the latter 
being shot by the lady) and twenty-two and a half 
•couple of snipe. 

Sportsmen should not permit natives to swim 
out into tanks which are full of weeds, in order 
to recover fallen birds, since many men have lost 
their lives through being entangled in the dense 
growth. 



398 



CHAPTER XXIV. 

THE FORESTS, PLAINS, AND HILLS OF MYSORE, 

THEIR DENIZENS, AND THE FAVOURITE 

HAUNTS OF THE LATTER 

THE province of Mysore, which is under 
native rule, is an elevated table-land, varying 
in altitude for the most part from 2,500 to 3,000 feet, 
its lowest point being 1,800 feet above sea-level. It 
comprises an area of almost exactly 2,700 square 
miles. Its chief town, Bangalore, which is a large 
military cantonment, lies within ten or eleven hours' 
journey by rail from Madras, and stands at an 
elevation of 3,000 feet. 

There is, as compared with the plains of other 
parts of India, practically no heat to complain of 
in this climatically favoured province ; and though, 
of course, in March, April, and May the tempera- 
ture is high for Mysore, the fact that, even at this 
season, punkahs are required nowhere but in dining- 
rooms, speaks for itself. English light summer 
tweeds form, even in the hottest weather, the 
apparel of the European male sex in Bangalore. 

The rainfall of the province is but moderate, 
averaging only some forty inches in the open 
•country, though on the hill ranges and in the large 

399 



BULLET AND SHOT 

forests, twice that amount, and in some places much 
more than twice, is often registered as the year's 
supply. 

Mysore is rich in magnificent forests, which offer 
to the lover of big-game shooting a splendid field 
for sport in its most interesting and exciting forms,, 
and under pleasant conditions as regards tempera- 
ture. 

It is easily reached by rail from any part of India,, 
and the haunts of large game are at quite con- 
venient distances from the railway lines. 

The large military cantonment of Bangalore is. 
but eighty-seven miles distant by rail from the 
native capital — Mysore — which gives its name both 
to the district in which it is situated, and also to the 
whole province. 

How long those forests will continue to hold out 
attractions to the sportsman remains to be seen ; but 
since gun licences are being issued broadcast, and 
the cost of one is so small, that any native, however 
poor, can obtain a permit, while people belonging 
to meat-eating castes are very numerous in Mysore, 
the game is doomed ; though some time must 
necessarily elapse before it will become so rare as. 
to be no longer worth the trouble of seeking. 

One has only to read old sporting books, and 
even so comparatively recent a one as Mr. Sander- 
son's, and to know the forests as they are at this 
day, to fully appreciate the terrible rate at which 
game has decreased, and is ever decreasing, in 
Mysore. 

According to the forest rules in force there, no- 

400 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

one may enter a State forest for any purpose what- 
soever except that of shooting. Thus, any idle, 
loafing vagabond, who dislikes work, can, by shoot- 
ing, say, even two or three hinds or does in a 
month (he probably shoots a good many more), 
and by selling the meat, earn far more money than 
he could do by honest labour. When once game 
has been so diminished in quantity as to render this 
province a barren field for sport, the stream of 
rupees from outside, now annually flowing into the 
country from sportsmen who visit it for shooting, 
will necessarily be diverted to other parts. 

From a sportsman's point of view, the forests of 
Mysore may be conveniently classified as (i) State 
deciduous, (2) District deciduous, (3) Fuel, and 
(4) Evergreen. 

THE FORESTS OF THE MYSORE DISTRICT 

The forests of the Mysore district belonging to 
class I form a continuous belt along the Malabar 
frontier. They are the forests of Metikuppe, 
Karkenkotta, Begur, Ainurmarigudi, Berrambadie 
and Bandipur, which last, however, is situated 
partly on the frontier of the Nilgiri district. The 
first of these, viz., the Metikuppe forest, is about 
forty-six miles distant from the town of Mysore, 
i.e., some ten miles beyond the travellers' bungalow 
of Antesunte, which is thirty-six miles from the 
capital, on the high - road to the western coast. 
To shoot this forest, a tent should be pitched at 
Bissalwaddie, and if during the hot and dry weather, 
2 D 401 



BULLET AND SHOT 

a cask of good water, mounted on a cart, should 
accompany the camp. Twelve and a half miles 
along the road beyond Antesunte, is the Karken- 
kotta travellers' bungalow, in the forest of that 
name. Within a few hundred yards of the high- 
road flows the Cubbany river, in which mahseer 
run to an enormous size, though they are very 
"dour" to take, and, except by means of night- 
lines, I have heard of no one having any real 
success therein, with the single exception of Mr. 
M., whose narrow escape from death at the horn 
of a bison has been narrated when describing sport 
with that animal. He had a coracle brought from 
a long distance, and, fishing from it, secured some 
magnificent mahseer, up to, if memory serves me 
truly, sixty-two pounds in weight. 

Beyond the Cubbany river lies the Begur forest, 
and to reach it from the Karkenkotta side, the river 
must be crossed. This can be done by means of 
a raft at a place called Nissen, only about a mile 
from the Government road, the cart-track to it 
diverging from the latter nearly half-way between 
Antesunte and Karkenkotta. Carts must be taken 
over unloaded, and the cart bullocks be either made 
to swim, or taken over separately on the raft ; the 
loads must also be similarly conveyed, and the carts 
reloaded on the other side, so that the operation is 
one which occupies a good deal of time. There 
used to be a forest lodge at Nissen, and probably it 
is still in existence. 

After leaving the Government road between Ante- 
sunte and Karkenkotta, the Begur, Ainurmarigudi, 

402 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

and part of the Berrambadie forests must be 
traversed ere another Government road be en- 
countered, viz., that from Mysore to Manan toddy, 
which passes through the Berrambadie forest, in 
which, close to the road, there is (or was) a forest 
lodge called Moluhollay. There are, however, 
cart-tracks through the forests, though after heavy 
rain it is advisable not to overload the carts, and, 
further, to have in reserve two or three loose 
pairs of buffaloes, to render assistance in case of 
need. 

Bandipur forest marches with Berrambadie, but 
to reach the Bandipur travellers' bungalow — forty- 
nine miles from Mysore, on the road to the Nilgiris 
— from Moluhollay, two sides of a triangle have to 
be traversed. 

Goondulpet, on the direct road from Mysore to 
Bandipur, is about thirteen miles from the latter, 
and about twenty-two miles from Moluhollay ; but 
thirteen miles from Moluhollay, and nine miles from 
Goondulpet, is a travellers' bungalow called Maddur 
at which the journey can be broken. 

The game animals inhabiting these forests are 
elephant, bison, tiger, panther, sambur, bear, 
spotted deer, muntjac and four-horned antelope. 
Mousedeer also are plentiful, but are rarely seen, 
though their tracks are frequently visible. 

Since I left the Mysore district in which these 
forests are situated, and before the death of the 
late Maharajah of Mysore, some portion of this 
area was made into a " Maharajah's reserve." 
Whether this distinction has since been preserved, 

403 



BULLET AND SHOT 

I know not ; but a timely request, addressed to 
the Private Secretary to H.H. the Maharanee 
Regent, for permission to shoot in the reserve 
(even should it still exist) would probably be 
granted. 

All the above-mentioned forests, with the single 
exception of Begur, which, owing to the great 
preponderance of bamboo therein, is good only for 
elephants, are excellent ground for the sportsman, 
bison being plentiful in them. 

Another considerable tract of forest is that 
which extends from Atticulpoor, in the Chamraj- 
Nagar taluq of the Mysore district, to the Mysore 
boundary upon the Billiga-Rungun hills. 

Atticulpoor is about forty-five miles from Mysore 
on the Coimbatore road. Now that coffee planta- 
tions have been opened upon the Billiga-Rungun 
hills, the shooting upon the latter is no longer 
what it once was, and this tract is also much 
poached by native shikarries. 

The jungle men inhabiting those hills are called 
Sholagas, and though some of them are useful 
assistants to the sportsman, they will neither eat 
the flesh of a bison, nor even bring in the head 
of a slain bull. | 

Personally, I much prefer to shoot bison where, I 
as in the case of the forests previously mentioned, 
the jungle men will prevent any waste of the flesh 
by cutting it all up and drying it in strips for future 
use, the whole of the carcass beino- thus utilised. 

These forests contain timber trees of many 
valuable species, chief in value amongst which 

404 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

are the teak {Tectona grandis), the honne i^Ptero- 
carptis marstipium\ and the blackwood {Dalbergia 
latifolia). 

The timber is of very mixed character, any one 
species never monopolising any portion of forest to 
the exclusion of others, though occasionally, and 
over limited areas, the bamboo -cane practically 
usurps the whole of the ground. 

The nature of the forest varies greatly with each 
change in site, locality, elevation and soil. In low- 
lying, well-watered and sheltered situations, the 
mixed timber is very fine, except where deficient 
natural drainage or unsuitable soil prevents the 
thriving of timber species, in which cases small 
trees of no utility take their place. 

Bamboo in large clumps is extremely prevalent ; 
in some places, as above remarked, forming the 
major portion of the jungle ; in others, occurring 
mixed with timber trees ; while here and there, 
where it is altogether absent, the pleasant 
variety of open timber forest affords a wider scope 
for vision than can be obtained amongst the dense 
cover afforded by the bamboo — particularly in its 
younger stages. 

In high, exposed portions, little arboreal vegeta- 
tion is observable, except in the sheltered hollows; 
while in parts, where rock occurs immediately 
below the surface of the soil, the growth is 
necessarily stunted and poor. 

Rivers, streams, and nullahs intersect the forests, 
and afford water for their human inhabitants and 
for their wild denizens. 

405 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Unless the efforts of the Forest Department to 
prevent fire should be successful (they necessarily 
are sometimes the reverse, especially in the case of 
the large forests on the frontier), the forests take 
fire in the hot season, i.e. between February and 
the end of April, when the ground is strewn with 
the dry leaves of the now leafless trees, and when 
the rank growth of grass has dried up to so high 
a pitch of desiccation, that a spark falling upon 
the ground, if fanned by a light air, will suffice 
to set many square miles in a blaze. 

The reason why the efforts of the Forest Depart- 
ment to ensure fire protection in these forests are 
so often but partially successful, lies in the fact that 
the forests are inhabited by a jungle tribe whose 
services are quite invaluable to the department, 
who perform all the work required by the latter, 
and who alone can live, or find their way, in these 
vast solitudes. The Forest Department can prevent 
fires from spreading into its reserves from unpro- 
tected forests of its own, or from Her Imperial 
Majesty's forests across the frontier ; it can also 
isolate the dwellings of the jungle tribes by clear 
belts across which fire cannot pass ; but it cannot 
prevent fire spreading from sparks dropped from 
the torches of these jungle men, and carried by 
them as a protection against wild beasts when they 
move about after dark, nor from careless dropping 
by them, in the daytime, of fire carried for the 
purpose of lighting their tobacco which they smoke 
from a green leaf twisted into a conical form. It 
were the rankest heresy to question the advisability 

406 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

of fire protection, and its probable advantage in the 
case of arboreal growth in India; but it is a self- 
evident fact that fire protection, unless it be 
uniformly successful and continuous, becomes more 
disastrous in its effects upon a forest into which 
fire may have entered after a year or two of 
immunity, than its total neglect would have been ; 
for, from the comparatively small amount of 
inflammable matter which results in a single season, 
an annual fire which would have but little effect upon 
healthy standing trees would, in the latter case, do 
little damage, while in the former, the large accumu- 
lation of dry vegetable matter causes a fire of far 
more scorching power and destructive effect. 

Forest officers were formerly fond of trying to 
account for jungle fires, by the theory of their 
reputed spontaneous generation, owing to the 
friction of dry bamboos. It is hardly necessary, 
however, to state that such a theory is entirely 
false and untenable ; the only ordinary origin of 
fires being Jire itself, and their only possible natural 
source being lightning, any spontaneous ignition 
due to the latter being, however, rendered most 
improbable from the fact that lightning is usually 
accompanied by rain in forest tracts. 

Occasionally a combination of circumstances 
occurs which renders fire protection an easy matter, 
or, rather, which of itself prevents fires from 
occurring in the forests, viz., when abnormally late 
rains in one season are so closely followed by 
exceptionally early ones in the following year that 
the grass does not entirely dry up. The early 

407 



BULLET AND SHOT 

showers fall in April and May, and immediately, in 
any areas which may have been burnt, cause the 
springing, from the moistened soil manured by the 
ashes of the burnt grass and leaves, of a new 
growth of rapidly-rising, succulent grass — a great 
blessing for the game after their short commons 
during the hot weather. This is, perhaps, the most 
unhealthy season in the forests of the low country, 
for the light rains serve to stir up, and to liberate, 
gases generated by the decay of organic matter, 
without being sufficient to also wash them away. 

Between the 25th of May and the 15th of June 
may be expected the burst of the south-west mon- 
soon (when the wind sets in steadily from that 
quarter) which is usually ushered in by heavy 
rains. These, washing all the deleterious matter 
out of the soil, render the jungles healthy and 
free from malaria. This is the time for the sports- 
man who values his health, and who wishes to 
enjoy big-game shooting in these lovely forests 
without fear of fever, so long as he acts prudently 
and takes due precautions. 

The grass now grows rapidly, and by the end 
of the following month will, in places, be several 
feet in height. 

The south-west monsoon continues till about 
September or October, when the wind veers round 
to the opposite quarter, and the north-east takes 
its place. July is generally very wet, August rather 
less so, while in September comparatively little 
rain falls, and the drying up of the jungles begins. 
Now again an unhealthy season commences, and 

408 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

the forests, unless heavy and frequent rains should 
fall during the north-east monsoon, remain malarious 
until the advent of the next south-west monsoon, 
or, should fire protection fail, until the burning of 
the jungles in the dry weather renders them tem- 
porarily salubrious. 

The forest revenue obtained from the large 
timber reserves consists mainly, of course, of the 
proceeds of the sale of timber, chiefly of the three 
species named at the commencement of this chapter, 
with the addition of matti {Terminalia tomentosa). 
There are, however, certain minor items, such as 
beeswax and honey from the combs of wild bees, 
myrabolams, gum, etc., which contribute their quota 
of revenue. 

Important, however, as are the Mysore timber 
forests, whether regarded from an economic or a 
climatic point of view, the lighter belt of small 
jungle between them and the cultivated land, pieces 
of small jungle in the interior, and the hedges of 
the cultivated fields as well, yield a product which 
is by far the most considerable item of forest 
revenue, and one of which the Mysore plateau 
may almost be said to enjoy the monopoly. This 
item is sandalwood, which grows freely in the 
light scrub jungles of Mysore, and which is of 
extremely high value in several European markets 
on account of the scented oil contained in its heart- 
wood. Sandal {Santalum albuni) is a tree of small 
stature, having diminutive, pointed, dark green 
leaves, and it grows most freely where it is shaded 
and protected by the proximity of other trees or 

409 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of thorns. It is impatient of injury by cattle and 
by fire, and, requiring shade while young, grows 
well in clumps of thorny bushes. As the essential 
oil, upon which its commercial value depends, is 
developed only in the heart-wood, the growth of 
the tree should not be too rapid, and hence sandal- 
wood from dry, stony situations is more valuable 
than that grown in moister localities and in richer 
soil, although in the latter case the trees grow to 
far larger dimensions. 

Sandal trees are not felled, but are uprooted, the 
roots containing much oil, and being, therefore, 
very valuable. The mature trees, after being 
uprooted, are divested of most of the valueless 
white or sap-wood, and are then carted to the 
nearest sandal store (or '* kothi " as it is locally 
termed) to undergo the preparation necessary 
before sale. In the kothi, the trunk is sawn into 
lengths ; the outside portions, consisting of any 
still adherent white wood and a little heart-wood, 
are removed by adzing, and the lengths, or billets, 
are planed, and finally smoothed by the use of 
sand-paper. The branches are similarly treated, 
and the roots divested of bark and white wood, 
their interstices being at the same time freed from 
any adherent or contained soil. All the different 
products of manufacture are separately stored, the 
billets and chips being sorted into various classes, 
and a largely attended auction sale is held annually 
in each kothi, at which lots of convenient size 
(from three to seven, and in the case of chips 
many more, tons) of each class are exposed for 

410 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

purchase by the public. Sandalwood is used in 
India for carving and ornamental purposes, by 
Hindoos for marking their foreheads, and for 
burning with the dead on the funeral pyre, by 
Parsees in fire worship, and for the extraction of 
oil as a perfume ; while it is used in European 
countries for the extraction from it of a perfectly 
pure oil for use medicinally, the samples obtainable 
locally being usually very much adulterated. 

The beeswax obtained from these forests is 
made by three different species of wild bees, but 
the only one which yields any considerable quantity 
is the large and savage Apis ferox, whose combs 
are hung upon branches of forest trees or under 
overhanging rocks, and are often of very large 
size. A second species — a tiny bee about half the 
size of a common house-fly, and devoid of a sting 
— nests in hollow trees, and yields a small quantity 
of honey of excellent quality ; while a third, rather 
larger than the preceding, nests in holes in the 
ground. 

Myrabolams are yielded by a small tree termed 
the gall-nut tree {Terminalia arju?ia), which 
produces an exceedingly precarious crop, varying in 
marketable value year by year in inverse ratio to 
its quantity, and whose value also depends to some 
extent upon the size and condition of the nuts 
composing it. 

A species of plant belonging to the ginger tribe 
yields the wild or jungle saffron, which is used in 
"cooking and in colouring the skin ; but its marketable 
value is now so low as to produce little more than 

411 



BULLET AND SHOT 

enough to recoup the expenses incurred in its 
collection and carriage. 

Until some twenty-five years ago, the operations 
of the Forest Department were confined to the 
collection and sale of timber, sandalwood, and 
other produce, and to the prevention of smuggling ; 
but about that time planting operations were begun, 
and are now prosecuted upon a large scale all over 
the province. 

Teak, honne, and blackwood are easily raised 
from seed sown in nurseries, and, if properly 
transplanted, bear the operation well ; but sandal 
is a very delicate plant, being impatient of trans- 
plantation, and requiring shade while young. It is 
therefore more advantageous to propagate sandal 
by in situ sowings, in suitable localities, on properly 
prepared ground. 

The propagation of gall-nuts requires special 
treatment of the fruit, from which the hard fibrous 
husk must be stripped, and the contained hard nut 
well soaked in water, before the latter can be sown 
with reasonable hopes of satisfactory and speedy 
results. If the fruit be sown without such removal 
of the outer husk, germination is extremely retarded, 
and only an infinitesimally small proportion of the 
contained seeds produce plants. 

The forests of the Mysore district are singularly 
deficient in orchids of conspicuous beauty, though 
there are many small, insignificant, epiphytal species, 
and one or two larger and more showy terrestial 
ones. In Northern Mysore, however, there are a 
few showy epiphytal orchids. 

412 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

Creepers, pleasing to the eye, are likewise absent, 
while those which strangulate trees, and are by no 
means objects of beauty, are very common. One 
handsome climbing lily, the Gloriosa superba, is, 
however, found in light forest tracts, its fantastic 
crimson and yellow blossoms often appearing at 
a height of six or eight feet above the ground. 

On the whole, the forests cannot be considered 
rich in floral gems, though there are some flowers 
worthy of notice to be found in them. One feature 
in the flora of these forests is the great preponder- 
ance of species of the natural order Leguminosae. 

Butterflies — some of them very large and con- 
spicuous — are to be seen in numbers in suitable 
localities and under proper conditions ; but, though 
they doubtless exist, and would be found if diligently 
sought for, showy beetles do not as a rule obtrude 
themselves upon the notice of the casual observer,' 
though now and then he may come across one 
which may seem to him worthy of preservation. 

Chief amongst the human inhabitants of the 
forests are the Kurrabas — a shy, timid race, living 
entirely in the jungles, and subsisting in great part 
upon honey, roots, and fruits gathered in the forests 
by themselves and at no expense, assisted by grain 
and tubers raised by them in clearances made in 
the forests, and by the flesh of wild animals secured 
by various primitive devices. 

The origin of the Kurrabas is shrouded in 
mystery. It is impossible to state whether they 
are, or are not, an aboriginal tribe. It is probable 
that until the creation of the Forest Department 

413 



BULLET AND SHOT 

they knew little about money, and seldom possessed 
any ; but the more civilised families amongst those 
who work for that department are now keenly alive 
to their own interests in this particular, and they 
have been so systematically swindled by native 
subordinates that their morals have to some extent 
been corrupted, and cases of their attempting to 
outwit their oppressors by practices the reverse of 
straightforward, are not uncommon, even amongst 
this simple and naturally well-dispositioned people. 

There are, amongst the Kurrabas, two separate 
tribes which do not intermarry, and which differ 
in the fact that one tribe is rather more civilised 
than the other. These tribes are termed respec- 
tively the " Bett " (or hill) Kurrabas, and the "Jain" 
(or honey) Kurrabas. Of these the former is the 
more civilised, and certain families amongst them 
have even begun to settle in villages outside the 
forests, and to work in the fields as farm labourers. 

The ordinary attire of a Kurraba inhabiting the 
forests is a strip of dirty cloth round his loins — 
a simple dress of most economical character, light 
and airy, and affording free play to all the limbs. 
The women wear a cloth of larger size, but equally 
dirty, and, as they run away and hide, should a 
European approach their humble dwellings, it is 
not often that they ar6 seen by the sportsman 
shooting in the forests which they inhabit. 

Kurrabas are very thankful for a blanket, should 
one be presented to them, and the most civilised 
among them are beginning to take a pride in dress, 
and even in dressing their hair neatly — the head- 

414 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

dress of a wild uncivilised member of the jungle 
fraternity consisting of loose, shaggy locks, well 
matted with dirt, and innocent of the comb. 

The word " Kurraba " in Canarese sio-nifies a 
shepherd, so it seems possible that the jungle tribes 
bearing this appellation may originally have been 
a race of pastoral origin, but if so, their habits have 
been entirely changed by residence in the forests. 
Certain it is, that at one time there was a powerful 
race of Kurrabas, presided over by a Kurraba king, 
but whether the jungle Karrabas are, or are not, 
offshoots from that race, is not known. 

Kurrabas are usually of small stature and of 
miserable physique, with tiny limbs which look as 
if their possessors would be unable to either walk 
far or to carry any weight. In this respect, how- 
ever, appearances are very deceptive. I have 
known a little man of this tribe, who was only two 
or three inches above five feet in height, walk all 
day long, carrying for a great part of the time an 
8-bore rifle of fifteen pounds in weight. 

I n disposition, Kurrabas are the mildest, gentlest, 
and most peaceable people whom I have ever met. 
Crime amongst them seems to be almost unknown. 
They never go to court, and, in fact, would bear in 
silence any injury or oppression rather than visit 
the dreaded town with its "busy haunts of men." 
If the poor Kurraba be ill-treated and bullied be- 
yond endurance by less primitive natives, he pos- 
sesses but one remedy, viz., flight, and he seeks no 
other. 

A Kurraba's notions of the value of money are 

4J5 



BULLET AND SHOT 

very vague ; he is only too happy to obtain all the 
advances which he may be able to extract, and such 
ready cash enables him to fuddle himself by pur- 
chasing and drinking the fermented juice of the 
toddy-palm, in which his simple soul delights ; and 
until the money so obtained has been exhausted, 
not a single day's work will he do. His knowledge 
of accounts is so limited, that he falls the easiest of 
prey to the wily rogues who visit the forests with 
stores of cloth to sell to the simple Kurrabas at ex- 
orbitant prices, and happy the scoundrel who can 
get the poor jungle men deeply in his debt. Fortu- 
nately, however, he is sometimes checked in his 
extortionate proceedings by his victims — who have 
probably already paid far more than full value for 
what they have received — leaving their humble 
abodes, and going away to a distant forest, there 
to make new homes for themselves, and to escape 
from the extortions of their oppressor. The huts 
in which the Kurrabas live are of the simplest 
possible description. A few poles, some bamboos, 
grass, and mud are all the materials required for 
their construction ; and as they are very low and 
small in size, the abandoning of one settlement, 
or "hady," and the formation of one elsewhere, 
entail but little labour upon these expert wood- 
men. 

The State forests of this district consist, generally 
speaking, of heavy forest ; while the district and 
village forests, between them and the cultivation, are 
of lighter growth, becoming sparser and poorer the 
further they recede from the State forest line. 

416 



FORESTS OF MYSORE DISTRICT 

There are, however, exceptions in each case to this 
general rule. 

Though the elephant and bison chiefly frequent 
the State forests, still they are often to be found in 
many parts of the district forests ; and similarly, 
though the proper home of the tiger, spotted deer, 
and panther is the lighter belt (which includes the 
greater proportion of the district forest area), all 
these animals are to be found in parts of the State 
forests also. 

Of the forests in the Mysore district, Bandipur 
always seemed to me to afford the greatest variety 
of game. This forest, a portion of Karkenkotta, 
near the Cubbany river, and the tract at the foot 
of the Billiga-Rungun hills (which last is, moreover, 
the best bear country in the district) are the best 
localities for spotted deer. 

All the State forests of this district, with the 
exception of Begur, are excellent bison ground. 
I have seen these animals in the Begur forest 
too. 

Tigers and panthers are to be found in suitable 
jungles all over the district, but the best localities 
for bagging them in this country, in which it is 
difficult to bring them to the guns by beating, are 
the lightly-forested areas near Hunsur, Humpapur, 
Heggadavancotta, Maddur and Atticulpore. One 
very likely spot is Naganipur, to which, from the 
Mysore - Bandipur road at Begur (twenty-seven 
miles from Mysore), a road branches off at right 
angles. This Begur is a good place for antelope 
shooting, and is nowhere near the forest bearing 

2 E 417 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the same name. In the Naganipur jungles, tigers 
as well as panthers are to be found, and I have had 
sport there with both. 



THE FORESTS OF THE KADUR DISTRICT 

The Kadur district is reached by rail from 
Bangalore, whence a journey of about ten hours 
takes the traveller to the town of Kadur. From 
this, the district headquarters — Chickmaglur — is 
twenty-five miles distant, but if the traveller's 
destination be the large bison forests, he should 
not get out at Kadur, but go on by rail to Birur 
a few miles further down the line. 

The Kadur district, in its western extremity, 
includes a portion of the Western Ghauts (a high 
hill range), in which bison abound, and where they 
can be stalked when out grazing on the grassy 
opens which alternate with the densely jungled 
sholahs. In this part, and also in some other 
portions of the district, evergreen forests are found. 
Before attempting an expedition upon the Ghauts, 
however, the sportsman should make the acquaint- 
ance and engage the good-will of some of the 
planters in this district — a very fine set of hospit- 
able, manly, good fellows — without whose kindly 
aid he could do little or nothing there, and who, 
he must remember, have to live in the country, and 
are dependent for sport upon the game in the 
vicinity of their estates, in which they therefore 
possess a vested interest. 

The principal low-country forests of this district 

418 



FORESTS OF KADUR DISTRICT 

are Lakwallie, twenty-two miles from Birur railway 
station, — where there is a travellers' bungalow 
outside the forest, and a forest lodge in the heart 
of the latter — Muthodie, beyond Lakwallie, and 
Tegurgudda beyond Muthodie. Tigers, as well as 
bison and deer, inhabit these forests, but the first 
are not easily met with. 

Lakwallie is a very large forest, the State 
reserved portion of which covers an area of forty- 
seven square miles. These three forests are all 
very thick, but bison abound in them, as also in the 
horse-shoe at the foot of, and formed by, the Baba 
Booden hills. Bison are no longer to be found 
on the grassy slopes on these hills, as they once 
were (Colonel Pollock mentions having seen them 
there in 1870), but are numerous in the forested 
area at their base. The Lakwallie teak plantations 
often hold a tiger (I shot two in them upon 
different occasions when beating for deer, or for 
anything that might chance to appear), and spotted 
deer and sambur are numerous therein, as also in 
many parts of the forest. 

I believe that only two elephants remain in this 
and the adjoining district of Shimoga. There 
used to be a considerable herd frequenting im- 
partially these two districts, but they became very 
troublesome to the roots and destructive to crops, 
and permission was therefore given to the late 
Major P., of the 21st Hussars (now Lancers), to 
shoot some of the largest, which he accordingly 
did. The balance of the herd, with the exception 
of the above-mentioned two animals, was subse- 

419 



BULLET AND SHOT 

quently captured in a kheddah in the Shimoga 
district. 

Another good locahty for spotted deer and 
chinkara, is Yemmaydodie kaval one march from 
Kadur ; and, as there is a Public Works Depart- 
ment's bungalow on the ground, no tent need be 
taken. Spotted deer are also numerous between 
Sacrapatam, on the Kadur-Chickmaglur road, and 
Santaweri, on the road from Chickmaglur across 
the Baba Booden hills, as also in the vicinity of the 
lyenkerray tank. Chinkara and antelope occur 
between Kadur and Chickmaglur, and I have shot 
the latter while staying at the Kadur bungalow, 
though one usually has to ride some miles out from 
thence in order to find them. There are often 
tigers in the district forests near Tarikere, on the 
road between Kadur and Shimoga. 

THE FORESTS OF THE BANGALORE DISTRICT 

The forests in this district consist for the most 
part of scrub jungles, and tracts in which the 
arboreal growth is more suitable for fuel than for 
any higher purpose, with the single exception of 
Kankanhully which is a timber forest. Bamboo 
is prevalent in parts, and a feature of the district 
is the great number of rocky hills, rising abruptly 
from the plain, and clothed with thorny jungle 
wherever there is any soil to support the latter. 

Bangalore is not a good district for shooting, but 
a tiger has very occasionally been shot at Closepet, 
on the line of rail between Bangalore and Mysore, 

420 



FORESTS OF CHITALDROOG DISTRICT 

(I have myself seen one near Bidadi, the next 
station in the Bangalore direction), and there are 
panthers at both of these places as well as in many- 
other parts of the district. 

I have also shot a tiger near Magadi, only some 
thirty miles as the crow flies from Bangalore ; and 
in the Savandroog forest, round the base of the 
high rocky hill of that name, there is always a 
chance of bagging one, though the jungle is so 
continuous, that it is extremely difficult to locate 
a tiger and to get him driven towards the guns. 
I tried upon two occasions to bag panthers at 
Bidadi by beating, but though upon each attempt 
one of the animals was seen, no one obtained a 
shot at it. 

There are bears in parts of this district, but 
game animals generally, even deer, are so scarce 
therein, that it would not be worth a visitor's while 
to waste time there, since good shooting grounds 
lie within such easy reach. 

CHITALDROOG DISTRICT 

Although, as I have said elsewhere under 
"Antelope," it would be worth the while of no 
one who intended to visit the north, to shoot 
antelope in Mysore, yet in the case of a sportsman 
who might be unable to go north, and who could 
not spare the time to go to either the Bellary or 
the Guzerat districts, but who might wish to bag 
a few black buck heads, a visit to this part, where 
the heads are certainly larger than I have seen 

421 



BULLET AND SHOT 

them anywhere else in the Mysore Province, would 
be worth paying. 

There is much antelope and chikara ground in 
the Chitaldroog district, which consists largely of 
open plains, and which is on the line of rail from 
Bangalore to Bombay — the antelope being found 
quite near to the railway line, as well as in the 
interior. 

My best bag of antelope — viz., twenty-four black 
buck, together with one buck chikara and two 
bustard — was made in seventeen days' actual 
shooting in this district, in the vicinity of Hosdroog. 

THE FORESTS OF THE SHIMOGA DISTRICT 

Shimoga, the headquarters of the district of the 
same name, lies on the high-road, only twenty-four 
miles from Tarikere, in that of Kadur. This 
district contains the best localities for tigers in the 
Mysore province, but bison are found in only two 
of its State forests, viz., Sacrebail, which is nine, 
and Shanker, which is seventeen miles, respectively 
from Shimoga. Tigers are found in both of these 
forests, as well as in Gangavansara twenty-three 
miles, Kardibetta the same distance, Kukuvada- 
Ubrani twenty-two miles, Kunchinballi eight miles, 
Kumsi eighteen miles, Malandur thirty-four miles, 
Nasrur twenty miles, Puradhal eight miles, and 
Umblibail and Humsi Kutti ten miles respectively 
from the district headquarters. 

For working Gangavansara, Kardibetta and 
Kunchinpalli, tents are required, but for all the 

422 



FORESTS OF HASSAN DISTRICT 

other forests, owing to the proximity of travellers' 
bungalows and inspection lodges, they need not be 
carried unless a party should go together, in which 
case the accommodation afforded by the buildings 
might be insufficient. It is, however, always con- 
venient to take one or two tents in case of 
necessity. 

Deer, etc., are to be found in all the above, as 
well as in a number of the other forests of this 
large district. 

THE FORESTS OF THE HASSAN DISTRICT 

About three miles from the railway station of 
Arsikere, the State forest of Hirikalgudda com- 
mences. There are three forest lodges on the 
demarcation line which measures twenty-one miles 
round, and tents may also be pitched on a table-land 
in the centre of the forest. This forest contains 
tigers, bears, panthers, deer, etc. 

The same animals are also to be found in a long 
range of forest some twenty miles in length, and 
from two to five miles in breadth, of which the 
State forest of Seegadagudda forms one portion, 
the remainder consisting of district forest and 
Amrut Mehal kavals (i.e. grazing grounds for the 
Government cattle department's use). Tents are 
required to work this tract which commences about 
fifteen miles from Hassan. 

In the Ghaut forests of the Munzerabad taluq, 
which borders upon the Imperial district of South 
Canara, the same game animals, with the addition 

423 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of bison, are to be found, and to work these, tents 
should be taken. Here, again, no move should be 
made without the friendly aid of one or more of 
the planters having been promised to the visitor. 
In parts of the Hassan district, antelope inhabit the 
open plains. 

The principal small game of the Mysore province 
are snipe, jungle-fowl, spur- fowl, bustard, the lesser 
floriken, partridges, sand-grouse, quail, wild geese, 
ducks, and teal of various species, also hares. 

I append a few Canarese words and phrases 
which are likely to be of service to a sportsman 
who is ignorant of that language, and who may 
wish to shoot in Mysore or Canara. The Canarese 
equivalents for the English words are written as 
phonetically as possible, no attempt being made to 
adhere to the Canarese spelling. 



NAMES OF LARGE GAME ANIMALS 



English. 
Antelope 



Bear 
Bison 
„ bull 
„ cow 
Elephant . 
„ Tusker 
Four-horned 
Antelope 



Canarese. 
I Jinki and Hoolay- 
I kerra. 

Kurradee. 

Kartee. 

Kworna. 

Yemmay. 

Arnay. 

Kombin-arnay. 

[Kardcoorie. 



English. 
Hyaena 
Muntjac 
Panther 



Pig (wild) 
Sambur 
Spotted 
deer 
Tiger 



Canarese. 
Cut-keerba. 
Kard-coorie. 
Keerba, Ibba, 

Mutt-naie. 
Kard-hundee. 
Kurrowvee. 

Sargar, Marnoo. 
Hooly, Dod-naie. 



424 



CANARESE WORDS 



NAMES 


OF MISCELLANEOUS ANIMALS 


English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese 


Buffalo 


Kworna. 


Domestic sheep . 


Coorie. 


Dog 


Naie. 


Hare 


MoUa. 


Wild dog . 


Kard-naie. 


Young one of all 




Domestic cattle 


Dana. 


animals . 


Murree. 


Domestic bull 


Guli. 


Male of ditto 


Gundoo. 


Domestic goat 


Ardoo. 


Female of ditto . 


Hennoo. 



A FEW COMMON NOUNS 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarkse. 


Arm 


Toloo. 


Fish 


Meenoo. 


Back 


Bennoo. 


Flesh 


Marmsa. 


Bag 


Cheela. 


Foot 


Pada. 


Bamboo . 


Bidaroo. 


Footprint . 


Ajjie. 


Bird 


Hukki. 


Ford 


Kadavoo. 


Blood 


Ruttar. 


Forest 


Kardoo, Pareest 


Brain 


Medooloo. 


Fowl 


Kolee. 


Bread 


Roti. 


Fruit 


Phala, Khaie. 


Bullet 


Goondoo. 


Fruit (ripe) 


Hunnoo. 


Butter 


Benne. 


Hand 


Kye. 


Camp 


Mukkarmoo. 


Head 


Tollay. 


Cart 


Bandi. 


Heart 


Hardaya. 


Cartridge . 


Tota. 


Hill 


Betta, Gudda. 


Cholera . 


Sunniroga. 


Horn 


Komboo. 


>> 


Vantibhadi. 


House 


Munnie. 


Darkness . 


Kuttarle. 


Jungle 


Kardoo. 


Day 


Deevasa. 


Knee 


Monakarloo. 


Ear 


Kivi. 


Ladder 


Yaynee. 


Eye 


Kunnoo. 


Leg 


Karloo. 


Fault 


Tuppa. 


Lie 


Poie. 


Ferry 


Kadavoo. 


Light 


Belakoo. 


}> 


Tari. 


Man 


Arloo. 


Fever 


Jowra. 


Mangoe . 


Arm. 


Few 


Swelpoo. 


Medicine . 


Owshada. 


Finger 


Beraloo or Bettoo. 


Mile 


KuUoo (literally 


Fire 


Benky. 




stone). 



425 



BULLET AND SHOT 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


Milk 


Harloo. 


Spot (on 




Money 


Hunna. 


animal) 


Mutt. 


Moon 


Candra. 


Stick 


Komboo. 


Morning . 


Beilige. 


Stone 


Kulloo. 


»> 


Wottare. 


Sun 


Suriya. 


Mouth 


Byee 


Tank 


Kerray. 


News 


Vurtamarna. 


Tent 


Dehra, goodara. 


Night 


Rart. 


Throat 


Guntloo. 


Nose 


Mugoo. 


Tongue 


Narlige. 


Order 


Appane. 


Tooth 


Halloo. 


>j 


Hookoomoo. 


Town 


Ooroo. 


Peacock . 


Nowlo. 


Tree 


Morrer. 


Plain 


Beiloo. 


Truth 


Neeja. 


Potato 


Aloogudde. 


Tusk 


Komboo. 


Rain 


Mollay. 


Village 


Grama. 


River 


HoUay, Nuddy. 


Water 


Neeroo. 


Road 


Marga. 


Wind 


Gharli. 


Rock 


Kulloo. 


Wound 


Ghyar. 


Rupee 


Rupaiye. 






Salt 


Oopoo. 


Note,— 


-To form the plural 


Shot 


Cara. 


add the affix "galu" to the 


Sickness . 


Roga. 


singular noun. 


Snake 


Ow. 







PRESENT IMPERATIVES OF A FEW VERBS 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


Be careful 


Jagrate iroo. 


Cut . 


Kutarisoo. 


Be silent . 


Suramane iroo. 


Do not 


Baydar. 


Bring (a 




Eat . 


Teenoo. 


person) . 


Kurrukondoo, 


Feed 


Sakoo. 




bar. 


Find 


Kanoo, Sikkoo 


Bring (a 




Follow 


Himbasiloo. 


thing) . 


Tegadadu 


Give 


Kodoo. 




Kondoo, bar. 


Go . 


Hogo. 


Call . 


Kurree. 


Hold 


Hidee. 


Come 


Baroo, bar. 


Inquire 


Vicarisoo. 


Cut . 


Koyyoo. 


Lift . 


Yettoo. 



426 



CANARESE WORDS 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


Make 


Mardoo. 


See . 


Nordoo. 


Must (in 




Shoot 


Ese 


(combi- 




Shout 


Koogoo. 


nation) . 


Baykoo. 


Speak 


Martardoo. 


Put . 


Harkoo. 


>> 


Hayloo. 


Remain 




Take 


Tegge. 


(or stay) 


Iroo. 


Throw 


Bisardoo, Ogee 


Remember 


Nenapoo mardoo. 


Tie . 


Cuttoo. 


Run 


Ode hogo. 


Wait 


Kayu. 


EXAMPLES OF A FEW OTHER 


TENSES 


English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


Has become Aietoo. 


Has hit . 


Bidto. 


Has come 


Buntoo. 


Has 




Has died . 


Settoo hoietoo. 


missed . 


Tuppaietoo or 


Has gone 






Bidit ilia. 


to sleep 




Is . 


Oontoo. 


(or lain 


[too. 


May be . 


Irabhodoo. 


down) . 


Nintaietoo or Nin- 







A FEW ADJECTIVES 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese 


Bad. 


. Kettoo or 


Long 


Oodda. 




Kettadoo. 


Many 


Rumboo. 


Black 


. Koppoo. 


Much 


Bhalar. 


Blue 


. Neela. 


Near 


Huttra. 


Brown 


. Kandoo. 


>> 


Huttrakke. 


Cold 


. Tannagada. 


Red 


Kempoo. 


Deep 


. Ala. 


Shallow . 


Uttana. 


Far . 


. Doura. 


5> 


Alavillada. 


Good 


. Wollay or 


White . 


Billi. 




WoUaydoo. 


Yellow 


Arasina. 


Green 


. Hasaroo. 






High 


. Ettara, Unnata. 


Adverbs 


derived frorr 


Hot 


. Bissey. 


jectives generally bear the 


Large 


. Dodd, Doddadoo. 


"Arge," e.g 


., Badly = Ket 



ad- 



427 



BULLET AND SHOT 





PERSONAL 


PRONOUNS 




English 


t. Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese 


I 


. Narnoo. 


It 


Adoo. 


Thou 


. Neenoo. 


We . 


Nava. 


You 


. Neevoo. 


They 


Avaroo. 


He 


. Avanoo. 


They 




She 


. Avaloo. 


(neuter). 


Avoo. 




SOME MISCELLANEOUS WORDS 


English 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


About 


. Sumaroo. 


Near . 


Bali. 


After 


. Turuvaya. 


No or not . 


Illar. 


From 


. Add "inda" to 


Now . 


Ippo. 




name of place, e.g., 


Outside 


Horage. 




Mysore-inda = from 


There . 


Ulligee. 




Mysore, except where 


Till . 


Tanaka. 




euphony requires 


Under . 


Kellagee. 




"dinda," e.g., Cham- 


Upon . 


Mayley. 




raj-nagardinda = from 


Where . 


Yayley. 




Chamrajnagar. 


Why . 


Yartikke. 


Here 


Illigee. 


Yes . 


Howdoo. 


How 


. Hyarge. 


Yesterday 


Ninne. 



A FEW PHRASES SHOWING FORMS OF 
COMBINATIONS OF WORDS 



English. 
The bullet has hit . 
The bullet has missed 

The tiger is asleep, or is lying down 

The elephant is dead 

Bring water .... 

The bison is a big bull 

How far is Mysore ? . 

It may be about ten miles 

428 



Canarese. 
Goondoo bid-to. 
Goondoo Tuppaietoo, 

or Bidditilla. 
Hooli nintoo, or 

Nintaietoo. 
Arnay settu hoietoo. 
Neeroo tegadukondoo 

bar. 
Kartee dodd kworna 

oontoo. 
Mysooroo yestoo doura? 
Sumaroo hutt kulloo 

irabhodoo. 



CANARESE WORDS 



CARDINAL NUMBERS 



English. 


Canarese. 


English. 


Canarese. 


One 


Wondoo. 


Twenty-two Ipput-yerradoo. 


Two 


Yerradoo. 


Twenty- 




Three 


Mooroo. 


three, 


Ipput-Moorow. 


Four 


Nalkoo. 


etc., etc. 




Five 


Eidoo. 


Twenty- 




Six . 


Aroo. 


nine 


Ipputtumbuttoo. 


Seven 


Yayloo. 


Thirty 


Mowatoo. 


Eight 


Yentoo. 


Forty 


Nalvattoo. 


Nine 


Wombuttoo. 


Fifty 


Eivattoo. 


Ten. 


Huttoo. 


Sixty 


Aravattoo. 


Eleven 


Hunnondoo. 


Seventy 


Yeppattoo. 


Twelve 


Huddinyerradoo. 


Eighty 


Yembbattoo. 


Thirteen . 


Huddimooroo. 


Ninety 


Tombbattoo. 


Fourteen . 


Huddinalkoo. 


One 




Fifteen . 


Huddineidoo. 


hundrec 


[ Nooroo. 


Sixteen 


Huddinaroo. 


One thou 


- 


Seventeen . 


Huddinyayloo. 


sand 


. Savira, 


Eighteen . 


Huddinyentoo. 


NOTE.- 


-To form ordinal 


Nineteen . 


Huttumbuttoo. 


numbers, 


substitute *'ane" in 


Twenty 


Ipputtoo. 


place of 


"oo" as an affix to 


Twenty- 




the cardinal, e.g., First = 


one 


Ipput-wondoo. 


Wondane. 





429 



CHAPTER XXV. 

HINTS ON CAMP EQUIPMENT, SERVANTS, 
TRAVELLING IN INDIA, etc. 

TENTS 

ALTHOUGH I have elsewhere indicated my 
IX. own preference in the matter of tents, 
individual views and tastes are so diverse, that, 
before setting himself up with these indispensable 
articles, I would recommend a sportsman to write 
to the Elgin Mills Company, Cawnpore, for their 
illustrated catalogue, and from it he can then make 
his selection. He must do this with special regard 
to the country to be worked, and the means of 
transport therein available. 

CAMP FURNITURE 

Camp furniture should be obtained in India, and, 
to save the expense of carriage by rail over a long 
distance, had better be purchased at the nearest 
large town to the starting-point. Native servants 
are very careless, and to avoid subsequent breakage 
during marches, the furniture, though it must, 
if intended for use in hilly country, be light, ought 
also to be strong. All should of course be capable 

430 



THE CAMP MEDICINE-CHEST 

of folding irlto a small space, and excellent folding 
tables, chairs and cots, from which the sportsman 
can select whatever kinds he may prefer, are made 
in the country. 



THE CAMP MEDICINE-CHEST AND HOW TO USE IT 

This should contain whatever laxative may prove 
most satisfactory in the case of the individual 
sportsman (I personally pin my faith to compound 
liquorice powder, in doses of one large teaspoonful 
each) and some strong purgative (such as pills 
containing a little croton oil) for use when neces- 
sary by the servants. Too great attention cannot 
possibly be paid in India to the interior economy 
of the body, more particularly in feverish localities. 
Castor oil is an excellent and safe purgative, but 
I am personally unable to take it owing to the 
nausea which it causes. 

In case of incurring fever, quinine, Java Hari, 
and Warburg s tincture are most useful, also 
phenacitine (or antipyrin) as a sudorific. A fever 
patient should be put at once to bed, well covered 
with bed-clothes, and encouraged to drink freely 
in order to induce perspiration. Ten-grain doses 
of antipyrin will accelerate this result. As soon as 
the temperature of the body has fallen (as shown 
by the clinical thermometer which should find 
a place in the chest), quinine may be administered 
in ten-grain doses thrice daily, but must, in the 
absence of skilled medical advice, never be given 
while fever is actually raging. After profuse 

431 



BULLET AND SHOT 

perspiration, great care must be taken to prevent 
the patient from incurring a chill. 

The native patent medicine named " Java Hari " 
can be safely taken while fever is on, and I have 
often used it, with apparently useful results, in the 
case of native servants. Warburg's tincture has 
often proved very valuable in cases of obstinate 
continued fever which would not yield to other 
remedies, and is taken during its continuance. 
I used to carry this medicine, but happily never 
had occasion to use it. 

I generally, in the case of natives, began the 
treatment of that horrible disease, dysentery, with 
a dose of castor oil, followed, after this had 
thoroughly acted, by chlorodyne. The best treat- 
ment of this ailment, however — in addition to the 
avoidance of all solid food (except a little toast 
or bread), which must in every case be insisted 
upon, the diet being confined to milk, cold beef-tea, 
cold soup, etc. — lies in large doses of ipecacuaiiha^ 
and perfect rest. ' The patient should lie down 
as much as possible, and any semblance of a 
draught must be carefully avoided. The sports- 
man can take with him powders or capsules which 
his doctor will prescribe, containing as much 
ipecacuanha as may be thought advisable in his 
case, and in the deplorable event of his incurring 
this troublesome and dangerous complaint, he 
should take them according to the directions given 
him by the medical man ; and, when well enough 
to travel, should leave the jungles, and seek the 
nearest place where he can obtain medical 

432 



THE CAMP MEDICINE-CHEST 

attendance. I always carried with me in camp 
a small bottle of pure carbolic acid, in case of 
being mauled by an animal, and though I never 
had occasion to use it in my own case, I was, by 
having her wounds well syringed with a two per 
cent, solution of this drug, enabled to save the life 
of a favourite dog which had been horribly mauled 
by a panther. I recommend every sportsman 
who is in pursuit of dangerous game, to carry a 
bottle of this, and a syringe wherewith to inject 
a two per cent, solution of it to the full extent 
of the wounds, should one of the party unfortu- 
nately meet with an accident. 

In case of toothache arising from a hollow tooth, 
I know no better remedy than a drop or two of the 
purest carbolic acid on a tiny piece of cotton-wool 
inserted in the hollow. A pad of cotton-wool 
should be placed inside the cheek on the same 
side, and the patient should stand with his mouth 
open, allowing the saliva to run freely to avoid 
any burning of the mouth or tongue by the acid. 

In case of diarrhoea, it is advisable in the first 
instance to ascertain its cause. It may be due to 
some internal irritant, in which case castor oil 
should be administered ; or to a chill, when thirty 
drops of chlorodyne in a wineglassful of brandy 
and water is a good remedy, which can, if necessary, 
be repeated a few hours later. 

For external use, in case of injuries other than 

those caused by wild animals, homocea- is a valuable 

remedy, as is sulphate of zinc ointment in the case 

of cuts. Ellimans embrocation, of the strength 

2 F 433 



BULLET AND SHOT 

recommended for use upon horses and catde, is 
valuable in the cases of rheumatism and of bruises. 
In the case of ulcers, carbolic acid is useful. For 
colds, I am a great believer in quinine, taken, as 
soon as the malady is detected, thrice daily. It is 
usually unnecessary in India to carry any solvent 
for quinine, as the juice of one of the limes so 
largely used in native cookery will dissolve it. 
Eucalyptus oil, taken internally on sugar, is also 
good for colds, and I have derived much relief at 
home recently, in the case of heavy head colds, by 
the use of menthol snuff combined with doses of 
quinine taken thrice daily. 

Some lint, cotton-wool, two or three bandages, 
and a pair of scissors will complete the necessary 
list of contents of the medicine-chest which need 
be carried by a healthy man, though, should any 
sportsman be liable to suffer from an ailment which 
requires special remedies, the latter should of course 
be taken in addition to those named above. 

In case of sunstroke, the patient should be 
undressed, and a cold water douche, from a height 
of three or four feet, applied to the head, neck, 
chest, and all over the body. Two grains of 
calomel may be thrown on the back of the tongue, 
and, after consciousness has returned, five grains of 
antipyrin may be administered. An attack of 
sunstroke appears to predispose the patient to 
further seizures of the same malady, so that 
exposure to the sun should be avoided after anyone 
has once suffered from this complaint. The tabloid 
is the most convenient form in which the majority 

434 



CAMP SERVANTS 

of medicines which should find a place in the camp 
medicine-chest can be carried and administered. 
Messrs. Burroughs, Wellcome & Co., Snow Hill 
Buildings, London, E.C., make up convenient 
tabloid chests of sizes to suit the requirements of 
all classes from the cyclist to the explorer. 

CAMP SERVANTS 

In engaging servants for a shooting trip, the 
sportsman should be careful to select only those who 
have been well accustomed to travelling, and it is, 
of course, a great advantage should he be able to 
secure any who have previously travelled in the 
locality in which he intends to shoot. Directly it is 
known in the bazaar that servants are required by 
him, a number of them, each bearing a lot of 
certificates, will appear and offer themselves for 
employment. Regarding these certificates, a word 
or two of caution is necessary for the enlightenment 
of the newly-arrived European in India. Not only 
does a "sahib," who has found a servant most 
unsatisfactory, in the softness of his heart at the 
moment of parting with the " boy," not infrequently 
present him with a written character far better than 
he deserves, but very often the characters produced 
for the sportsman's inspection do not refer to the 
bearer thereof, but to some other servant from 
whom their bearer has bought, hired, or borrowed 
them, simply adopting the same name as that men- 
tioned therein. Then, again, fictitious characters 
are written (for a consideration) for servants by 

435 



BULLET AND SHOT 

loafing rascals who would commit any villainy for a 
fee. All these tricks make it very difficult to dis- 
tinofuish between the false and the true, and a 
personal recommendation from any previous 
employer (or an intimate friend of the latter) is 
worth a whole sheaf of the often very dirty scrip. 

It must be borne in mind, in enoraoring- servants 
for camp work, that it by no means follows that a 
really excellent headquarters " boy " will be at all 
a shining light in camp. Having had myself, ever 
since my marriage in 1885, to keep two sets of 
servants when in India, I have had considerable 
experience of the way in which good camp boys 
often fail when tried in headquarters, and also 
conversely. In the case of cooks — in my opinion 
the most important of Indian servants — this charac- 
teristic is curiously accentuated. It is very easy 
to comprehend why a good station cook, capable 
of preparing a dinner of which his master need not 
be ashamed, if taken out to camp with but few 
appliances wherewith to work, should fail to give 
satisfaction ; but it is less facile of comprehension 
why a really good camp cook, if employed at a 
pinch when his master is in headquarters, with a 
good cook-room and all the necessary utensils and 
materials, should be unable to do even as well as he 
can, with but a very limited amount of the latter, 
when in camp, and yet I have in practice found 
this to be the case, and much of the sportsman's 
comfort will depend upon his securing a really 
good specimen of the genus cook, species camp- 
understanding. 

436 



CAMP SERVANTS 

The servants of the north greatly differ from 
those employed in the south of India. 

In the north, the majority of domestic servants 
are Mahomedans, and, personally, I prefer these, 
as being men possessed of far more self-respect 
than members of the class from which the 
servants of the south are drawn. Moreover, any 
Mahomedans who are strict disciples of the 
Prophet are strict teetotallers, whereas drink is a 
terrible curse amongst the servant class in the 
south of India. 

In the south, the majority of the domestic 
servants are pariahs, or outcasts, the representa- 
tives of which class in the villages have quarters 
in a separate part thereof, are not permitted to 
mix with the inhabitants possessed of that wonder- 
ful Indian fetish, caste, and who are horribly 
foul in their manner of life, not even scrupling 
to eat domestic cattle which have died natural 
deaths, or have succumbed to disease. A primi- 
tive pariah will even move right out of the way, 
should he meet a Brahmin, for fear of his very 
shadow falling upon and polluting so holy a being. 

It is not to be wondered at, in so very con- 
servative a country as India, that the servant 
class, though for many generations they have 
been domestic servants, and far too well fed to 
hanker after diseased flesh (in the case of a large 
number, moreover, rejoicing in the profession of 
some form of Christianity), should, with such 
traditions, be less self-respecting, and therefore 
less reliable, than are Mahomedans ; and when 

437 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the influence of the demon drink, from the sale 
of which the Government derives so great a 
revenue, is superadded, it will be seen at a glance 
that the pariah, or native Christian servant of the 
south, can scarcely be expected to be so trustworthy 
as is the Mohamedan of the north. 

Excellent servants are to be found in Madras, 
as also in other large towns in the south ; but 
such can usually obtain congenial and well-paid 
employment in those towns, and are generally, even 
if found when temporarily disengaged, unwilling 
to risk their health in, or to undergo the privations 
and (to them) monotony of camp life. 

The first demand which a servant will make on 
being engaged will be an advance of half a month's 
wages. In every case the sportsman must insist 
upon retaining, as some small security therefor, 
the chits, or written characters, which the boy will 
have presented for his perusal, the same to be 
carefully kept and returned to the latter when 
his services are dispensed with. 

As stated elsewhere, a suit of warm clothes and 
a blanket, and in wet weather a cheap waterproof 
coat and turban cover also, should be given to 
each servant before he leaves headquarters for the 
jungles, or hills, as the case may be. 

The only domestic servants which a single sports- 
man in the south need take into camp with him 
are, a head boy, or " butler," and a cook. As, 
however, servants are terribly liable to suffer from 
fever, etc., when in the jungles, the head boy must 
also be a capable cook, and It will add to the 

438 



CAMP SERVANTS 

master's comfort, if he should take as well a third 
servant who is able also to cook a little in case 
of need. For each horse or pony which he may 
take out, he will require a syce (or groom) and 
a grass-cutter (usually the wife or female friend 
of the syce), except in localities wherein grass 
can be purchased in camp, in which case I should 
recommend that the grass-cutter be dispensed with. 

A Mahomedan, if procurable, or, failing him, a 
native of some sort who is thoroughly versed in 
the pitching, packing, and drying of tents, should 
accompany the camp, and in places in which the 
sportsman travels by bullock-coach, he can be 
occupied during marches in driving the latter. 

If two or three sportsmen should be out together, 
one personal servant apiece, with a cook and an 
under servant, in addition to the horses' attendants, 
will be ample for comfort. In the latter case, one 
of the personal servants must be entrusted with 
the general care of the camp arrangements and 
of the table, and the others be clearly made to 
understand that they are to obey him. 

The usual wages of the different classes of 
servants in Southern India, while in headquarters, 
are appended, the rupee being calculated as 
equivalent to one shilling and fourpence. It 
must be remembered, however, that all servants 
expect a special allowance to cover the additional 
cost to which living apart from their families (if 
they possess such), and in some cases the higher 
price of provisions in out-of-the-way places, may 
entail upon them. This used to cost me, in 

439 



BULLET AND SHOT 

the case of upper domestic servants, about two- 
pence a day, and in that of lower ones and of 
syces, one penny per diem in addition to their 
monthly pay. 





Rupees per mensem 


Butler in headquarters 


14 to 16 


Head matey „ 


12 


Under matey „ 


10 


Cook „ 


14 to 16 


Syce 


7 


Grass-cutter „ 


4 


Tent lascar „ 


8 



When two or more sportsmen go out together, 
one member of the party should undertake sole 
responsibility for the commissariat. If this be 
not done, and a constant check thus imposed 
upon pilfering and waste, not only will it often 
be found that supplies ample for a month will 
disappear in less than half that period, but, if 
the head boy be entrusted with the catering, he 
will wait until he has entirely, or almost entirely, 
run out of some essential item, before informing 
his master that more of it is required. 

For the carriage of sugar, rice, ghee (clarified 
butter, used in lieu of lard in cookery), curry 
powder, flour, salt, pepper, mustard, etc., I re- 
commend strong wooden boxes fitted with tin 
canisters, unless in the case of ghee, salt, pepper, 
etc., for which strong glass jars may be used. A 
strong wooden box lined with tin should also 
contain potatoes and onions. All such boxes should 
be fitted with padlocks and keys of not too common 

440 



CAMP SERVANTS 

a design (the Yale padlocks are excellent), and if 
the member of the party who has charge of the 
stores should call up the cook every morning 
directly after breakfast, give the latter the keys, 
and tell him to take out all his requirements for 
the day in his presence, he will find that the few 
minutes thus spent will be very well paid in 
economy in use of the articles. 

The keys should never be given to the servant 
for use unless in his master's presence, and after 
the former has taken what he requires, the latter 
should see the boxes locked up again, and resume 
possession of the keys. 

All wines and spirits must be kept carefully 
locked up, and when a bottle of either has been 
opened, it should be secured with a "bottle-lock," 
which can be bought at any of the large shops 
in the country. This will prevent not only theft 
of the liquor and the possible temporary incapacity 
of the boy, but also the addition to the former of 
water (frequently dirty) with the object of concealing 
the peculation. 

In travelling in India, it is not only unfeeling 
towards the servants to expect them to make long 
marches, in a broiling sun, along hot roads, but 
also bad policy from the standpoint of their master's 
own comfort, such being very liable to cause illness 
in the case of people of generally very poor 
physique. Care should therefore be exercised to 
see that carts enough are provided for the carriage, 
not only of the camp requisites, but also of the 
servants, who, however, take up very little room, 

441 



BULLET AND SHOT 

and can squat for hours together in a position 
which would soon become agony to a European. 
A native servant, in the south, who does not 
drink, is a great treasure, and when once secured 
should be retained as long as possible, much being, 
if necessary, forgiven him in consideration of so 
valuable a trait. 



TRAVELLING TO AND IN INDIA 

Should a sportsman from England wish to visit 
Bengal, or the north of India, he will probably 
prefer to go by one of the Peninsular and Oriental 
S.S. Company's vessels from Marseilles or Brindisi 
to Bombay, and to travel thence by rail to the 
nearest point at which the latter approaches his 
destination. He can, however, should he prefer to 
do so, go the whole way to Calcutta by sea, and 
commence his rail journey there. 

If, however, his destination be the south of 
India, and if he should be so unfortunately con- 
stituted as to be liable to sea-sickness (from which 
I personally suffer whenever there is the least 
excuse for so doing), an expeditious route, with a 
minimum of sea, is the following. Sending his 
heavy luggage to the agents at Liverpool a week 
or ten days before one of the steamers of the 
Bibby Line is timed to leave that port, and 
ascertaining on which day the vessel will reach 
Marseilles, he can join her there, and thus avoid 
about a week of sea, including the oftentimes 
turbulent Bay of Biscay. The steamers of that 

442 



TRAVELLING TO AND IN INDIA 

line are fine, large, well-appointed ships, with all 
arrangements for the comfort of passengers. A 
journey of seventeen clays' duration will take him 
to Colombo (the capital of the island of Ceylon), 
whence one night's journey by sea, in one of the 
British India steamers which ply between that port 
and Tuticorin, will put him down at the latter 
whence he can travel by rail. 

In railway travelling in India, it is practically 
necessary to travel first class. Even this will not 
secure the traveller from the intrusion of a possibly 
scantily -clad native, whose manners and customs 
may be the reverse of agreeable to the former. 
It is high time that the railway companies should 
provide separate first-class accommodation for 
Europeans and for natives, and permit none of the 
latter, except such as may have adopted English 
costume, to enter the carriages reserved for 
Europeans. 

Before starting on a railway journey in the 
plains of India, the traveller should ascertain 
whether ice is carried on the train for supply to 
the passengers, as, if not, he will find a box of it, 
taken with him, a great comfort, and he should 
not omit to also take some soda-water and a 
tumbler. Having reached the termination of his 
journey by rail, the sportsman's means of transport 
thence will depend entirely upon the means avail- 
able in the locality, which he will have to ascertain. 

As is elsewhere stated, in Mysore and other 
parts of the south, a comfortable bullock- coach 
for his own conveyance can be hired either for 

443 



BULLET AND SHOT 

a single journey, or at a monthly rate if retained ; 
while carts drawn by bullocks will convey his 
baggage and servants, one of whom, however, 
should travel on the box of his master's coach 
with the driver. If the sportsman has taken with 
him a horse or a pony, or has arranged to hire 
one in the nearest large town to the area to be 
worked, he can, if he should choose so to do, dis- 
pense with the bullock-coach, though the latter 
is a great comfort in wet weather, and also a 
convenience when travelling by night. Personally 
I can sleep splendidly while travelling by bullock- 
coach. 

Before starting on his journey from the nearest 
railway station, the sportsman should ascertain 
what travellers' bungalows, and at what distances 
apart, lie along the roads which have to be 
traversed by him en route to his shooting grounds ; 
and also, in the case of each, what necessaries in 
the way of furniture, etc., are provided, as 
bungalows are by no means uniformly provided 
with necessary kit. Thus, should cooking utensils 
and crockery be not provided in all of those in 
which he proposes to halt, the traveller must take 
sufficient of them, and of supplies for the journey, 
with him in the coach ; or, should he be riding, 
then in one of the carts. In the latter case, it 
is better to have the small stock of necessaries 
which he will require before he reaches his destina- 
tion and pitches his camp, packed separately in one 
or two boxes, to avoid as much as possible unpack- 
ing and repacking while travelling. 

444 



TRAVELLING TO AND IN INDIA 

All rifle- and gun-cases should be strong, and 
capable of standing, without risk of breakage, the 
wear and tear of cart travelling, and possible care- 
less packing and handling. 

In travelling, the sportsman should personally 
superintend the loading of his carts, to prevent 
ponderous articles being placed upon light and 
fragile packages. 



445 



CHAPTER XXVL 

RIFLES AND GUNS, AMMUNITION AND 
ACCESSORIES 

T would be invidious, where so many firms of 
gunmakers are capable of turning out first- 
rate weapons, to select any of them for particular 
mention ; but, especially where weapons for use 
upon big game are concerned, a few words of 
-caution and advice to the beginner may usefully 
introduce this chapter. 

In the first place, the sportsman who may wish 
to shoot large game will do well, so far as his 
pocket will admit, to purchase only the very best 
weapons. By the " very best " is meant, not 
necessarily the most expensive, but those whose 
accuracy, power, and mechanism leave nothing to 
be desired. They may be of quite plain finish, 
but they must fit the intending user, be suitable 
for use upon the game which he is likely to en- 
counter, shoot as straight as any weapons of the 
same bore can be made to do, and their locks, 
fittings, and actions should be of the very best 
types. 

Cheap double rifles for large game cannot be 
relied upon, and few men who value their lives 

446 



RIFLES AND GUNS 

in the case of dangerous game, or who want to 
make the best use of their opportunities in the 
case of other animals, would care to trust to single 
barrels. 

The process of laying together a pair of barrels, 
so that both will shoot accurately from the same 
sight, is a laborious and expensive operation ; while 
the skilled, and therefore highly-paid, labour which 
must be employed in securing that extreme nicety 
of fitting of the different parts — a sine qua non in 
securing absolute smoothness and uniformity in 
working, perfect balance, and longevity — precludes 
the possibility of any gunmakers being able to turn 
out the very best class of weapon at even a com- 
paratively cheap price. 

None of the leading firms, whose reputation 
amongst sportsmen is known all over the world, 
will allow a weapon which has not been thoroughly 
proved to leave their establishments ; so that in 
buying from one of the leaders of the profession 
the purchaser can be sure of obtaining a really 
reliable rifle. With regard to rifles burning nitro 
powders, it would be most dangerous to purchase 
from any but the very best makers. 

In the case of guns for small-game shooting, the 
sportsman will find that, to a great extent, the same 
principles apply ; and although numbers of even 
country gunmakers can turn out good-shooting, 
good-looking, and reliable guns, at prices, too, to 
suit the respective pockets of their various cus- 
tomers, a great difference will be apparent between 
the cheaper and the more highly priced weapons 

447 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of the same firm. Without entering into the 
question of how the former are affected by use, 
only contrast the difference in the degree of 
pleasure which is afforded the owner of a well- 
built, well-fitting, accurately-balanced, and neatly- 
finished gun, who has for the nonce been compelled 
to take out for the day, say, a so-called ** keeper's 
gun " in place of his own, even although the 
stranger may fit him well, and both weapons be 
equally effective and deadly when held straight. 
The sportsman will, in the matter of guns, probably 
" cut his coat according to his cloth," and buy the 
best which he may be able to afford. Personally, 
I prefer the hammerless ejector, but have not yet 
tried the single trigger. 

If practicable, both rifles and guns should be 
made to order, and, in the case of the latter, the 
purchaser will do well to be fitted by actual practice 
at a shooting school with the adjustable " try- 
gun," to the merits of which, in securing a perfect 
fit, numbers of sportsmen (myself included) can 
testify. 

ACTIONS FOR RIFLES AND BALL GUNS 

For all weapons burning large charges of powder, 
there is no better action than that known as the 
double-grip lever, which, in efficiency and power, 
leaves nothing to be desired. 

Provided that the Indian sportsman intends 
taking an ample battery, with, say, a couple of spare 
weapons in case of accident or loss, or even with- 

448 



EXTRA PARTS 

out the latter in the event of his thoroughly under- 
standing the mechanism of the hammerless system, 
and being able to take the locks to pieces and 
to re-adjust them, there is no reason why his rifles 
should not be built upon that principle which 
possesses many advantages over the hammer type. 
A sportsman, however, who is obliged to limit his 
battery to two or three weapons, will, in the 
absence of such special knowledge (which com- 
paratively few possess) do well to order the simpler 
system, which is less liable to be affected by sand, 
rust, etc., as well as far easier to take to pieces and 
re-adjust, than is the hammerless. 

THE ANTI-RECOIL HEEL PAD 

This is a useful adjunct to all weapons burning 
heavy charges of powder. When I was upon one 
occasion knocked right over by the simultaneous 
discharge of both barrels of my 4-bore, the cart- 
ridges being loaded with ten drams of powder, and 
bullets weighing 3|- oz. each, the rubber pad pre- 
vented the slightest inconvenience to my shoulder. 

EXTRA PARTS 

Spare mainsprings, tumbler pins, and foresights, 
etc., with the necessary strong tools fit for the 
practical work of taking weapons to pieces and 
putting them together again, should be taken, and 
the sportsman before starting on his trip should 
learn how to use the tools with facility and 
efficiency. 

2 G 449 



BULLET AND SHOT 

RIFLE STOCKS 

As a rule the stock of a rifle should be rather 
more bent than is the stock of a gun used by the 
same sportsman, the tendency of the latter in using 
a rifle being to shoot too high. Moreover, if a 
straight stock be used on a rifle carrying a heavy 
charge, the cheek is liable to suffer. Most sports- 
men prefer a pistol grip on their rifle stocks, and 
this certainly affords a firmer hold. 

HAMMER STOPS 

Never allow stops to be fitted to any hammer 
rifle which is intended for use upon dangerous 
game, though for rifles meant for deer-stalking 
they are recommended. 

SLINGS 

It is only in the case of severe climbing, in the 
course of which the sportsman may require both 
his hands free, or in riding, that he will ever need 
to sling his rifle on his back. The loops for 
attachment of the sling should be made flat, thus 
obviating the rattling of rings or swivels. 

RIFLE-CASES, ETC. 

A convenient form of rifle-case is the " Shikari," 
made of strong sole leather ; but to prevent any 
tampering with the contained weapon by inquisitive 

450 



RIFLE SIGHTS 

natives, each case should be fitted with a padlock 
and key. As long as transport by bullock carts 
is available, strong cases of the ordinary make are 
preferable. 

Every weapon should be fitted with barrel-rods 
covered with baize or flannel, and loose flannel 
bags for barrels and stocks are also useful. 

For the barrels and external metal parts of 
rifles and guns, the best lubricant is vaseline ; 
while for their locks and works, the purest and most 
refined Rangoon oil alone should be used. 

RIFLE SIGHTS 

In the matter of rifle sights, each individual 
sportsman of any experience has his own prefer- 
ences, but for the benefit of the tyro a few remarks 
upon this subject may not be out of place. 

It is obvious that a deep V backsight, however 
suitable for target shooting, would be quite out 
of place upon a sporting rifle which will be used 
at running as well as at standing animals ; and 
even in the case of " bull's-eye shooting," many 
of the best shots elect to take aim over a plain 
bar in preference to even a broad shallow V, which, 
with a small central nick and a fine line down from 
the latter, is by far the best pattern of backsight 
for sporting rifles. 

The foresight should be a small, fine, platinum 
bead, unless, indeed, ivory be preferred. If re- 
quired, a folding sight for use after dark can be 
added, and elevated when needed. Any of the 



BULLET AND SHOT 

leading firms can, if desired, fit any rifle with a 
telescopic sight, whereby great accuracy of shoot- 
ing can be secured ; but the difficulty of taking aim 
at running animals with such a sight is a serious 
objection to its use. Moreover, in the case of 
rifles firing heavy charges, this sight is not recom- 
mended. 

A common fault in rifles is over-sighting. Con- 
sidering that when still-hunting in the forests, as 
also when tiger, panther, bears or deer are driven 
out by beaters, very close shots are obtained, there 
is no advantage in the standing backsight of an 
express rifle being regulated to shoot at more than 
lOO yards. The majority of animals are killed 
at much shorter ranges, and for hill stalking and 
antelope shooting, when longer shots may have 
to be taken, two folding flaps for use at long ranges 
may be added. By target practice, the sportsman 
will soon learn how much difference in elevation 
is caused by taking the foresight fine, or the re- 
verse, and he must always be on his guard against 
shooting over, since the tendency in shooting game 
with a rifle is to shoot too high. A standing back- 
sight regulated for lOO yards will afford a better 
chance in firing at moving objects than one which 
is set for 150 or more yards, since the common 
error of shooting too high is accentuated in the 
case of running shots, owing to the difficulty of 
taking a sufficiently fine foresight. In firing from 
a hard, rigid rest, such as a rock or a log, it is 
necessary, in order to prevent the barrels from 
flying up at the shot, to interpolate some soft 

452 



EXPRESS RIFLES 

substance, e.g., a cap, or a large pocket-handkerchief 
well bunched up, between the barrels and the rest. 

EXPRESS RIFLES 

These, in spite of the recent introduction of the 
•303 and "256 sporting rifles, are still the weapons 
in most general use, by the majority of sportsmen 
who enjoy frequent opportunities of large-game 
shooting, upon the lighter and softer-bodied class 
of game animals ; while the largest of these 
excellent weapons, viz., the '577, is, with suitable 
bullets, very deadly when employed against even 
the ponderous section of Indian and African ferai. 

The principle of the express proper is the 
enormous velocity imparted to a light, and more 
or less hollow bullet, driven by a very large charge 
of powder, causing the projectile on entering an 
animal's body (i) either to break up altogether, 
and thus to act like an explosive shell ; (2) to 
break up partially, while the large solid base and 
a portion of the adherent anterior part of the 
bullet carries on ; or (3) to open out in a mush- 
room-like form, and thus present a cutting surface 
equivalent to that of a bullet of much larger 
calibre. All these three results may be attained 
by the use of different bullets from the same rifle, 
and although in the case of each pattern the 
results attained will be less accentuated the greater 
the range at which the shot has been fired, and 
are moreover liable to variation when large bones 
are struck, their relative effects may be relied upon 

453 



BULLET AND SHOT 

when enterine the vitals of an animal of the softer- 
bodied class at the same range. Expresses are 
generally made of '360, '400, -450, -500, and -577 
calibres. Given the same charge of powder and 
the same range, the larger and longer the hollow 
in the front of the express bullet, and the lighter 
therefore the latter becomes, the more the thinness 
of its walls facilitates its breaking up at ordinary 
ranges, or almost pulverisation if fired into an 
animal at very close quarters. 

The above three results are the legitimate work 
of the express rifle with its proper bullets, though 
the weapon may be instantly converted into a hard- 
hitting small bore by the substitution of solid 
bullets, though this last is but a casual and 
secondary — albeit often extremely valuable — ser- 
vice which it is capable of rendering when 
desired. 

In addition to its power, and the shock to the 
nervous system of an animal struck by its peculiar 
bullet, the express rifle possesses the further advan- 
tage of a comparatively flat trajectory owing to the 
great velocity of its light projectile driven by a 
large charge of powder. As has been said above, 
bullets of different weights may be used out of the 
same rifle, but as the latter will have been tested 
and sighted for but one of these, a slight increase 
of elevation will, in the case of long shots, have 
to be given when a heavier bullet is employed, and 
a finer sight be taken when a slightly lighter pro- 
jectile is used. 

The weight of Eley's papered hollow tube '500 

454 



THE PARADOX GUN 

express bullet is only 340, whereas that of the 
long, canelured bullet is 440 grains ; if, therefore, 
it be desired to use in a '500 express rifle, tested 
with and sighted for the heavier projectile, a bullet 
weighing 100 grains less, the charge of powder 
must be reduced. 

It is dangerous to trust to the 340 grain '500 
express bullet in tiger shooting, owing to the 
great risk of the bullet breaking up on impact 
before it has reached the vitals. Many tigers, 
however, have been killed with that bullet, which 
is all that can be desired for use upon antelope 
and small deer, while for tigers and large deer 
(e.g. sambur) the 440 grain bullet is infinitely more 
effective. 

For Indian antelope shooting, the "360 express 
in the hands of a good shot is, with bullets con- 
taining only a short hollow plugged with wood, 
quite sufficient ; though some sportsmen prefer 
the "400 or even the "450, which latter, of course 
with suitable bullets, is also effective in tiger 
shooting. 

The "577 is, with suitable bullets, a most reliable 
weapon for use upon tigers and bison, and if loaded 
with solid bullets, it forms a serviceable second gun 
when the sportsman is in pursuit of elephants. 

THE PARADOX GUN 

This splendid weapon is the invention of Colonel 
Fosbery, v.c. Weighing, in the case of a 12-bore, 
but 7 lbs. or 7^ lbs., the Paradox shoots a heavy 

455 



BULLET AND SHOT 

conical ball with extreme accuracy up to loo yards 
or more, while when used with shot, it is as effective 
as is a good shot gun. Its lightness, handiness and 
power render it a most valuable weapon for tiger or 
bear shooting, as also for use upon deer in forested 
areas, and for running shots up to lOO yards or so, 
it is to be preferred to any rifle. 

Paradox guns are now made of i6, 12, 10 and 
8 bores, but the 12-bore is the one in most general 
use. 

The Paradox is rifled only at the muzzle, friction, 
and consequently recoil, being thus minimised. 

ORDINARY BALL GUNS 

Ball guns of 8 and 4 bores are very useful for 
elephant and bison shooting in thick forests, and, 
at the short ranges at which they are used, are 
quite sufficiently accurate. Smooth bores are much 
lighter than rifles of the same calibres, and a 
further advantage in the case of the former in 
close-quarter work upon ponderous animals, is 
the tremendous energy of the bullet owing to 
absence of friction. A 4-bore bullet striking an 
elephant's head rarely fails to floor him, whether 
the animal be brained or not. 

Care must be taken in using guns or rifles of 
these calibres to invariably fire the left barrel 
first, as otherwise both barrels are apt to go off 
together, which, however, never happens when the 
trigger of the left barrel is first pulled. 

456 



RIFLES BURNING NITRO POWDERS 



RIFLES BURNING NITRO POWDERS 

That these are the rifles for long-range shooting, 
such as hill stalking, is beyond dispute, the extra- 
ordinarily flat trajectory far surpassing all the hopes 
of sportsmen previous to their introduction. 

There can be little doubt that the rising genera- 
tion will live to see marvellous strides made both 
in the application of nitro powders to sporting 
rifles, and in the extension and improvement of 
the Paradox system of boring. Apart from the 
advantage of a small, handy weapon, with a tra- 
jectory so flat that accurate judging of distance is 
hardly required, combined with immense power, 
and (provided suitable bullets be used) tremen- 
dously destructive eflect, the mere absence of 
smoke is itself a great boon. In thick, heavy 
forest, on a still day, the smoke from black 
powder often hangs so heavily as to obscure the 
animal fired at, as well as the intervening space, 
and this might cost the sportsman his life when 
attempting to kill, or at any rate to stop, a wounded 
animal of the dangerous class in the act of charg- 
ing. Many an animal, which has not seen the 
sportsman at all, has charged the cloud of smoke 
by which the position of the enemy has been 
betrayed. 

So far as the application of nitro powders to 
sporting rifles has at present gone experience 
proves conclusively: (i) that rifles made for large 
charges of such explosives must be much more 
heavily and powerfully built than weapons of the 

457 



BULLET AND SHOT 

same bores constructed for use with black powder ; 
and (2) that only the cartridges specially loaded for 
them by the makers, and with which the weapons 
were tested, ought to be fired in them. 

Whereas a given charge of black powder can, 
with very slight variation, be depended upon 
to give certain specified results, what might, and 
doubtless would by the majority of sportsmen, be 
regarded as very trivial differences in loading, 
will, in the case of nitros, exhibit very seriously 
diverse effects. For instance, the same charge of 
cordite, in a rifle of say ■450-bore, will give very 
different velocities and elevations, and gravely wide 
diversities in strain on action, breech-end and 
barrels, according to whether the cartridge-case 
carries (i) a cap constructed for cordite 5 (2) a 
rather too powerful cap ; or (3) the ordinary 
cap. Further, the amount of air-space left between 
the powder and the base of the bullet governs, 
to a great extent, the combustion, and the amount 
of pressure which is exerted on the barrels. In 
addition to these factors, we find variations in 
cordite according to the degree of heat to which 
it is subjected, as well as to the amount of moisture 
which it contains. 

All the above considerations should deter sports- 
men from trying any experiments with cordite or 
kindred powders, from attempting to load their 
own cartridges with such, and even from purchas- 
ing loaded cartridges from anyone except the 
makers of their own rifles. 

Taking the larger bores first, rifles burning 

458 



THE -303 SPORTING RIFLE 

cordite and rifleite are now being made of '400, 
•450, '500, and '577 bores, but of two very different 
types. For instance, the more powerful pattern, of 
say •450-bore, made to shoot a large charge of 
cordite, say 50 grains or more, and a heavy bullet 
with a velocity of 1,900 or 2,000 feet, the stress or 
strain of which charge is far more severe than that 
caused by five drams of black powder, has for 
safety's sake to be made much stronger, and there- 
fore much heavier, than a rifle made for black 
powder. The lighter type, on the other hand, is 
built to shoot a charge of cordite powder large 
enough to give only the same velocity and strain as 
result from a charge of four drams of black powder. 
Now the strain in the case of the larger charge of 
cordite is from 50 to 100 per cent, higher than that 
of the comparatively small charge of the same, and 
one trembles to think what might happen, should a 
cartridge loaded for use in the heavier weapon be 
fired by mistake in a rifle of the lighter type. Yet 
this might very easily occur in the case of a powder 
taking up so little room in the cartridge-case as does 
cordite. The safest plan would be for the gunmaker 
to stamp the outside of every cartridge with the 
weight of the contained charge. 



THE "303 SPORTING RIFLE 

The author has had no opportunity of trying the 
•303 at game, but he was delighted with a double 
rifle of this bore by Messrs. Holland and Holland, 

459 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Limited, which he used at the running deer in the 
N.R.A. meeting of 1898. 

Many other sportsmen have, however, used this 
charming little weapon on many kinds of game, 
and they appear to be unable to say too much 
in its praise. The following letter from that mighty 
hunter, Mr. F. C. Selous, shows his opinion of the 
rifle, and of Messrs. Holland's peg bullet used 
therein. 

" BULUWAYO, 

"August lytk, 1895. 

" Dear Mr. Holland, — I have now shot with the little 
•303 rifle you made for me the following animals : 

3 Sable antelope bulls. I i Great crested bustard. 



I Sable antelope cow. 

3 Black wildebeest. 

4 Bontebocks. 



2 Sassaby antelopes. 
I Leichtenstein hartebeest 
bull. 



3 Blesbucks. 3 Reedbucks. 

3 Springbucks. I 3 Steinbucks. 

2 Vaal rhebucks. ! 2 Duikers. 

I Roan antelope bull. i Crocodile, 

1 Leopard. j i Jackal. 

2 Koodoo bulls. I I Rock rabbit. 

" Briefly, I have found it a most deadly little weapon, and 
am more than satisfied with it. I killed every animal I 
hit, with one exception — a wart hog, whose hind leg I 
broke with a running shot. This animal I should also 
have got, but I had first (after wounding it) to go some 
distance after my horse, and then lost the pig's spoor. 

" The hollow bullets are excellent, but I like your patent 
Peg Bullets even better. I killed the roan antelope bull 
with a shot in the chest at 300 yards. The bullet did not 
hit any bones (but the chest bones) but it dropped him on 
the spot and he died almost immediately, as the bullet 

460 



THE -303 SPORTING RIFLE 

had passed through his heart. The crocodile I ^Iso killed 
dead with a Peg Bullet behind the shoulder. These bullets 
not only expand and make a very severe wound in large 
heavy animals, but they also expand very well in small 
beasts, such as jackals and rock rabbits. 
" Please send me 500 more. 

" Believe me, 

" Yours very truly, 
(Signed) " F. C. Selous. 

"P.S. — You can make any use you like of this letter, as 
it is a simple statement of facts, which speak for them- 
selves. I have no trouble in cleaning the rifle." 

Major David Bruce, a.m.s., in the Field of 
May 8th, 1897, gives his experiences in Africa 
with a Holland '303, which are extremely favour- 
able. Although, as he most reasonably and justly 
remarks, he would not take the same liberties with 
dangerous game when armed only with so small 
a rifle as when he had in hand a "577, the Major 
on one occasion killed a buffalo cow with a single 
Holland's special bullet from the '303. 

Many other sportsmen have testified to the ad- 
mirable work done by this most powerful, accurate, 
and handy little weapon, whose flat trajectory, 
moreover, renders it extremely valuable for long 
shots. 

Although I should consider no battery, for use 
in India or Africa, complete which did not include 
a double "303, I would counsel the tyro not to 
allow his admiration for the weapon to induce him 
to use it upon large or dangerous animals which 
are ordinarily killed by much larger rifles. 

461 



BULLET AND SHOT 

It is true that many big beasts have been killed 
with the '303, but experiments in this direction are 
better avoided, both on the score of cruelty to the 
animals, and upon that of danger to the sportsman. 
The '303 in its proper and legitimate use will be 
found all that can be desired, but it is unreasonable 
to expect it to do the proper work of a bone-crusher 
of large bore. 

With the object of meeting the views of some 
sportsmen who desire a weapon of the same type, 
but more powerful than the '303, Messrs, Holland 
and Holland have lately built a rifle of '375 bore, 
the velocity of which is the same as that of the 
former. 

THE '256 SPORTING RIFLE 

I have never had the opportunity of trying the 
'256 sporting rifle, regarding which the opinions of 
sportsmen who have used it are conflicting, some 
deeming it an excellent weapon for use upon deer, 
etc., while others do not believe in it. 



CARTRIDGES 

All cartridge cases, even 8- and 4-bores, should 
be made of solid brass. It is a good plan to have 
those of small bores soldered up in tin packets each 
holding twenty-five, and those of the larger calibres 
in similar packets of ten cartridges each, the 
number of the bore being stamped on the outside. 
An ample supply should be taken, and no attempt 

462 



BULLETS 

be made to reload even brass cases with black 
powder, the risk of a miss-fire rendering such pro- 
cedure very bad economy. Then again reloaded 
brass cases are apt to stick in the chambers owing 
to their having expanded when fired, and though 
this drawback can be coped with by trying all the 
reloaded cartridges in the rifle before use, the other 
and more serious danger, viz., the possibility of a 
miss-fire, remains, and is sufficient to more than 
counterbalance the saving in cartridge cases which 
reloading would effect. 

For use out shooting, and to prevent the dinting 
of brass cartridges, carriers, made on the principle 
of the magazine, and the belt elsewhere described 
in this book, will be found useful, and can readily 
be made to order. 

BULLETS 

A few words on the subject of bullets may be 
of some service to the beginner. 

So many, and so diverse in effect, are those on 
the market from which he must make his choice, 
that the embarras de richesses may well render his 
selection a matter of some difificulty. 

The classes of bullets which a sportsman will 
select for his battery will, to some extent at least, 
depend upon the composition of the latter. A 
man who cannot afford a number of weapons may 
be compelled, as a makeshift, to make one weapon 
do the work of three, and in such case he will 
require different bullets for various kinds of game. 
To a certain extent, it is easy to guide him, for 

463 



BULLET AND SHOT 

spherical bullets of large bore hardened by the 
admixture of one-tenth or one-eighth of quick- 
silver (tin also will harden the lead, but it reduces 
the weight of the bullet) are the proper pro- 
jectiles for use upon all animals of the ponderous 
type. But then comes in the powerful '577 
express, which, if made to burn 6^ drams of 
powder, will propel a large bullet containing but 
a small hollow stopped with a wooden plug, or 
a solid projectile, with great effect in use upon 
animals of the genus Bos. 

Personally, I prefer the '577 where bison are met 
with in fairly open country, and a regular bone- 
crusher — such as an 8- or 4-bore — where the same 
animals are encountered at close quarters in very 
thick forest. 

For use upon the Indian elephant I found the 
4-bore with spherical bullets most effective. As 
the Indian sportsman fires, at very close quarters, 
only at the brain of an elephant, a 4-bore bullet 
possesses ample penetration, while the weight of 
the projectile, and the large surface simultaneously 
struck by it, convey such a shock as rarely fails 
to floor an elephant, even though the brain be 
missed. This is, in my opinion, the one and only 
instance in which the 4-bore with spherical bullets 
possesses any advantage over the 8-bore Paradox 
gun, the latter being much lighter and handier, and 
possessing superior penetration as well as much 
greater accuracy than the former. In fact, for use 
upon rhinoceros and the African elephant (which 
is shot behind the shoulder) the 8-bore Paradox 

464 



BULLETS 

appears, judging by the experience of great 
hunters who have tried both, to be far more 
effective than are rifles of 8 and 4 bore. 

I have never personally tried the Paradox, but 
there is no doubt that it is rapidly superseding the 
rifle for use upon game which is shot at fairly 
close quarters. 

Though a solid, hardened bullet, from an express 
rifle carried as a spare gun, may be useful at a 
pinch, few men of any experience would care to 
trust to such weapons for elephant shooting, 
though, of course, even the largest animals have 
been, and may be with luck, bagged with rifles 
of even '450 bore. 

The number of the bores of rifles and guns 
built for spherical bullets, such as 4, 8, 10, 12, etc., 
means the number of spherical bullets of the given 
calibre which theoretically weigh one pound avoir- 
dupois. Practically, however, the thickness of the 
cartridge case makes it impossible for it to contain 
a bullet quite so heavy. For instance, the largest 
bullet which I could fire from my 4-bore, which 
took paper cases, weighed only 3^ ounces, and 
to get that bullet into the case, the mouth of the 
latter had to be pared down internally, and so made 
very thin. In the case of the small bores, e.g., 
the various express, '303, and other small-bore 
rifles, the decimal represents the diameter of the 
bullet in the fraction of an inch. Thus a '500 bore 
bullet is half an inch in width at the base. 

Great care must be taken in casting hardened 
bullets, as if too much antimony, tin, or quicksilver 
2 H 465 



BULLET AND SHOT 

be put in, the bullets become brittle, and so lose 
penetration when they encounter large bones. 

In casting bullets with an admixture of quick- 
silver, the latter must not be added till the lead 
has been melted, as otherwise it would evaporate. 
After the molten lead is ready for the mould, the 
mercury should be poured in, mixed well with an 
iron rod, and the bullets cast off as rapidly as 
possible. Antimony is, however, easier to use, 
and is equally effective in hardening lead. 

If tin (which is not recommended) be used to 
harden bullets, it appears to oxydize more readily 
that does lead, and upon re-heating any residue 
which may have got cold, it is better to add a little 
pure lead in order to avoid the risk of over- 
hardened bullets. 



BATTERY FOR LARGE GAME SHOOTING IN INDIA 

This is a somewhat difficult subject, owing 
mainly to the immense variety of game animals 
which inhabit the continent of India, but partly 
also to the individual preferences of sportsmen, as 
well as to the exceedingly variable limits of ex- 
pense within which each individual may wish to 
confine himself. Then, again, comes in the per- 
sonal equation. It is no fair argument that 
because A., a first-rate shot and very experienced 
sportsman, can kill any given class of game satisfac- 
torily with a rifle of comparatively small bore, B., 
who is quite a beginner, ought to be able to do the 
same ; and the latter will therefore do well to err 

466 



BATTERY 

upon the side of too much, rather than too little 
power. He will soon feel his own way, and as 
his ability to place his bullet where he wishes 
increases, he may, if he chooses to do so, use 
lighter weapons. 

Amongst all humane men who deprecate every 
moment's unnecessary pain inflicted upon the 
game which they may wish to secure, there can 
be but one opinion, viz., that the novice, at any 
rate, should use more powerful weapons than the 
past master, to compensate for his own deficiencies 
in the matter of " buck-ague," or over anxiety to 
bag. This last impediment to good shooting is, 
however, by no means confined to beginners. The 
keener a man may be, and the more enjoyment 
he may therefore derive from shooting, this element, 
though it ordinarily becomes tempered by fruition, 
may, if he be of an excitable and nervous dis- 
position, affect him in a greater or less degree — 
whether he is personally conscious of its existence 
or no — throughout the whole of his sporting 
career. 

Beyond certain limits, it is impossible for any 
one weapon to be really effective. Much may be 
done with it, however, which would be infinitely 
better accomplished with another rifle, and it then 
becomes, when used upon game rather too large or 
rather too small for it, a more or less unsatisfactory 
makeshift. For instance, bison have been killed 
with a "500 express, whereas both a powerful "577 
and an 8-bore are infinitely superior weapons in 
bison shooting. On the other hand, antelope may 

467 



BULLET AND SHOT 

also be killed with the '500, though either a "303 or 
a '360 express is a much better weapon in antelope 
shooting. 

Again, that admirable weapon, the 12-bore Para- 
dox gun, would be out of place in hill stalking 
when long shots must often be taken, nor, if used 
in elephant shooting, would it possess the tremen- 
dous knocking-down power of a 4-bore. Of course 
a Paradox of larger bore would be too large, too 
heavy, and unnecessarily powerful for use on tigers, 
bears, and deer, where the 12-bore Paradox is so 
effective, but would be a splendid weapon for rhi- 
noceros, buffalo, and bison, and quite sufficient for 
elephant shooting, though the Indian sportsman of 
the present day is unlikely to have many chances of 
sport with elephants. 

The sportsman must consider what game animals, 
he is likely to meet with, and what amount of 
money he may wish to spend upon his battery, 
and then select the latter accordingly. If expense 
be no object, and if he should aspire to make a 
bag which shall include all species of Indian game, 
a comprehensive and efficient battery would be a 
pair of double "303 sporting rifles ; one double 
•577 express, taking the long case and 6 J drams, 
of powder; one double 12-bore Paradox gun; one 
double 8 -bore Paradox gun. 

If the sportsman is unwilling to incur the ex- 
pense of two "303 rifles he must needs be content 
with one. A pair is put down merely as a pre- 
caution against disappointment, should anything 
happen to the one in use, the above battery con- 

468 



CLEANING OF SMALL-BORE RIFLES 

taining no other rifle suitable for long range hill 
shooting at light-bodied game. 

NOTE ON THE CLEANING OF SMALL-BORE RIFLES 
BURNING NITRO POWDERS 

Cleaning is a far less easy operation when cordite, 
etc., is used, than when the fouling is due to black 
powder. Plenty of friction with the cleaning rod, 
supplemented when necessary by the use of hot 
water, and the application to the interior of the 
barrels after cleaning of a special preparation called 
" Nitroclene," are the most satisfactory means of 
keeping such rifles in good order. They should 
be cleaned as soon as possible after use. 



469 



CHAPTER XXVII. 

HINTS ON SKINNING, AND ON THE PRESERVATION 
OF TROPHIES 

A LTHOUGH in the body of this work I 
Jr\ have given rough-and-ready methods, which 
I have personally employed for the treatment of 
skins, head-skins, etc., I am indebted to Mr. Butt, 
taxidermist, of 49, Wigmore Street, for the following 
up-to-date instructions on the subject : — 

ON SKINNING MAMMALIA 

Directly after the animal has been killed, the 
nostrils, throat, and any bullet -wounds should be 
plugged with cotton-wool or tow. 

To remove the skin, place the animal on its back, 
and make a longitudinal incision with the knife 
along the centre line of the belly to the lower lip, 
which latter must be divided. In performing this 
operation, care must be taken that the hair along 
the line of incision be carefully divided, and not cut. 
Straight cuts through the skin may next be made 
along the inside of each leg as far as the claws, 
or hoofs, as the case may be. Next turn the skin 
back in every direction as far as the incisions made 
will admit of this being done, and free the legs 

470 



THE PRESERVATION OF TROPHIES 

from the skin. Continue the longitudinal cut 
along the under part of the tail to its tip, and 
turning the skin back, strip that organ of it. 

Nothing now remains but to remove the skin 
from the back and the head. To effect this, place 
the carcass on its side, and with the scalpel carefully 
separate the skin, drawing it towards the head. In 
skinning the head, great care must be taken to 
avoid the accidental making of any unnecessary 
incisions in or around the eyelids, nose, and lips. 
The ears should be cut off as close as possible to 
the skull, their cartilages being left in the skin. 

The skin is now free from the body, and the 
next operation is to turn the ears inside out, and 
to remove from them, the nostrils, lips, and feet, 
all adherent cartilage and flesh. 

Place the skin open on the ground, with hair side 
underneath, and carefully remove any flesh or fat 
which may adhere to it, scraping it well to remove 
all loose particles of underskin, or pelt. 

ON PRESERVING THE SKINS OF MAMMALIA 

The above operations being thoroughly performed, 
take a quantity of powdered alum (which must be 
used liberally) and a very small quantity of common 
salt, and rub these well into the skin, taking especial 
care to do this very thoroughly in the case of the 
ears, nostrils, lips, and feet, till the whole has been 
completely impregnated. 

Allow the skin to lie, with the raw side upper- 
most, on the ground for an hour or two, and then 

471 



BULLET AND SHOT 

hang it up on a line or a branch to dry. The 
drying should, if possible, be effected in the shade. 

If the specimen be not destined for mounting 
whole, the skin may be pegged out on the ground 
to dry, but the common mistake of unduly stretching 
it out of shape, in order to make it appear larger 
than it really is, should in every case be avoided. 

As soon as the skin is thoroughly dry, it may be 
folded with the fur or hair inside, and so packed. 
Skins are best packed for sending home in a 
wooden box lined with tin, whose cover (of the 
same material) should be soldered on to the lining, 
thus rendering the case perfectly air-tight. 

When it is intended that the animal shall be 
mounted whole, the leg -bones must be preserved. 
These should be separated from the trunk at the 
shoulder -joints and the thighs, and thoroughly 
cleansed from all adherent flesh, etc. 

In every instance the skull should be preserved. 
To effect this, place it in boiling water for five 
minutes only in the case of small specimens, and 
ten minutes or more in that of larger ones, after 
which clean thoroughly, scooping out all the brains. 
Care must be taken not to lose any of the teeth. 

In packing skulls, each should be separately tied 
up in paper, and marked with a number correspond- 
ing to that by which the skin belonging to it is 
indicated, and packed tightly moreover to avoid 
breakage of teeth, etc., through rolling about — a 
frequent source of disappointment. 

Another excellent method for the preservation 
of skins of the mammalia, where it is practicable, 

472 



THE PRESERVATION OF TROPHIES 

is the following, which may be confidently relied on. 
After the skin has been thoroughly scraped and 
freed from all adherent particles of flesh, etc., place 
it entirely in a cask or tub in which a pickle, 
consisting of one pound of powdered alum, half 
an ounce of saltpetre, and two ounces of common 
salt to each gallon of cold water, has been previously 
prepared, and well mixed. After the skin has been 
soaked therein for two days or so, it may be either 
hung up, or pegged out on the ground to dry, 
according to whether it is destined for mounting 
whole, or for retention merely as a skin. 

In all cases, sportsmen should pack and forward 
to England as soon as possible any skins and heads 
which they may desire to preserve. Not only are 
insects very destructive to skins in India, but, in 
the hot and dry weather, teeth are very apt to 
split, and no process of which I am aware will 
prevent this. 

In the case of very thick skins, such for instance 
as the masks of bison, the only method of preserving 
them is to shave the skin down, to about one-third 
of its original thickness, before applying preserva- 
tives or placing it in pickle, as the case may be. 
A good plan is to take a native chuckler (worker 
in leather) with the camp, but on no account, in 
such case, must he be allowed to work his wicked 
will upon the skins in his own primitive way. He 
should simply work under the sportsman's own eye, 
and be made to obey orders literally and promptly. 

When it is intended to preserve the head of a 
hornless animal for subsequent mounting separately 

473 



BULLET AND SHOT 

from the skin, no incision through the under part of 
the neck and the upper Hp need be made, since 
after the severance of the head in its skin, the 
latter can be drawn back over the face and 
separated without any further cutting. 

Mr. Butt regards the use of turpentine as pre- 
judicial, and that of arsenical soap as unnecessary. 



474 



APPENDICES. 



THAMIN, AND THEIR QUEST* 

Of all the deer family Thamin or brow - antlered deer 
(Cervus eldii) are among the most graceful and beau- 
tiful, and least generally known of their species. They 
are found in Burma — from the Chindwin Valley to 
Tenasserim — in Siam and Manipur. On the immense 
plains of Lower Burma, which lie between the hills and 
the sea, they may be met with in considerable numbers. 
They seem to prefer the flat country, especially those 
plains where a dense growth of elephant grass occurs ; 
this land affording good grazing and capital shelter. The 
peculiarity of this grass {Saccharum spontaneum, S. 
procereum, etc.) is its immense size, and the remarkable 
scarcity of trees amongst it. The grass, called by the 
Burmans " kiang," attains a height of eight feet and over, 
and possesses thick woody stems. During the dry 
weather fires occur, and on these clearings a short 
succulent grass springs up when the rains come, affording 
good pasture. In the wet season patches of low-lying 
ground become swampy which, when the dry weather 
comes, retain sufficient moisture for short grasses. These 
patches, called " kwins " by the Burmans, are much 
favoured by thamin, and it is in these localities the 
sportsmen may expect to find them. I have not heard 
of their being found in heavy jungle, " though in Upper 
Burma they are frequently met with in ' open tree ' 
jungle, but probably only resorting there for shade and 
rest." (Evans.) In appearance a mature thamin stag is 
of a dark russet brown, which at a distance appears 

• This article, which appeared in the Field of December 31st, 1898,.. 
is reproduced in extenso by kind permission of the editor and the author. 

477 



BULLET AND SHOT 

blackish. The coat is thick and shaggy, the hair being 
especially thick round the neck and down the spine ; on 
the under part it is white and thinner. In height he 
stands from 10*3 to ir2 hands, and weighs from thirteen 
to fifteen stone, and sometimes over. According to 
Veterinary-Captain Evans of Rangoon, who has probably 
shot more of these animals than anyone else, there are 
not two distinct kinds of thamin, as some sportsmen have 
assumed, the difference in colour, etc., being probably due 
to age, season of the year, and perhaps locality. The 
head is graceful, the peculiarity being the great develop- 
ment of the brow antlers. The main horns sweep 
upwards, outwards, and inwards, and the usual number 
of tines are ten, though often more are found. A good 
head will measure 36 in. to 40 in. between widest points, 
and from tip of brow-antler to tip of main, from 50 in. 
to 55 in. The difference between stags found in Upper 
and Lower Burma appears to be in colour and sweep 
of horns, those of the latter province being wider and 
more graceful. The hinds are a bright chestnut colour 
with fine hair, the calves being pretty little creatures, 
usually spotted white. Thamin are gregarious, and may 
often be met with in herds of twenty and over. Though 
found on the same ground as hog deer {Axis porcinus) 
they do not seem to mix. The best time of the year for 
a shoot is during the hot weather, March, April, and 
May, the stags not being out of velvet before the end of 
February. This means a fairly warm time, as the 
thermometer frequently rises to 104°- 106° Fahr. during 
the afternoons, but as the heat is of the dry kind, and 
nights nearly always deliciously cool, it is not unbear- 
able. I think Lower Burma affords better sport for 
thamin than any other part of the country, and travelling 
is easier. 

To make a " bandobast " (expedition) for this particular 
sport does not present many difficulties ; and, once in the 
locality we have selected to shoot in, the rest is easy. At 
fairly frequent intervals, Public Works Department bunga- 

478 



THAMIN, AND THEIR QUEST 

lows are met with. They are lightly-built houses, erected 
for the convenience of travelling officials. 

Here one may put up for a few days, and make a 
change from camp life. As they are usually near a village 
where bullocks, carts, men, etc., can be procured, all of 
which are indispensable, it is sometimes wiser to make 
one's headquarters here than farther away in plain or in 
jungle. 

In some parts of Upper Burma thamin are shot from 
bullock carts — a vehicle, by the way, of the most primitive 
form, and eminently calculated to jolt one's heart into 
their mouth, being innocent of springs. To this cart 
two bullocks are fixed, and leafy branches spread round 
the framework. The deer pay but little attention to it, 
though its progress is attended with much noise ; but they 
are accustomed to see carts frequently, being the one 
means of transport the natives here possess. Very often 
one can get within range while the stag gazes curiously at 
its approach. I shot my first thus ; but I must confess the 
method practised in Lower Burma commends itself more 
to one's sense of sport and fairness. Here the bullock 
cart takes us to the ground, and on sighting a stag, 
feeding probably in an open patch, or " kwin," we dismount 
and begin to stalk. 

Another method is to shoot from an elephant. The 
deer do not seem to mind the sight and smell of one, as 
they frequently see wild herds on their feeding-grounds 
during the rains. 

Supposing one has left camp or bungalow about 
4.30 a.m., and arrive where we may expect to find 
game a couple of hours later, by now the sun is well 
up and getting warm. Thamin get very shy and nervous 
even at considerable distance after a day or two's shooting, 
so it is very desirable not to attract their attention. We 
will suppose our stag is feeding in a kwin. Frequently 
there is but scanty cover, and after some manoeuvring, 
finding out how the wind blows and the best cover to 
make for, we begin the stalk through the long grass 

479 



BULLET AND SHOT 

(about one foot high). It usually means a pretty hot 
time before one is within range, as deer have the most 
aggravating way of moving on and on. How often, 
after a grilling time, with a fierce sun beating down 
on my head and back, have I got almost near enough 
to open fire, dripping with perspiration, and black as a 
sweep from the charred and burnt grass, to see some 
inquisitive hind come towards me, sniffing suspiciously,, 
while her unconscious lord was quietly grazing just out 
of range ! At this time of year the ladies appear 
especially on the qui vive, and many a hard hour's 
work has been quite spoiled by a hind scenting or seeing 
me, and giving the alarm. When disturbed they go off 
with big bounds, but soon settle down to a running trot, 
and strange to say, instead of making for cover, make 
for the open, halting now and then to see what caused 
the disturbance. On more than one occasion such a halt 
has proved fatal, for it gave me an opportunity for a long 
and perhaps a steadier shot than when I had just finished 
my hot crawl. A wounded stag always makes for cover, 
and once in the thick elephant grass it is almost im- 
possible to find them. On these shoots one frequently 
comes across native fisheries (deep pools of muddy water, 
which they stock with small fish for drying), and at these 
very good hunting -dogs can be procured, especially in 
the Pegu District, where they have a famous breed of 
dogs. Sometimes we can recover our stag with their 
aid. Another invaluable " tracker " is the vulture, which 
abounds when there is anything to eat, though where 
they depart to when no carrion is about, is hard to say. 
One afternoon I wounded a stag badly, getting a good 
shot, after a long stalk, at about one hundred yards. I 
knew I had planted my bullet where I wanted to, and saw 
he was hard hit ; yet he made a dash for the high grass, 
and, before I could get in another shot, had disappeared. 
I was shooting with a Lee-Metford "303 and dum-dum 
bullets, and was disappointed with the result. I drove 
the bullock cart through and through the long grass, but 

480 



THAMIN, AND THEIR QUEST 

could find no trace of him. At last, evening coming 
on, and being a long way from camp, I had to give up 
the search and turn homewards, much to my regret, for 
he carried a fine head, and I was loth to lose it. Near 
by was a solitary dead tree, and on the top branch an 
evil-looking vulture was perched. My Burman tracker 
said he had marked the deer down, and that by-and-by 
others would come. Next morning, being on another 
part of the ground some distance away, I noticed a 
number of birds hovering over one particular spot. We 
steered towards it, and, as we drew near, clouds of vultures 
rose and settled again. I knew it was either my stag 
or a dead buffalo, frequently met with on these grounds ; 
but they were so thick on the carcass that not until I 
had fired a shot and disturbed them, could I see what 
it was. To my delight it was the thamin — what re- 
mained ! The bullet had entered in front of the 
shoulder, passing through the lungs and out behind the 
shoulder on the opposite side. With this terrible wound 
he had managed to reach cover and disappear. I found 
the lungs ploughed up and quite blooded. The exit 
wound was as large as a five-shilling piece, and a 
portion blown out of two ribs. I should mention what 
little meat remained, my Burman tracker carried off for 
drying. 

I think the best weapon for this sport is a double '500 
or '450 Express. An excellent gun is the "Jungle" 
Paradox, and one I found to do good work. I shot at 
first with a Lee-Metford -303, using dum-dum and soft- 
nosed bullets, and although for long shots and straight 
shooting it probably cannot be beaten, yet I was some- 
what disappointed with the results, for the only stags 
I lost were shot with this rifle. Unless hit in a vital 
part, the animal will manage to reach cover, and so 
lost, for it is surprising what an amount of killing a 
full-grown thamin requires. The dum-dum bullet makes 
a terrible wound, but I do not think it has sufficient 
striking power, and therefore the shock is not sufficient 
2 I 481 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to cause collapse. The effect of the heavier ball of the 
Paradox and '500 Express I found quite the reverse. 

Good water is a serious difficulty on these little ex- 
peditions, and arrangements must be made for a daily- 
supply for cooking and other purposes. For drinking, 
either soda-water should be carried, or aerated water made 
from boiled water. In its unboiled state it is unsafe to 
drink. One little point requires mentioning, and that is 
to be on one's guard against snakes when stalking. These 
are very numerous, and comprise cobras, hamadryads, tic 
bolongas, etc. No one can shoot much in Burma without 
coming across specimens of each species, which, as they 
are all extremely poisonous, must be carefully avoided. 
The danger, of course, lies in one's relaxing their attention 
when stalking. It is a good plan to wear a pair of soft 
leather socks over one's ordinary ones, and putties from 
the knee down. With these precautions, and good boots, 
one is pretty safe, even if they did tread on a snake. 

Burma offers a fine field for the sportsman and the 
naturalist. The former may obtain elephant, tiger, 
panther, the various kinds of deer, gaur, pig, etc., with 
a reasonable amount of trouble. Tigers are bold and 
numerous, and in May last, when in Rangoon, I heard 
of a tiger being shot within nine miles of the town. The 
country is picturesque, and the people interesting, but 
the " trackers " are somewhat lazy and indolent. During 
the months I have named the climate is excellent, though 
warm, and tolerably, if not altogether, free from fever. 
As I have said the nights during the hot weather are 
nearly always cool, and, in those parts I shot, I noticed an 
entire absence of mosquitoes, due probably to the scarcity 
of water. 

There is no sensation more pleasing than the welcome 
rest which comes after a long day's stalk, and my mind 
goes back to a little camp, pitched in a grove of mango 
trees, through whose thick leaves the sun never came. To 
see this looming up, when one was tired and thirsty, was a 
welcome sight; and after a refreshing tub and a good 

482 



THAMIN, AND THEIR QUEST 

dinner (with hunger for the sauce) in which the most 
tasty parts of thamin figured in ways known to our 
native cook, with what contentment one settled into a 
long chair and enjoyed the after-dinner cheroot! making 
fresh plans for the morrow, and lazily admiring the beauty 
of the tropical night. It was all so pleasant, that when 
the end came we were unfeignedly sorry. 

To Veterinary-Captain Evans my best thanks are due 
for permission to refer to his paper on "Thamin" in the 
records of the Bombay Natural History Society. 

(Sd.) G. R. Radmore. 



483 



THE BANTING OR TSINE IN UPPER BURMA* 

Not much has been written about the banting, or tsine» 
as it is called by the Burmese, chiefly because it is locally 
confined to a few spots on the globe ; and, unlike the 
bison, it very much objects to dwelling in the near neigh- 
bourhood of human habitations. It has thus happened 
that what little information we possess concerning the 
haunts and habits of this animal has come to us through 
sportsmen exceptionally favoured by circumstances, and, 
we should add, exceptionally tough, for the successful 
pursuit of tsine entails the roughest of camp life. The 
notes here gathered together have been made during the 
course of some years' sojourn in the jungles of Upper 
Burma, mainly in the Terai, at the foot of the Chin Hills. 
A description of the kind of country at the foot of these 
hills may, perhaps, be of interest. It is here that the 
plains of Upper Burma, and the steep, irregular slopes 
of the wild Chin Hills meet. The Chin Hills, through 
many streams, drain into the valleys of Burma ; in these 
valleys there are vast plains of grass and stunted trees, 
over which the tsine roams ; the country is of a prairie- 
like description, much broken up by ravines, some shallow, 
some deep. In parts of this undulating prairie — for it 
cannot well be called forest — it is possible to see for 
many hundreds of yards, and a shot has occasionally 
to be taken at such distances, there being no choice in 
the matter of a nearer approach. The grass in these 
plains is of a rather fine quality, almost equal in appear- 
ance to our own meadow grasses ; the soil is a browny- 

* This article, which appeared in the same issue of the Field as the preceding 
one, is reproduced in extenso by kind permission of the editor and the author. 

484 



THE BANTING IN UPPER BURMA 

red, and in some places almost a brick-red colour. The 
trees grow sparsely about these plains, and are almost all 
confined to the species indine, which grows to about 
thirty feet in height only, the soil presumably not being 
favourable to a luxuriant vegetation. It should be men- 
tioned that a large river drains the valley, to the west 
of which lie the Chin Hills, the Burmese villages being 
almost entirely confined to the east bank of the river, 
a precaution necessary in times when the King of Burma 
ruled the land on account of the raids which the Chins 
made on the Burmans. I do not, however, think that 
this would entirely account for the almost total absence 
of Burmese villages and cultivations from the west side 
of the river, and the cause must, no doubt, be found 
partly in the poorness of the soil on that side. However 
this may be, it has been very acceptable to the solitude- 
loving tsine, which has roamed here between the river 
and the hills from " time immemorial." These plains 
soon became familiar to me after my arrival in the 
valley, as they are in the vicinity of forests where I 
have to superintend the felling of teak trees on behalf 
of the Bombay Burma Trading Corporation, who are 
known throughout the East for their wealth and enter- 
prises in Burma, Siam, and elsewhere. As my work 
takes me into the jungle all the year round, I find 
exceptional opportunities for hunting big game and 
noting their habits. The great difficulty for a sportsman 
in Burma is the question of transport. In India coolies 
can, I believe, always be obtained, but in Burma it is 
quite otherwise ; the inhabitants are few to begin with, 
and unfortunately payment, however liberal, has not the 
least attraction for them. The only way in which a man 
unacquainted with the language and country could get 
transport would be to obtain an order on village headmen 
through the Deputy-Commissioner to supply coolies, but 
it is rather doubtful whether the Deputy- Commissioner 
would even do this ; certainly not at a busy time of year 
when crops were being planted, for would not that mean 

485 



BULLET AND SHOT 

loss of revenue to Government, the be-all and end-all 
of administration in Burma. This was never a difficulty 
for me, as the Corporation supplied me with two elephants 
to carry my camp when on tour. Of the many ways 
in which Englishmen pass their lives in all quarters of 
the globe, this is perhaps one of the wildest and most 
peculiar — the wildest because one's life is spent in nature's 
primeval forests, the most peculiar because it is practically 
a nomadic life. Englishmen are wonderfully successful 
in this kind of life, even getting to know the jungles as 
well as the natives themselves ; thus do the old instincts 
of our ancestors reassert themselves. Engaged in this 
employment, a man will have his headquarters, or place 
where he lives and keeps his stores, about the centre 
of the district over which he has charge. From this 
place he starts on a tour of his district of many square 
miles of forest, and hither he returns when down with 
fever or when he has completed the tour of his district. 
It is during the monsoon that he will be most busy, 
as then he has to see that his foresters are keeping the 
logs in the streams after every flood so that they may 
float out to the main river, as well as putting in freshly- 
cut logs. The best time of year for the pursuit of tsine 
is during the monsoon, when it is quite easy to track a 
herd on striking a fresh trail ; at this season the tsine 
is finding abundance of fodder, and now the young 
bamboo shoots, the piece de resistance of bovine fare, 
are springing up. On these the tsine takes heavy toll, 
with the result that he keeps himself fat and sleek during 
the cold weather, and even in the hot weather does not 
show any failing in condition. A somewhat strange trait 
in the character of the tsine is that he keeps to the same 
part of the prairie land and will not leave it unless dis- 
turbed ; this allows the native hunters to know exactly 
whereabout to look for a herd, and they seldom fail to 
find fresh tracks in the course of a day's pursuit. 

I would recount the procedure of a few days spent in 
hunting tsine. In one somewhat restricted area in this 

486 



THE BANTING IN UPPER BURMA 

valley tsine are more numerous than elsewhere ; there 
^ must be something in the nature of the ground or jungle 
growth which attracts them, but to one's own perception 
the prairie land appears the same for miles. Taking 
my two elephants, with sufficient of the necessaries of 
life, such as tinned vegetables, curry powder, oil, etc., to 
last for about three weeks, I leave my headquarters and 
proceed down the river to a village, opposite which I shall 
strike off into the tsine country. The distance to this 
village is about thirty miles, so that the journey takes 
me three days, camping nightly at some village en route. 
Arrived at my destination, I make arrangements to get 
a hunter or " mokso " (as he is known in Burma) who 
knows the jungles well ; there still remain a few " moksos " 
(to call these individuals hunters would quite rob them 
of their individuality) from Burmese times, for since the 
occupation of Upper Burma by the British all guns have 
been withdrawn from the natives, and thus the extinction 
of the species " mokso " is almost complete, and there is 
difficulty in finding any of the old school. Starting at 
daybreak, the kit is ferried across the river, whilst the 
elephants swim. A swimming elephant is a curious sight, 
the animal appearing to float rather than swim, nothing 
but the highest ridge of the back being visible, whilst 
occasionally the trunk is protruded to draw in air. But 
to proceed on our journey. We take a Chin path, which 
is merely a jungle track used by Chins on their way from 
and to their hills during the cold season, when they come 
into the valley to sell ginger-root, plantains, and other 
produce of their hill country to the Burmans, and return 
with the produce of the valley, such as dried fish and 
cotton goods. They frequently purchase, or sometimes 
steal, buffaloes, which they drive back to their hills, and 
kill on some feast-day, amid copious libations of liquor 
distilled from hill rice. Up to the foot of the hills, a 
distance of about nine miles from the river, the path is 
exceedingly good, winding in such a manner as to avoid 
nullahs and broken ground, and yet take the nearest 

487 



BULLET AND SHOT 

possible route. We journey over the grassy plain, inter- 
spersed with stunted trees, for six miles to the westward ; 
this will bring us to our camping-ground beside a creek 
rushing from the hills, where our " mokso " has often 
camped before, in days when he had a muzzle-loader 
and shot the wily tsine. On our way we are on the 
qui Vive for any fresh tracks of tsine which may have 
crossed the path recently, and also keep sharp eyes to 
either side, as, not unfrequently, tsine may be viewed, 
although the habit of the animal is to be cautious when 
crossing a jungle-path, and to hurry on for some distance 
after doing so. It must not be supposed that tsine are 
not cognisant of a path and its purpose ; they know 
very well, and, if on the feed, when reaching a path 
they will hurry on for some few hundred yards before 
grazing again. Indeed, in my experience, most wild 
animals have this habit. Should we come on fresh 
tracks, we start off to track, intending to reach our camp 
later on towards nightfall. The tracks are not unlike 
those of the village cattle, but cut more finely, and, if 
one might use the expression, more deer-like in appear- 
ance. The tracks of a tsine and a bison may be easily 
distinguished after a little experience, the former being 
elongated, whereas the latter are almost circular, and, of 
course, broader. The track of the tsine is, indeed, so 
nearly approaching that of a sambur, that one some- 
times has to look twice before making quite sure. 
Following up the herd, we shall probably find evidence 
that they have been cropping the long grass as they 
go ; if, on the contrary, there are no such signs, it would 
not . be worth while tracking them, for, of a certainty, 
they have been disturbed by getting the wind of some- 
body or something, and are making a line for another 
part of the prairie land, which will lead us on for miles, 
till nightfall. As the herd moves along it breaks up, 
rejoining again and proceeding in Indian file where a 
nullah has to be descended by a single break in the 
bank or broken ground, to be avoided by a strip of 



THE BANTING IN UPPER BURMA 

sound going, for the tsine, like the bison, always takes 
the easiest and most level path, and not the steepest and 
most difficult, as some men, who have never had experience, 
are fond of asserting. It may be safely laid down that no 
tsine or bison can go in any place where a man on foot 
cannot follow, but there are many places where a man 
can go and the bovine tribe could not follow. Following 
on the tracks, we come to a depression in the ground in 
which there are clumps of bamboo growing; the herd, 
after spreading about this and feeding on the bamboo 
shoots, have made their exit on to the prairie again. As 
the sun is now hot, the probability is that the herd is lying 
down in some dense bamboo grove similar to that through 
which we have just come. We shall, therefore, have to 
proceed steadily on nearing the next bamboo grove, and 
listen carefully, for the animals, if not resting, may be 
feeding, in which case we may expect to hear the bamboo 
breaking. Now we get on to a well-beaten big game path, 
which is well marked, even without the aid of the fresh 
hoof prints. These paths often lead for many miles over 
the prairie, connecting one tsine ground with another, and 
passing en route through groves of bamboo and out on to 
the open grass land again. One herd of tsine will resent 
and forcibly oppose the intrusion of another herd on to its 
own particular division of country, there being apparently 
a sphere of influence allotted to each herd by the unwritten 
code of tsine laws. Tsine are very fond of breaking small 
trees with their horns as they pass along, and of bowling 
over the ant-hills which the white ants make in the rainy 
season ; this they do presumably with a view to cleaning 
their horns as well as getting rid of the tics which cling 
to their heads when they could not otherwise be disturbed. 
Now we cross a small nullah where the tracks of the herd 
show freshly, but at what hour exactly they passed it is 
impossible to say. Going a little further, we find that the 
herd has stampeded, but this often occurs when they are 
stung by wasps, which make their nests in the bamboo 
clumps, and the pursuit should not, therefore, be given up, 

489 



BULLET AND SHOT 

as it will probably be found that they have resumed their 
usual pace a few hundred yards further on. We are now 
on the open prairie again, all eyes for the expected herd. 
Ah, what is that about one hundred yards off, half con- 
cealed by the trunk of an indine tree ? After a little 
reflection we are satisfied that it is only an ant-hill or 
an indine leaf, which are both easily mistaken for tsine, 
the maxim here, as elsewhere, holding good that animals 
only inhabit places or country which closely resembles 
the shade of themselves and so act as a self- protection 
from man. Thus the elephant inhabits the dense shade 
of thick forests, and it must be seen to be believed 
how effectually this trait acts as a complete concealment 
of the presence of the animals. Bison, which are black, 
inhabit the same sort of country, but tsine which are 
a bright chestnut, must live on the yellow lands of the 
plain where the soil and the ant-hills harmonise with 
the colour of their hides. On we trudge, dipping in and 
out of nullahs, taking a view under the lowest branches of 
the forest as we go. 

My attention is arrested by some movement ; ah ! sure 
enough, the swishing to and fro of tails, which, like any 
movement in the quiet jungle, immediately rivets the 
observation. The herd is in front of us. I can see 
them now, as I write, seven of them following one another 
in irregular order ; to our left and a little ahead is a knoll ; 
here no doubt the herd made its midday siesta, and, as 
the sun declined, came slowly trooping out to graze ; they 
wander on athwart our track, presenting their bright sides 
to a side-shot ; as they graze along they do not raise their 
heads but hold them always on the qui vive in such a 
manner as to be able to see under the branches of the 
forest trees ; the breeze or rather the currents of the air (for 
there is no breeze proper) are apparently unfavourable to 
us, for one of the herd moves round with head still 
declined and peers in our direction ; the others, without 
moving, take note of their comrade's attitude in silence. 
The only chance now of a shot is to fling away the sun- 

490 



THE BANTING IN UPPER BURMA 

hat and crawl up as near as possible to the herd, taking- 
cover behind the ant-hills and rough grounds. As I move 
or rather wriggle along towards them I have a peep to 
see what they are doing ; now the whole herd, having got 
our wind, are standing with head erect sniffing the tainted 
breeze directly from us ; arrived at an ant-hill I prepare 
for the shot which can at best be a poor one, for only the 
chests of the animals are presented at a distance of about 
130 yards. In the excitement I make as steady a shot as 
possible ; the herd, however, do not move off at once, but 
stand gazing, motionless. There is time for another shot ; 
just as I have reloaded my '450 there is a clatter, followed 
by the thundering of the herd over the prairie ; they are 
gone, gone for miles ere they will feed again. No blood 
is apparent in the place where the herd were grazing, nor 
in the track of the fleeing beasts, so the bullet did not 
probably take effect. 

The sight of a herd of tsine is, indeed, a placid one ; 
as one stops and watches them lazily grazing amid a 
wealth of luscious grass, showing unmistakable signs of 
a surfeit of good feeding, the absolute stillness of the 
jungle impresses itself upon one more than usual, and in 
the harmonious placidity of the scene almost suggests 
a picture of the Golden Age. Without doubt the tsine 
is an exceptionally keen-scented and wideawake animal ; 
and many a long and toilsome tramp has proved in vain 
through the animals having winded the hunter as he 
peregrinated here and there trying to puzzle out the 
tracks of the herd and determine the direction taken. 
When once the herd has taken alarm, it will travel for 
days, finding refuge in some prominent ground amid 
the lowest Chin Hills, from which any enemy approaching 
can either be winded or seen. A herd which may happen 
to be in the vicinity of one fired at will, on hearing the 
shot, likewise make off; and, should it en route encounter 
other herds, will probably cause them also to seek safety 
in flight, so that it is prudent when after tsine, to fire at 
nothing but tsine, and even then to make sure as possible 

491 



BULLET AND SHOT 

of your mark. Sad experience has taught me that nothing 
inferior to a '577 rifle should be used, but I should prefer 
an 8-bore, for a weapon is required which will knock the 
animal over wherever hit, bearing in mind that the difficult 
and annoying chest shot is the most usual one offered in 
tracking big game. Even when well hit with a bullet 
from the '577 (excepting the shot planted behind the 
shoulder) a tsine may give a lot of trouble by going some 
miles ere he will yield to another shot. I have been at 
some pains in making inquiries from the old Burmese and 
Chin hunters as to the propensity of the tsine to charge 
when wounded or when fired at in the first instance. The 
consensus of native opinion will, no doubt, be contested 
by many shikaris, but tot homines quot sententice, and no 
two sportsmen seem to have the same experiences, or 
perhaps the same occurrences, present themselves differ- 
ently to the minds of each and every individual. This 
somewhat unorthodox opinion is that the tsine is a less, 
nay, much less fearsome animal when wounded than the 
bison in a similar plight ; that the bison is " tai so dai " 
(" very bad "), to use the Burmese expression, but that the 
tsine will die quietly, or, at any rate, receive the coup de 
grace with more composure than the bison. I cannot but 
think that, from the cautious manner in which the natives 
pursue the bison, and the somewhat listless manner in 
which they attack the tsines, there must be some founda- 
tion for their assertion. Most of the old hunters will 
relate an adventure in which one of their companions 
came to a tragic end, either by the animal's horn having 
been thrust through the thigh of the said companion, or by 
being taken between the horns of the animal and the 
life shaken out of him. On asking whether the animal 
in question was a bison, or a tsine, the answer is invari- 
ably " a bison ! " As there has been a good deal of 
diversity in describing the colour of tsine, having seen 
them at all ages and under various conditions, I may be 
excused for recording my experiences as, at any rate, they 
presented themselves to me. Once on coming up the 

492 



THE BANTING IN UPPER BURMA 

bank of a nulkh on to the prairie, I had the unusual, but 
fortunate, experience of almost walking on to a solitary 
bull tsine lying down, evidently asleep. He could not 
have been fifteen paces from me. I did not, however, 
observe him until he jumped up and was making off at a 
gallop ; as he did so, he leapt into the air, and lashed out 
with both his heels, evidently from disgust at having 
been caught napping at such close quarters ; indeed, his 
demeanour suggested that no liberties would be permitted 
if we had fired a shot at him. This was the first tsine 
which I had ever seen, and it was not only a grand sight at 
such close quarters, but the appearance of the animal was 
altogether different to that which I had previously figured 
in my mind. I exclaimed to the " mokso," " Blue ! blue ! " 
Now there are various shades of blue ; it was not a sky- 
blue, nor a sea-blue, nor any blue of that kind, but the first 
impression that arose in my mind was, " a tsine has a blue 
hide." To analyse this blue we will call it steel-blue ; but a 
shade must be taken out of the blue and put into the 
steel ; it was thus very nearly approaching that of an old 
and rather washed-out kharki coat, a colour impossible to 
describe accurately. Some would call it a bluish-grey or a 
whitey-grey ; the Burmese who were accompanying me 
called it " blue," and those animals met in a herd they 
designate " red " (their language, however, does not permit 
of much delicacy in designating colour). A mouldy bluish- 
grey would, I think, describe the colour as accurately as 
any other. Only in advanced life or old age is the hide 
of this colour, that of the young animals being rightly 
described as a bright chestnut. The skull differs from that 
of the bison, the forehead being flatter and the bone thicker, 
whereas the bison's forehead is concave and the bone less 
dense. The distinction in the horns may be thus illus- 
trated : Holding the arms above the head so that each 
hand is directly over the temple will represent the shape 
of the bison's horns ; holding the arms above the head, 
but bringing the hands lower down than in the former 
case, will roughly represent the tsine. A more accurate 

493 



BULLET AND SHOT 



angle will thus be formed at the elbow, which is consonant 
with the shape of a tsine's horns. The Burmese will lie 
down on the ground if attacked by a tsine, as the latter 
cannot thus do damage with his horns, the points of which 
turn inwards, whereas, if attacked by a bison, the only 
thing to do is to get behind, or preferably, up a tree. The 
following measurements, which I have selected from among 
some hundreds of heads hung up in Chin villages in the 
plain, may be of interest ; the largest measurements which 
I could find are here given, and may be taken to be, as 
regards the tsine, if not a record, at any rate dimensions 
which very few tsine attain. 



Round left horn, at base . 
Round right horn, at base 
Between horns, on top of head 
Between horns, across forehead 
Round outside curve of left horn 
Round outside curve of right horn 
Between tips of horns 
Length of skull 
Thickness of skull (about) 





Tsine. 


Bison. 


in. 


in. 


. 20 


20 




20 


20 




6 


10 




loj 


i3i 




31 


30 




31 


29 




21 


29 




21 


22i 




li 


2 



(Sd.) TSINEGALAT. 



i 



494 



GAME LAWS AND RULES OF THE MADRAS 
PRESIDENCY AND THE NILGIRI HILLS. 

MADRAS ACT No. II. of 1879. 

An Act to provide for the protection of Game and Acclimatised Fish 
in the District of the Nilgiris in the Madras Presidency. 

Whereas it is expedient to provide for the protection 
of wild animals and birds used for food 
and of acclimatised fish, and to prohibit 
the killing, capturing, and selling game and acclimatised 
fish in the district known as the Nilgiris, as described in 
the Schedule hereto appended, under certain conditions. 
It is hereby enacted as follows : — 

1. This Act may be called "The Nilgiris Game and 

Fish Preservation Act, 1879" ; and it shall 
Title and local ex- ^^^^ j^^^ operation in the district afore- 
said, or such parts thereof, and from such 
dates as the Governor in Council may from time to time 
declare by notification in the Fort St. George Gazette. 

2. In this Act the word "game" shall include bison, 

sambhur, ibex, jungle-sheep, deer of all 
^.fg'^ ^»^^ "^^ descriptions, hares, jungle-fowl, pea-fowl, 

partridge, quail, spur - fowl, snipe and 
woodcock, or such birds or animals as the Governor in 
Council may deem fit to specify by notification from time 
to time in the Fort St. George Gazette. 



495 



BULLET AND SHOT 

3. The Governor in Council may, by notification in the 

Fort St. George Gazette, from time to time, 

Poivcr to fix close 

season ^^ ^ season or seasons of the year during 

which it shall not be lawful for any person 
to shoot at, kill, capture, pursue or sell, or attempt to kill, 
capture or sell game, as may be specified in such notifica- 
tion within the district aforesaid. 

Provided that nothing in this Act contained shall pre- 
clude proprietors or occupiers of land from 

Proviso as to private 1 . • , 111 

j^jj^jg '^ adoptmg such measures on such land as 

may be necessary for the protection of 
crops or produce growing thereon, 

4. Whenever any animal, bird, or fish, useful for food, 

not indigenous to the district aforesaid, is 
Protection of animal, introduced into it with the approval of the 

bird, or fish not in- ^ . , . ^ . 

digenous. Government with a view to becoming 

acclimatised or being propagated therein, 
it shall be lawful for the Governor in Council, from time 
to time, by notification in the Fort St. George Gazette, 
to prohibit altogether, or to regulate in such manner and for 
such period not exceeding three years as may be declared 
in such notification, the pursuit, killing or capture of such 
animal, bird, or fish. 

5. It shall be lawful for the Governor in Council, by 
Power to prescribe notification in the Fort St. George Gazette, 
rule for the regula- from time to time to make rules for the 
tion and control of regulation and control of fishing in any 
fishing. stream or lake within the said district ; 
and such rules may, with the view to protect acclimatised 
fish which may be believed to be there, or may be here- 
after introduced therein, prohibit or regulate the poisoning 
of the waters of any stream or lake, the throwing of any 
deleterious matter therein, the use of fixed engines for the 
capture of fish in any stream, and the use of nets of a 
mesh below a certain size to be defined in such rules for 
the capture of fish in such stream or lake. 

496 



GAME LAWS 

6. Any Government officer or servant or policeman 

producing his certificate of office, or 
Power of Govern- •vvgaring the prescribed distinctive dress 

ment officer or , , . , . , 

police. *-*^ badge of his department, may require 

any person whom he finds committing 
any offence against sections 3, 4 or 5 of this Act to 
give his name and address, or if there is reason to doubt 
the accuracy of the name and address so given, to accom- 
pany him to the nearest poHce station. 

7. Every person convicted before a Magistrate of any 
^ , . , , offence against sections 3, 4 or ? of this 

Penalties for shoot- . , ,, , i- 1 1 r 7 X- 

ing, etc., during ^^^ shdW be hable for a first offence to 
close seasons and a penalty not exceeding rupees fifty and 
for breach of fishing ^q the forfeiture to Government, at the 
discretion of the Magistrate, of the 
game, birds or fishes taken, and of all guns, engines, 
implements, nets and dogs used in or for the purpose 
of aiding the commission of such offence, and, in default 
of payment of fine to simple imprisonment for a period 
not exceeding one month, and for every second and 
subsequent offence, to a penalty not exceeding rupees 
one hundred, and the same liability to forfeiture, and 
in default of payment, to simple imprisonment for a 
period not exceeding two months. 

8. The provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure 

relating to the summoning and examina- 
roce ure un er ^j^^ ^^ persons accused and witnesses, and 
to the levying of penalties shall be applied 
to proceedings under this Act. 

9. All fees, fines and forfeitures realised 
Appropriation of ^^^^^ ^j^j^ ^^^ ^j^^jj y^^ j^ j^^.^ ^^^ 
fees, fines, etc. '^ 

public treasury. 

But it shall be competent to the convicting Magistrate 
to award such portion of the fine, or of 

Award to informer. , , /• ,1 r r -^ 1 

the proceeds of the forfeiture as he may 
2 K 497 



BULLET AND SHOT 

think fit, not exceeding one-half the amount of full fine 
authorised to be imposed by this Act in any case under 
this Act, to the person or persons on whose information 
the conviction is obtained. 

SCHEDULE REFERRED TO IN THE PREAMBLE. 

The Nilgiri District shall, for the purpose of this Act, be 
held to be bounded by — 

The north bank of the Bhavani River from Attipadi in 
Attipadi Valley to the junction of the Moyar River. 

The west and south banks of the Moyar River from its 
junction with the Bhavani to the point in the Mudumullah 
District nearest to Gudalur. 

A line carried thence to the head of the Pandy River 
(Ouchterlony Valley). 

The east bank of the Pandy River to where it falls 
near the Karkur Pass in Malabar Payenghaut. 

A line along the south crest of the Ouchterlony Valley 
and across the western slopes of the Nilgiri and Mukurti 
Peaks and Sispara Ranges to Wallaghaut. 

A line thence along the west crest of the Silent Valley 
(Malabar) Range. 

N.B. — The district shall include the entire tract known 
as the Silent Valley. 

A line from the south end of the above-named range 
to the Bhavani River at Attipadi in the valley of the same 
name. 



498 



NOTIFICATIONS 



418 

487 

16 

*40S 



REVENUE DEPARTMENT. NOTIFICATIONS. 
Fort St. George, January 10, 1894 

No. 40. — In supersession of the notifications quoted in 

the margin, His Excellency the 
At page 1117 of Part I. of the Governor in Council is pleased, 

Fort St. George Gazette, dated , ,. y ^ , ^-^ ^ 

2ist December 1886. ""^^^ sections 21 and 26 (/) of 

No. 214, dated 30th July 1889. the Madras Forest Act, to make 
99 „ 9th March 1991. the following rules for the regu- 

^!!l r^f" " lation of fishing anywhere within 
27th Oct. „ . , ^ „ . ° ./ 
9th Jan. 1892. the followmg limits :— 

1st July 1893. (i) The south bank of the 

♦Vide note on page 675, ^<?r^.S'^.G^^^<r "RVipv^n; T? Jvp^r from Affindrli in 
Gazette, dated jth June 1894, Part I. -tJ^avani KlVCr trom Attip^dl, in 

the valley of that name, to its 
junction with the Moydr River ; 

(2) from that point the north bank of the Moydr River 

as far as the boundary of the Nilgiri District, and 
thence the boundary of the said district as deter- 
mined for ordinary administrative purposes to Nilgiri 
Peak; 

(3) from that point the western crest of the Nilgiri Hills 

to its termination below Sispdra ; 

(4) thence along the northern, western and southern 

crests of the Silent Valley Range to its southern- 
most point ; 

(5) from that point to Attipddi ; 

and of hunting and shooting in all the reserved and rented 
forests, fuel and fodder reserves, grazing-grounds and areas 
under special fire-protection within the said limits. 

Rules. 
I. Unless with the sanction of Government, no person 
shall shoot at, wound or kill the females or immature 

499 



BULLET AND SHOT 

males of any of the following animals within the limits 
of any reserved or rented forest or of any fuel or fodder 
reserve, grazing -ground or area under special fire -pro- 
tection : — 

(i) Bison or Gaur. (5) Antelope. 

(2) Sambhur. (6) Barking-deer, 

(3) Spotted-deer. (7) Four-horned deer. 

(4) Ibex. 

2. Unless with the sanction of Government, no person 
shall kill, wound or shoot at any mature male sambhur or 
spotted-deer if it is hornless or if its horns are in velvet 

3. No person shall kill, wound, shoot at or capture pea- 
hens at any time throughout the year or the hens of 
jungle-fowl between the ist of March and the ist of 
October of each year. No person shall take the eggs of 
pea-hens or of jungle -hens at any time throughout the 
year. 

4. No person shall hunt, kill, wound or shoot at any 
game as defined in Madras Act II. of 1879, within any 
of the reserved or rented forests, fuel or fodder reserves, 
grazing -grounds or areas under special fire protection 
comprised within the aforesaid limits, until he has ob- 
tained a license from the Collector of the Nilgiris. 

5. Any person may obtain from the Collector a license 
to shoot game on payment of a fee of Rs. 30. The 
Collector may refuse to grant a license only if the 
applicant has been convicted of an offence against the 
rules under the Forest Act relating to hunting, shooting 
and fishing, or against the provisions of Act II. of 1879. 
The license shall not be transferable and shall be available 
only for the currency of the fasli year to which it relates, 
whether it be taken out at the commencement of, or 
during the currency of the year. 

The Collector of the Nilgiris shall, however, have 
authority, at his discretion, to reduce the payment for 
each license to Rs. 5 in the case of non-commissioned 
officers and soldiers of Her Majesty's forces on proof to 

500 



NOTIFICATIONS 

his satisfaction that the appHcation for the license is for 
bond fide sporting purposes. 

6. The seasons during which such Hcenses shall permit 
hunting or shooting of game in the reserved or rented 
forests or other areas specified in rule 4 comprised within 
those limits, shall be duly notified, from time to time, 
by the Collector of the Nilgiris and shall be clearly 
endorsed on the licenses. 

7. The Collector may from time to time, by notification 
in the District Gazette, declare all or any rivers, streams 
or lakes closed against fishing during any year, or part 
of a year within any part of the aforesaid scheduled 
area and may similarly declare the whole or any part 
of any reserved or rented forest, fuel or fodder reserve, 
grazing-ground or area under special fire-protection within 
such scheduled area, closed against shooting or hunting 
for the whole or any part of any year. He may also 
prohibit within the same areas and for like periods the 
pursuit, killing or capture of any particular species of 
game or fish. 

8. The poisoning of water, the dynamiting of fish, the 
setting of cruives or fixed engines for the capture or 
destruction of fish, the damming and baling of water 
for the capture of fish, the netting of fish with nets, 
the meshes of which are under i^" square, and the setting 
of traps and snares for the capture of game are absolutely 
forbidden anywhere within the limits of the scheduled 
area in which these rules are in force. 

9. Any breach of the above rules within any area 
reserved under section 16 of Act V. of 1882 will render 
the offender liable on conviction before a Magistrate, to 
the punishment provided by section 21 of the Act and 
any breach of the above rules in any of the above- 
mentioned areas, other than those reserved under section 
16 of the Act, will render the offender liable on conviction 
before a Magistrate to imprisonment for a term which 
may extend to one month or to fine which may extend 

501 



BULLET AND SHOT 

to Rs. 200 or both. Erratum dated 6th April, 1894, 
page 414, Fort St. George Gazette, Part I., dated loth 
April 1894. 

The following notifications, issued under Act TI. of 1879, 
which still remain in force, are reproduced below : — 

No. 41. — It is hereby notified under section 5 of the 

Nilgiri Game and Fish Pre- 

Fort St. Ge^gc Gazette, ^S^^.m. g^.^^tion Act, 1 879, that, with 
vember 1884, page 231. . . . 

the view to protect acclimatised 
fish which may be believed to be in the undermentioned 
streams and lakes within the Nilgiri District and specified 
in the Schedule to the said Act or which may be here- 
after introduced therein. His Excellency the Governor in 
Council hereby prohibits the poisoning of the waters of 
the said streams and lakes and the throwing of dynamite 
or any other deleterious matter therein, and the use of 
nets of a mesh below one inch and a half: — 

Streams and Lakes. 

1. Ootacamund Lake and Stream issuing therefrom. 

2. Marlimund Reservoir in Ootacamund. 

3. Lawrence Asylum Lake and Stream issuing therefrom. 

4. Pykara River and its confluents from their sources 

down to the limits. 

5. Avalanche or Kunda River and its confluents. 

6. The Karteri and its confluents. 

No. 42. — The Governor in Council hereby notifies under 

section 5 of the Nilgiri Game 
^°"'^*' ^^f-^^^'^^f''2"dNo- ^^^ pj^j^ Preservation Act (II. 
vember isoo, page 980. ^ 

of 1879, Madras) that from and 
after this date until further orders, the catching or killing 
of fish is prohibited in the Bay of the Ootacamund Lake 
at the foot of Awdry House. The limits within which 
fishing is prohibited as above will be demarcated by posts 
erected by the Nilgiri Game Association, one of which 
shall be placed below St. Thomas' Church and the other 
below Black Wood Cottage. 

502 



NOTIFICATIONS 

No. 43. — Under the provisions of Madras Act II. of 

1879 (an Act to provide for the 

Fort St. George Gazette, 28th ... r j ,. 

October 1890. page 825. protection of game and acch- 

matised fish in the district of 
the Nilgiris in the Madras Presidency), and in supersession 
of the notification published at page 70, Part I., of the 
Fort St. George Gazette of the 8th February 1881, His 
Excellency the Governor in Council hereby fixes the 
undermentioned periods as the seasons during which it 
shall not be lawful to shoot at, kill, capture, pursue, or 
sell, or attempt to kill, capture, or sell large and small 
game, respectively, in the year 1891 and future years, 
viz. : — 

Large game (including all "1 ^, , - . , ,, 

^. ^. ^ The 1st of June to the 

game other than hares \ ^ cr^ ^ / • ^ • 

J ^ ^, , . 3 1st of October mclusive. 

and feathered game). j 

f, „ ^ ,. .\ The 15 th of March to the 

bmall Game (hares and 1^ec^^^. 

r ^, J N y 1 5 th of September 

feathered game) -^ . , f 

^ ■^ ) inclusive. 

(Sd.) C. A. Galton, 

Secretary to Government. 

Extract from Rules under Act II. 0/ iSyg, Nilgiri Game and 
Fish Preservation, 

3. All Police Officers and Heads of Villages are required 
to give every possible assistance in the detection of per- 
sons violating these provisions, and to give information 
to the Magistrate, and section 9 of the Act empowers 
Magistrates to award to any person by whose aid or 
information a conviction is obtained, half of the fine 
inflicted on the offender. 



503 



BULLET AND SHOT 



THE RULES OF THE NILGIRI GAME AND FISH PRE- 
SERVATION ASSOCIATION, AS AMENDED AT THE 
GENERAL MEETING HELD ON THE 23RD AUGUST, 
1893. 

1. The name of the Association shall be "The Nilgiri 
Game and Fish Preservation Association." 

2. The objects of the Association are the preservation of 
the existing indigenous game and the introduction of game 
birds and animals and fish, either exotic or indigenous to 
India. 

3. Any person taking out a license under the Game Act 
shall be eligible for membership. 

4. Any licensee desirous of becoming a special member 
of the Association, shall submit a written request to the 
Honorary Secretary to that effect, and, if elected a mem- 
ber, an entrance fee of Rs. 5 must be remitted to the 
Honorary Secretary. Such special membership shall cease 
on the expiry of the license. Any other person shall be 
eligible for ordinary membership on payment of Rs. 5 and 
election, but shall have no vote. 

5. An Annual General Meeting shall be held on the 
15th July each year or such date subsequent thereto as 
may be fixed by the President, when the Committee shall 
submit an Annual Report of their proceedings with a 
statement of accounts. 

6. A Special General Meeting shall be held at any time 
on the application of 10 members of the Association to 
the Honorary Secretary, provided 14 days' clear notice 
of such meeting has been given in writing to the Honorary 
Secretary and that the notice specifies the subject to be 
discussed at such special meeting. 

504 



NILGIRI GAME ASSOCIATION 

7. The control of the funds and the entire management 
of the Association shall be under a Committee comprised 
of the President and not less than 12 members to be 
elected at the Annual General Meeting. 

8. The Collector, by virtue of his appointment, shall be 
ex-officio President. 

9. The Committee shall elect its own Honorary Secre- 
tary. 

10. The Committee shall meet once a quarter or oftener, 
if necessary. Four members of the Committee shall form 
a quorum and the Chairman shall have a casting vote. 

11. The accounts of the Association shall be audited 
yearly by two members of the Committee and the 
Honorary Secretary. 

It shall be competent for the Committee to form Bye- 
laws to be in force till the following Annual General 
Meeting. 



505 



RULES FOR OBSERVANCE BY VISITORS AND 
RESIDENTS IN THE TERRITORIES OF 
H. H. THE MAHARAJA OF JAMMU AND 
KASHMIR. 

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA. FOREIGN DEPARTMENT. 

Notification. No. 85 E. 

Fort William, the i^th January 1888. 

In supersession of the Notification of the Government of 

India in the Foreign Depart- 

* Note. -Copies of these Rules ^^^^ ^^ ^ p j^^^j ^^^ 

can be obtained from the Resident _,, . ., '"1 , .,, 

in Kashmir. 28th April, 1885, the following- 

revised Rules,* for observance 
by all Europeans, Americans and Australians, who are 
now, or may be hereafter, in the territory of His Highness 
the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmfr, which have been 
drawn up with the consent of His Highness the Mahardja 
and have received the sanction of the Governor-General 
in Council, are published for information : — 

I. — (i) Military or Civil Officers of the British Govern- 
ment may, at any time, and without passes, visit and 
reside in the territories of His Highness the Mah^rdja of 

Jammu and Kashmfr, subject to 

t At present there is no limit. 1 i- •, 1 • i_ .1 

such limit t m number as the 
Government of India, with the concurrence of His High- 
ness the Maharaja, may prescribe, and subject also, in the 
case of Military Officers, to the military regulations or 
orders for the time being in force. 

(2) Other Europeans, Americans or Australians, wishing 
to visit or reside in the said territories, require passes which 

506 



RULES FOR VISITORS 

may be granted (in the Form A annexed) by the Resident 
in Kashmfr. 

II. — Information as to the usual routes for entering and 
leaving Kashmfr may be obtained from the Assistant 
Resident. The route via Jammu and Banihal is private, 
and may not be used except with the special permission 
of His Highness the Mahardja obtained through the 
Resident. 

III. — Persons subject to these rules are not allowed to 
travel from Kashmir to Simla (or vice versd) across the 
hills, or the plains (or vice versd) via Kishtwar, Bhadarwar, 
and Chamba, except with special permission of His 
Highness the Maharaja obtained through the Resident. 

IV. — No request should be preferred to the ordinary 
officials of His Highness the Mahdraja, except in real 
emergencies. An officer of the Durbdr is appointed by 
His Highness the Maharaja to attend to the wants of the 
European community at Sn'nagar, and application may be 
made to him for assistance in petty matters. All pay- 
ments must be made at the rates demanded, which, if 
deemed exorbitant, can be reported to the Resident in 
Kashmir. 

V. — Complaints should be preferred, with statements 
of the circunistances, to the Resident in Kashmir. 

VI. — No present may be accepted from His Highness 
the Maharaja or his officers. 

VII. — Persons subject to these rules, who may be 
desirous of paying their respects to His Highness the 
Maharaja, can be introduced by the Resident on suitable 
occasions ; and all arrangements for official visits to Jammu 
or Sn'nagar should be made through the Resident. 

VHI. — The customs and regulations of His Highness 
the Maharaja's territory should be carefully observed by 
persons subject to these rules and by their servants. 

IX.— When attending evening entertainments given by 
His Highness the Maharaja, Military Officers should wear, 

507 



BULLET AND SHOT 

subject to the military regulations or orders for the time 
being in force, either uniform or evening dress, and other 
visitors or residents should wear evening dress. 

X. — The Resident may, from time to time, with the 
concurrence of His Highness the Mahdraja, prescribe 
limits of travel beyond which no one will be allowed 
to go unless supplied with a special pass obtained from 
the Resident. 

XI. — Rules may, from time to time, be made by the 
Resident, with the concurrence of His Highness the 
Mahdraja, regarding the routes for entering, leaving and 
travelling in Kashmfr, the rates to be paid for coolies, 
transport, supplies and other minor matters. 

Xn. — The Resident in Kashmfr is authorised to require 
any persons subject to these rules, who breaks any of 
them, to leave the territories of His Highness the 
Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmfr. If any such requi- 
sition on the part of the Resident is not at once complied 
with, the matter will be reported by him for the orders of 
the Governor-General in Council. 

Form A. 
Pass No. of 189 . 

of is permitted to travel ) in the territories of 

or reside J His Highness the 
Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmfr from the to the 

189 , subject to the conditions noted on the back of 
this pass. 

This pass may be cancelled or withdrawn at any time, 
and it requires renewal at the end of the period for which 
it is current. 

Endorsement on Reverse of Pass. 

I agree to conform to the rules prescribed by the 
Government of India for observance by Europeans, 
Americans and Australians in the territories of His 

508 



RULES FOR VISITORS 

Highness the Mahdrdja of Jammu and Kashmfr. I will 
return this pass to the Office of the Resident in Kashmfr 
at the end of the period for which it is current. 

General Rules. 

1. All visitors to Srinagar are requested to communi- 
cate their names and dates of arrival to the Durbdr official 
deputed to attend on Europen visitors. The official for 
the time being is Rdi Sahib Amar Ndth. 

2. Visitors are advised, in their own interests, to 
procure such Kashmiri servants as they may require, 
specially boatmen and shikaris, through Rdi Sahib Amar 
Nath and not through local bankers. 

3. Visitors to Srinagar are not permitted to encamp 
in the Dilawar Khan Bagh situated within the city, nor 
in the Nishat, Shalimar or Chashmah Shihi Gardens on the 
Dal Lake. The fixed camping-places are the Munshi, 
Hari Singh, Ram Munshi and Chinar Baghs at Srinagar, 
and the Nasi'm Bagh on the Dal Lake. Visitors are also 
informed that the plot of ground at Sumbal, known as the 
" Nandi Keshwar Bhairava," should not be used for 
camping purposes. 

4. Visitors wishing to visit the Fort or Palace at 
Srinagar are required to give at least one full day's notice 
of their intention to the Rai Sdhib deputed to attend on 
European visitors. 

5. Cows and bullocks are, under no circumstances, to 
be slain in the territories of His Highness the Maharaja, 
and visitors are requested to take precautions that their 
dogs do not worry these animals. 

6. Visitors about to proceed into the interior and 
wishing to be supplied with carriage are requested to 
communicate with the Rai Sahib at least 30 hours before 
the time fixed for their departure. Failing this notice the 
Rai Sdhib cannot be responsible for the supply of carriage 
in proper time. 

509 



BULLET AND SHOT 

7. Travellers in the interior should not encamp within 
villages. They are advised to encamp only at the ordinary 
stages and camping -grounds, supplies are not usually 
available in any other place. 

8. Persons going on shooting excursions are required 
to take carriage and supplies with them. They may 
not demand them in places where no provision is made 
for supplying them, and they are forbidden to press into 
their service the people of the country as beaters for 
game. 

9. Visitors to the Skardu District are informed that 
the route, via the Deosai plains, from Skardu to Bandi- 
pore, is reserved, and passes to use the same will only 
be issued to a few visitors by the Kashmir Durbar through 
the Residency and under the conditions that those, to 
whom such passes are given, will be prepared to pay 
double the rates for carriage and coolie transport now 
in force on that route in cases in which it is necessary 
to make local arrangements for transport and supplies. 
Visitors are also informed that when visiting the Skardu 
District they should make their own arrangements for 
transport, as the local officials of the Kashmir Durbar 
will not be bound to meet their requisitions for transport. 

9 {a). Visitors are also informed that no supplies, 
except wood and grass, are obtainable, nor should they 
be requisitioned at the village of Tolti in the Skardu 
District on the Dras-Skardu route. 

10. Visitors are not permitted to shoot in the tract 

of country extending along the Lake from the Takht-i- 

Suliman to the Shdlimdr Gardens or anywhere in the 

hills between the Sind and Lidar Rivers, or in the Wangat 

„ _ „ , . „ ^, . . Valley, or any nullah thereof, 

Dopatta Kukiawala, Machipura, ; ' ■' r tt- 

Danuchikar, Uri, Banyar and in all whlch are preserves of HlS 

the territory of the Raja of Khar- Highness the Mahdraj a. Shoot- 
mong in Baltistan without the j^g q^ the tracts marginally 
permission of the Rdia. ^ 1 1 • 1 • ^ . 

■^ noted,which are private property, 

is also prohibited ; and no one should shoot anywhere in 

510 



RULES FOR VISITORS 

Jammu territory without a parwdna obtained from the 
Durbdr through the Resident. 

The attention of sportsmen is invited to notifications 
issued by the State Council for the preservation of game 
in Kashmfr, published at pages 7 to 9 of this -pamphlet. 

11. Visitors are prohibited from shooting heron in 
Kashmir. 

12. Fishing is prohibited at the places marginally 

Martund, Verinag, Anantnag, noted, as also between the ISt 

Devi Khirbhowani. and 3rd bridge in Srinagar 

and in the Jammu Province, unless a parwdna has 
been previously obtained from the Durbdr through the 
Resident. 

13. Visitors are not allowed to encamp in the gardens 
and pavilion at Achhabal, which are the private property 
of His Highness the Maharaja, nor are their servants 
allowed to make cooking-places there. 

14. When the Dal gate is closed no attempt should be 
made to remove the barrier or to lift boats over the bund 
to or from the Lake. 

15. Application for houses or for quarters in the 
Barracks at Srinagar should be made to the State 
Engineer, Kashmir Durbdr, Srinagar. 

16. A visitor may not sub-let his house or quarters, 
and no visitor may rent more than one set of quarters 
except with special permission. 

17. Rent must be paid on demand, or in advance 
when required, to the State Engineer, Kashmir Durbdr. 

18. When attending evening entertainments given 
by His Highness the Mahardja in honour of Her 
Majesty the Queen- Empress, Military Officers should 
appear in Mess uniform. 

19. Visitors are particularly requested to be careful that 
their servants do not import into the valley articles for 
sale, on which duty is leviable. The baggage of visitors 

5" 



BULLET AND SHOT 

is not examined by the Mahardja's Customs officials, and, 
in return for this courtesy, it is expected that any evasion 
of the Customs Regulations will be discountenanced. 

Subject to this provision, and with effect from nth 
April, 1897, Customs duty according to the tariff in force 
in the State will be charged on all goods imported by both 
visitors to, and residents in, Kashmir. 

20. Servants of visitors found in the city after dark, 
and any servant found without a light after the evening 
gun has fired, will be liable to be apprehended by the 
Police. 

21. Servants of visitors found resorting for pur- 
poses of nature to places other than the fixed latrines 
are liable to punishment. 

22. Grass-cutters are prohibited from cutting grass 
in, or in the neighbourhood of, the gardens occupied by 
European visitors. 

23. All persons are required to settle all accounts 
before they leave Kashmir, and are responsible that 
the debts of their servants are similarly discharged. 

24. Complaints of the nature of civil suits against 
subjects of His Highness the Mahdrdja can only be taken 
cognizance of by the State Courts, and against all British 
Indian subjects who are visitors to Kashmir, by the Court 
of the Assistant Resident on payment of the usual 
Court fees. 

25. Visitors are reminded that the forests in the 
Jammu and Kashmfr State are in charge of the State 
Forest Department, and that no trees may be felled 
without permission and payment of the price. 

Application for trees and for permission to cut them 
should be made to the Conservator of Forests, Srinagar, or 
to the nearest Forester. 

26. A dairy has been established, under State super- 
vision, behind Doctor Neve's Hospital. Milk can be 
obtained there twice a day at the rates in the "Nirakh- 

512 



GAME LAWS OF JAMMU, &c. 

namah," which is posted at the Library, or is obtainable 
from Rdi S^hib Amar Nath, the Durbcir Official deputed 
to attend on visitors. 

Visitors should send their own cans for milk, and they 
are reminded that the Kashmfri seer is less by about two 
chittacks than the Indian seer. 

27. Visitors to Gulmarg are requested to kindly warn 
their grass-cutters not to encroach on the cultivated parts 
of villages. 

Grass can always be cut from the Tangmarg. 

28. The attention of visitors is called to the special 
notices printed at pages 25 to 31. 



jAMMU. 

29. Visitors to Jammu are informed that permission to 
visit the town and to occupy rooms in the State Travellers' 
Bungalow must be obtained from the Assistant Resident 
in Kashmir, who will issue passes to approved persons on 
receipt of application. 

This rule does not apply to officers of Her Majesty's 
service in Civil and Military employment. 

30. These rules will be revised and new rules added 
from time to time as circumstances may require. Any 
doubt as to the meaning of any rule will be decided by 
the Resident. 

Notification, No. 232, dated 21st April, 1896. 
Game Laws of Jammu and Kashmir State. 

The following rules for the preservation of game are 
published for general information : — 

I. Driving game with men and dogs in Kashmfr, 
including Gilgit, Ladakh and Skardu, is prohibited, except 
in the case of bears, leopards and pigs, driving and beating 
for which is allowed between 15th May and 15th October, 
but not at other times of the year. The destruction of all 
2 L 5»3 



BULLET AND SHOT 

females of the following animals : Barasingha, Ovis 
Ammon, Yak, Shahpoo, (Oorial) or Burhel, Markhor, Ibex, 
Tibetan Antelope, Tibetan Ravine Deer, and Serow, is 
absolutely prohibited in Kashmir. No Musk Deer, either 
male or female, are to be shot or taken. 

2. The sale in Kashmir of the horns and skins of any 
of the animals mentioned in Rule i , excepting the skins of 
bears and leopards, is prohibited. 

3. The breeding season of pheasant, chikor, and 
partridge extends from 15th March to 15th September, 
inclusive, in each year. 

During the breeding season, as above defined, the shoot- 
ing of any of the birds above-mentioned, their destruction 
by nets or in any other fashion, or the taking of their 
eggs, is absolutely prohibited. During the breeding 
season no person shall sell in Kashmir any such bird 
recently killed or taken. 

4. During the shooting season, i.e., from the i6th 
September to 14th March, the netting, trapping and 
ensnaring of the above-mentioned birds is also prohibited. 

5. Whoever intentionally commits a breach of rules 
I and 2 shall be punished on first conviction by a fine not 
exceeding Rs. 25, or with imprisonment for a term not 
exceeding one month, or both ; and on second conviction, 
by a fine not exceeding Rs. 100, or with imprisonment not 
exceeding four months, or both, together with forfeiture of 
the guns or other weapons and dogs of the offender to 
the State, and if the offender is a shikari, with forfeiture of 
licence for one year ; provided, that when the offender is a 
European, or a servant of the European, the case shall be 
immediately reported to the Resident for disposal in such 
manner as he may think fit. 

6. Subject to the same proviso any person convicted of 
a breach of rules 3 and 4 shall be punished by a fine not 
exceeding in each case Rs. 25. 



514 



GAME LAWS FOR LADAKH, &c. 

7. His Highness the Maharaja may, by order in 
-writing, relax any or all of the foregoing rules in favour 
of any person. 

Amar Singh, Raja, 

Vice-President of the Jammu and Kashmir 
Countersigned — State Council. 

A. C. Talbot, 

Resident in Kashmir. 

■Game Laws for Ladakh, Skardu and Baltistan. 

It has been observed that the coolies and shikari's of 
Kashmfr engaged by European visitors and taken up 
to Skardu and Ladakh, often use violence to the people 
and create trouble by non-payment for the supplies and 
carriage obtained from the villagers. In the hope of 
preventing complaints arising from this cause, the follow- 
ing rules have been framed and passed by the State 
Council : — 

I. — The local officers shall open a register of all shikarfs 
residing in Ladakh who are known to be competent and 
willing to accompany visitors in search of game. Many 
excellent men are to be found among the Ladakhis, and 
gentlemen desirous of shooting in Ladakh are advised, 
if possible, to employ Ladakhi shikdri's, in place of men 
from Kashmfr. 

II. — To facilitate the engagement of Ladakhi shikaris 
copies of the register referred to in rule I. will be 
supplied to, and circulated among, visitors in Srinagar 
by Rdi Sihib Amar Nath, who will be able to give the 
necessary information as to where, and how, any shikari 
selected for employment can be engaged. 

Ill, — Officers who, nevertheless, wish to employ Kashmiri 
shikdrfs in Ladakh should, before starting, register, with 
the Assistant Resident in Kashmir, Srinagar, the name 
of their shikirf and of his chota shikari, stating also the 
shikdrfs' fathers' names, residence and the district, and, 

515 



BULLET AND SHOT 

if possible, the nullah in which it is proposed to shoot. 
This information is necessary in order that the names of 
Kashmiri shikdrfs, going to Ladakh, may be known and 
notice taken of misconduct. 

IV. — Copies of the register kept by the Assistant 
Resident in Kashmir under rule III. will be sent to 
the Assistant Resident for Leh and to the Governor in 
Kashmir, and, in the event of any misconduct being 
proved against any shikari permitted to go to Ladakh, 
his name will be noted and permission to go to Ladakh 
in future will be withheld. 

V. — In order to prevent inconvenience to officers wishing 
to travel to Ladakh direct from Baramula, the information 
required by rule III. may be given to the Assistant 
Resident by letter, or shikaris who have been actually 
engaged beforehand, by officers in India, may themselves 
register their names with the Assistant Resident in 
Srfnagar before joining their employers. It should be 
clearly understood that any Kashmiri shikari employed 
in Ladakh, whose name has not been registered, will be 
liable to the punishment mentioned in rule IV. 

Kashmir Residency : I (Sd.) H. S. Barnes, 

Dated Sidlkof, the loth March, 1895. i Resident in Kashmir. 



Public Works Department. 

JAMMU AND KASHMIR STATE. 

Rules for Rental of Huts at Gulmarg, sanctioned by the State 
Council, under Resolution No. 22, dated Zth October, 1896. 

The huts in Schedule A are available for rental on the 
following conditions': — 

I. No hut will be allotted until the full season's rent 
has been deposited with the State Engineer, and priority 
of deposits shall constitute priority of claim to allotment. 

516 



PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT 

2. Such deposit will be refunded in event of failure to 
occupy, subject to the following deductions : — 

A deduction of Rs. lo, if notification of relinquish- 
ment is given before 1st April. 

A deduction of Rs. 20, if such notice is given after 
1st April and before ist June. 

One-half the deposit will be forfeited, if such notice is 
not given until after ist June. 

3. Tenants may dispose of their right of occupancy for 
any period of a season for which they shall have paid 
the full rent in advance, provided that, in each case, the 
terms of the arrangement shall be clearly defined in a 
written agreement (signed by both .parties thereto), and 
that a copy thereof shall be filed in the office of the State 
Engineer for record and for reference of the Resident in 
case of disputes arising. 

4. It is to be clearly understood that the foregoing rule 
is framed solely for the convenience of tenants who may 
be unable to occupy their premises after allotment for part 
or whole of the season ; it is not intended to permit of the 
acquirement and sub-letting of the huts for purposes of 
profit which is prohibited. 

5. The payment of rent as fixed will entitle the tenant 
to the use of the premises as detailed in the Schedule, 
in a state of reasonable and water-tight repair, but the 
tenant will be liable for all breakages which may occur 
during his tenancy. 

6. Any tenant wishing to add to the accommodation 
of his holding may do so, with the previous sanction of 
the State Engineer, at his own cost, and on the under- 
standing that such additions become the absolute property 
of the State. 

7. Any tenant adding to his holding under the fore- 
going rule shall have the right to occupy the same without 
enhancement of rent for as many consecutive seasons as he 

517 



BULLET AND SHOT 

wishes, provided that he shall pay the full season's rent in 
advance on demand. 

The huts in Schedule B are available for allotment on 
the following conditions : — 

8. No hut will be allotted until the nominal ground- 
rental of Rs. 20 for the season has been deposited with the 
State Engineer. 

9. Tenants may occupy and add in any way they choose 
to the existing premises subject to the provisions of rules 
3, 4, 6 and 7, but the State will be in no way responsible 
for repairs or up-keep. 

10. Any person wishing to build on a new site may 
do so free of charge for the first year, provided that the 
Resident's approval of the site has been first obtained, and 
also provided that, after the first year, the premises shall 
become subject to rules 8 and 9. 

11. Tenants (Schedule A) asking P. W. D. to make 
additions or changes, or tenants (Schedule B) asking for 
repairs to their huts, will be charged 10 per cent com- 
mission on the amount of expenditure. 

(Sd.) M. Nethersole, C.E., State Engineer, 
Jammu and Kashmir State. 

(Sd.) Amar Singh, Raja, 

Vice-President of State Council. 

Schedule A. — Gulmarg Huts for Rental. 

Hut No. I. — A new four- roomed hut, two bath-rooms, 
one small godown, no pantry, stone nogging walls, shingle 
roof, one kitchen, four servants' quarters, six stables, 
plank walls, and plank and shingle roof: rent Rs. 130 
per season. 

Hut No. 3. — A new eight-roomed hut, four bath-rooms, 
one store-room and one pantry, stone nogging walls, 
shingle roof with one kitchen, three stables and three 
servants' quarters, all shingled : rent Rs. 200 per season. 

518 



PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT 

Hut No. 4. — New, three rooms, two bath-rooms, one 
pantry, plank wall, shingle roof, kitchen, servants' quarters 
three, stables three, verandah in front of stables, plank wall 
and shingle roof: rent Rs. 130 per season. 

Hut No. 5. — New, same as hut No, 4: rent Rs. 130 per 
season. 

Hut No. y. — New, four rooms, three bath-rooms, one 
pantry, one kitchen, plank walls, shingle roof, six servants' 
quarters, plank wall, shingle roof, stables five, old 
pacherbandi wall, mud roof, two old pacherbandi servants' 
quarters : rent Rs. 1 30 per season. 

Hut No. 8. — Dining-room and drawing-room, mud roof, 
four large bedrooms, shingle roof, four bath-rooms, pantry 
and three godowns, six servants' houses, eight stables: rent 
Rs. 270 per season. 

Hut No. 10. — New, three rooms, two bath-rooms, one 
pantry, nogging walls, shingle roof, with one new hut 
close by, with one room, one bath-room, plank wall, 
shingle roof, one new kitchen, four new servants' quarters, 
weather-boarded walls and shingle roofs, four stables 
pacherbandi walls and shingle roof: rent Rs. 130 per 
season. 

Hut No. 22 A. — New, four rooms, two bath-rooms, no 
pantry, weather-boarded walls and shingle roof, three 
servants' houses, shingle roof: rent Rs. 80 per season. 

Hut No. 22B. — Old, three rooms, two bath-rooms, 
pacherbandi walls, mud roof, one new hut close by, 
three rooms, two bath-rooms, weather-boarded walls, 
shingle roof; one kitchen with the old hut, four weather- 
boarded servants' quarters, new shingle roof: rent Rs. 130 
per season. 

Hut No. 25. — New, four rooms, two bath-rooms, one 
pantry, nogging wall, shingle roof, one kitchen, new, and 
four servants' quarters, weather-boarded, shingle roof: rent 
Rs. 130 per season. 

519 



BULLET AND SHOT 

Hut No. 35. — New, four rooms, two bath-rooms, one 
pantry, nogging walls, shingle roof, four new servants' 
quarters, shingle roof, one kitchen old, pacherbandi walls, 
mud roof, weather-boarded, no stables: rent Rs. 130 per 
season. 

Hut No. 36. — New, two rooms, one bath-room, verandah 
converted into a room, nogging wall, shingle roof, one new 
kitchen, four servants' quarters, weather-boarded, shingle 
roof: rent Rs. 70 per season. 

Hut No. 24. — New hut, plank walls, shingle roof, three 
living rooms, two small dressing-rooms, four bath-rooms, 
pantry and store-rooms, one kitchen, three servants' 
quarters, three stables, all shingled : rent Rs. 160 per 
season. 

Schedule B. — Old huts for allotment on payment of 
ground-rent Rs. 20 per season. 

Hut No. 23. — Old, three rooms, two bath-rooms, one 
pantry, pacherbandi wall, mud roof, one new kitchen, 
four new servants' quarters, weather-boarded, one stable. 

Hut No. 26. — Old, one room new, with pacherbandi 
walls, shingle roof, two rooms old, pacherbandi walls, 
mud roof, two bath-rooms, one pantry, one kitchen, three 
servants' quarters, pacherbandi walls, plank roof, sheds for 
stables. 

Hut No. 27. — Old, three rooms, two bath - rooms, 
pacherbandi walls, mud roof, one kitchen, three servants' 
quarters. 

Hut No. 30. — Old, four rooms, three bath - rooms, 
pacherbandi walls, mud roof, two kitchens, five servants' 
quarters, two stables. 

Hut No. 31. — Old, two rooms, one bath-room, pacher- 
bandi walls, mud roof, one kitchen, three servants' quarters, 
old pacherbandi wall, mud roof. 

Hut No. 34. — Old, three rooms, three bath-rooms, one 
pantry, pacherbandi wall, mud roof, one new kitchen, 

520 



LIMITS OF TRAVEL— ROUTES 

four servants' quarters, weather-boarded, three old stables, 
and four servants' quarters, pacherbandi walls, mud roof. 

Huts Nos. 2)7 (tnd 38. — Old, each with two rooms, one 
bath-room, mud roof, no servants' quarters, only two 
kitchens, four old stables, pacherbandi wall, mud roof. 

Hut No. 39. — Old, two rooms, one bath-room, one 
pantry, pacherbandi walls, mud roof, very old, one new 
kitchen and one new servants' quarter, weather-boarded. 

Hut No. 40. — Three old rooms, with one new kitchen, 
three servants' quarters. 

Limits of Travel. 

Gurais has been fixed as the limit of travel in the Gilgit 
direction, and the frontier of His Highness' territories in 
the Ladakh direction. No visitor will be permitted to 
cross any frontier of Kashmir territory except when con- 
tiguous with British India, without a special permit from 
the Government of India. 







Routes. 






The following routes for entering and 


leaving Kashmir 


are open to the public 


: — 




I. Vid Rawalpindi, 


Murree, Kohdla and Bdramula. 


The stages are as follows : — 






Name of 


Distance in 


No. 


Stage. 


Miles. 


— 


Rawalpindi 


— 


British j ^ 
territory. ' ^ 


Murree . 
Phagwari . 
Kohdla . 




37 
H 
13 


^ 6 


Dulai 




II 




7 


Domel 




10 




8 


Garhi 




14 


Kashmir ^ 
territory. 


9 

10 


Hattidn . 
Chakoti . 




9 
"1 


II 


Uri 




n\ 




12 


Rampore . 




^z\ 




13 


Baramula 




nh 




I 14 


Srinagar . 




33 



Total 



521 



195 



BULLET AND SHOT 

There is a Dak Bungalow at every stage in Kashmir 
territory, except Hattidn. From Baramuia to Srinagar 
the journey can be performed by boat if desired. The 
tonga road is, however, now open, and tongas can be 
procured from Messrs. Dhanjibhoy and Son for the entire 
journey from Rawalpindi to Srfnagar. A Dik Bungalow 
has been opened at Srfnagar. 

2. Vid Abbottabad, Domel, and Bdramula. 





Name of 


Distance in 


No. 


Stage. 


Miles. 


I 


Abbottabad . 


— 


2 


Mansahra 


. i6 


3 


Ghari Habibulla 


. i8 


4 


Domel ) See route I 
Srinagar ) (i) j 


• "3 


12 





Total 



147 



There is a Dak Bungalow at Abbottabad, Mdnsahra 
and Ghari Hab{bulla. As far as Ghari Habfbulla there 
is a fair cart road, and between Ghari Habibulla and 
Domel a fair pony track. 

3. Vid Bhimber, Rajauri and the Pfr Panjal Range. 





No. 


Name of 
Stage. 


Distance in 
Miles. 




3 
4 


Gujrat . 
Bhimber 
Sarai Siabadad . 


2^ 
14 




5 


Nowshera 


12 




6 


Changas Sarai . 


14 


Kashmir 
territory, y 


7 
8 


Rajauri (Rampore) 
Th^na Mandi . 


14 
14 


9 

10 


Bahramigulla 
Poshidna 


10 
10 




II 


Aliabad Sarai 


II 




12 

13 
14 


Hirpur . 
Shapiyan 
Ramu . 


12 

8 

12 




Ws 


Srinagar 


18 






Total 


• i77i 



52: 



TARIFF OF BOAT HIRE IN KASHMIR 



4. Vid Bhimber, Punch, and over the Hdji Pfr Pass 
to Uri. 

Name of Distance in 

Stage. Miles. 

Bhimber J See route \ . .68 

Thani Mandi 1 (3) 
Suran 
r Punch 



No. 

I 
6 

7 
8 

9 
10 
II 

12 



Kahiita 
Aliabad 
Haiderabad 
.Uri { See route \ 

Srinagar \ (i) ) 

Total 



5. Vid KotH, Punch, Uri, and Baramula. 



i6 

14 
12 

9 





Name of 


No. 


Stage. 


I 


Bhimber 


2 


Shaidabad 


3 


Dharmsal 


4 


Koh-i-ruti 


5 


Dhuna 


6 


Kotli . 


7 


Sehra 


8 


Punch 


9 


Srinagar 



14 

_65 
206 



Distance in 
Miles. 



15 
18 

7i 
7i 
6 

12 

10 
108 



Total 



184 



In ordinary seasons Route (3) is impracticable till May, 
and is closed by snow in November. Route (5) is usually 
open in April, but it is difficult and is not recommended. 
On Routes (3), (4) and (5) the Rest-houses are not kept 
up, and the supply of ponies and coolies is very limited, 
and can in no way be guaranteed. The distances in miles 
are approximate. 

Tariff of Boat Hire in Kashmir. 
I. Boats hired by the month — 

{a) Living Boat (Dunga) with crew consisting of at 
least four persons, Rs. 20. 
523 



BULLET AND SHOT 



(J?) Kitchen Boat (Dunga) with crew consisting of at 
least three persons, Rs. 15. 

(c) Third-class Boats (small Dunga) with crew con- 
sisting of at least two persons, Rs. lo. 

{d) Small boat (Shikara) for boat only, Re. i. For 
each member of the crew of the same, Rs. 4 a 
month in Srinagar. 

Note. — Women and children over twelve years of age are counted as 
members of the crew in the cases of (a), {b) and (c). 

The boats belonging to classes {a), {b) and {c) are 
marked with a brand L. B., K. B. and 3rd class, 
respectively. 

2. Wages for extra boatmen employed are annas 4 for 
each man per diem. 

3. In addition to the rates given above, rasad at the rate 
of Re. I per head per mensem, can be claimed by every 
member of the crew when the boats on which they are 
employed are taken out of Srinagar. 

4. Boat-hire by distance — 
(?.) — For each member of the crew :- 









Boats of class 






Rs. 


{a) 
a. 


P- 




Rs. a. 


P- 


From Baramula to Srinagar 





10 







8 





„ Srinagar „ Baramula . 
„ „ „ Islamabad . 






8 
10 








6 
8 






„ „ „ Avantipore . 
„ Islamabad ,, Srinagar 
„ Avantipore,, Srinagar 







6 
8 
5 









5 
6 
4 








(k.) — For the trip, crew to consist of the minimum laid 
down in para. ( i ) : — 

Rs. a. p. Rs. a. p. 

From Srinagar to Ganderbal , . 140. 120 

„ „ „ Awatkala . . 320. 300 

„ „ „ Bandipore . . 200. i 12 o 

5. When boats are ordered from Srinagar to meet a 
visitor at any place, half hire of the boat from Srinagar 

524 



TARIFF OF HIRE OF COOLIES, &c. 

to that place is payable in addition to the fare due for the 
journey to the place where the visitor is proceeding. 

6. When a boat is not used on the date for which it is 
ordered, the following rates for each day during which the 
boat is detained and not used, are payable for detention : — 

Rs. a. p. 
Class (a) . . .0100 per diem, 

„ (<5) . ..080,, 

„ (c) . . .060,, 

7. Visitors requiring boats and extra boatmen at 
Srfnagar must apply to R^i S^hib Amar N^th, giving 
30 hours' notice for the former and 48 for the latter ; 
and when extra boatmen are required at Sopor to cross 
the Wular Lake on the journey from Baramula to 
Srfnagar, at least 24 hours' notice must be given to the 
Tahsflddr at Sopor. 

8. Extra boatmen can only be supplied at the following 
places on the river, viz.: — Baramula, Sopor, Hajan, Srfnagar 
and Khanabal (Islamabad). They are not procurable at 
Sumbal, Shadipur, Pimpur or Avantipore, the inhabitants 
of which places are not boatmen by profession but zamfn- 
d^rs. In every case at least 24 hours' notice must be given 
to the Civil authorities for their supply. 

9. Visitors are particularly requested to satisfy them- 
selves that the wages of any extra boatmen supplied to 
them have been properly paid before they are dismissed. 

It is also requested that they will be careful to see that 
firewood, milk and other supplies along the river are 
regularly paid for by their servants and boatmen. 

Tariff of Hire of Coolies, Ponies, etc. 

I. In all localities in the territories of His Highness the 
Mahdrdja of Jammu and Kashmir the standard rate shall be 
paid for the hire of coolies, etc., except where otherwise 
specially provided. 

525 



BULLET AND SHOT 



2. The standard rate in the said 
Hows ■ 


territories is 


For a 


Rs. 

coolie carrying the established 


a. 


P- 




load of 25 s^rs or less . . 


4 


per stage 


it 


coolie carrying a load in excess 
of 25 sdrs, but not exceeding 
one maund . . . 


6 


» 




kahar . . . . 
riding pony with English pattern 
saddle and bridle . .1 


7 



» 
» 


» 


baggage and servants' pony or 
mule . . . . 


8 


» 


>> 


bullocks . . • . 


8 


„ 



as 



The load of a baggage pony or mule is 80 s6rs ; of a 
j/ak or bullock 60 s6rs. Travellers must provide, at their 
own cost, all ropes required for securing their baggage. 

3. The following rates are prescribed for the under- 
mentioned marches, in supersession of the standard rate : — 

The Ladakh Road. 

All visitors to Laddkh are required to enter their names, 
destination and permanent address in the Visitors' List. 
The rates for the different marches are as follows : — 





Coolies. 


Ponies 




annas. 


annas. 


Srlnagar to Ganderbal, or vice versa . 


4 


8 


Ganderbal to Kangan „ 


4 


8 


Kangan to Goond „ 


4 


8 


Goond to Sonamarg „ 


4 


8 


Sonamarg to Baltal „ 


4 


8 


Baltal to Matiun „ 


6 


12 


Matiun to Dras „ 


4 


8 


Dras to Tashgam „ 


4 


8 


Tashgam to Kargil „ 


6 


12 


Kargil to Shergol „ 


6 


12 


Shergol to Kharbu „ 


6 


12 


Kharbu to Lamayuru „ 


4 


8 


Lamayuru to Nurla „ 


6 


12 


Nurla to Saspul „ 


4 


8 


Saspul to Nimo „ 


4 


8 


Nimo to Phiang or Spitak „ 


4 


8 


Phiang or Spitak to Leh „ 


2 


4 


526 







TARIFF OF HIRE OF COOLIES, &c. 

The above rates are not applicable when the Passes are 
closed by snow. 

Sportsmen and others wishing to cross the Zojila Pass 
before the ist of May will be required to obtain 3.parwdna 
from the Assistant Resident for Leh, who resides at 
Srfnagar, or, in his absence, from the Governor of Kash- 
mir, and who will make the necessary arrangements for 
transport, etc. 

The rates to be paid to coolies between Goond and Dras 
will be entered on the back of the parwdna in English and 
vernacular, and will vary according to the season. The 
maximum being limited to Rs. 5 per coolie. 

Sportsmen will not be allowed to cross the Pass more 
than two at a time and at fixed intervals according to 
priority of application at Sri'nagar. 

Supplies and transport are obtainable at all the regular 
stages above, except Matayun, where nothing can be 
demanded ; travellers halting at stages other than those 
above must take their chance about supplies and not ask 
to change transport. 

Notices to this effect will be found along the whole 
line. 

At Leh there is a furnished Dak Bungalow, and all 
information about the districts beyond Leh is obtainable 
through the Wazi'r of Ladak and from the notices in the 
Bungalow. 



II.— The Bhimber Route. 

From Bhimber to Uri, 6 annas each coolie and 8 annas 
■each kahdr per stage. 

From Bhimber to Shapiyan, 6 annas each coolie and 
8 annas each kahar per stage. 

The rest-houses on this route are not kept up and the 
supply of coolies is limited, and cannot be guaranteed. 



527 



BULLET AND SHOT 



III. — The Jhelum Valley Cart Road. 

1. Any traveller may bring his own transport, and is 
entitled to buy supplies at any Dik Bungalow at the 
prescribed rates on this road. 

2. The Durbar cannot guarantee the supply of riding 
ponies, baggage animals, or coolies along any portion of 
the road opened to wheeled traffic. 



528 



BRIEF NOTES ON TRAVELLING IN 
CASHMERE. 

{Condensed from Official Handbook.) 
MURREE SECTION. 

FROM RAWALPINDI TO MURREE AND VICE VERSA. 

The cost of a single journey by mail tonga of the Imperial 
Carrying Company is eight, that of a return journey 
twelve, of a family tonga taking three adults and two 
children thirty, and of an express tonga (three passengers) 
twenty- four rupees respectively. A bullock train cart 
costs sixteen rupees, and parcels are conveyed at rates 
varying from one to four rupees per maund (of eighty-two 
pounds) or less in the case of lighter parcels. 

CASHMERE (KASHMIR) SECTION. 

FROM MURREE TO SRINAGAR AND VICE VERSA. 

The same Company offers tonga carriage for passengers 
between Murree and Baramula at the following rates : — 

Single journey by mail tonga, thirty, special tonga (three 
passengers) ninety, and family tonga (three adults and 
two children) one hundred and twenty rupees respectively; 
and between Murree and Srinagar the cost is, single 
journey thirty-seven, special tonga one hundred and ten, 
family tonga (if available) one hundred and forty-five 
rupees. In all the above quotations, toll, which must be 
paid by the passengers, is not included. 

Bullock train carts from Murree to Bdramula cost fifty, 
and from the former to Srinagar sixty rupees each, 
'2 M 529 



BULLET AND SHOT 

luggage not requiring a special cart being carried at 
fixed rates. 

Tongas, except those carrying -the mails, may run only 
by daylight, and each tonga may carry but one maund 
and a half of luggage, the allowance in the case of a 
family tonga being reduced to one maund only. The 
free allowance of luggage for each seat in the mail tonga 
is twelve seers. 

The time occupied respectively in making each of these 
journeys by tonga is as follows : — 

Between Rawalpindi and Murree ... 6 hours. 
„ Murree and Baramula, inclusive 

of two nights' halt ... ... 48 „ 

„ Baramula and Srinagar ... ... 6 „ 

Heavy packages for Cashmere should be sent at least 
ten days in advance, to ensure their reaching destination 
before the arrival of the travellers. 

(An English sovereign may be roughly calculated as 
equivalent to fifteen rupees, though the value of the latter 
varies slightly.) 

NOTICE. {Verbatim.) 

The Kashmir Durbar having introduced a Civil Trans- 
port Corps to assist in the requirements of travellers 
between Srinagar and Gulmarg, and Gulmarg and Bdra- 
mula, the following rules (sanctioned by the Kashmir State 
Council under Resolution No. 9, dated 2nd June, 1894, and 
approved of by the Resident in Kashmir), regulating the 
employment of this transport, are published for information 
of the public : — 

1. The Transport Corps will only work from the 15th 
April to the 1 5 th October of each year. 

2. Transport can only be obtained at Srinagar, Gulmarg 
and Bdramula. 

3. Requisitions for transport at Srfnagar should be 
addressed to Rdi Sahib Amar Ndth, but at Gulmarg and 
Baramula to the Transport Agent. 

530 



TRAVELLING IN CASHMERE 

4. Requisitions for transport must be delivered to the 
Rai Sahib or the Transport Agents, as the case may be, 
at least 30 hours before the transport is required. 

5. Applications for transport will be booked according 
to priority of receipt. In the event of all the coolies and 
ponies at a stage being already engaged for the day, any 
further requisitions for transport on that day will be 
returned with an intimation to that effect. 

6. Persons must avail themselves of the transport for 
which they have indented on the day and at the time 
mentioned in their requisitions, otherwise their requisitions 
will be considered cancelled, and they will be liable to pay 
half rates for the transport entered in their requisitions. 

7. A voucher in duplicate will invariably be furnished 
when the transport is supplied. Travellers are requested 
to sign one voucher as an acknowledgment of the receipt 
of transport entered therein and return it to the Transport 
Officer by whom it is presented, the duplicate copy should 
be kept in case of any cause for complaint arising. 

8. The rates for hire of transport under these rules are : — 

Rs. a. p. 

For each coolie ...040 

„ „ kahar ... ... ... o 7 o 

„ a baggage pony ... ... o 12 o 

„ a riding pony with English saddle 100 

These rates are for each full stage or distance less than 
a full stage. 

9. Each coolie will carry a load of 25 s^rs and each pony 
one of two maunds. 

These are the maximum weights and must not be ex- 
ceeded. 

10. On arrival at their destination (or at Magam, in 
the case of a journey between Gulmarg and Srinagar) 
travellers are requested to dismiss the transport engaged 
by them with the least practicable delay. 

11. The journeys between Srinagar and Gulmarg, and 
Baramula to Gulmarg, and vice versa, as also from Gul- 

531 



BULLET AND SHOT 

marg to Palhalan (in cases when the transport is taken 
from Gulmarg to that place) will be charged as two full 
stages. In the case of the former journey, transport 
must be changed at Magam, in the cases of the two latter 
journeys, coolies will not be changed on the road. 

12. In cases when a halt is made during any journey 
half rates only will be charged in respect of each day that 
such halt may last. 

13. In all cases baggage will only be carried at the 
owner's risk. All possible precaution will, however, be 
taken to guard against damage and loss, and assistance 
will be given in investigating circumstances under which 
damage or loss may have occurred. 

14. All complaints against the transport staff should 
be made to Rai Sahib Amar Ndth at Srinagar. 

15. Employers of transport are, in no case, to take the 
law into their own hands by attempting to deal with 
causes of complaint themselves ; contravention of this 
rule will be brought to the notice of the Resident in 
Kashmir. 

16. Visitors are reminded that, under the published 
rules, payment for coolie and pony transport must be 
made in advance to the Transport Agent and not to the 
coolies or pony men. If payment is not made in advance 
the Transport Agent has authority to refuse to supply 
transport. 

17. It is requested that the Transport Agent be treated 
with the consideration due to officials of His Highness 
the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir. 

(Sd.) Amar Singh, Raja, 

Vice-President, 
Jamtnu and Kashmir State CounciL 
Approved — 

(Sd.) A. C. Talbot, 

Offg. Resident in Kashmir. 



532 



GAME RULES OF KASHMIR STATE 

Jammu and Kashmir State. 

Notification. {In extenso.) 

The following rules for the preservation of game are 
published for general information. They apply to European 
and native residents and visitors, and also to State subjects 
and officials : — 

1. Driving game with men and dogs in Kashmir, 
including Gilgit, Ladakh, Skardu and Kishtwar, is 
prohibited, except in the case of Bears, Leopards and 
Pigs, driving and beating for which is allowed between 
15th May and 15th October, but not at other times of 
the year. Between Shupyon and Baramulla on the hills 
which bound the vale of Kashmir to the south, Black 
Bears may be driven for from ist April to 15*^ October. 
The destruction of all females of the following animals — 
Barasingha, Ovis ammon, Yak, Shahpoo (Oorial), or 
Burhel, Markhor, Ibex, Thibetan Antelope, Thibetan 
Ravine deer and Serow — is absolutely prohibited in 
Kashmir. No Musk deer, either male or female, are to 
be shot or taken. 

The possession by anyone of a net or nets for the 
express purpose of taking birds or wild animals is hereby 
declared to be illegal, except netting for hawks in Kishtwar 
(Jammu Province), which is permitted as heretofore. 

2. The sale in Kashmir of the horns and skins of any 
of the animals mentioned in rule i, excepting the skins 
of Bears and Leopards, is prohibited. 

3. The breeding season of Pheasants, Chikor, Partridges 
and Wild-fowl is considered to extend from icth March 
to 15th September, inclusive, in each year. 

During the breeding season, as above defined, the 
shooting of Pheasants, Chikor, Partridges, Geese, Ducks 
and Teal, their destruction by nets or in any other 
fashion, or the taking of their eggs, is absolutely pro- 
hibited. During the breeding season no person shall 
sell in Kashmir any such bird recently killed or taken. 

533 



BULLET AND SHOT 

4. During the shooting season, i.e.^ from i6th September 
to 14th March, the netting, trapping and ensnaring of 
Chikor and Pheasants is also prohibited. Wild-fowl 
may be noosed by villagers in their fields, but not in 
the jhils. 

5. His Highness the Maharaja may, by order in writing, 
relax any or all of the foregoing rules in favour of any 
person. 

6. Sportsmen wishing to shoot in the lands of the Raja 
of Kharmang must first obtain his permission to do so. 

7. The following nullahs are closed until April 15th, 
1900 : — 

I. — The Bow above Bandipur. The stream in this 

nullah rises between Changwai and Ranga, and 

flows in a south-easterly direction towards Kral- 

poora, when it is joined by another stream coming 

from the west. 
n. — The Oor in the Liddar. This is on the right 

bank of the Liddar, close to Dowhat. 
HI. — The Zais Nai in the Wardwan. This joins the 

Kreashnai above Furriabad, and the stream is the 

western source of the Furriabad River. 
IV. — The Gweo Nai in the Wardwan. This is the 

nullah which joins the left bank of the Wardwan 

River one march above Maru Wardwan. 
V. — The Phoo, or as it is sometimes called the 

Kurtsee Phoo. It joins the right bank of the 

Suru River above Kargil. 
VI. — The Achkor in Baltistan. This joins the right 

bank of the Indus above Rondu. 
VII. — The Braldah or Braldu. The river of this 

nullah rises to the east of the Shigar, and is the 

main source of that river. 
VIII. — The Basgo in Ladakh. This is above the 

village of Basgo on the Leh road. 
IX. — The ravine above Saspul which is adjacent to 

Basgo. 

534 



GAME RULES OF KASHMIR STATE 



I 

2 

6 

2 

4 
4 
4 

2 
2 

I 

no limit. 



8. Markhor shooting in the Kanjinag and Shamshibri 
Mountains is prohibited until April 15th, 1901. 

9. Licenses to shoot large and small game will be 
granted as follows : — 

I. — A license, for which the sum of Rs. 60 will be 
charged, permits the holder to shoot large game 
in the districts and nullahs which are open for 
sport, provided he does not kill more than the 
following numbers of the animals specified : — 

Pir Panjal Markhor 

Astor variety of Markhor 

Ibex 

Ovis Hodgsoni (Ammon) 

„ Vignei (Sharpu) . 

„ Nahura (Burhel) . 
Thibetan Antelope 

„ Gazelle 
Kashmir Stag 
Serow 
Bears, Leopards, Pigs, Tehr, and Goral 

This license to be in force from March 15th to 
November 15 th. 

II. — A license of the value of Rs. 20 will cover the 
period from 15th March to 15th November, and 
will permit the holder to kill Black Bears and 
Leopards only. 

III. — A license of the value of Rs. 20 will be issued 
to cover the period from November 15th to 
March 15th. It will permit the holder to kill 
Tehr, Goral, Serow, Bears, Leopards, and Pigs, 
and in addition two Kashmir Stags and one Pir 
Panjal Markhor. 

IV. — A small game license, for which Rs. 20 will 
be charged, will be issued to all who wish to 
kill wild-fowl, Chikor, Partridges and Pheasants 
within the season. No restrictions as to number 
are made, but it may hereafter be found necessary 
to curtail the shooting season. Snipe and quail 
shooting is open to all, free of cost. 
535 



BULLET AND SHOT 

10. The Takszldari of Kiskiwar, mclud'mg the Wardwan 
and Duchin Districts^ are under the regulations for the 
preservation of game. 

11. Whoever intentionally commits a breach of rules i, 
2, 7, 8, and 9 (I.), (II.) and (HI.), shall be punished, on 
first conviction, by a fine not exceeding Rs. 25, or with 
imprisonment for a term not exceeding one month, or 
both, and on second conviction by a fine not exceeding 
Rs. 100, or with imprisonment not exceeding four months 
or both, together with forfeiture of the guns or other 
weapons and dogs of the offender to the State, and if 
the offender is a Shikari, with forfeiture of license for 
one year ; provided that when the offender is a European, 
or the servant of a European, the case shall be immediately 
reported to the Resident for disposal in such manner as he 
may think fit. 

12. Subject to the same proviso any person convicted of 
a breach of rules 3, 4 and 9 (IV.) shall be punished by 
a fine not exceeding in each case Rs. 25. 

(Sd.) A. C. Talbot, 

Resident in Kashmir. 
(Sd.) Amar Singh, 
Vice-President of the Jammu and Kashmir State Council. 

Applications for licenses should be made to the Assistant 
Resident in Kashmir. All other communications should 
be addressed to Colonel A. E. Ward, Honorary Secretary, 
Kashmir Game Laws, care of Postmaster, Srinagar. 



536 



INDEX 



Ailments, common, Treatment 

of, 431- 
Ammunition, spare, Magazine 

for, 83. 
Antelope, The four-horned, 336. 

— The Indian, 316. 
in Mysore, 317. 

— Scarcity of, in Mysore, 319. 

— Vitality of, 322. 

— How to bag, 323. 

— shooting, Weapons for, 327. 

— Preservation of heads of, 329. 

— Localities for, in Southern 
India, 330. 

— Abundance of, in N.W.P., 331. 

— The Thibetan, 334. 

B 

Ball-guns (ordinary), 456. 
Bangalore District, The, 420. 
Banting, or Tsine, The, in Upper 

Burmah, 484. 
Battery for large game shooting 

in India, 466. 
Bear, The brown, red, or snow, 

204. 

— The Himalayan black, 202. 

— The Indian black sloth, 197. 

Bad temper of, 198. 

Methods of bagging, 199. 

Best localities in Mysore 

for, 201. 



Belt for carrying cartridges, 83. 
Bison, The Indian, 10. 

— Recent record head of, 1 1. 

— Proper measurement of heads 
of, 12. 

— Friends' adventures with, 1 7. 

— Sounds emitted by, 21. 

— Reputed ferocity of, in Assam, 
22. 

— Localities for, 23. 

— shooting, 26. 

Best season in Mysorefor,29. 

Best weapons for, 31. 

How to aim in, 34. 

— Preservation of trophies of, 

39, 473. 

— shooting. Personal reminis- 
cences of, 42. 

Hints to beginners in, 68. 

Boar, The wild, 343. 

Boots for shooting, tj^ 80, 81. 

Brow-antlered or Eld's deer, 260, 

477. 
Buffalo, The wild, 88. 
Bullets, 463. 

Bullock coach. Travelling by, 23. 
Burhel, The, 310. 
Bustard, The Indian, 381. 



Camp cots, 79. 

— furniture, 430. 

— kit, 72. 



537 



BULLET AND SHOT 



Camp medicine-chest, 431. 

— servants, 435. 

Wages of, 440. 

Canarese language, Some useful 

words of the, 424. 
Carrier for luncheon, 84. 
Cartridges, Belt for carrying, 83. 
Cashmere (Kashmir) stag, The, 

255. 

— stag. Horns of, 256. 
Rarity of, 257. 

Col. W.'s luck with the, 258. 

— Rules for visitors in, 506. 

— Game laws of, 513, 533. 

— Routes to and from, 521. 

— Tariff of boat-hire in, 523. 
coolie- and pony-hire in, 525. 

— Brief notes on travelling in, 529. 
Cats, wild, 360. 

Cheetah, The hunting, 191. 
Chills, Danger of, 78. 
Chitaldroog District, 421. 
Cleaning of rifles burning nitro 

powders, 469. 
Cloth, Basel Mission Shikar, 78. 
Clothes for shooting, 78. 

D 
Deer, List of Indian and Hima- 
layan, 244. 

— Barking or Muntjac, 262. 

— Brow-antlered or Eld's, 260, 

479- 

— Cashmere. See Stag or Cash- 
mere. 

— Hog, 253. 

— Mouse, 265. 

— Musk, 264. 

— Sambur. See Sambur. 

— Sikkim. See Stag or Sikkim. 

— Spotted, 250. 

Distribution of, 251. 



Deer, Spotted, Still-hunting for, 
252. 

— Swamp, 254. 
Distribution of Indian large 

game, 3. 
Dog, The wild, 350. 

— The pariah, 353. 
Ducks, wild, 393. 

Duck shooting, 395. - 

E 

Elephant, The Indian, 206. 
Elephants, Solitary and rogue, 
208. 

— Food of, 209. 
Elephant, Brain of the, 210. 
How to aim at the, 211. 

— shooting, Weapons for, 216. 
Elephants, Liability of, to charge, 

219. 

— Blind rushes of, 220. 

— Tusks and tushes of, 222. 

— Fine trophies of, 222. 

— Preservation of trophies of, 
225. 

Elephant shooting, Episodes in, 
228. 



Fire protection, 406. 
Florican, The Bengal, 382. 
— The lesser, or leek, 383. 
Forest lodges, 79. 
Forests of the Bangalore Dis- 
trict, The, 420. 

Chitaldroog District, The, 

421. 

Hassan District, The, 423. 

Kadur „ „ 418. 

Mysore „ „ 401. 

Province generally, 400. 

Shimoga District, The, 422. 



53« 



INDEX 



Fox, The Indian, 360. 

— The common flying, 362. 

Furniture, Camp, 430. 



Game laws of Jammu and Kash- 
mir (Cashmere) State, 513, 533, 

— of Ladakh, Skardu, and Bal- 
tistan, 515. 

— of Madras Presidency and the 
Neilgherry Hills, 495. 

Gazelle, The Indian, Chikara, or 
ravine deer, 332. 

— The Thibetan, or Goa, 335. 
Geese, Wild, 392. 

Gooral, The, 303. 

H 

Hare, The black-naped, 361. 
Hassan District, The, 423. 
Head, Protection of the, 81, 
Head shots at felidce. Danger of 

firing, 124, 175. 
Hills and Mountains : 

Anaimalai hills, The, 23. 

Ibex on, 291. 

Billiga-Rungun hills. The, 19, 
404. 

Chamundi hill. Large panther 
of, 174- 

Gopalsawmy hill for bears, 201, 

Himalayan mountains. The, 4. 

Snow panther of, 194. 

Black bear of, 202. 

Red bear of, 204. 

Deer of, 255, 259, 263, 

264. 

Ibex of, 292. 

Markhor of, 299. 

Tahr of, 302. 

Gooral of, 303. 

Serow of, 304. 



Hills and Mountains : 
Himalayan mountains, The, 

Ovis Ammon of, 307. 

Burhel of, 310. 

Shahpoo of, 312. 

Thibetan antelope of, 334. 

gazelle of, 335. 

Best months for ibex 

shooting on the, 294. 
Limits of travel on the, 

521. 
Major D.'s disastrous 

start on the, 294. 
Major G.'s fine bag of 

ibex on, 294. 
Kurdebetta hill for bears, 201. 
Nilgiri hills. The (higher ranges 

of, called Koondahs), 267. 

Tigers on, 136. 

Sambur on, 249. 

Ibex of, 267. 

— — Black lungoor of, 356. 
Pulney hills. The, 20, 

Salt range, Oorial of the, 5, 313. 
Sewalik hills, Sambur on the, 

249. 
Sigeebetta hill for bears, 2or. 
Travancore hills. Bison on the, 

16, 23. 
Man-eating tigers on the, 

102. 

— — Black panther on the, 189. 

Elephants on the, 226. 

Ibex on the, 291. 

Black lungoor on the, 356. 

Western Ghauts, 23. 

Ibex on the, 291. 

Portion of the, in Mysore, 

418. 
Hog-deer, The, 253. 
Hog, The pigmy, 345. 
Houbara, The, 382. 
Hunting cheetah, The, 191. 



539 



BULLET AND SHOT 



I 

Ibex, The Himalayan, 292. 

— The Neilgherry (Nilgiri), 267. 

— The, of Asia Minor, 297. 
India, Travelling to and in, 442. 
Indian game, General distribu- 
tion of, 3. 

J 
Jungle-fowl, The red, 389. 

— The grey, 389. 

K 
Kadur, The district of, 418. 
Kashmir. See Cashmere. 
Kurrabas, 32, 48, 413. 



Lion, The Indian, 195. 
Lungoor, The Bengal, 357. 

— The Neilgherry, 356. 

M 
Magazine for spare ammunition, 

83. 
Malaria, 70. 
Mammalia, Skinning of the, 470. 

— Preservation of skins of the, 
471. 

Markhor, The spiral-horned, 299. 

— The straight-horned, 300. 

— Difficulty of the pursuit of the, 
301. 

Medicine, Moore's family, for 

India, 87. 
Medicines, Camp, 431. 
Minor forest produce in Mysore, 

409,411. 
Monsoons, The (in Mysore), 408. 
Mosquito curtains. Necessity for, 

79- 
Mouse-deer, The, 265. 



Musk-deer, The, 264. 




Mysore, The Province of, 399. 


Mysore District 


of, 401. 


Kadur „ 


„ 418. 


Bangalore „ 


„ 420 


Chitaldroog „ 


„ 421 


Shimoga „ 


„ 422 


Hassan „ 


V 423 



N 
Neilgherry (Nilgiri) ibex, 267. 

Sport with the, 268. 

How to stalk the, 290. 

Haunts of the, 291. 

Nilghaie, The, 334. 
Nitroclene, 469. 
Nuisances, 354. 

O 

Oorial, The, 313. 

Ounce, The (orsnow panther), 194. 

Ovis Amnion, The (or nyan) 307. 



Panther, The, 170. 

Cunning of, 172. 

Sport with, 174. 

— A man-eating, 182. 

— shooting, Advice to beginners 
in, 184. 

after dark with lantern, 185. 

— The black, 189. 

— The clouded, 190. 

— The snow (or ounce), 194. 
Paradox gun. The, 455. 
Partridge, The grey, 384, 

— The black, 385. 
Pea-fowl, The common, 386. 
Pheasant, The kaleege, 386. 

— The grey peacock, 387. 

— The moonal, 387. 

— The Indian crimson tragopan, 
388. 



540 



INDEX 



Poacher, The native, 346, 
Poachers, Minor, 354. 
Preservation of trophies, 470. 



Quail, The common (or grey), 390. 

— The rain, 391. 

— The bustard, 391. 

— The button, 391. 

R 

Reason in animals, 186. 
Rhinoceros, The great Indian, 339. 

— The J a van, 342. 
Rifle, Sporting -303, 459. 
-256, 462. 

Rifles and guns. Sporting, 446. 
Appurtenances of, 448. 

— Express, 453. 

— burning nitro powders, 457. 

■ Cleaning of, 469. 

Roberts, Lord, v.C, F.M., En- 
couragement of shooting by, I. 



Salt licks, 26. 
Sambur, The, 244. 

— Stalking of the, on the Koon- 
dahs, 246. 

— Still-hunting for, 248. 
■ — leather, 249. 
Sandalwood, 409. 
Sand grouse. The, 384. 
Serow, The, 304. 
Servants, Camp, 435. 

Warm clothes for, 86. 

Wages of, 440. 

Shapoo, The, 312. 
Shimoga District, The, 422. 
Sholagas, 404. 
Shooting-ladder, The, 1 16. 

— Col. G.'s adventure on a, 123. 



Sickness, Liability of camp ser- 
vants to, 85. 

Sikkim stag. See Stag. 

Skinning of mammalia, The, 470. 

Skins of mammalia. Preservation 
of the, 471. 

Snipe shooting in India, 363. 

Snipe, The common (or fan-tail), 
366. 

— The pintail, 367. 

— The jack, 368. 

— The painted, 369. 

— How to cook, 384. 

— soup, 384. 

Snow bear. The brown, red, or, 
204. 

— panther. The (or ounce), 194. 
Spotted deer. The, 250. 

Distribution of, 251. 

Still-hunting for, 252. 

Squirrel, The Malabar, 358. 

— The black hill, 359. 

— The brown flying, 359. 
Stag, The Cashmere, 255. 
Rarity of, 257. 

Col. W.'s luck with, 258. 

— The Sikkim, 259. 
Stockings for shooting, 77. 

Sun, Necessity for caution re- 
garding exposure to the, 77. 
Swamp-deer, The, 254. 



Tahr, The, 302. 
Takin, The, 338. 
Teal, The Indian, 394. 

— shooting, 395. 
Tents, 430. 

— for the Mysore forests, 79. 
Thamine (or Thamin), 260. 
Thamin and their quest, 477. 
Tiger, The, 97. 



S4I 



BULLET AND SHOT 



Tigers, man-eating, Rarity of, loi. 

— how driven to man-eating, 104. 

— Measurement of, 106. 
Tiger shooting in S. India, 109. 
Head shots in, 124. 

Following up wounded ani- 
mals in, 125. 

Death of Sir James Dormer 

when, 126. 

Big bags made in Deccan, 

128. 

Weapons for, 129. 

Best localities for, 136. 

Incidents in, 138. 

Tiger, My pony attacked by a 
(frontispiece), 165. 

Timber trees of Mysore, 404, 409. 

Travel, Limits of, on the Hima- 
layas, 521. 

Travelling by bullock coach, 23. 

— Exciting episode in night-, 45. 



Travelling to India, 442. 

— in India, 443. 

— in Cashmere, 529. 
Trophies, Preservation of, 470. 
Tsine, The, 95. 

— The Banting or, in Upper 
Burmah, 484. 



W 

Water, Necessity for caution in 

use of, in India, 71, 79. 
Weapons for bison shooting, 31. 

— for tiger shooting, 129. 

— for elephant shooting, 216. 

— for ibex shooting, 297. 

— for antelope-shooting, 327. 



Yak, The, 94. 



PLYMOUTH 

WILLIAM BRBNDON AND SON 

PRINTERS 



#>- 



UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LIBRARY 

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