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FAUNA ^ Id, 






OF ' 










The Reverend WILLIAM KIRBY, M.A., F.R.S., F.L.S., &c. 













M.D., F.R.S., F.L.S., &c. 












The objects of Natural History collected by tlie last Overland 
Expedition to the Polar Sea, under the command of Captain Sir 
John Franklin, to which I was attached as Surgeon and Naturalist, 
being too numerous for a detailed account of them to be comprised 
within the ordinary limits of an Appendix to the narrative of the 
proceedings of the journey, I was desirous of making them known 
to the world in a separate work. As it was necessary, however, in 
order to render such a publication useful, that many of the subjects, 
particularly in the Ornithological and Botanical parts, should be illus- 
trated by figures, the expense would have been an insurmountable 
difficulty, had not His Majesty's Government, actuated by a most 
laudable desire of encouraging science, lent a liberal aid to the under- 
taking. On an application, which had the approval of the Secretary of 
State for Colonial Affairs, the Treasury granted one thousand pounds, 
to be applied solely towards defraying the expense of the engravings. 
A moiety of that sum has been allotted to the illustration of the 
Quadrupeds and Birds, and the remainder to the Fishes, Insects, and 
Plants ; and care has been taken, by employing only the first artists, 
to render the plates worthy of the high patronage the work has 
received ; while their number will demonstrate the rigid economy 
with which the funds for their execution have been distributed*. 

* There are twenty-eight plates in this part; and fifty admirable coloured ones, of birds, 
have also been executed. The botanical plates will likewise be numerous, and many of them 
are already finished. 



Having neither leisure nor ability to do justice to the different 
departments of such a work, without assistance, I have gladly availed 
invself of the aid of several kind friends and able naturalists, — the 
First Part, relating to the Quadrupeds, being the only one for which 
I am solely accountable. William Svvainson, Esq., the able illustrator 
of the Ornithology of the Brasils, undertook to arrange and make 
drawings of the Birds, elucidate the Synonyms, furnish Remarks on 
the natural groups, and, in fact, to charge himself with the principal 
part of the Ornithology. The Reverend Mr. Kirby agreed to arrange 
and describe the Insects ; and Dr. Hooker, Professor of Botany at 
Glasgow, relieved me entirely from the charge of describing the 
Plants. The number of specimens of these requiring that Dr. 
Hooker's part should extend to about two volumes of letter-press, 
it has been judged better to publish the Zoology and Botany in 
separate works, — the latter edited solely by Dr. Hooker, and as 
similar to the former in paper and type as possible*. The following 
introductory remarks are, therefore, drawn up principally with a view 
to the Zoological specimens. 

First, with regard to the geographical limits of the country, whose 
ferine inhabitants are to be described. 

The Expedition landed at New York, proceeded up the Hudson to 
Albany ; from thence westward by the ridge-road to Niagara ; then, 
after a short visit to the stupendous falls on that river, it crossed Lake 
Ontario to York, the capital of Upper Canada ; and, passing by Lake 
Simcoe and the river Nattawasaga, it arrived at Penetanguishene, 
on the north-east arm of Lake Huron, in the beginning of April. Up 
to this place, owing to the early period of the year, and the mode of 
travelling, which was, for the greater part of our route, in carriages at 
a rapid rate, our collections were small, consisting, in Zoology, only 
of a few insects and serpents, and in Botany, principally of lichens 

* Dr. Hooker is far advanced with his work, which will come out in parts ; and INIr, 
Drummond has already, under his inspection, published two volumes of dried American 
mosses, containing two hundred^and eighty-six species, collected by the Expedition. 


and mosses. With these shght exceptions, the specimens brought to 
England were entirely collected to the north of the Great Canada 
Lakes, beyond the settled parts of Upper Canada, and, in fact, in a 
widely extended territory, wherein the scattered trading posts of the 
Hudson's Bay Company furnish the only vestiges of civilisation. The 
following work may, therefore, be termed a Fauna; or, more properly. 
Contributions to a Fauna of the British American Fur Countries ; or 
it may be considered, in a general view, as comprising what is known 
of the Zoology of that part of America, which lies to the north of the 
49th parallel of latitude, and which, to the east of the Rocky Moun- 
tains, at least, is exclusively British. I have, however, included in it 
descriptions of a few specimens obtained a degree or two to the south- 
ward of that latitude on Lake Huron and on the River Columbia, in 
both of which quarters there are several fur-posts of the Hudson's 
Bay Company. After having travelled through the Fur Countries 
lying to the eastward of the Rocky Mountains, for seven summers, 
and passed five winters at widely distant posts, it will scarcely be 
thought that I arrogate too much in saying, that almost all the 
quadrupeds that are objects of chase or interest to the natives, and a 
very great proportion of the birds, either came within the scope of my 
own observation, or were mentioned in the many conversations I had 
with the white residents and native hunters, on the natural pro- 
ductions of the country. But, although my opportunities of ascer- 
taining the number of species actually inhabiting the northern parts of 
America were so great, I must confess, that a journey like ours, in 
which natural history was only a subordinate object, and at many 
periods of which the shortest delay beyond that absolutely necessary 
for refreshment and repose, was inadmissible, did not afford much 
opportunity for studying the manners and habits of the animals with 
the attention I could have wished to have devoted to that subject. 
The present work, therefore, though fuller than any preceding one, 
is to be considered only in the light of a sketch, in which many omis- 
sions remain to be supplied and inaccuracies to be corrected by future 
observers. To render the list as complete as possible, I have included 

b 2 


those animals mentioned by preceding writers, which did not come 
under the notice of the Expedition ; always carefully acknowledging 
the source of ray quotations. 

Sir John Franklin's narratives of his two journeys contain full 
information respecting the districts through which the Expedition 
travelled ; but, to save reference, and to enable the reader of this work 
the more readily to discover the particular habitats, and to trace the 
geographical distribution of the species described in it, I have thought 
it proper to give a summary account of our route, followed by some 
compendious topographical notices. 

The First of the two Northern Land Expeditions disembarked in 
the month of August, 1819, at York Factory, in Hudson's Bay, which 
is 90° of longitude east of the meridian of Greenwich. From 
thence, travelling between the 57th and 53d parallels of latitude, by 
Hayes' Kiver, Lake Winipeg, and the Saskatchewan, it proceeded 
to Cumberland-house, situated beyond the 102d meridian, where it 
arrived towards the end of October. Early in January, 1820, the 
Commanding Officer, accompanied by Mr. (now Captain) Back, set out, 
to travel on snow-shoes up the Saskatchewan, nearly west-south-west 
to Carl ton-house, in the 106tli degree of longitude ; and from thence, 
on a northerly and somewhat westerly course, by Green Lake, the 
Beaver River, Isle a la Crosse, and Buffalo lakes, across the Methy 
portage, and down the Elk River, to Fort Chepewyan, on the Atha- 
pescow or Athabascow Lake, or Lake of the Hills, as it is named by Sir 
Alexander Mackenzie. The other two officers of the Expedition 
(Lieutenant Hood and myself) stayed, during the remainder of the 
winter, at Cumberland-house ; and after I had paid a visit in May to 
the plains of Carlton, and collected all the specimens of plants and 
animals I could procure at that season, set out in the month of June, 
to travel in canoe to Fort Chepewyan by the route of Beaver Lake, 
Missinippi or English River, Black-bear Island Lake, Isle a la Crosse, 
Buffiilo Lake and Elk River. Having rejoined our companions, the 
whole party left Fort Chepewyan on the 18th of July, 1820; and, 


descending the Slave River, crossed Great Slave Lake, and ascended 
the Yellow-knife River, to the banks of Winter Lake, situated in 
latitude 64^-°, and in the 113th degree of longitude, which it reached 
on the 19th day of August. A winter of nine months' duration was 
spent at this place in a log building, which was named Fort Enter- 
prise ; and in the beginning of June, 1821, while the snow was still 
Ijing on the ground, and the ice covering the river, the Expedition 
resumed its march. After the baggage and canoes had been dragged 
over ice and snow for one hundred and twenty miles to the north 
end of Point Lake, we embarked on the Coppermine River on the 1st 
of July, and on the 21st of the same month reached the Arctic Sea, 
when, turning to the eastward, we performed a coasting voyage 
of six hundred and twenty-six statute miles, to Point Turnagain, 
which is, owing to the deep indentations of the coast, only six 
degrees and a half of longitude to the eastward of the mouth of the 
Coppermine River. The rapid approach of winter now rendered it 
necessary to abandon the further pursuit of the enterprise ; and on 
the 22d of August we retraced our course as far as Hood's River, 
which we ascended for a short way, and then set out to travel overland 
to Point Lake, on our way back to Fort Enterprise. Winter, clothed 
with all the terrors of an arctic climate, overtook the party early in 
September : it suffered dreadfully from famine, no supplies were 
obtained at Fort Enterprise, the majority of the party perished, 
and the survivors were on the verge of the grave, when the 
Indians brought supplies of provision, and conducted them to Fort 
Providence, the nearest of the Hudson Bay Company's posts. The 
want of the means of carriage, even at the most flattering periods of 
this disastrous journey, prevented us from attempting to preserve any- 
bulky objects of natural history ; but all the plants gathered previous 
to our reaching the mouth of the Coppermine River were saved, 
having been given in charge to five of the party who were sent back 
from thence. Those collected on the sea-coast, after having been 
carried for many days through the snow, were at length, on our 
strength being completely exhausted, reluctantly abandoned. The 


winter of 1821-22 was passed at Fort Resolution, on the south side of 
Great Slave Lake ; and the summer of 1 822 was consumed in returning 
by the route we had before travelled to York Factory, where we 
embarked for England in the month of September. The most 
interesting of the quadrupeds and birds collected on this Expe- 
dition were described by Joseph Sabine, Esq., in the Appendix to 
Sir John Franklin's narrative, and 1 published a list of the plants in 
the same work. 

The Second or Last Northern Land Expedition commenced, as far 
as regards the objects of natural history described in this work, at Pene- 
tanguishene, on St. George's day, the 23d of April, 1825, and having 
performed a coasting voyage along the northern sides of Lakes Huron 
and Superior, arrived at Fort William, a post of the Hudson's Bay 
Company, situated in Thunder Bay of the last-mentioned lake. From 
thence it ascended the Kamenistiguia to Dog Lake, and crossing a 
height of land of no great elevation at the source of the Dog River, 
and only between twenty and thirty miles from the shores of Lake 
Superior, it descended by a series of rocky rivers, interrupted by 
numerous cascades and portages, to Rainy Lake, the Lake of the 
Woods, and Lake Winipeg. On entering the Saskatchewan River, 
which falls into the last-mentioned lake, on its east side, the Second 
Expedition came upon the route of the first one already described, 
which it kept till its arrival at Fort Resolution, on Great Slave Lake. 
At Cumberland-house, Mr. Drummond, the Assistant Naturalist, was 
detached up the Saskatchewan to examine the plains of Carlton, and 
the eastern declivity of the Rocky Mountains, near the sources of 
the Peace River. His labours will be more particularly mentioned 
hereafter : at present I proceed to trace the progress of the Expedition, 
which, on its arrival at Fort Resolution, instead of directing its course 
across Great Slave Lake, as on the first journey, turned to the west- 
ward, along the south shore of the lake, and entered the Mackenzie, 
by far the largest of all the American rivers which fall into the Polar 
Sea, and which originating in the same elevated part of the Rocky 


Mountain chain with the Columbia, the Missouri, and the Saskatche- 
wan, or Nelson Rivers, flows under the names of Elk, Slave, or 
Mackenzie River, on a north-north-west general course, through 
fifteen degrees of latitude, until it discharges itself into the sea by a 
mouth extending from the 133d to the 13'7th degree of longitude. 
When the Expedition reached the 65th degree of latitude in its 
descent of the Mackenzie, it turned to the eastward for seventy miles 
up a river to Great Bear Lake, where a winter residence was erected, 
on which the appellation of Fort Franklin was bestowed. Excursions 
were made down the Mackenzie and along Bear Lake while the 
navigation continued open, but the whole party were assembled at 
their winter-quarters on the 5th of September. The extent of country 
examined this first season may be judged of by the length of the route 
of the Expedition, from its leaving Penetanguishene in the month of 
April till its assembling at Great Bear Lake in September, which, 
including Mr. Drummond's journey to the Rocky Mountains, Sir 
John Franklin's voyage down the Mackenzie to the sea, and a voyage 
round Great Bear Lake by myself, exceeded six thousand miles. 
Towards the end of the month of June 1826, the Expedition left its 
winter-quarters, and proceeded down the Mackenzie to the sea ; 
and the Commanding Officer, turning to the westward, sailed 
along the coast until he attained the 70|° of latitude, and nearly 
the 150th degree of longitude, when the lateness of the season 
prohibiting a further advance, he retraced his way to Great Bear 
Lake. In the mean time, a detachment under my charge had sailed 
from the mouth of the Mackenzie eastward, round Caps Bathurst, in 
latitude TT 36' north, to the mouth of the Coppermine River, whence 
it travelled on foot to the north-east end of Great Bear Lake, and 
from thence, in a canoe, to Fort Franklin. The extent of sea-coast 
examined by the two branches of the Expedition exceeded twelve 
hundred miles, and the whole distance travelled by them from the 
time of their departure from Fort Franklin till their return to it again, 
was upwards of four thousand miles. A collection of plants formed 
by Captain Back, who accompanied Sir John Franklin, is peculiarly 


interesting, as having been made principally on a coast skirting the 
northern termination of the Rocky Mountains. The Expedition 
returned to England the following summer ; one division of it by 
way of Canada and New York, and the other by Hudson's Bay. I 
passed the early part of the winter at Great Slave Lake, where I 
obtained specimens of all the fur-bearing animals of that quarter, and 
afterwards travelled on the snow to Carlton-house on the Saskatche- 
wan, where, with the assistance of Mr. Drummond, who joined me 
there, specimens of the greatest part of the birds frequenting that 
district were procured in the spring. I met Sir John Franklin at 
Cumberland-house in June, 1827, and accompanied him to Canada by 
the same route by which we came out, except that we went by the 
east side of Lake Winipeg, thus completing the circuit of that lake, 
and that instead of crossing Lake Ontario, on our way to New York, 
we gained the Uttawas from Lake Huron, by the route of the French 
Eiver, and descended it to Montreal, whence we travelled to. New- 
York by way of Lake Champlain. 

Having thus given in detail the routes of the other branches of the 
Expedition, it remains that I should mention the one pursued by 
Mr. Drummond, the Assistant Naturalist, to whose unrivalled skill in 
collecting, and indefatigable zeal, we are indebted for most of the 
insects, the greater part of the specimens of plants, and a considerable 
number of the quadrupeds and birds. This gentleman remained at 
Cumberland-house in the year 1825, after the rest of the party had 
^one to the north, collecting plants during the month of July, and 
then ascended the Saskatchewan for six hundred and sixty miles, to 
Edmonton-house, performing much of the journey on foot, and 
amassing objects of natural history by the way. Leaving Edmonton- 
house on the 22d of September, he crossed a swampy and thickly 
wooded country to Red Deer River, one of the branches of the Elk or 
Athapescow River, and along whose banks he travelled until he reached 
the Rocky Mountains, the ground being then covered with snow. 
Having explored the portage-road across the mountains to the 
Columbia River, for fifty miles, he hired an Indian hunter, with whom 


he returned to the head of the Elk River, on which he passed the 
winter making collections, under privations which would have 
effectually quenched the zeal of a less hardy naturalist. In the 
month of April, 1826, he revisited the Columbia portage-road, and 
remained in that neighbourhood until the 10th of August, when he 
made a journey to the head waters of the Peace River, during which 
he suffered severely from famine. Nothing daunted, however, he 
hastened back as soon as he obtained a supply of provisions, to the 
Columbia portage, with the view of crossing to that river, and 
botanizing for a season on its banks. He had reached the west end 
of the portage, when he was overtaken by letters from Sir John 
Franklin, acquainting him that it was necessary to be at York Factory 
in 1827. This rendered it necessary for him speedily to commence 
his return, which he did with great regret, for the view of 
the Columbia, whose banks are rich in natural productions, had 
stimulated his desire to explore them, and he remarks, — " The snow 
covered the ground too deeply to permit me to add much to my 
collections in this hasty trip over the mountains ; but it was impossible 
to avoid noticing the great superiority of the climate on the western 
side of that lofty range. From the instant the descent towards the 
Pacific commences, there is a visible improvement in the growth of 
timber, and the variety of forest trees greatly increases. The few 
mosses that I gleaned in the excursion were so fine, that I could not 
but deeply regret that I was unable to pass a season or two in that 
interesting region." He now bade adieu to the mountains and 
returned to Edmonton-house, where he stayed some time, and then 
joined me at Carlton -house, as has been already mentioned. His 
collections on the mountains and plains of the Saskatchewan amounted 
to about " fifteen hundred species of plants, one hundred and fifty 
birds, fifty quadrupeds, and a considerable number of insects." He 
remained for six weeks at Carlton-house after I left that place, and 
then descended to Cumberland-house, where he met Captain Back, 
whom he accompanied to York Factory ; but he had previously the 
pleasure of seeing Mr. David Douglas, who, after collecting specimens 


of plants for the Horticultural Society, for three years, on the banks of 
the Columbia and in North California, crossed the Rocky Mountains 
at the head of the Elk River, by the same portage -road that Mr. 
Drummond had previously travelled, and having spent a short time in 
visiting the Red River of Lake Winipeg, returned to England with 
that gentleman by way of Hudson's Bay. Thus, a zone of at least 
two degrees of latitude in width, and reaching entirely across the con- 
tinent, from the mouth of the Columbia to that of the Nelson River 
of Hudson's Bay, has been explored by two of the ablest and most 
zealous collectors that England has ever sent forth ; while a zone of 
similar width, extending at right angles with the other from Canada to 
the Polar Sea, has been more cursorily examined by the Expeditions. 

Through the liberality of the Horticultural Society, and the in- 
fluence of their learned Secretary, Joseph Sabine, Esq., ever readily 
exerted for the advancement of science, I have been permitted to 
examine and describe the specimens of quadrupeds collected by Mr. 
Douglas, and this gentleman, with a readiness to communicate the 
information he has acquired, that does him great credit, has kindly 
furnished me with some valuable notices of the habits of the animals 
which have been incorporated in this work. I have also had an 
opportunity of inspecting the specimens of quadrupeds obtained on 
the American coast of Behring's Straits, by Captain Beechey, on his 
late voyage in the Blossom ; and the notes respecting them, made on 
the spot by Mr. Collie, Surgeon of that ship, by whom principally they 
were collected, have been submitted to my perusal. Previous to our 
setting out on the Second Expedition, Sir John Franklin addressed 
letters to many of the resident chief factors and traders of the Hud- 
son's Bay Company, requesting their co-operation with our endeavours 
to procure specimens of Natural History, and their ready acquiescence 
with his desire was productive of much advantage to us. Not only 
were great facilities for the advancement of our pursuits afforded to us 
by Mr. John Haldane, Mr. James Leith, Mr. Alexander Stewart, Mr. 
John Prudens, Mr. Robert M' Vicar, and other gentlemen, whose posts 
lay on our line of route ; but a collection of birds and quadrupeds. 


of much interest, made at Fort Nelson on the Kiver of the Mountains, 
a branch of the Mackenzie, was forwarded to us by Mr. Macpherson, 
together with some vahiable specimens obtained in the same quarter 
bj Mr. Smith, chief factor of that district. Mr. Isbister also had the 
kindness to prepare for us a copious collection of birds at Cumberland- 
house. These were not, however, the only channels through which the 
specimens described in the following pages were obtained. I have had 
ample opportunities for studying the specimens brought home by Sir 
Edward Parry, on his several expeditions ; and much information was 
likewise derived from frequent visits to the museum of the Hudson's 
Bay Company, and from repeated examinations of the specimens im- 
ported by that Company from their posts on James's Bay, on the 
Columbia, and in New Caledonia, and presented by them to the 
Zoological Society and British Museum. 

After this brief exposition of the various sources from whence the 
specimens were derived, I proceed to give a concise general view of the 
nature of the different tracts of the country^ whose ferine inhabitants 
form the subject of the following pages. The most remarkable phy- 
sical feature of the northern parts of America, is the great Mountain 
Ridge, which is continued under the appellation of the Rocky Moun- 
tains*, in a north -north-west direction from New Mexico, to the 70th 
degree of latitude, where it terminates within view of the Arctic Sea, 
to the westward of the mouth of the Mackenzie Kiver. The course of 
this chain is tolerably straight, and its altitude, though various in 
different places, is everywhere far superior to that of any other moun- 
tains existing in the same parallel of the American continent. Like 
the Andes, of which they seem to be a prolongation, the Rocky Moun- 
tains lie much nearer to the Pacific coast than to the eastern shore of 
America, and they give rise to several very large rivers. Over an 
elevated portion of the chain, extending from the 40th to the 55tli 
degree of latitude, are spread the upper branches and sources of the 
Columbia, which falls into the Pacific in the 46th parallel. If the 
principal arms of this river had not a very circuitous course, the nar- 

* Pennant names them the "Shining Mountains," 


rowness of the stripe of country which intervenes between the summit 
of the ridge and the coast would have caused it to be Httle better than 
a mountain torrent. As it is, its arms spread far and wide, and it 
carries a great body of water to the sea. The head waters of the 
Missouri interlock with those of the southern branches of the 
Columbia ; but that river, precipitating itself down the eastern decli- 
vity of the mountains, takes a devious course to the south-east, 
receiving in its way several great tributaries, and joining the Missis- 
sippi, which rises at the west end of Lake Superior, in a comparatively 
low, but hilly country. Their united streams traverse the whole of 
Louisiana, and fall into the Gulf of Mexico, after a course of four 
thousand and five hundred miles, reckoned from the head of the 
Missouri. The Saskatchewan is the third great river which issues 
from the same elevated part of the mountains, its feeding streams 
spreading from the 47th to the 54th parallel of latitude, and the more 
southern ones being interposed betwixt the head waters of the two 
preceding rivers. The upper streams of the Saskatchewan, after 
descending from the mountains, form two principal arms, which flow 
through comparatively naked, sandy plains, under the names of the 
North and South Branches, and then unite a short way below Carlton- 
house. From thence the river, continuing its course through a welL 
wooded country, passes by Cumberland-house, where it receives a 
considerable tributary that originates on the immediate banks of the 
Missinippi, a parallel river, and afterwards, flowing through Lake 
Winipeg, changes its name to Nelson River, and falls into Hudson's 
Bay, near Cape Tatnam. The whole course of the Saskatchewan or 
Nelson River, from the mountains to the sea, may be estimated, 
windings inclusive, at one thousand six hundred miles. Lake 
Winipeg, besides other large streams, receives the River Winipeg, 
which rises on a ridge of land bordering closely on Lake Superior, and 
also the Red River, whose eastern branch has its sources on the same 
heights with the Mississippi, and whose western branch originates close 
to the banks of the Missouri, some distance above where that river 
begins to turn to the southward. By means of short portages, then, 
one may pass from the respective branches of the Nelson, by the 


Columbia, to the Pacific ; by the Missouri or Mississippi to the Gulf of 
Mexico ; by the St. Lawrence to the Atlantic, and also by the Elk or 
Mackenzie River, whose upper streams approach the north branches of 
the Saskatchewan to the Arctic Sea. The fourth great river which 
takes its rise from the same quarter of the Rocky Mountain range is 
the one just mentioned, — the Mackenzie, which is the third of the 
North American rivers in respect of size, being inferior only to the 
Missouri and St. Lawrence. The two principal arms of the Mackenzie 
are the Elk and Peace rivers. One of the main streams of the former, 
the Red Deer River, issues from the vicinity of the northern sources of 
the Columbia and Saskatchewan, whilst other feeders interlock with 
the head waters of the Beaver, Missinippi, or Churchill river. Having 
passed through the Athapescow Lake, the Elk River is joined by the 
Peace River, which, originating somewhat further north in the moun- 
tains within three hundred yards of the source of the Tacootchtesse or 
Frazer's River, affords a canoe route to all parts of New Caledonia. 
It is a singular fact, that the Peace River actually rises on the west 
side of the Rocky Mountain ridge, and is a large stream navigable for 
boats at the place where it makes its way through a narrow gorge 
bounded by lofty mountains, which are covered with eternal snows. 
Nearer the source of the river, and between it and the Tacootchtesse, 
the mountains are less lofty and more distant, and the country has 
there much of the character of elevated table-land. After its union 
with the Peace River the Elk River assumes the name of Slave River, 
which, on passing through Great Slave Lake, becomes the Mackenzie. 
At a considerable distance below the last-mentioned lake, and where 
the Mackenzie makes its first near approach to the Rocky Mountains, 
it is joined by a large stream, which rising a little to the northward of 
the Peace River, flows along the eastern base of the mountains. It 
obtained the name of the River of the INIountains from Sir Alexander 
Mackenzie ; but its magnitude has since gained it the appellation of 
the South branch of the Mackenzie from the traders. The Mackenzie 
receives several other large streams on its way to the sea, and among 
others Great Bear Lake River, whose head-waters rise on the banks of 


the Coppermine River and Peel's River, which issues from the Rocky 
Mountains, in latitude 67°. Immediately after the junction of Peel's 
River the Mackenzie separates into numerous branches, which flow to 
the sea through a great delta, composed of alluvial mud. Here from 
the richness of the soil, and from the river bursting its icy chains, 
comparatively very early in the season, and irrigating the low delta 
with the warmer waters brought from countries ten or twelve degrees 
further to the southward, trees flourish, and a more luxuriant vege- 
tation exists than in any place in the same parallel on the American 
continent. In latitude 68° there are many groves of handsome white 
spruce firs, and in latitude 69°, on the shores of the sea, lofty and dense 
wiUow-thickets cover the flat islands ; while currants and gooseberries 
grow on the drier hummocks, accompanied by some showy epilobiums 
and perennial lupins. The moose-deer, American hare, and beaver, 
accompany this display of vegetation to its limits. The whole course 
of the Mackenzie from the source of the Elk River to the sea, is about 
two thousand miles in length. 

These are the principal rivers of the fur countries, but there are 
three others of shorter course, upon which some part of the collections 
of specimens were obtained, viz. Hayes River, which rises near Lake 
Winipeg, and holding an almost parallel course to Nelson's River, falls 
into the same part of Hudson's Bay. York Factory, which will be 
often mentioned in the following pages, stands on the low alluvial 
point that separates the mouths of these two rivers. The next river 
which I have to mention is the Missinippi, or, as it is occasionally 
named, the English River, which falls into Hudson's Bay at Churchill. 
Its upper stream, named the Beaver River, rises in a small ridge of 
hills, which separates the north branch of the Saskatchewan from a 
bend of the Elk River. The Coppermine is the last river which 
requires a particular notice. It has its origin not far from the east 
end of Great Slave Lake, and, taking a northerly course, flows through 
the Barren -grounds to the Arctic Sea. It is a stream of no great 
magnitude in comparison with some of the branches of the Mackenzie :. 
there are few alluvial deposits on its banks, and there is not, conse- 


quently, that richness of vegetation, which on the Mackenzie attracts 
certain quadrupeds to very high latitudes. 

The Rocky Mountains have been crossed in four several places. 
First, by Sir Alexander Mackenzie, in the year 1793, at the head of the 
Peace River, between latitudes 55° and 56°. His route was followed, 
in 1806, by a party of the ISTorth-west Company, sent to make a settle- 
ment in New Caledonia, and is still occasionally used by the Hudson's 
JBay Company. Lewis and Clark, in the year 1805, crossed the 
Mountains in latitude 47°, at the head of the Missouri, in their way to 
the mouth of the Columbia River. For several years subsequent to 
that period, the North-west Company were in the habit of crossing in 
latitude 52 1°, at the head of the North branch of the Saskatchewan, 
between which and one of the feeding streams of the Columbia there 
is a short portage ; but of late years, owing to the hostility of the 
Indians, that route has been deserted, and the Hudson's Bay Company, 
who now have the whole of the Fur Trade of that country, use a 
portage of considerable length between the northern branch of the 
Columbia and the Red Deer River, one of the branches of the Elk or 
Mackenzie River. Some attempts have very recently been made 
to effect a passage in the 62nd parallel of latitude; but although 
several ridges of the mountains were crossed, it does not appear that 
any stream flowing towards the Pacific was reached. 

The whole of the country lying to the eastward of the Rocky 
Mountains, and north of the Missouri and Great Lakes, is settled, 
or more or less frequently visited by the Hudson Bay Company's 
traders, and is well known to them, with the exception of the vicinity 
of the Polar Sea, and a corner bounded to the westward by the Cop- 
permine River, Great Slave, Athapescow, WoUaston, and Deer Lakes, 
to the southward by the Churchill or Missinippi River, and to the 
northward and eastward by the sea. This north-eastern corner of the 
American continent is often mentioned in the following pages by the 
appellation of the Barren-grounds, which it has obtained from the 
traders on account of its being destitute of wood, except on the banks 
of some of the larger rivers that traverse it. The prevailing rocks in 


the district are primitive, and in one or two places only do they rise so 
as to deserve the name of a mountain-ridge, their general form being 
that of an assemblage of low hills with rounded summits, and more or 
less precijiitous sides separated by narrow valleys. The soil of the latter 
is sometimes an imperfect peat earth, and in that case it nourishes a 
few stunted willows, glandular dwarf-birches, black spruce-trees, or 
larches ; but more generally the soil consists of the debris of the rocks, 
which is a dry coarse quartzose sand, unfit to support any thing but 
lichens. All the larger valleys have a lake of very transparent water, 
often of great depth in their centre, and occasionally these lakes are 
perfectly land-locked, though they all contain fish. More generally one 
lake discharges its waters into another, through a narrow gorge, by a 
rapid and turbulent stream, and most of the rivers which flow through 
the Barren-grounds are little more than a chain of narrow lakes con- 
nected in this manner. The small caribou or rein-deer, and the musk- 
ox, are the principal and characteristic inhabitants of these lands, and 
the description by Linn^us, of the Lapland deserts frequented by the 
rein-deer, applies with perfect accuracy to this corner of America. 
" Nullum vegetabile in tota Lapponia tanta in copia reperitur ac haec 
Lichenis species, {Cenomyce rangiferina) et quidem primario in sylvis, 
ubi campi steriles arenosi vel glareosi, paucis Pinis consiti ; ibi enim 
non modo videbis campos per spatium unius horas, sed s«pe duorum 
triumve milliarium *, nivis instar albos, solo fere hocce hchene ob- 
ductos." '' Hi Lichene obsiti campi, quos terram damnatam diceret 
peregrinus, hi sunt Lapponum agri, haec prata eorum fertilissima, adeo 
ut felicem se prtedicet possessor provinciee talis sterilissimae, atque 
lichene obsit^e." Being destitute of fur-bearing animals, no settle- 
ments have been formed within the Barren-grounds by the traders, 
and a few wretched families of Chepewyans, termed, from their mode 
of subsistence, " Caribou eaters," are the only human beings who 
reside constantly upon them. Were any one to penetrate into their 
lands, they might address him with propriety in the words used by the 

* The Swedish mile is b^ English miles. 



Lapland woman to Linnaeus, when he reached her hut, exhausted hy 
hunger and the fatigue of travelHng through interminable marshes. 
" O thou poor man, what hard destiny can have brought thee hither, 
to a place never visited by any one before ! This is the first time I 
ever beheld a stranger. Thou miserable creature ! how didst thou 
come, and whither wilt thou go*?" Parties of Indians occasionally 
cross these wilds in going from the Athapescow to Fort Churchill, but 
they almost always experience great privations, and very often lose 
some of their number by famine. Hearne, in his first and second 
journeys, traversed them in two directions ; Sir John Frankhn, in his 
first journey, travelled within their western limits ; and Sir Edward 
Parry, in his second voyage, obtained specimens of the animals of 
Melville peninsula, which forms the Xorth-east corner of the Barren- 
grounds. The Chepewyans, Copper Indians, Dog-ribs, Hare-Indians, 
and Esquimaux visit them annually for a short period of the summer 
season, in quest of caribou. 

The following quadrupeds are known to inhabit the Barren-grounds : 

Ursus arctos ? Americanus. 

„ maritimus. 
Gulo luscus. 
Mustela (Putorius) erminea. 

„ „ vison. 

Lutra Canadensis. 

Canis lupus, et varietates ejus variee. 
„ (Vixlpes) lagopus. 
„ „ „ var. fuliginosa. 

Fiber zibethicus. 
Arvicola xanthognathus. 

„ Pennsylvanicus. 

„ borealis. 

„ (Georychus) trimucronatus. 

„ „ Hudsonius. 

„ „ Groenlandicus. 

Arctomys (Spermophilus) Parry i. 

More or less carnivorous 
or piscivorous. They 
prey much on the ani- 
mals in the following 


* Lachesis Lapponica, p. 145. 


Lepus elacialis. Principal food the dwarf-birch. 

Cervus tarandus, var. arctica. 1 Graminivorous, or more commonly 
Ovibos moschatus. J lichenivorous. 

A belt of low primitive rocks extends from the Barren -grounds to 
the northern shores of Lake Superior. It is about two hundred miles 
wide, and as it becomes more southerly, it recedes from the Rocky 
Mountains, and differs from the Barren-grounds, principally in being 
clothed with wood. It is bounded to the eastward by a narrow stripe 
of hmestone, and beyond that there is a flat, swampy, partly alluvial 
district, which forms the western shores of Hudson's Bay. As far as 
regards the distribution of animals, the whole tract, from the western 
border of the low primitive rocks to the coast of Hudson's Bay, may 
be considered as one district, with the exception that the sea-bear 
seldom goes further inland than the swampy land which skirts the 
coast. The whole may be named the Eastern district, and the follow- 
ing animals inhabit it : — 

Vespertiliones, species duo vel tres ignotse. 
Sorex palustris. 
„ Forsteri. 
Scalops, species ignota. 
Ursus Americanus. 

mn vi f i m 1 1 c ( ( Does'not go further from the sea- 
„ maiiLiuiub. I shore than one hundred miles.) 

Meles ? 
Gulo luscus. 

Mustela (Putorius) vulgaris. 
„ „ erminea. 

„ „ vison. 

„ martes. 
„ Canadensis. 
Mephitis Americana, var. Hudsonica, 
Lutra Canadensis. 
Canis lupus, varietates variae. 
„ (Vulpes) lagopus. 
„ „ fulvus. 

,, ,, ,, var. decussata. 

„ argentata. 
Felis Canadensis. 


Castor fiber, Americanus et ejus varietates. 
Fiber zibethicus et ejus varietates. 
Arvicola xanthognathus. 

„ Pennsylvanicus. 

„ (Georychus) Hudsonius. 
Mus leucopus. 
Meriones Labradorius. 
Arctomys empetra. 
Sciurus (Tamias) Lysteri. 

„ Hudsonius. 
Pteromys Sabrinus. 
Lepus Americanus. 
Cervus alces. 

„ tarandus, var. sylvestris. 

The district just mentioned is bounded to the westward by a very 
flat hmestone deposit, and the Hne of junction of the two formations 
is marked by a remarkable chain of rivers and lakes, among which are 
the Lake of the Woods, Lake Winipeg, Beaver Lake, and the middle 
portion of the Churchill or Missinippi River, all to the southward of 
the Methy portage ; and the Elk River, Athapescow Lake, Slave River, 
Great Slave Lake, and Martin Lake, to the northward of it. The 
whole of this district is well wooded ; it yields the fur -bearing animals 
most abundantly ; and a variety of the bison, termed from the circum- 
stance the wood bison, comes within its western border, in the more 
northern quarter. This animal has even extended its range to a par- 
ticular corner, named Slave Point, on the north side of Great Slave 
Lake, which is also composed of hmestone. The following animals 
may be found in the limestone tract : — 

Vespertilio pruinosus. 
Sorex palustris. 
„ Forsteri. 
Condylura longicaudata. (southern paru only.) 
Ursus Americanus. 
Gulo luscus. 

Mustek (Putorius) vulgaris. 
jjj „ erminea. 

„ „ vison. 



Alustela martes. 

„ Canadensis. 
Mephitis Americana, Hudsonica. 
Lutra Canadensis. 
Canis lupus occidentalis, var. grisea. 

,, ,, ,, atra. 

,, ,, ,, nubila. 

,, ,, „ Sticte. 

5, (Vulpes) fulvus. 

,, ,, ,, var. decussata. 

,, ,, ,, argentata. 

Felis Canadensis. 

Castor fiber, Americanus et varietates ejus nigrae, variae, et albse. 
Fiber zibethicus, colore interdum varians. 
Arvicola xanthognathus. 
,, Pennsylvanicus. 
Mus leucopus. 
Meriones Labradoriiis. 
Arctorays empetra. 

,, (Spermophillis) Hoodii (in the south-westem limits of the district.) 

SciurUS (Tamias) Lysteri (m the southern pan of the district.) 
,, ,, qnadrivittatUS (middle parts of the district.) 

,, Hudsonius'. 

,, niger (southern border of the district.) 

Hystrix pilosus. 
Lepus Americanus. 
Cervus alces. 

,, tarandus, sylveslris (only in a few spots.) 
Bos Americanus. 

Between this limestone district and the foot of the Rocky 
Mountains, there is an extensive tract of what is termed Prairie land. 
It is in general level, the slight inequahties of surface being imper- 
ceptible when viewed from a distance, and the traveller in crossing it 
must direct his course by the compass or the heavenly bodies, in the 
same way as if he were journeying over the deserts of Arabia. The 
soil is mostly dry and sandy, but tolerably fertile, and it supports a 
pretty thick swc^rd of grass, which furnishes food to immense herds of 
the bison. Plains of a similar character, but still more extensive, have 
been described by the American writers as existing on the Arkansaw 


and Missouri Rivers. They gradually become narrower to the north- 
ward, and in the southern part of the fur countries they occupy about 
fifteen degrees of longitude, extending from Maneetobaw or Maneeto- 
woopoo, and Winepegoos Lakes to the foot of the Rocky Mountains. 
They are partially intersected by some low ridges of hills, and also by 
several streams, the banks of which are wooded, and towards the 
outskirts of the plain there are many detached clumps of wood and 
picturesque pieces of water, disposed in so pleasing a manner as to 
give the country the appearance of a highly cultivated English park. 
In the central parts of the plains, however, there is so little wood that 
the hunters are under the necessity of taking fuel with them on their 
journeys, or in dry weather of making their fires of the dung of the 
bison. To the northward of the Saskatchewan, the country is more 
broken, and intersected by woody hills ; and on the banks of the Peace 
River, the plains are of comparatively small extent, and are detached 
from each other by woody tracts ; they terminate altogether in the 
angle between the River of the Mountains and Great Slave Lake. 
The abundance of pasture renders these plains the favourite resort of 
various ruminating animals. They are frequented throughout their 
whole extent by buffalo and wapiti. The prong-horned antilope is 
common on the Assinaboyn or Red River, and south branch of the 
Saskatchewan, and extends its range in the summer to the north 
branch of the latter river. The black-tailed deer, the long-tailed deer, 
and the grisly bear, are also inhabitants of the plains, but do not 
wander further to the eastward. 

The following list will shew the peculiarity of the group of ferine 
animals which frequent the district : — 

Ursus ferox. 
Canis latrans. 

5, (Vulpes) cinereo-argentatus. 

Arctomys (Spermophilus ?) Ludovicianus. 

J, „ Richardsonii. 

„ „ Franklinii. 

„ „ Hoodii. 


Geomys ? talpoides. 
Diplostoma ? 
Lepus Virginianus. 
Equus caballus. 
Cervus alces. 

„ strongyloceros. 

„ macrotis. 

„ leucurus. 
Antilope furcifer. 
Bos Americanus. 

The fur-bearing animals also exist in the belts of wood which skirt 
the rivers that flow through the plains ; and the wolverene wanders 
over them as it does through every part of the northern extremity of 
America. The mephitis Americana Hudsonica breeds freely there ; 
and the raccoon is found on the banks of the Red River, which is its 
most northern limit. 

The following animals are found on the Rocky Mountains : — 

Vespertilio subulatus. 
Sorex palastris. 
Ursus Americanus. 

„ ferox. 
Gulo luscus. 

Mustela (Putorius) erminea. 
„ „ vison. 

„ raartes. 
„ Canadensis. 
Mephitis ? 

Lutra Canadensis. 
Canis lupus at ejus varietates. 

„ (Vulpes) fulvus et ejus varietates. 
Felis Canadensis. 
Castor fiber, Americanus. 
' Fiber zibethicus. 

Arvicola riparius. 

„ xanthognathus. 
„ Novoboracensis. 
„ (Georychus) helvolus. 
Neotoma Drummondii. 
Mus leucopus. 


Arctomys empetra. 



^, (Spermo^ihilus) Parryi, var. erythrogluteia. 

„ „ „ phseognatha. 

J, ,y guttatus ? 

„ „ lateralis. . - 

Sciurus (Tamias) quadrivittatus. 

„ Hudsonius. 
Pteromys Sabrinus, var. alpina. 
Hystrix pilosus. 
Lepus Americanus. 

„ glacialis. 
Lepus (Lagomys) princeps. 
Cervus alces. 

/(.Vlarge kind of caribou is said^to frequent the moun- 
jj ^„. „^ , tains, but I have seen no specimens either of the animal 

(^or of its horns.) 

J, macrotis. 
Capra Americana (on the wghest ridges.) 

Ovis montana (on the eastern side of the ridge.) 
33oS AmericaUUS (m particular passes only.) 

The country lying between the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific 
is in general more hilly than that to the eastward ; but there are some 
wide plains on the upper arms of the Columbia which have much of 
the character of the plains of the Missouri and Saskatchewan, and are 
inhabited by the same kind of animals. In particular the ursus ferox, 
canis latrans, canis cinereo-argentatus, the braro (perhaps meles Labra- 
doria), cervus macrotis var. /S. Columbiana, cervus leucurus, and 
aplodontia leporina, are enumerated by Lewis and Clark. Mr. 
Douglas also observed the condylura macroura, and several species of 
Felis and of Geomys and Diplostoma in that quarter. The sea-coast 
at the mouth of the Columbia is frequented by a species of fox very 
hke the European one, or the red-fox of the Atlantic states of America. 
The Arctomys brachyurus and the Arctomys Douglasii also inhabit 
the banks of the Columbia ; and the Arctomys Beecheyi, a species 
nearly allied to the latter, is found in the adjoining parts of California. 
The bison are supposed to have found their way across the mountains 
only very recently, and they are still comparatively few in numbers, 
and confined to certain spots. 


The following brief description of New Caledonia, another district 
on the west of the Kocky Mountains, is extracted from Mr. Harmon's 
journal : — 

" New Caledonia was first settled by the North- West Fur Com- 
pany in 1 806, and may extend from north to south about five hundred 
miles, and from east to west, three hundred and fifty or four hundred. 
The post at Stuart's Lake is nearly in the centre of it, and lies in 
542° north latitude, and 125° west longitude. In this large extent of 
country, there are not more than five thousand Indians, including 
men, women, and children. It is mountainous, but between its 
elevated parts there are pretty extensive valleys, along which pass 
innumerable small rivers and brooks. It contains a great number of 
lakes, one of which, Stuart's Lake, is about four hundred miles in 
circumference ; and another, Nateotain Lake, is nearly twice as large. 
I am of opinion that about one-sixth part of New Caledonia is covered 
with water. There are but two large rivers. One of these, Frazer's 
River, is sixty or seventy rods wide, rises in the Rocky Mountains 
■within a short distance of the source of the Peace River, and is the 
river which Sir Alexander Mackenzie followed for a considerable 
distance when he went to the Pacific Ocean in 1793, and which he 
took to be the Columbia. The other large river of New Caledonia is 
Simpson's River, which takes its origin in Webster's or Bear Lake, 
and, after passing through several considerable lakes, falls into 
Observatory Inlet. The mountains of New Caledonia are not to be 
compared, in point of elevation, with those that skirt the Peace River 
between Finlay's Branch and the Rocky Mountain portage, though 
there are some which are pretty lofty, and on the summits of one in 
particular, which is visible from Stuart's Lake, the snow lies during the 
whole year. 

" The weather is not severely cold, except for a few days in the 
winter, when the mercury is sometimes as low as 32° below zero of 
Fahrenheit's thermometer. The remainder of the season is much 
milder than it is on the other side of the mountains in the same 


latitude. The summer is never very warm in the day-time ; and the 
nights are generally cool. In every month in the year, there are 
frosts. Snow generally falls about the 15th of November, and is 
all dissolved by the 15th of May. About M'Leod's Lake the snow 
is sometimes five feet deep, and I imagine that this is the reason 
that none of the large animals, except a few solitary ones, are to be 
met with. 

" There are a few moose ; and the natives occasionally kill a black 
bear. Caribou are also found at some seasons. Smaller animals like- 
wise occur, though they are not numerous. They consist of beavers, 
otters, lynxes, fishers, martins, minks, wolverines, foxes of different 
kinds, badgers, polecats, hares, and a few wolves. The fowls are, swans, 
bustards (anas Canadensis), geese, cranes, ducks of several kinds, par- 
tridges, &c. All the lakes and rivers are well furnished with excellent 
fish. They are, sturgeon, white-fish, trout, sucker, and many of a 
smaller kind. Salmon also visit the streams in very considerable num- 
bers in autumn. The natives of New Caledonia we denominate 
Carriers ; but they call themselves Ta-cullies, which signifies people 
who go upon water." 

Captain Cook, in his third voyage, saw raccoons, foxes, martins, and 
squirrels, alive, on the coast of New Caledonia, and obtained skins of 
the following animals : — ■ 

Black-bear, brown -bear, glutton, grey wolf, arctic or stone fox, black 
fox, foxes of a yellow colour with a black tip to the tail, foxes of a deep 
reddish yellow intermixed with black, raccoon, land-otter, sea-otter, 
ermine, martins of three kinds : the common one, the pine -martin, and 
a larger one with coarser hair (mustela Canadensis ?^, lynx, spotted 
marmot, hares, and skin of an animal named wanshee by the natives. 
In addition to this list, Meares mentions moose-deer skins, and the 
skin of a very small species of deer, as among the articles of trade in 
J)ossession of the natives at Nootka Sound. 

To the north of New Caledonia there is a large projecting corner, 
^vhich belongs to Russia, and has been traversed by the servants of the 


Fur Company of that nation ; but of which no account has been given 
to the world, except of the coast, respecting which some information 
jnay be obtained from the narratives of Captain Cook, Kotzebue, and 
other voyagers. The few Indians of Mackenzie River, who have 
crossed the Rocky Mountains, report that, on their western side, there 
is a tract of barren grounds frequented by caribou and musk oxen ; and 
the furs procured by the Russian Company indicate that woody regions, 
similar to those to the eastward of the mountains, also exist there. 

LangsdorfF gives the following list of skins contained in the principal 
magazine of the Russian Fur Company, on the island of Kodiak, most 
of them collected on the peninsula of Alaska, Cook's River, and other 
parts of thecontinent. 

Brown and red bears, black bears, foxes black and silver-gray, (the 
stone fox, canis lagopus, is not found to the southward of Oonalaska), 
glutton, sea, river, and marsh otters, lynx, beaver, zizel marmot, com- 
anon marmot, hairy hedge-hog {erinaceus ecaudatus), rein-deer, American 
wool- bearing animal. 

The quadrupeds which inhabit the shores of the Polar Sea, are the 
same that are comprised in the list of the animals of the Barren 
Grounds. On the remote North Georgian Islands, in latitude 75°, there 
are nine different species of mammiferous animals, of which five are 
carnivorous, and four herbivorous. The following is Captain Sabine's 
list of them : — 

Ursus maritimus. 
Gulo luscus. 
Mustela erminea. 
Canis lupus. 
Canis lagopus. 
Lemmus Hudsonius. 
Lepus glacialis. 

„ . r These two animals are only summer visitors. 

xJOS mOSChatuS . I They arrive on Melville Island towards the 

Crr, 1 j middle of May, and quit it on their return 

erVUS larandUS . \ to the south in the end of September. 

I have not enumerated the seals, moose, or whales, in any of the 
lists ; nor have I attempted to give a description of any of them in the 
text, because my opportunities of examining them were too limited to 


enable me to record any new facts ; neither had I the means of cor- 
rectly ascertaining the species. 

I have, in the text, described the different species of animals, from 
nature, as correctly as I could ; and I have chosen rather to subject 
myself to the charge of proxility than to become obscure by aiming at 
too great conciseness, because, in the course of my researches, I have 
felt the difficulty of ascertaining the species, from the brief characters 
assigned to them by the old writers. I have for the same reason in 
many instances repeated some of the generic characters in the account 
of a species, particularly in cases where any doubt respecting the genus 
or sub-division of the genus existed. In the account of the manners 
of the animals, I have borrowed freely from preceding writers ; and 
from none more frequently or more copiously than from Captain Lyons, 
whose "Private Journal" contains a great fund of information resjDect- 
ing the northern animals. I wish it to be understood, however, that 
in all cases, unless where a doubt is actually expressed, or where I state 
that I have had no opportunity of personal observation, the remarks I 
have quoted are sanctioned by the information I collected on the spot. 
The nomenclature of colours, made use of in the description, is a 
modification of Werner's, contained in Mr. Syme's useful little work*. 
Before closing this introductory chapter, I have to discharge the 
agreeable duty of expressing my obligations to many gentlemen who 
have fostered the progress of the work. To the Eight Honourable 
Lord Viscount Goderich my gratitude is especially due. To his 
attachment to the sciences I am indebted for that patronage and aid, 
which his high situation in his Majesty's Government enabled him to 
bestow, and without which this work could not have appeared. To 
the Right Honourable Thomas Frankland Lewis, also, I am under great 
obligations for the interest he has shewn in the advancement of the 
work, and for his kindness in forwarding my views. My gratitude is 
not less owing to the present Treasury Board, for the readiness with 
which they made the grant of money available ; and to the late and 

* Werner's Nomenclature of Colours, loith Additions. By Patrick Syme, Flower Painter. 
Edinburgh, 1821. 

e 2 


present Secretaries of State for Colonial Affairs, for their kindness in 
forwarding my applications through their department. I have next to 
express my best thanks to the Governor and Committee of the Hud- 
son's Bay Company, for granting me free access to their museum, and 
to the manuscript accounts of the Fur Countries, in their possession, 
and for the strong recommendations they transmitted to the resident 
Chief Factors and Chief Traders, to forward the views of the Expedi- 
tion, with respect to Natural History. To Mr. Garry, the Deputy 
Governor of that Company, I have to offer my thanks in an especial 
manner, not only for his general kindness and good offices, but for the 
free use of his valuable library, particularly rich in the works of the 
early travellers in America. I have also to mention my deep sense of 
the kindness of the Council of the Horticultural Society, and of Joseph 
Sabine, Esq., Secretary to that Institution, for the opportunity of 
examining and describing Mi: Douglas's specimens. To Charles 
Koenig, Esq., of the Eritish Museum, I am under much obligation, for 
the facility he afforded me of examining the specimens in that collec- 
tion ; and I am equally indebted to IST. A. Vigors, Esq., of the Zoological 
Society, for his aid in the consultation of the museum under his charge. 
I have, lastly, to express my gratitude to Sir John Franklin, and to the 
Officers associated with me under his command. To the former, for the 
kindness with which he embraced every opportunity during the pro- 
gress of the Expedition, of forwarding my views with respect to that 
branch of its objects, which was more particularly intrusted to me; 
and to Captain Back, Lieutenant Kendall, and Mr. Dease, for their 
active assistance in the collection of specimens. Indeed, I may, with 
propriety, embrace this opportunity of saying, that I had the happi- 
ness of being placed under an Officer, who was endowed with the rare 
union of devoted attention to the duties of his profession, and of the 
most sincere attachment to the interests of general science, — and that, 
in him, and in the Officers under his command, I met withkind friends, 
whose agreeable society beguiled the tedium of a lengthened residence 
in the Arctic wilds. 



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Cuvier, Fred. . . . Histoire Naturelles des Mammiferes. En folio. 

De Monts Vide Monts. 

Denys Histoire de TAmerique. (Quoted from Pennant.) 

Desmarest Mammalogie en Description des Especes des Mammiferes, par M. A. G. Des- 

marest. 4to. Paris, 1820. 
Dixon A Voyage round the World, in the Years 1785, 1786, 1787, and 1788, by Captain 

George Dixon. London, 1789. 

Dobbs An Account of Hudson's Bay, by Arthur Dobbs, Esq. Londoiv, 1744 

Drage Fi'c^e Smith and Clerk of the California. 

Dudley Philosophical Transactions, January, 1727. Of the Moose-deer in America, by 

Paul Dudley, Esq. 

Du Pratz Vide Pratz. 

Edwards Natural History of Birds and other rare undescribed Animals, by George Edwards. 

7vols. 4to. London, 1743. 

Ellis Voyage to Hudson's Bay in the Dobbs and California, by Hemy Ellis, in the 

year 1746 and 1747. London, 1748. 8vo. 

Erxlebein Systema Regni Animalis. 8vo. Leipzick, 1777. 

Fabricius Fauna Groenlandica Othonis Fabricii. 1 vol. 8vo. Haftiiaeet Lipsiae, 1780. 

Fernandez Historia Animalium, auctore Francisco Fernandez, Pliillippi Secundi Primario 

Medico. 1 vol. 4 to. An. 1651, Roma. 

Fleming The Philosophy of Zoology, by John Fleming, D.D, 2 vols. 8vo. Edinburgh, 1822. 

FoRSTER Philosophical Transactions, vol. 62. An. 1777. Descriptions of Specimens of 

Animals brought from Hudson's Bay, by J. Reinhold Forster. 

Franklin Narrative of an Expedition to the Shores of the Polar Sea, in the Years 1819, 1820, 

and 1821, by John Franklin, Capt. Royal Navy. 1 vol. 4to. London, 1822. 

„ Narrative of a Second Expedition to the Shores of the Polar Sea in the Years 

1825, 1826, and 1827, by John Franklin, F.R.S., Captain Royal Navy. 1 vol 
4to. London, 1828. 

Gass Journal of the Travels of a Corps of Discovery under Captain Lewis and Captain 

Clarke to the Pacific Ocean, in the Years 1804, 1805, and 1806. 8vo. By 
Patrick Gass. 1 vol. 8vo. London, 1808. 

Geoffrey ..... Geoffroy St. Hilaire, Annales du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle de Paris. 20 vols. 
in4to. De 1822 a 1823. 

Gmelin Systema Naturae Linnei, ed. 13. An. 1790. J. F. Gmehn. 


God MAN .'. . .' . . American Natural History, by John D. Godman, M.D. 3 vols. 8vo. Philadel- 
phia, 1826. 

Graham ....... Vide Hutchins. 

Grieve History of Kamskatcha, translated fi-om the Russian of Krascheninikoff, by James 

Grieve, M.D. Gloucester, 1764. ... 

Griffith ..... Tlie Animal Kingdom, by Baron Cuvier, translated by Edward Griffith, and 
Others. 8vo. London, An. 1827 et seq. 

GuLDENSTED .... Novi Commentarii Peti'opolitani, 1 749 — 1775. 20 vols', ■ • • • • 

Hamilton Smith . . Vide Smith. 

Harlan Fauna Americana, being a Description of the Mammiferous' Animals inhabiting 

North America, by Richard Harlan, M.D. 8vo. Philadelphia, 1825. 

Harmon. ..... A Journal of Voyages and Travels in the Interior of North America, between the 

47th and 58th Degrees of Latitude, by Daniel William Haraion, a Paiiner in 
the North West Company. Andover, 1820. 

Hearne Jom-ney to the Northern Ocean, by Samuel Hearne, in the Years 1769, 1770, 

1771, and 1772. London, 1807. 

Hennepin Nouvelle Decouverte d'un Tres gi-and Pays situe dans I'Amerique, "par R. P. 

Louis de Hennepin. Amsterdam, 1698, 
Henry Travels and Adventures in Canada and the Indian Ten-itories, by Alexander 

Henry, in the Years 1760 — 1776. New York, 1809. . . 

He riot Travels through Canada, by George Heriot, Esq. London, 1807. 

Hernandez Rerum Medicaram Novae Hispaniae Thesaurus Francisci Hernandez, Reecho 

Editore. Roma, 1651. 

Histoire de l'Amerique. Histoire de I'Amerique Septentrionale. Tom. 2, 12mo. Amsterdam, 1723. 

Hontan Vide Lahontan. 

Hutchins MS. Account of Hudson's Bay, written about the j-ear 1780. Mr. Hutchins 

furnished much intelligence to Pennant respecting the Zoology of Hudson's 
Bay. In a few first sheets of this work Mr. Graham is through mistake quoted 
as the author of these manuscript notices. 

James The dangerous Voyage of Captain Thomas James, for the Discovery of a North- 

West Passage. London, 1633, reprinted 1740. 

James Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, under the Command of Major Long, by Edwin 

James. 3 vols. London, 1823. The American edition -is also quoted oc- 

Jameson .,..., Transactions of the Wernerian Society of Edinburgh, vol. iii. p. 306, Account of 
the Rocky Mountain Sheep, by Professoi- Jameson. 

Jeremie ...... Voyage au Nor d. (Quoted from Pennant.) 

JosELYN ...... New England. (Quoted fi-om Pennant.) 

Joxitel Voyage to Mexico, by Mr. Joutel, translated fi-om the French. London, 1719. 

Kalm Peter Kalm's Travels in North America, translated by J. R. Foster, The abridge- 
ment in Pinkerton's collection of voyages is also quoted, ... 


Klein Isaac Theodore Klein, Quadrupedum Dispositio. 4to. Lipsiae, 1751. 

Krasheninikoff . . . Vide Grieve. 

Lahontan Voyages dans rAmerique de M. La Baron de la Hontan. Vol. 2 en 12mo. Ala 

Haye, 1703. 
Langsdorff .... Voyages and Travels to various Parts of the World, in the Years 1803, 1804, 

1805, 1806, and 1807, by G. H. von Langsdorff. 2 vols. London, 1813. 

Lawson History of Carolina. (Quoted from Pennant.) 

Leach ...... Leach, W. Elford. Zoological Miscellany. 

„ „ „ Appendix to Ross's Voyage to Baffin's Bay. 1819, 

Lesson Manuel de Mammalogie, par Rene Primeven-e Lesson. 12mo. Paris, 1827. 

Lewis and Clarke . . Travels to the Pacific Ocean in 1804, 1805, and 1806, by Captains Lewis and 
Clarke. 3 vols. 8vo. London, 1807. 

LiCHTENSTEiN .... Voyagc a Boulihara, par M. Le Baron Georges de MeyendorfF, en 1820. Paris, 
1826. Description, par M. Lichtenstein des Animaux Recueilles dans le 
Voyage, par M. Eversman. 

Linn Systema Naturae, Carolo a Linne. Ed. xii. 1706, 

„ „ „ Fauna Suecica. 8vo, 1746. 

Linn. Gmelin , . . . Systema Naturae Linnei. Ed. xiii. Cura Gmelini, Leipsig, 1788, 
Long's Journey . , . Vide James. 

Lyon Private Journal of Captain G. F. Lyon during a Voyage of Discoveiy under 

Captain Parry. 8vo. London, 1824. 

Mc GiLLivRAY . . . . New York Medical Repository, vol. vi. p. 238. Account of the Mountain Ram, 
by William Mc Gillivray. 1803. 

Mackenzie (Sir Alex.) Travels to the Polar Sea and to the Pacific Ocean, in theYearsl789 — 1791, by 
Alexander Mackenzie. London, 

Mackenzie (Sir George) Travels in Iceland. 

Marten Voyage to Spitzbergen and Greenland, by F, Marten. 8vo. London, 1711. 

Mears Voyages to the North- West Coast of America in 1788 and 1789, by John Meares, 

Esq. 4to, London, 1790. 
Meyendorff .... Vide Lichtenstein. 
MiTCHiLL . . , , . Medical Repositoiy of New York. An. 1821. (Quoted from M. Say.) 

MoNTS, De Nova Francia. The three last voyages of Monsieur de Monts, of M. Pontgrave, 

and of M. De Poutrincourt, into La Cadia. London. 

Ord Guthrie's Geogi-aphy, American Edition. Philadelphia. (Quoted from Harlan.) 

„ Journal of the Academy of Sciences of Philadelphia. Vol, iv, p. 305. 

Palisot de Beauvais . Bulletin des Sciences par la Societe Philomatique depuis, 1791. Paris. 

Pallas Novae Species Quadrupedum e Glirium Ordine. Erlang. In 4to. 

„ Spicelegia Zoologica, Berolini, 1767 — 1780. 

, Voyage dans Plusieurs Provinces de I'Empii-e de Russie. 8 vols, in 8vo. Paris. 

> Annals of Nature. (Quoted from Desmarest.) 


Parry Voyage for the Discoveiy of a North-West Passage, performed in the Years 1819, 

1820, in His Majesty's Ships the Hecla and Griper, by Wilham Edward Parrj", 
R.N., F.R.S. 4to. London, 1821. 

» Second "Voyage for the Discovery of a North- West Passage in the Years 1821, 

1822, 1823, in the Fury and Hecla, by Captain William Edward Parrj', R.N. 
F.R.S. London, 1824. 

Pennant Hist oiy of Quadrupeds. 3d Edition. 2 vols. 4to. London, 1793. 

Arctic Zoology. 2 vols. 4to. 1784. 

Pii^E Travels on the Missouri and Arkansaw, by Lieutenant Pike, in 1805 and 1806. 

Edited by T. Rees, Esq. London, 1811. 
Pratz, Du Voyage de Louisiana. (Quoted fi-om Pennant.) 

Rafinesque, or 

„ „ American Monthly Magazine, (Ditto). 

„ „ Precis, les Decouvertes Somiologiques. En 18mo. Palerme, 1814. 

Ray Raii Synopsis Methodica AnimaUum. 8vo. Londini, 1693. 

Richardson Appendix to Captain Parry's Second Voyage. London, 1824. 

„ Zoological Journal. 1828, 1829. London. 

Sabine, (Joseph) . . . Franklin's Fu-st Journey. Zool. Appendix. London, 1822. 

>, „ ... Linnean Transactions, vol. xiii. 

Sabine, (Capt. Edward) Supplement to the Appendix of Captain Parry's First Voyage in 1819, 20. 
London, 1824. 

Sagard-Theodat . . Vide Theodat. 

Sauer , . Vide Billings. 

Say His Zoological Notices, in the Notes to Long's Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, 

are quoted. Vide James. 

Schoolcraft .... Travels to the Sources of the Mississippi River, by H.R. Schoolcraft. Albany, 1821. 

Schreber Histoire des Mammiferes. In 4to. Erlangen, 1775, etsuiv. 

Shaw General Zoology, by George Shaw, M.D., F.R.S. 16 vols. 8vo. London, 


Smith, (Captain) . . Voyage by Hudson's Straights, in the California, by Captain Francis Smith; by 
the Clerk of the California, in 1746 and 1747. (The Clerk's name was Drage. 
Ellis, the Agent for the Proprietors in the Dobbs, the consort of the California, 
gives another account of the voyage, but less full on points of Natural Histoiy.) 
Vide Ellis. 

Smith, (C. H,) .... His papers in the Linnean Transactions, and in Griffith's Translation of Cuvier, 
are quoted. 

Steller Acta PetropoUtana. 

Temminck Monographies de Mammalogie et Tableau Methodique des Mammiferes. 4(o. 

Paris, 1827. 


Tueodat Histoiredu Canada, par le F. Gabriel Sagard-Theodat. ' 12mo. Paris, 1636. 

Traill Voyage to Greenland, by J. Scoresby. Appendix. 

Umfreville .... Present State of Hudson's Bay, by Edward Umfreville. London, 1790. 8vo. 

Ulloa Voyage. (Quoted from Pennant.) 

Warden Account of the United States of North America, Edinburgh, 1819. 

Voyage de l'Amerique Voyage de TAmerique dans le Vaisseau Pelican, En 1697. Anisterdam, 1723. 


1. Vespertilio pruinosus. The Hoary Bat . . . .1 

2. „ SUBULATUS. Say's Bat .... 3 

3. SoREX PALusTRis. The American Marsh-Shrew . . . .5 

4. „ FoRSTERi. Forster's Shrew-Mouse .... 6 

5. „ PARVUS. The Small Shrew-Mouse . . . .8 
jB. ScALOPS Canadensis. The Shrew-Mole .... 9 

7. CoNDYLURA LONGicAUDATA. The Long-tailcd Star-nose . . .13 

83. „ MACROURA ...... 284 

8. Ursus Americancs. The American Black Bear . . .14 

9. „ ARCTos ? Americanus. The Barren-ground Bear . . 21 

10. „ FEROx. The Grisly Bear . . . . .24 
10'''^ „ MARiTiMus. The Polar or Sea Bear .... 30 

11. Procyon lotoe. The Raccoon . . . . .36 

12. Meles Labradoria. The American Badger ... 37 

13. GuLo Luscus. The Wolverene . . . . .41 

14. MusTELA (Putorius) VULGARIS. The Common Weasel . . 45 

15. „ „ ERMiNEA. The Ermine, or Stoat . . .46 

16. „ „ visoN. The Vison- Weasel ... 48 

17. „ MARTEs. The Pine-Marten . . . . .51 

18. „ Canadensis. The Pekan or Fisher . . .52 
„ var. alba. White Pekan . . . .54 

19. Mephitis Americana, Hudsonica. Hudson's Bay Skunk . . .55 

20. LuTRA Canadensis. The Canada Otter .... 5^7 

21. „ (Enhydka) Marina. The Sea Otter . . . .59 




22. Canis lupus, occidentalis. The American Wolf . . . 60 
var. A. Lupus griseus. The Common Gray Wolf . . .66 

B. „ ALBus. The White Wolf . ... 68 

C. „ Sticte. The Pied Wolf . . . .68 

D. „ NUBiLus. The Dusty Wolf .... 69 

E. „ ATER. The Black American Wolf . . .70 

23. Canis Latrans. The Prairie Wolf .... 73 

24. „ FAMiLiARrs. The Domestic Dog . . . .75 
var. A. BOREALis. The Esquimaux Dog .... 75 

B. LAGOPUs. The Hare-Indian Dog • . . .78 

C. Canadensis. The North American Dcg ... 80 

D. Nov^ Caledonijs. The Carrier Indian Dog . I .82 

25. Canis (Vulpes) lagopus. The Arctic Fox . . . 83 

var. /S. FULGiNosA. The Sooty Fox . . . . .89 

26. Canis (Vulpes) fulvus. The American Fox ... 91 
var. /3. DEcussATA. The American Cross Fox . . . .93 

y, ARGENTATA. The Blacli or Silver Fox ... 94 

27. Canis (Vulpes) Virginianus. The Gray Fox . . . .96 

28. ,, (Vulpes vulgaris^ vulpes ? The Fox ... 97 

29. Canis (Vulpes) cinereo-argentatus. The Kit Fox . . .98 

30. Fklis Canadensis. The Canada Lynx .... 101 

31. ,, RUFA. The Bay Lynx . . . .. . . 103 

32. ,, FASciATA. The Banded Lynx .... 104 

33. Castor fiber, Americanus. The American Beaver . . . 105 

var. B. ,, nigra. The Black Beaver . . . .113 

C. ,, varia. The Spotted Beaver .... 114 

D. „ alba. The While Beaver .... 114 

34. Fiber zibethicus. The Musquash . . . . .115 
var. B. ,, nigra. The Black Musquash . . . 119 

C. ,, MACULOSA. The Pied Musquash .... 119 

D. „ alba. The White Musquash . . . 119 

35. Arvicola riparius. The Bank Meadow-Mouse . . . 120 

36. „ xanthognathus. The Yellow-cheeked Meadow-Mouse . 122 



37. Arvicola pennsVlvanicus. Wilson's Meadow-Mouse . . . 124 

38. „ NovoBORACENsis. The Sharp-nosed Meadow-Mouse . . 126 

39. „ BoREALis. The Northern Meadow-Mouse . . . 127 

40. „ (Georychus) helvolus. The Tawny Lemming . . 128 

41. „ „ TRiMucRONATUs. Bacli's Lemming . .130 

42. „ „ HuDsoNius. The Hudson's Bay Lemming . 132 

43. „ „ Grcenlandicus. The Greenland Lemming . . 134 

44. Neotoma Drummondii. The Rocky Mountain Neotoma . . 137 
f . Mus KATTus. The Black Rat ..... 140 
f . ,, DEcuMANus. The Brown Rat .... 141 
|. ,, MuscuLUs. The Common Mouse .... 141 

45. ,, LEucopus. The American Field-Mouse . . . 142 

46. Meriones Labradorius. The Labrador Jumping-Mouse . . . 144 

47. Arctomys empetra. The Quebec Marmot . . . . 147 

48. ,, ? PRUiNosus. The Whistler .... 150 

49. ,, BRAciiYURUS. The Short-tailed Marmot . . . 151 
|. ,, MONAX. The Wood-Chuck .... 153 
|. ,, (Spermopiiilus ?) LuDoviciANus. The Wistonwish . . 154 

50. ,, ,, Parryi. Parry's Marmot . . . 158 

Var. /3. ERYTHROGLUTEIA .... 161 

„ y. PH^OGNATHA ..... 101 

51. Arctomys (Spermophilus) guttatus ? The American Souslik . 162 

52. „ „ RicHARDsoNii. The Tawny Marmot . . 164 

53. „ „ Franklinii. Franklin's Marmot . 168 
|, „ „ Beecheyi. Beechey's Marmot . . 170 

54. „ ? „ ? DouGLAsii. Douglas's Marmot . . 172 

55. J, „ LATERALIS. Say's Marmot . . 174 

56. ,, ,5 HooDii. The Leopard Marmot . . 177 

57. SciuRus (Tasiias) Lysteri. The Hackee .... 181 

58. „ „ Quadrivittatus. The Four-banded Pouched-Squirrel 184 

59. J, HuDSONius. The Chickaree . . . . 187 
„ Var. /3. The Columbian Pine-Squirrel . . .190 

60. „ NIGER. The Black Squirrel .... 191 













, Pteromys S.\brinus. The Severn River Flying Squirrel 
Var. i3. ALPiNA. The Rocky-Mountain Flying-Squirrel 

Geomys. Generic characters 

,, DouGLASir. The Columbia Sand-Rat 
,, uMBRiNus. Leadbeater's Sand-Rat , 

,, ? BURSARius. The Canada Pouched-Rat 
,. ? TALPOiDEs. The Mole-shaped Sand-Rat 

DiPLOsTOMA BULBivoRUM. The Camas-Rat 

Aplodontia. Generic characters . • 

Aplodontia leporina. The Sewellel 

Hystrix pilosus. The Canada Porcupine 

Lepus Americanus. The American Hare 
,, GLACiALis. The Polar Hare 
„ ViRGiNiANus. The Prairie Hare 
,, (Lagomys) PRiNCEPs. The Littlc-Chief Hare 

LiPURA HuDsoNiA. The Tail-less Marmot 

Equus caballus. The Horse 

Cervus alces. The Moose-Deer . 

„ TARANDUs. The Caribou 

Var. «. ARCTicA 


,, sTRONGY'LOCEROs. The Wapiti 

,, MACROTis. The Black-tailed Deer 
Var. ^. Columbiana 

„ LEucuRus. The Long-tailed Deer 
Antilope furcifer. The Prong- Horned Antilope 
Capra Americana. The Rocky Mountain Goat 
Ovis MONTANA. The Rocky Mountain Sheep 
OviBos MoscHATUs. The Musk-Ox . , 

Bos Americanus. The American Bison 




































[1.] 1. Vespertilio Pruinosus. (Say.) Hoary Bat. 

Genus. Vespertilio. LiNir. Suh-genus. Vespertilio, Geoffroy. 

V. Pruinosus. Say. Long's Exped.^ vol. i. p. I67. American edition, (vol. i. p. 331, Engl, ed.) 

Harlan. Fauna Amer. p. 21. 
Hoary Bat. God man. Nat. Hist. vol. i. p. 68, and fig. t. No. 3. 

This species of Bat was first noticed by Mr. Nuttall, at Council Bluffs^ on the 
Missouri ; and Mr. Say_, in Long's Expedition, describes an individual captured 
in the same neighbourhood. Dr. Godman states^ that it has been taken near 
Philadelphia. The specimen I have described below was caught at Cumberland- 
house on the Saskatchewan^ in latitude 54°, and presented to me by Mr. Isbister, 
resident clerk at that post. This individual is larger than Mr. Say's_, but there 
seeras to be no other difference. Godman's figure does not represent the tail 
forming a small obtuse point to the interfemoral membrane, such as it exists in 
my specimen. After a minute examination^ I could find no traces of more than 
two incisors in the upper jaw. Mr. Say found the same number; but it is pos- 
sible, that some cutting-teeth may have dropped out in both specimens. The 
number of teeth would bring this species of Bat into the genus Nycticems of 
Rafinesque ; but the whole habit of the animal shews that it is properly classed 
in Geoffroy 's genus Vespertilio, a subdivision of the great Linnaean genus. 


Dental formula, incisors |, canines j-E^I, grinders ^ = 34, 
The superior incisors are conical and sharp pointed, separated from each other by a wide 
naked space, and closely adjoining to the canine tooth on their respective sides. They are 



slightly dilated exteriorly at their bases, but can scarcely be termed tuberculated. In height, 
they equal the molar teeth. The inferior incisors are arranged in contact with each other in a 
convex line, and are very short. They have obtuse, slightly two-lobed crowns, which expand 
laterally beyond their roots. The upper canine teeth are conical, obscurely three-sided and 
sharp pointed. They stand twice as high as the m.olar teeth. The inferior canine teeth are 
of the same size with the superior ones, and have each a minute and rather obtuse lobe at 
the base on the inner side. The molar teeth have high, sharp, pyramidal points. 

The nostrils are two lines apart, turned a little outwards, and have a raised obtuse, naked 
margin. There is a depression between the nostrils superiorly, but no furrow on the 
margin of the lip, which is hoary within and without. The eyes are surrounded by fur, 
but situated clear of the ear and its tragus. The ears are shorter than the head, nearly 
circular, entirely covered with fur behind, except a small lobe, which projects anteriorly, 
and is overlapped by the tragus. On the inside there are some detached patches of hair. 
The margins are entire, and the folds around the auditory opening have a resemblance to 
those of the human ear. The tragus is scalene-triangular, fixed by one of its angles, and 
is Avell characterised by Mr. Say as very obtuse at the tip, and arquated. It is thinly 
hairy exteriorly. The margin of the mouth and the chin are black and hairy; and the 
crown of the head and throat are yellowish-brown. The occiput, and the rest of the superior 
parts, are covered with a long and very fine fur, which is blackish-brown at the base, then 
shining yellowish-brown, followed by very dark umber-brown, and, lastly, tipped with white, 
producing a hoary and almost silvery colour on the back. The fur of the under parts is also 
hoary, but has less lustre. The interfemoral membrane is triangular, and at its apex there is a 
very slight smooth projection of the tail. It is hairy above ; its fur, towards the middle, being 
coloured like that of the back ; but, near its margins, and particularly towards the apex, a 
reddish-brown tint prevails. The xoincj-membrane presents some small hairy patches above 
the elbow-joint, and at the roots of the metacarpal-bones. Underneath, it has a close coat of 
yellowish-brown fur on each side of the humerus ; also a hairy patch beneath the brachial- 
bone, and others beneath the metacarpal-bones at their origin. The first finger has one 
joint ; the second, three ; and the others, two each. The thumb has one phalanx, which 
is much longer than its metacarpal-bone, and is armed with a short but strong, curved, black 
claw. The hind-feet are covered with hoary fur above, and have short, curved claws, which 
are excavated underneath. 






Length of the head aud body 


Space betwixt the upper canine teeth 


„ tail 


„ lower canine teeth 


Spread of the wings 


„ ears 


Length of head 



Length of thumb and claw 


Space betwixt the nostrils nearly 


Diameter of the ear, (every way,) about 



[2.] 2. Vespertilio Subulatus. (Say.) Sai/'s Bat. 

Vespertilio Subulatus. Say. Long''s Exped. vol. ii. p. 65. (or vol. ii. p. 253, Eng. ed.) 
Subulate Bat. Godsian. Nat. Hist. vol. i. p. 71. 


Dental formula, incisors ^^, canines ~\, grinders IEs = 38. ■ 

The upper incisors are short, and are arranged in two distant pairs, each pair being 
close to the canine tooth of the same side. Each tooth has a small interior pointed 
lobe. The lower incisors are very short, and have two obtuse lobes. The canine teeth are 
a little longer than the grinders, nearly straight, subulate, and sharp pointed*. The two 
anterior grinders on each side, both above and below, are small, short, conical, and sharp 
pointed. The one adjoining to them, also simply conical, is higher than the three pos- 
terior grinders of each side, which, in the lower jaw, have a double row of acute points; 
and, in the upper jaw, a triple row ; the inner row of the latter being much lower than the 
outer ones. 

The head is short, broad, and flat: the nose blunt, with a small, flat, naked muzzle. The 
nostrils, situated at the two anterior corners of the muzzle, are small, roundish, naked, and 
scarcely one line apart. The tip of the lower jaw is rounded, and naked. Eyes concealed 
by the fur, and situated near the ears, but not covered by them. Ears about the length of the 
head, or a little longer, thin, membranous, ovate, obtuse ; slightly undulated, but not notched 
posteriorly, and curving forwards at the base ; slightly ventricose anteriorly, without folds. 
The ear is hairy at the base behind, and there are a very few scattered hairs on its innei' 
surface. The tragus is thin, broadly subulate below, tapering to a point upwards, and ending 
in a small obtuse tip ; it is attached by one corner at the base, is about two-thirds of the 
height of the ear, and is not curved or falciform. 

The back has a shining yellowish-brown colour ; the belly a yellowish-gray. The fur, soft 
and fine, is longest on the back (three Unes), and both above and below is blackish at the roots. 
With the exception of the small naked space behind the nostrils, the head is covered with fur, 
but a little shorter than that on the back ; towards the mouth it assumes a blackish colour; 
it is rather coarser on the lips, and there are a few longer hairs or whiskers, but they are not 
stiff nor very conspicuous. 

The interfemoral membrane is broad, and tapers to a point along the tail, which it envelopes. 
It is thinly clothed at the base with fur similar to that on the back in colour, but shorter. It 
is also fringed with a few scattered hairs on its posterior, free margin, which is not undulated. 

• The bifid point of one of the canine teeth in Jlr. Say's specimen seems to have been an accidental circumstance. 

B 2 


The tail projects about a line beyond the membrane. The toes of the hind-feet are rather 
long, and have white, slender claws, not greatly curved, with a few long hairs projecting over 
them. The loing -membrane is naked, and the joints of the fingers correspond with those 
of the vespertilio jrruinosus, and the rest of the genus, as restricted by Geoffrey. The 
thumb is about two lines and a half long, including its slender claw, which rather exceeds half 
a line. 


Inches. Lines. Inches. Lmes» 

Length of body and head ... 1 10 Height of the tragus .... 4|. 

tail ... 1 6 Spread of wings from tip of the middle 

head 9 finger of the right wing to the tip of 

Height of ear .... 8 the corresponding finger of the left 

Breadth of ditto near the middle . . 4 wing . ... 10 
It is broader at the base. 

This Bat is the most common species near the eastern base of the Rocky Moun- 
tains on the upper branches of the Saskatchewan and Peace Rivers. Mr. Say'^s 
specimen was obtained near the head of the Arkansas, within sight of the moun- 
tains ; and the description he gives of it corresponds so nearly with my specimens^ 
that I have no hesitation in considering them to be the same. Say's Bat has a 
general resemblance to the Verpertilio jnpistreUus of the British isles ; but the 
latter has one grinder of a side fewer, weaker canine teeth, a smaller ear, and a 
shorter thumb and claw. Its fur is likewise shorter, and its back and belly do not 
exhibit such distinct shades of colour. It seems to approach near to the Vespertilio 
emargimtus of GeofFroy, as Mr. Say has remarked ; b\it I have not been able to 
obtain a specimen of the latter with which I might compare it. The Carolina 
Bat differs in the shape of the tragus, which is semi-cordiform, but resembles this 
one nearly in the colour of the fur and in general form. 


{3.] 1. SoREX Palustris. (Richardson.) American Marsh-Shrew. 

Genus. Sorex. Linn. 

Sorex palustris. Richardson. Zoological Journal, No. xii. April, 1828. 

S. (palustris) cauda corpics longitudine exeedenti, auriculis subvestitis vellere lalentibus, corpore cinerascenti-nigro ; 

subter cinereo. 
Shrew, with the tail longer than the body, short hairy ears concealed by the fur, back somewhat hoary-black, belly 



The dimensions of this animal are nearly the same with those of the Musaraigne de 
Daiihenfon, or Water Shrew of Pennant, and are considerably greater than those of the 
>S'. constrictus, with which it seems to have some relations. 

Dental formula ; intermediary incisors #, lateral incisors |^* grinders t^ = 30. 

The two posterior lateral incisors are smaller than the two anterior ones on the same side, 
and the latter are a little longer than the posterior lobes of the intermediary incisors. All the 
lateral incisors have small lobes on their inner sides. The tips of the teeth have a shining 
chestnut-brown colour. 

Form. — The muzzle is shorter in proportion and broader than that of the Sorejc parvus. 
The whole upper lip is bordered with ivhiskers, and the tips of the posterior ones, which are 
the longest, reach behind the ears. The extremity of the muzzle is naked and two-lobed. 
The eyes are visible. The ear is shorter than the fur ; its inferior margin is folded in ; there is 
a heart-shaped lobe covering the auditory opening, and a transverse fold above it. The ears, 
particularly the superior margins, are clothed with thick tufts of fur, like that on the rest of 
the head. The tail appears to be rounded^ or slightly four-sided from its base, to near the 
tip, where it is compressed and terminated by a small pencil of hairs. It is covered by a close 
coat of short hair. The feet are clothed with rather coarse, short, adpressed hairs, those on 
the sides of the toes being arranged somewhat in a parallel manner, but not very distinctly. 

The fur resembles that of the mole in softness, closeness, and lustre. On the superior 
or dorsal aspect it is black, with a slightly hoary appearance when turned to the light. On 
the ventral aspect it is ash-coloured. At the roots it is bluish-gray. The outside of the 
thighs and upper surface of the tail correspond in colour with the back, the under surface of 
the tail and inside of the thighs with the belly. The feet are paler than the back and a little 
hoary. The nails are whitish. 


Lines. Inches. Lines. 

6 Length of nose, from upper incisors, scarcely 2 

7 Height of ear ...... 3 

2 Length of hind-foot from heel to end of the 

7 nails 9 


ngth from nose to origin of tail . 


„ of tail 


„ of head . . . . 


„ from nose to eye 


This animal agrees with the S. constridus in having two lateral incisors more 
in the upper jaw than some other species of the genus, but the Sorex brevicaudus 
of Say is described by Dr. Harlan as having five lateral incisors ('' minute false 
molars ") on each side, and the same thing occurs in the following species. 
When compared with a specimen of the water-shrew in the British Museum, the 
colour of its fur appeared different, the points of the teeth darker, the ears smaller, 
and the tail longer than in the water-shrew. Several specimens of this animal 
were obtained, but the descriptions were drawn up from the prepared skins, and 
some uncertainty consequently exists as to the true shape of the tail. The 
iS. pahtstris most probably lives in the summer on similar food with the water- 
shrew ; but I am at a loss to imagine how it procures a subsistence during the 
six months of the year in which the countries it inhabits are covered with snow. 
It frequents borders of lakes, and Hearne tells us that it often takes up its abode 
in beaver houses. 

[4.] 2. Sorex Forsteri. (Richardson.) Forsters Shrew-Mouse. 

Shrew, No. 20. Forster. Phil. Trans, vol. Ixli, p. 381. 
Sorex Forsteri. Richardson. Zool. Journ. No. 12, April., 1828. 

Sorex (Forsteri) cauda tetragona longitudine corporis, auricuUs brevibus vestitis, dorso xerampelino, ventre viurino. 
Forster's Shrew-mouse, with a square tail as long as the body, short furry ears, back of a clove-brown colour, 
belly pale yellowish -brown. 

This little animal is common throughout the whole of the fur countries to the 
67th degree of latitude, and its minute foot-prints are seen every where in the 
winter, when the snow is sufficiently fine to retain the impression. I have often 
traced its pathway to a stalk of grass, by which it appears to descend from the 
surface of the snow, but a search for its habitation by removing the snow was 
invariably fruitless. I was unable to procure a recent specimen, and the following 
description is drawn up from one prepared by Mr. Drummond. It is the 
smallest quadruped the Indians are acquainted with, and they preserve skins 
of it in their conjuring bags. The power of generating heat must be very great 
in this diminutive creature to preserve its slender limbs from freezing- when 


the temperature sinks 40 or 50 degrees below zero. The Sorex Forsteri ap- 
proaches the S. tetragomtrus of Desmarest in dimensions^ and agrees with it in 
some other points. 


Dental formula, interm. incisors |, lateral incisors |Ei, grinders ^ = 32. 
The teeth are white, brightly tinged with chestnut brown on the points. The upper 
intermediary incisors have each a posterior obtuse lobe. The lateral incisors of the upper 
jaw are crowded and somewhat tiled ; the four anterior ones of a side are broad and obtusely 
conical, the fifth is flattish on the crown. The first grinder is smaller than either of the two 
whicli succeed it ; and the fourth is the smallest of all. In the loiver jaw the intermediary 
incisors have two distinct obtuse posterior lobes, and a slight undulation producing the rudi- 
ment of a lobe towards their points : the lateral incisors have a central mamraillary point ; 
and the anterior grinder is a little larger than the other two. The muzzle is very slender, 
and has a naked and a deeply lobed tip. The whiskers reach to the occiput, and are 
composed of a few white hairs, intermixed with many black ones. The ear is as long 
as the fur of the head, and is clothed within and without, but particularly on its 
margins, and folds, with hairs of the same colour and length of those on the crown of 
the head. It is rounded, but from a small fold of its upper margin appears pointed. Its 
circumference is ample for the size of the animal. There is a semicircular lobe projecting 
from the inferior margin of the ear, and covering the auditory opening, and above it there is a 
transverse fold. The ear is not perceptible until the fur is blown aside. The fur forms a 
fine, short, close coat, which on the dorsal aspect of the animal has a grayish-brown or clove- 
brown colour, and on the ventral aspect a dull yellowish-brown. The tail is four-sided 
and tapers gradually from the root to its extremity, which is terminated by a pencil of 
hairs. It is covered with dark-brown hair above, and pale, yellowish-brown hair beneath. 
The feet are five-toed, and are clothed with short, adpressed, pale yellowish-brown hairs. 
The nails are slender and white. 

• Dimensions. 

Inches. Lines. Indies. Lines, 

Length of head and body . . . ' 2 3 Length from upper incisors to nostrils . 2 

„ of tail .... 1 3 Height of the ear .... 2 

„ of head 9i 


[5.] 3. SoREX Parvus. (Say ?) Small Shrew-Mouse. 

Sorex parvus. Say. Long''s Expedition^ vol. i, p. 163 ? 
Sorex, No. 89. Museum or the Zoological Society. 

There is a specimen of a shrew-mouse in the Museum of the Zoological Society, 
which answers nearly to the description of the Sorex parvus by Say^ except that 
its tail is considerably longer. Not to add unnecessarily to the number of specific 
names, I have adopted Mr. Say's, until a comparison of authentic specimens shall 
determine whether it belongs to the same or a different species. Forster^ in the 
Philosophical Transactions^ mentions the Sorex araneus as an inhabitant of 
Hudson's Bay. The large naked ears of that species would distinguish it at once 
from the /S, parvus. 

Description of the specimen in the Zoological Museum. 

JTorm. — Ears very short, and indicated only by a brownish tuft of hair, shorter than the rest of 
the fur. Muzzle more slender than that of S. jmlustris, but not so much so as that of S. For- 
sferi The tail is apparently cylindrical the greater part of its length, pointed and perhaps 
slightly compressed at the tip. The fur, from its root to near the tip, has a dark blackish-gray 
colour, but from its closeness only the tips are seen, and on the back they have a brov.-nish- 
black colour, on the head and sides brownish-gray, and on the belly ash-gray. The feet 
have a brownish tinge. The points of the teeth are dark reddish-brown. 


Length of head and body 

,, tail .... 





,, from nostrils to incisors 



Mr. Collie^ surgeon of his Majesty's ship Blossom, caught a Shrew-mouse on 
the shores of Behring's Straits, which he describes as having a dark brownish- 
gray colour above, and a gray tint beneath. It measured, from the tip of the snout 
to the root of the tail_, two inches and four lines^ and its tail was one inch long. 
This specimen agrees still more nearly with Mr. Say's description than the one in 
the Zoological Museum does, and if it is allowed to be of the same species, it gives 
to the Sorex parvus a range of twenty-three degrees of latitude. 


[6.] 1. ScALOPS Canadensis. (Cuvier.) Shreio-Mole.^ 

Genus. Scalops. Cuvier. 

Browni Mole. Pennant. Arciio ZooL, vol. i. p. lil. 

Sores aquaticus. Lin. St/st. 

Musaraigne-taupe. CuviEn. TaL. Elem. 

Scalope de Canada. Cuvier. Eigne An., vol. i. p. 134. 

Shrew-SIole. Godman. Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 84, t. v. fig. 3. 

Mole. Lewis and Clarke. Journey, ^c, vol. iii. p. 42. 


Dental formula, incisors |, grinders 1°^ = 44. 
The two upper incisors have an exact resemblance, in shape and position, to the two middle 
incisors of man. They occupy the end of the jaw, and are twice as broad, and somewhat 
higher than the grinders which immediately follow. The four first grinders of a side are 
conical, and obscurely three-sided. The fifth is a little compressed, and has a minute pro- 
' jection at its base posteriorly. The sixth is still more compressed, and has a larger posterior 
projection. These six anterior grinders (termed conical teeth or false grinders by some 
authors) are nearly equal to each other in height, and occupy the whole jaw between the 
incisors and posterior higher grinders. They stand at equal but small distances from each 
other, and from the incisors, not exceeding the quarter of the breadth of a single tooth. The 
four posterior grinders are larger, and rather exceed the incisors in height. The first of them, 
or seventh grinder, does not differ much from the preceding one ; it is compressed, has 
an acute lobe posteriorly, and a minute one on the inside anteriorly. The two next grinders 
are composed of two exterior triangular folds of enamel, and one interior one, producing, 
besides some subordinate points, three conspicuous sharp ones, of which the interior one is 
lower than the other two. The tenth or last grinder is smaller than the two which precede it. 
In the lower jaw, there are two incisors, shaped like the upper ones, but much smaller and 
lower than the closely adjoining grinders. They are succeeded on each side by seven small 
conical but rather obtuse grinders, which are flat on the inside. These teeth are close to each 
other, but do not touch, and they have their points gently inclined forwards. They increase 
gradually but slightly in height, in proportion as they are situated further from the incisors ; 
and the three which are farthest back have a minute projection at their bases posteriorlj\ 
The foremost of these conical teeth on each side, which is almost in contact with the incisors, 
closely resembles the two which follow it ; but it is by many considered as an incisor, and 
when one or both lower incisors have dropped out, it does indeed approach to its fellow, and 
then becomes more opposed to the upper incisors. They stand, like the other grinders, 

* The English trivial name of Shrew-mole is a translation of Pennant's epithet Soiex talpcefoymis, or cf Cuvier's 
Musaraigne-taupe, and is adopted from Dr, Godman. 



in the plane of the limbs of the jaw, or nearly at a right angle with the planes of the 
incisors. The three posterior lower grinders of each side resemble the upper ones 
reversed, but have no lobe corresponding to the interior one of the upper teeth. They 
rise more above the sockets than the upper grinders do, and they have, as Dr. Godman has 
observed, a considerable resemblance to the grinders of a Bat. In old individuals, all the teeth 
are worn down and have rounded crowns. 

The Shrew-mole has a thick cylindrical body, like that of the Common Mole, without any 
distinct neck. Its limbs are very short, being concealed by the skin of the body nearly down to 
the wrist and ankle-joints. The fore-extremities are situated nearly under the auditory opening. 
The moveable snout is almost linear, and projects about four lines and a half beyond the 
incisors. It is naked towards its extremity, particularly above ; beloAV, it is thinly clothed 
with hairs for about two-thirds of its length next the incisors. There is a conspicuous furrow, 
extending nearly its whole length, on the upper surface ; and, beneath, there is also a 
furrow, reaching half its length from the incisors. Beyond the latter, the snout is transversely 
wrinkled beneath ; and its small, flat, or truncated extremity is smooth and callous. The 
small oblong nostrils open in an inclined space, immediately above this circular callous end. 
The eyes are concealed by the fur, and scarcely to be found in the dried specimen *. The 
auditory openings are covered by the fur, and there is no external ear. The tail is thickest 
about one-third from its root, and tapers from thence to its tip, which is acute. It is whitish, 
and is sparingly clothed with short hairs. Its vertebrae are equally four-sided. The fore- 
arm, rather slender, and projecting only about three lines from the body, is, consequently, 
concealed by the far. The five fingers, extremely short, and united to the roots of the nails, 
form, with the wrist, a large, nearly circular palm. The nails of all the fingers are large, 
white, and have a semi-lanceolate form, with narrow, but rather obtuse points. They are 
nearly straight, convex above, and slightly hollowed beneath. The middle one is the largest, 
the others gradually diminish on each side of it, and the exterior one is the smallest of all. 
The palms are turned outwards and backwards, and the whole fore-foot bears a close resem- 
blance to that of the Common Mole. The hind-feet are more slender than the fore ones, and 
the nails are one-half shorter, much more compressed, and sharper, and, in fact, nearly subu- 
late. They have a slight curvature laterally corresponding with the direction of the toes 
inwards, and are somewhat arched, but cannot be said to be in any manner hooked. They 
are excavated underneath. The fore and hind feet are thinly clothed above with adpressed, 
pale hairs. The palms and soles are naked, but are bordered posteriorly with white hairs, 
■which curve a little over them. 

The fur has the same velvety appearance with that which clothes the Common Mole, It 
has considerable lustre on the surface ; and, in most lights, exhibits a brownish-black tint. 
When blown aside, it shews a greyish-black colour, from the roots to near the tips. It has 
the same colour over the whole body, but there is a slight tinge of chestnut-brown on the 
forehead and about the base of the snout, and on the throat it is shorter and paler. 

* Dr. Godman informs us, tliat the aperture in the skin is just big enougli to admit an ordinary sized human hair. 



Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Lengtli of head and body ..78 

„ tail . . . .1 6 

,, fore-palm . • . C 

Breadtli of fore-palm . . .07 

Length of middle fore-nail ..06 

LengthfroniTrristjointto tipofthemiddlenail 1 

,, heel to end of middle claw 10 

Greatest breadth of the hind-foot . 3 
Distance from auditory opening to the end 

of the snout ... 1 7 

The animal described above inhabits the banks of the Columbia and the adjoin- 
ing- coasts of the Pacific in considerable numbers, and is^ doubtless^ the mole 
mentioned by Lewis and Clarke as resembling-^ in all respects, the mole of the 
United States. Sir Alexander Mackenzie saw many animals^ which he terms 
" moles/' on the banks of a small stream near the sources of the Columbia ; but as 
we are led to infer, from the way in which he speaks of them, that they were in 
numbers above ground, I am inclined to think that they were sewellels, belong'ing- 
to the g-enus aplodontia, and not Shrew-moles*. I did not obtain recent speci- 
mens of the Shrew-mole on the late expedition, and am unable to say what are 
the exact limits of its range to the northward. I do not think, however, that it 
can exist, at least on the east side of the Rocky Mountains, beyond the fiftieth 
degree of latitude, because the earth-worm on which the Scalops, like the Com- 
mon Mole, principally feeds, is unknown in the Hudson's Bay countries. On the 
milder Pacific shore, it may, perhaps, reach a somewhat higher latitude. There 
are two specimens of the Shrew-mole from the Columbia preserved in the Museum 
of the Hudson's Bay Company, and Mr. David Douglas has kindly furnished me 
with others which he obtained in the same quarter. The Columbia animal seems 
to be of larger dimensions, and has a longer tail than the Shrew-moles of the 
United States : but I have not detected any other peculiarities by which it might 
be characterised as a distinct species. Authors, probably from their specimens 
being of different ages, have varied considerably in their descriptions of the 
dentition of the Scalops, and several of them have mentioned edentate spaces 
between the incisors and grinders. In the adult animal, from which my descrip- 
tion was taken, no such spaces exist. In a large and apparently very old 
individual, the incisors, and all the small grinders, are so worn and rounded, as to 
appear like a row of small pearls set in the jaw. Baron Cuvier informs us, that 
the animals of the genus Scalops unite to the teeth of the Desmans (inygak) ; 
and the simply pointed muzzle of the Shrews, large hands, armed with strong- 
nails, fitted for digging into the earth, and entirely similar to those of the INIoles. 
It is evident, from my description of the teeth of the Columbia Shrew-mole, that 

* ^Mackenzie's Voyage to the Pacific, <S;c. p. 314. 
C 2 


they approach closely to those of the Desmans, there being merely some not very 
important variations in the shape^ particularly of the upper incisors*. 

The Shrew-mole resembles the Common European Mole in its habits^ in leading 
a subterranean life^ forming galleries, throwing up httle mounds of earthy and in 
feeding principally on earth-worms and grubs. Dr. Godman has given a detailed 
and interesting account of their manners^, particularly of one which was domesticated 
by Mr. Titian Peale. He mentions that they are most active early in the morn- 
ing, at mid-day, and in the evening, and that they are well known in the country 
to have the remarkable custom of coming daily to the surfiice exactli/ at noon. 
They may then be taken alive by thrusting a spade beneath them and throwing 
them on the surface, but can scarcely be caught at any other period of the day. 
They burrow in a variety of soils, and in wet seasons are observed to retreat to the 
higher grounds. The captive one in possession of Mr. Peale ate considerable 
quantities of fresh meat, either cooked or raw, drank freely, and was remarkably 
lively and playful, following the hand of its feeder by the scent, — burrowing, for a 
short distance, in the loose earth, and, after making a small circle, returning for 
more food. When engaged in eating, he employed his flexible snout in a singular 
manner to thrust the food into his mouth, doubling it so as to force it directly 

From the great resemblance of the Shrew-mole to the common one, they might 
be readily mistaken for each other by a casual observer ; and Bartram and others, 
who have asserted the existence of a species of the genus talpa in America, are, 
on this account, supposed, by later writers, to have been mistaken. There are, 
however, several true m.oles in the Museum of the Zoological Society which were 
brought from America, and which differ from the ordinary European species in 
being of a smaller size, and in having a shorter and thicker snout. Their fur is 
brownish-black, I could not learn what district of America they came from. 

* I Lave termed " first grinders '' tlie teetli named "inferior lateral incisors" by Cuvier, because they luive an 
exact resemblance to tlie otber small grinders in form and size. 


[7.] 1. CoNDYLURA LoNGiCAUDATA. (IlHger.) Lo7ig-tailed Star-nose. 

Long-tailed I\IoIe. Pennant. Hist. Qtiadr., vol. ii. p. 232. t. 90. /. 2. Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 140. 
Talpa longicaudata. Erxlebein. Syst., torn. i. p. 118. 
Condylure a longue queue. Desjiauest. iWam)?i., torn. i. p. 158. 
Condj'lura longicaudata. Harlan. Faun., p. 38. 
Naspass-kasic. Chii'peways, and Saulteur Indians. 

The Zoological Society recently obtained several specimens of a Star-nose from 
Moose Factory^ Hudson's Bay^ which agree so closely with Pennant's description 
of his Long-tailed Mole^ that I have had no hesitation in referring it to that species. 
They were not accompanied by any account of their habits, or notice of the exact 
locality where they were killed ; but as the most southern fur posts depending upon 
Moose Factory are situated upon the borders of Lake Superior, it is probable that 
they came from that quarter. Pennant's specimen was received from New York. 
It is remarkable that M. Desmarest, who derives all his knowledge of this animal 
from Pennant^ should make "point cks cretes nasales" part of its essential cha- 
racter. In the History of Quadrupeds, it is termed the " Long-tailed Mole with 
a radiated nose; " and in Arctic Zoology, it is said to have ""the nose long, the 
end radiated with short tendrils." Perhaps M. Desmarest was misled by the 
miserable figure in the History of Quadrupeds. 


The Long-tailed Star-nose has a thick body, with a long head, tapering towards the end 
of the nose, which is furnished with a cartilaginous fringe, having eighteen rays in the circum- 
ference, and two shorter bifid ones attached beneath the nostrils. The body is covered with 
a soft, short, velvety coat of fur of a brownish-black colour on the surface, and a bluish-black 
hue towards the roots. The nose is of the same colour with the body. The tail, slender and 
tapering, is covered with short hair, and is about one-third shorter than the body. Its vertebrse- 
are equally four-sided. The extremities are short, and bear a resemblance to those of the 
Common Mole. The palms are not so broad as those of the Mole, but have a similar form. 
They are naked ; and the back of the hand is covered with scales, with a few intermixed hairs. 
The claws are large, white, convex, linear, and obtuse. The hind extremities are longer than 
the fore ones. The legs, short and slender, are thinly covered with hair. The feet are longer 
and narrower than the hands, covered above as far as the ankle-joint with scales. The hind- 
claws are white, narrow, and sharp-pointed 


; Length of head and body 

„ tail . . . , , 

„ head ..... 










[8.] 1. Ursus Americanus. (Pallas.) American Black-Bear. 

Black Bear. Penxaxt. Arct. Zool., vol. i. p. 57, and Introduction, p. cxx. Hist. Quad., vol. ii. p. 11. 
AVarden. United States, vol. i. p. 195. 
GoDJiAJT. N'at. Hist., vol. i. p. 194. 
Ui-sus Americanus. Pallas. Spicel. Zool, vol. xiv. p. 6—26. 

Harlan. Fauna, 'p. 5\. 
Sass. Chepewyan Indians. 

Musquaw (pi. musquawuck). Chee Indians, or, when reference is made to the black colour of tlie fur, it is termed 
cuskeeteli musquaw. The cinnamon-coloured variety is named oosaw-wusquaw, the first letter of the proper 
name being altered euphonia causa. 
Mucquaw. Algonquins. Macoush (a young bear.) Iidem. 

The different species of Bears resemble each other so strongly in form ; and 
colour, when described by general and frequently indefined terms, affords so un- 
certain a mark of discrimination, that much doubt has arisen as to what are species 
and what merely varieties. These doubts can be removed only by a rigid com- 
parison of the skeletons of the different kinds, combined with careful observation 
of the habits of the animals in their native retreats, and a more attentive consider- 
ation of their geographical distribution than has hitherto been given. Buffon, 
classing the American and European Bears together, distinguishes two species of 
land Bear differing from each in colour and manners*. Naturalists of the present 
day are generally of opinion that there are two or more species of Bear in the 
northern parts of the New World, differing specifically from those of the old 
continent. The Polar Bear is perhaps the only species which is comimon to both 
continents, but it may with justice be considered as a sea animal, inhabiting the 
ice floating between them. 

The Black Bear of America was first described as a distinct species by Pallas, 
and with reason, although some late writers continue to confound it with the 
Black Bear of Europe f. It has a milder disposition, and lives more on vegetable 

* " II faut distinguer," dit-il, " deux especes dans les ours terrestres, les Iruns et les noirs, lesquels n'ayant pas les 
memes appetits naturels, ne peuvent pas etre consideres comme deux especes distinctes et separees. De plus, I'ours 
hlanc terrestre n'est qu'une variete de I'une on de I'autre de ces especes. Nous comprenons ici sous la denomination 
d'ours bruns, ceux qui sont bnins, fauves, roux, rougeatres, et par ceUe d'ours noirs ceux qui sont noiratres aussi bien 
que tout a fait noirs." — Buffon, Hist. Nat., vol. viii. p. 248. 

f Baron Cuvier, in his elaborate work Sur les Ossemens Fossiles, distinguishes the ursus niger EuropcBus from the 
European Brown Bear, or ursus arctos of authors. The ursus niger has the frontal bone of its cranium flattened, 
especially transversely, and separated from the temporal depressions by well marked ridges, which unite behind at an 
acute angle to form an elevated sagittal crest. Its fur is blackish, rough, and more or less woolly. The well marked 
depressions and ridges of the cranium giving lodgment and origin to the strong muscles of the lower jaw, shew that 
the Black Bear of Europe is more decidedly a beast of prey than the Brown one, in which respect they difler from the 
bears of corresponding colours which inhabit the New World. 


substances than the latter, and there are corresponding differences in the form of 
its cranium^ which is shorter, with less convex zyg-omatic arches, and consequently a 
smaller space for lodging the crotaphite muscle. Its forehead is not flat like that of 
the Black Bear of Europe, but arched, although not so much so as the forehead of 
the Brown Bear. Its temporal ridges, however, are well marked, and unite to form 
a sagittal crest. Its nose is continued nearly on the same line with the forehead, 
and is rather arched, which produces the most striking peculiarity in the physio- 
gnomy of this species. Its ears are high, oval, rounded at the tips, and far apart. 
The palms and soles of the feet are short in comparison with those of the Brown 
Bear. The fur on the body is long, straight, shining and black, and the msesial 
line of the nose is also black or very deep brown, but there is a large pale 
yellowish-brown patch on each side of the muzzle. The naked extremity of the 
nose is a little oblique, not being so directly truncated as that of the Brown Bear. 
The hair of the feet projects beyond the claws, which are black. 

The Cinnamon Bear of the Fur Traders is considered by the Indians to be an 
accidental variety of this species, and they are borne out in this opinion by the 
quality of the fur, which is equally fine with that of the Black Bear. The Yellow 
Bear of Carolina is also referred by Cuvier to this species, as is likewise the Ours 
Qulairc of M. GeofFroy, which has a white throat. The white markings on the 
throat of the animal, mentioned by the latter author, are perhaps analogous to 
the white cohar which many of the European Brown Bears exhibit when young. 
Captain Cartwright remarks that the cubs of the Black Bear, on the Labrador 
coast, are often marked with white rings round the neck*, and Pennant notices 
the same thing of the bears of Hudson's Bay. 

The Black Bear is smaller than the other American bears which we have to 
describe, the total length of an adult seldom exceeding five feet. Its favourite 
food appears to be berries of various kinds, but when these are not to be pro- 
cured, it preys upon roots, insects, fish, eggs, and such birds or quadrupeds as it 
can surprise. It does not eat animal food from choice ; for when it has abundance 
of its favourite vegetable diet, it will pass the carcase of a deer without touching it. 
It is rather a timid animal, and will seldom face a man unless it is wounded, or has 
its retreat cut off, or is urged by affection to defend its young. In such cases 
its strength renders it a dangerous assailant. I have known the female confront 
her enemy boldly until she had seen her cubs attain the upper branches of a tree, 
when she made off, evidently considering them to be in safety, but in fact leaving 

* CaFcTwright's Journal of a Residence in Lahrador. 


them an easy prey to the hunter. The speed of the Black Bear when in pursuit is 
said not to be very great, and I have been told that a man may escape from it, 
particularly if he runs into a willow grove or amongst long grass : for the caution 
of the Bear obliges it to stop frequently and rise on its hind legs for the purpose 
of reconnoitring. I have, however^ seen a Black Bear make off with a speed that 
would have baffled the fleetest runner^ and ascend a nearly perpendicular chfF with 
a facility that a cat might envy. 

This Bear, when resident in the fur countries^ almost invariably hibernates, and 
about one thousand skins are annually procured by the Hudson's Bay Company, 
from Black Bears destroyed in their winter retreats. It generally selects a spot 
for its den under a fallen tree, and having scratched away a portion of the soil, 
retires to it at the commencement of a snow-storm, when the snow soon furnishes 
it with a close, warm covering. Its breath makes a small opening in the den, 
and the quantity of hoar frost which occasionally gathers round the aperture serves 
to betray its retreat to the hunter. In more southern districts, where the timber 
is of a larger size. Bears often shelter themselves in hollow trees. The Indians 
remark that a Bear never retires to its den for the winter until it has acquired a 
thick coat of fat, and it is remarkable that when it comes abroad in the spring it 
is equally fat, though in a few days thereafter it becomes very lean. The period of 
the retreat of the Bears is generally about the time when the snow begins to lie 
on the ground, and they do not come abroad again until the greater part of the 
snow is gone. At both these periods they can procure many kinds of berries 
in considerable abundance. In latitude 65°, their winter repose lasts from the 
beginning of October to the first or second week of May ; but on the northern 
shores of Lake Huron, the period is from two to three months shorter. In very 
severe winters, great numbers of Bears have been observed to enter the United 
States from the northward. On these occasions, they were very lean, and almost 
all males ; the few females which accompanied them were not with young *. The 
remark of the natives above-mentioned, that the fat Bears alone hibernate, explains 
the cause of these migrations. The Black Bears in the northern districts couple in 
September, when they are in good condition from feeding on the berries then in 
maturity. The females retire at once to their dens, and conceal themselves so 
carefully that even the lyncean eye of an Indian hunter very rarely detects them ; 
but the males, exhausted by the pursuit of the female, require ten or twelve days 
to recover their lost fat. An unusually early winter will, it is evident, operate 

* Pennant's Arctic Zcology, vol. i. p. CO. 


most severely on the males, by preventing- them from fattening a second time ; 
hence their migration at such times to more southerly districts. It is not,, how- 
ever, true that the Black Bears generally abandon the northern districts on the 
approach of winter, as has been asserted, the quantity of Bear skins procured 
during that season in all parts of the fur countries being a sufficient proof to the 
contrary. The females bring forth about the beginning of January, and it is pro- 
bable that the period of their gestation is about fifteen or sixteen weeks, but I 
believe it has not been precisely ascertained. The number of cubs varies from 
one to five^ probably with the age of the mother, and they begin to bear long 
before they attain their full size. 

The Black Bear inhabits every wooded district of the American continent, from 
the Atlantic to the Pacific, and from Carolina to the shores of the Arctic sea. 
They are, however, more numerous inland than near the sea-coast. LangsdorfF 
observes, that " the valuable Black Bear, the skins of which form part of the 
(Russian) Company's stock, are not the produce of the Aleutian islands, but 
of the continent of America, about Cook's river. Prince William's Sound, and 
other places *. 

The strength and agility of the Bear, together with its tenacity of life, render 
an attack upon it hazardous, and its chace has been considered by the rude in- 
habitants of the northern regions as a matter of the highest importance. Many of 
the native tribes of America will not join the chace until they have propitiated the 
whole race of Bears by certain speeches and ceremonies, and when the animal is 
slain they treat it with the utmost respect, speak of it as of a relation, offer it 
a pipe to smoke, and seldom fail to make a speech in exculpation of the act of 
violence they have committed in slaying it, although the hunter at the same time 
glories in his prowess. This veneration for the Bear seems to have arisen from 
the ability and pertinacity with which it defends itself; and it is interesting- to 
observe in how similar a manner the same feeling manifests itself in tribes speak- 
ing diverse languages, and widely separated from each other by geographical 
position. Thus, Regnard informs us that the chase of the Bear is the most 
solemn action of the Laplander, and the successful hunter may be known by and 
exults in the number of tufts of bear's hair he wears in his bonnet. When the 
retreat of a Bear is discovered, the ablest sorcerer of the tribe beats the runic 
drum-j- to discover the event of the chase, and the side on which the animal 

* Langsdokff's Voyages, vol. ii. p. 74. 

f The same kind of drum, shaped like a double-headed tambourine, and painted with arbitrary characters or rude 
representations of wild beasts and of the heavenly bodies, is common throughout all the various North American tribes. 



ought to be assailed. During the attack^ the hunters join in a prescribed chorus, 
and beg- earnestly of the Bear that he will do them no mischief. When they have 
killed him, they put the body into a sledge to carry it home ; the rein-deer which 
has been employed to draw it, is exempted from labour during the rest of the 
year; and means are also taken to prevent it from approaching any female. A 
new hut is constructed expressly for the purpose of cooking the flesh ; and the 
huntsmen, joined by their wives, begin again their songs of joy, and of thanks to 
the animal for permitting them to return in safety *. Leems also acquaints us, 
that the Laplanders never presume to call the Bear by its proper name of 
Guourhja, but term it " the old man in the fur cloak," because they esteem it to 
have the strength of ten men and the sense of twelve f . It is also said that the 
Bear is the great master of the Kamskatkans in medicine, surgery, and the polite 
arts. They observe the herbs he has recourse to when ill or wounded, and 
acknowledge him as their dancing-master, mimicking his attitudes and graces 
with great aptness X- Bear-dances, in which the gestures of the animal are 
copied, are also common with the North American Indians. 

The following extract § from the narrative of Mr. Alexander Henry, one of the 
first Englishmen who penetrated into the fur countries after the reduction of 
Canada under the British arms, will serve to contrast the manners of the Indians 
with those of the Laplanders, and it contains besides some remarks on the habits 
of the Bear peculiarly valuable as coming from an eye-witness worthy of all credit. 
"■ In the course of the month of January, (whilst on the banks of Lake Michigan,) 
I happened to observe that the trunk of a very large pine-tree was much torn by 
the claws of a bear, made both in going up and down. On further examination, 
I saw that there was a large opening in the upper part, near which the smaller 
branches were broken. From these marks, and from the additional circum- 
stance that there were no tracks on the snow, there was reason to believe that a 
Bear lay concealed in the tree. On returning to the lodge, I communicated my 
discovery ; and it was agreed that all the family should go together, in the morn- 
ing, to assist in cutting down the tree, the girth of which was not less than three 
fathoms. The women, at first, opposed the undertaking, because our axes being 
only of a pound and a half weight, were not well adapted to so heavy a labour; 
but the hope of finding a large Bear, and obtaining from its fat a great quantity 

* Regnard's Journ. to Lapland. (Pinkekton's Voy. vol. i. p. 194.) 
f Ij'E-ems' s Danish Lapland. {Idem. vol. i. ^. 485.) 
J Arctic Zoology, vol. i. p. 65. Introd,, p. cxx. 
§ Henry's Travels, p. 142. 


of oil, an article at the time much wanted, at length prevailed. According-ly, in 
the morning-, we surrounded the tree, both men and women, as many at a time as 
eould conveniently work at it ; and there we toiled, like beavers, till the sun went 
down. This day's work carried us about half-way throug-h the trunk ; and 
the next morning- we renewed the attack, continuing it till about two o'clock in the 
afternoon, when the tree fell to the ground. For a few minutes every thing 
remained quiet, and I feared that all our expectations were disappointed ; but as 
I advanced to the opening, there came out, to the great satisfaction of all our 
party, a Bear of extraordinary size, which, before she had proceeded many yards, 
I shot. 

'' The Bear being dead, all my assistants approached, and all, but more par- 
ticularly my old mother, (as I was wont to call her,) took his head in their hands, 
stroking and kissing it several times ; begging a thousand pardons for taking 
away her life ; calling her their relation and grandmother ; and requesting her not 
to lay the fault upon them, since it was truly an Englishman that had put her to 
death. This ceremony was not of long duration ; and if it was I that killed their 
grandmother, they were not themselves behind hand in what remained to be per- 
formed. The skin being taken off, we found the fat in several places six inches 
deep. This being divided into two parts loaded two persons ; and the flesh parts 
were as much as four persons could carry. In all, the carcase must have exceeded 
five hundred weight. As soon as we reached the lodge, the Bear's head was 
adorned with all the trinkets in the possession of the family, such as silver arm- 
bands, and wrist-bands, and belts of wampum ; and then laid upon a scaffold, set 
up for its reception, within the lodge. Near the nose was placed a large quantity 
of tobacco. 

" The next morning no sooner appeared, than preparations were made for a 
feast to the manes. The lodge was cleaned and swept ; and the head of the Bear 
lifted up, and a new stroud blanket, which had never been used before, spread 
under it. The pipes were now lit ; and Wawatam blew tobacco-smoke into the 
nostrils of the Bear, telling me to do the same, and thus appease the anger of the 
Bear, on account of my having killed her. I endeavoured to persuade my bene- 
factor and friendly adviser, that she no longer had any life, and assured him that 
I was under no apprehension from her displeasure ; but the first proposition 
obtained no credit, and the second gave but little satisfaction. At length the 
feast being ready, Wawatam made a speech, resembling, in many things, his 
address to the manes of his relations and departed companions ; and we then all 

D 2 


ate heartily of the Bear's flesh. It is only the female Bear that makes her winter 
lodging- in the upper parts of trees, a practice by which her young are secured 
from the attacks of wolves and other animals. She brings forth in the winter- 
season ; and remains in her lodge till the cubs have gained some strength. The 
male always lodges in the ground, under the roots of trees. He takes to this 
habitation as soon as the snow falls, and remains there till it has disappeared. 
The Indians remark, that the Bear comes out in the spring with the same 
fat which he carries in in the autumn ; but, after the exercise of only a few days, 
becomes lean. Excepting for a short part of the season, the male lives con- 
stantly alone." 

La Hontan * has also given a very full account of the ceremonies attending a 
Bear-hunt by the Canadian Indians, which does not differ greatly from Mr. Henry's. 
The women of the Chepewyan and Dog-rib tribes will not touch a bear's skin, nor 
even step over it ; so that one spread at the door of a tent is an effectual bar 
asainst female intruders. Even the men of some of the tribes refuse to eat 
bear's flesh, or pemmican which contains bear's grease. The Laplanders, also, 
prohibit their women from eating certain portions of a bear. The flesh of a bear, 
when in good condition, resembles greasy and rather flabby pork ; and when the 
animal has been fed on the sea-coast, and by the banks of rivers, has also a fishy 
taste. The skin of a Black Bear, with the fur in prime order, and the claws 
appended, was, at one period, worth from twenty to forty guineas, and even more, 
but at present the demand for them is so small, from their being little used either 
for muffs or hammercloths, that the best, I believe, sell for less than forty shillings. 

I/A Hontan, Journal de Voy., vol. v, p. 1C9, et seq. See also Schoolcropt's Narrative, Ac, p. 183. 


[9.] 2. Ursus Arctos ? Americanus. Barren-ground Bear. 

Grizzly Bear. Hearne's Journey^ passim. 

Brown Bear, variety S, Grizzly. Pennant's Arct. Zoo/, vol. i. p. 62. / 

The Brown Bears of America are^ by some authors^ supposed to be merely 
varieties of the Black Bear of the preceding article ; whilst others have con- 
sidered them to belong- to a distinct species, whose identity, however, with the 
Brown Bear of Europe has not been ascertained ; neither has any one given it a 
new specific appellation. The obscurity in which the subject is involved has 
been increased by the accounts received from the natives of another species, named 
the Grisly Bear {Ursus ferox) having been amalgamated with the descriptions 
that authors have eiven of their Brown Bear. Warden * mentions a Brown Bear 
mider the appellation of the '^^ Ranging Bear," and says that it has the general 
shape of the Black Bear, but that its body and legs are longer, and that it is more 
ferocious when wounded. It is said to be an inhabitant of the United States, par- 
ticularly of the western districts ; but it never came under our notice, and the 
remainder of this article has no relation to it. From the inquiries I made through- 
out the woody country from Lake Superior to Great Slave Lake, being ten 
degrees of latitude, I learnt that the natives of those districts are acquainted with 
only two species of Land Bear, viz., the Common Black Bear, including the cinna- 
mon-coloured and other varieties, and the Grisly Bear, which is confined to the 
lofty chain of the Rocky Mountains, and the extensive plains that skirt their bases. 
The barren lands, however, lying to the northward and eastward of Great Slave 
Lake, and extending to the Arctic Sea, are frequented by a species of Bear, which 
differs from the American Black Bear in its greater size, profile, physiognomy, 
longer soles, and tail ; and from the Grisly Bear also, in colour and the compa- 
rative smallness of its claws. Its greatest affinity is with the Brown Bear of 
Norway ; but its identity with that species has not been established by actual 
comparison. It frequents the sea-coast in the autumn in considerable numbers, 
for the purpose of feeding on fish. 

The general colour of this Bear is a dusky-(or sometimes yellowishj-brown, but 

• Warden's United States. 


the shoulders and flanks are, in the summer season at least^ covered with long 
hair^ which is frequently very pale towards the tips. The Indians and interpreters^ 
who are not very precise in their application of the few terms they have to express 
varieties of colour, often denominate them ^'^ White Bears." Hearne calls them 
" Grizzly Bears," and some confusion has been produced by late writers having 
applied the same name to Lewis and Clark's Ursus ferox. Pennant, who 
describes them as a variety of the American Black Bear, considers them at the 
same time to be of the same species with the ^'^ Silver Bear'' that inhabits the 
north of Europe. It is, indeed, very probable, that the Brown Bear which 
Captain King informed Pennant was an inhabitant of Kamskatka, is of this 
species, which may, in fact, extend all along the north of the old continent ; 
but this, in the present state of our knowledge, is mere matter of conjecture. 
Mention is made in the narrative of Cook's third voyage * of Bears of a brown 
or sooty colour inhabiting the American coast near Cook's river. LangsdorfF 
also informs us that Brown and Red Bears are abundant on the Aleutian Islands, 
where the Black Bear does not exist f. These authors do not furnish us with 
any details whereby the species may be determined ; but the Bears they mention 
live in similar districts with the Barren-ground Bear, and differ in that respect 
from the Ursus ferox, which exists principally, perhaps only, in the buffalo 

The Indians dread the Barren-ground Bears, and are careful to avoid burning 
bones in their hunting encampments, lest the smell should attract them. 
Keskarrah, an old Indian mentioned in the Narrative of Captain Franklin's first 
Journey, was seated at the door of his tent, pitched by a small stream not far 
from Fort Enterprise, when a large Bear came to the opposite bank, and 
remained for some time apparently surveying him. Keskarrah considering him- 
self to be in great danger, and having no one to assist him but his aged wife, made 
a speech to the following effect: ''Oh Bear! I never did you any harm; I have 
always had the highest respect for you and your relations, and never killed any of 
them except through necessity. Go away, good Bear, and let me alone, and I 
promise not to molest you." The Bear walked off; and the old man, fancying 
that he owed his safety to his eloquence, favoured us, on his arrival at the fort, 
with his speech at length. The Copper Indians often cautioned us against 
these '' White Bears" of the barren lands, which they said would attack us if 
they saw us, but we received no such caution in travelling through the districts 

* Cook's Third Voyage, vol. ii. p. 376. f Langsdorff's Travels, vol. ii. p. 74. 


frequented by the Black Bear. It does not^ however, possess the boldness of the 
Ursusferox, as all the individuals we saw fled at once. The Barren-ground Bear 
resorts to the coast of the Arctic Sea in the month of August^ and preys indis- 
criminately upon animal and vegetable matters. , In the stomach of one which 
I opened there were the remains of a seal, a marmot^ a large quantity of the 
long sweet roots of some astragali and hecli/sara, together with some berries, and 
a little grass. Many long white worms adhered to the interior of the stomach 
which held this farrago. Hearne has given the name of Grizzle Bear Hill to 
an eminence which had been much ploughed up by the Bears in quest of the 
Arctomi/s Parryi, termed by him " Ground Hog." The appellation of " grizzly/' 
first used by Hearne to designate this Bear, being also applied by the traders 
and American authors to the Ursus ftrox, I have given this one the ad interim 
name of Barren-ground Bear^ until its difference from^ or identity with, the Ursus 
«rc^os of Linneeus be fully established*. 


We saw several of these animals daring Captain Franklin's first Expedition. An old and 
lean male, killed on the shores of the Arctic Sea on the 1st of Augast, 1821, was of a nearly 
uniform yellowish-brown colour, except on the forehead and back, where the tips of the fur 
were paler. The fur, which was straight, and of the fineness of coarse wool, was giving 
place to a thin coat of blackish hair. Its forehead was broad, and slightly convex, and the 
arch of the orbit rose conspicuously at the root of the nose, which was straight. The legs 
were long, and the claws, of an intermediate size between those of the Black and Grisly 
Bears, projected beyond the hairs, and were more pointed than the claws of the latter. 

Dental formula, incisors f, canines J^J , spurious molars^, grinders t^ = 36. 

The incisors were worn flat, except one on each side, which adjoined the canine-teeth, and 
which rose in a point above the others. The canines strong, conical, and slightly curved, 
projected an inch and a quarter above the gums. Two small and pointed spurious molar- 
teeth (dents espac^es) rose on each side of the upper jaw, and Avere succeeded by three 
tuberculated molars that increased in size from the first to the last. The first of these was 
pointed anteriorly, and had a lobe posteriorly Avhich exhibited the section of two points. The 
other two were worn quite flat ; the second, or carnivorous-tooth, presented the section of 
two pairs of points ; and the last, and largest, the section of three pairs. In the lower jaw, one 
small spurious molar-tooth was situated close to the canines. The first of the true molars was 
pointed, without any flattened lobe; the remaining three differed little from each other in 
size, though the middle one was rather the largest ; and their crowns were worn so smooth, 
that no vestige remained of the points they originally possessed. 

* In the appendix to Captain Parry's second voyage, from a hasty consideration of the subject, I erroneously stated 
the Barren-ground Bear to be the brown variety of the American Black Bear. 


The dimensions of this individual were as follows*: — 

Length from the muKzle to the root of the tail 5 2 

„ of tail , , . .0 6 

Height from the sole of the fore-foot to the 

top of the shoulder .... 2 9 

„ of hind-quarters . . .2 C 

liength of muzzle from the nostrils to the an- 

Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches. 

Length from anterior angle of the eye to the 

centre of the auditory opening . 10 

Distance from the tip of one ear to the tip 

of the other . . .0 10 

Breadth of fore-foot, which was nearly cir- 

cular . . . .0 e 

terior angle of the eye . .0 C ' Length of the sole of the hind-foot .0 10 

[10.] 3. Ursus ferox. (Lewis and Clark.) Grisly Bear. 

Grizzle Bear. Ujifreville's Hudson's Bay, p. 1G8. An. 1790. 

Grisly Bear. Mackenzie's Voyage, ^c, p. IGO. An. 1801. 

White, or brown-gray Bear. Gass' Journal of Lewis and Clark's Expedition, pp. 45, 116, 34G. An. 1808. 

Grisly, brown, white, and variegated Bear, (Ursus fero.x) Lewis and Clark's Voyages, ^-c, vol. i. pp. 284, 293, 343 

375 ; vol. iii. pp. 25, 2C8. Anrio 1814. Clinton, Trails. Philos. and Liter. New York, vol. i.pp. 50, 114. 

An. 1815. 
Grizzly Bear. Warden's United States, \o\. '\.y. \(iT. An.\Q\Q. 
Grey Bear. Harmon's Journey, p. 417- An. 1820. 
Ursus Cinereus. Desmarest's Mammal. No. 253. An. 1820. 
Ursus horribilis. Say, Long's Expedition, vol. ii. p. 244, note 34. An. 1822. 

Ursus Candescens. Hamilton Smith, Griffith''s An. Kingdom, vol. ii. p. 229, and vol. v. ^"0. 320. An. 1826. 
Grizzly Bear. Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 131. An. 1826. 
Meesheh musquaw. Cree Indians. 
Hohhost. Chopunnish Indians (Lems and Clark). 

This animal has long been known to the Indians and fur traders as a distinct 
species, inferior to all the varieties of the Black Bear in the quality of its fur_, and 
distinguished by its great strength and ferocity, its carnivorous disposition^ the 
length of its claws^ the breadth and length of its soles^ and the shortness of its tail. 
It has attracted the attention of almost all travellers who have passed through the 
districts it inhabits, and is mentioned in several of the earlier French writers on 
America under the title of Ours blanc, not that it is ever seen of a white colour like 
the Polar Bear_, but because the Canadian Coiireurs des bois who were^ and who 
remain to this day^ almost the only interpreters of the Indian languages, translated 

* Baron Cuvier describes the Ursus Arctos, or Brown Bear of Europe, as having the upper part of its cranium arched 
longitudinally and rounded laterally ; the forehead and occiput forming parts of the same curve, and there being no 
well-defined line of separation between the forehead, £he middle portion of the parietal bones, and the temporal fosses. 
The sagittal suture beginning to be sensibly marked very near the occipital bones, and the nasal bones to be set in rather 
obliquely to the rounded forehead, producing the appearance of a depression at the root of the nose. The sole of the 
hind-foot is of moderate length. — Ossemens Fossiles. 


the terms used by the different tribes to signify hoary or light coloured, by the 
general epithet of blanc. Lewis and Clark, in their ably-executed Journey to 
the Shores of the Pacific, bad numerous opportunities of observing its manners, 
and by their ample descriptions, first enabled naturalists to class it as a distinct 
species. It is true that Forster, long before, in his translation of Bossu's Travels, 
had intimated that the '^ White Bear of Louisiana '' must be distinct from the 
Polar Bear, Vfhich it resembled in size, but the remark was suffered to pass 
unheeded. De Witt Clinton, in his discourse at the Institution of the New York 
Literary and Philosophical Society, is the first naturalist who, judging from Lewis 
and Clark's account, clearly asserted that this animal was specifically different 
from either the Polar or common American Bears. Since that time the various 
synonymes prefixed to this article, in the order of their publication, have been 
assigned to it. The English name of Grisly has been adopted in this work as 
being less liable to objection than one founded on colour alone ; and the Latin 
translation of it, ferox, which, as far as I have been able to ascertain, first occurs 
in Desmarest, and seems preferable to cinereus, is used for the specific appellation. 
Mr. Say, in the account of Major Long's Expedition, gives a description of the 
Grisly Bear, drawn up from male and female specimens, preserved in the Phila- 
delphia Museum, and which, haying been brought up in a state of confinement, 
were killed before they arrived at maturity. Figures of these specimens have 
been published in the American edition of Long's Expedition, and in Godman's 
Natural History. A young cub, caught on the Rocky Mountains, being brought 
to England by the Hudson's Bay Company about eight years ago, has been kept 
in the Tower ever since, and there is a spirited engraving of it by Landseer, in 
Griffith's Animal Kingdom. The etching, forming plate first of this work, is by 
the same able artist, the head being from that of an adult male, brought home by 
Mr. Drummond, and the form of the body and attitudes from the individual in the 
Tower. I was present at the death of a young Grisly Bear, killed at Carlton- 
house on the Saskatchewan. It was a male, in its second year, which being pur- 
sued by mounted hunters, was overtaken after an hour's chase, through snow one 
foot deep. The hunters approached boldly, trusting in the fleetness of their 
horses ; although, from the size of its foot-prints, they were fully aware that it was 
a Grisly Bear, even before they saw it *. The skin and scull of this individual are 
now preserved in the Museum of the Edinburgh University, and a figure of it is 
given in the sixth number of the very excellent Illustrations of Zoology by Wilson. 

* Mackenzie mentions the foot-marks of a Grisly Bear as being nine inclies long and proportionably wide. The 
foot-marks of the young one mentioned in the text were of eqnal dimensions. 



The Grisly Bear has been well compared by Mr, Say with the Norwegian variety of the 
Ursus Ardos, to which it has a great resemblance in its general appearance. Its fur is long, 
and mostly of a dark brown colour, with paler tips, that on the flanks being generally lighter 
coloured in the summer season, and there is frequently a considerable admixture of gray 
hairs on the head. The whole muzzle is pale, without the dark central stripe which the 
Black Bear has. It is distinguished from the Brown and Black Bears, by shorter and more 
conical ears, placed further apart, and white, arched, and very long claws, compressed like the 
incisors of a squirrel, carrying their breadth on their upper surface, nearly to the tips, but 
chamfered away as it were beneath. They project far beyond the hair of the foot, and cut 
like a chisel when the animal strikes a blow Avith them. The forehead is broad, flattish, and 
continued nearly in a line with the nose, but there is in the older animals a distinct projection 
of the superciliary ridges of the frontal bone. The soles of its feet are longer and its heel is 
broader than those of the Brown Bear of Europe. Its tail is very small, so as to be hidden 
by the hair of the buttocks, and it is a standing joke among the Indian hunters, when they 
have killed a Grisly Bear, to desire any one unacquainted with the animal to take hold of its 
tail. The tail of the Black Bear is conspicuous enough, and that of the Barren-ground Bear 
is still longer*. 

The strength and ferocity of the Grisly Bear are so great that the Indian 
hunters use mucli precaution in attacking them. They are reported to attain a 
weight exceeding eight hundred pounds, and Lewis and Clark mention one that 
measured nine feet from the nose to the tail, and say that they had seen a still 
larger one^ but do not give its dimensions. This is far above the usual size of 
other Land Bears, and equals the larger specimens of the Polar Bear. Governor 
Clinton received an account of one fourteen feet long^ from an Indian Trader^ but 
even admitting that there was no inaccuracy in the measurement, it is probable 
that it was taken from the skin after it was removed from the body, when it is known 
to be capable of stretching several feet. The strength of this Bear may be estimated 
from its having been known to drag to a considerable distance the carcass of a 

* " Two men visited the Indian ^-illage (on one of tlie upper branches of the Columbia) where they purchased a 
dressed bear skin, of an uniform pale reddish-brown colour, which the Indians called yackah, in contradistinction to 
hohhost^ or the White Bear. This remark induced us to inquire more particularly into their opinions as to the several 
species of bears, and we therefore produced all the skins of that animal which we had killed at this place, and also one 
very nearly white, which we had purchased. The natives immediately classed the white^ the deep and the pale grizzly, 
red, the grizzly dark-brovcn^ in short, all those with the extremities of the hair of a white or frosty colour, without 
regard to the colour of the ground of the fur, under the name of huhhost. They assured us that they were all of the 
same species with the White Bear ; that they associated together, had longer nails than the others, and never climbed 
trees. On the other hand, the black skins, those which were black with a number of entire white hairs intermixed, or 
with a while breast, the uniform bay, the brown, and light reddish-brown, were ranged under the class yackah, and 
were said to resemble each other in being smaller, and having shorter nails than the White Bear, in climbing trees, 
and being so little vicious, that they could be pursued with safety." — Lewis and CiARK, vol. iii. p. 215. 



Buffalo, weighing about one thousand pounds. The following story is well authen- 
ticated. A party of voyagers, who had been employed all day in tracking a 
canoe up the Saskatchewan^ had seated themselves in the twilight by a fire^ and 
were busy in preparing their supper, when a large Grisly Bear sprung over their 
canoe that was tilted behind them^ and seizing one of the party by the shoulder 
carried him off. The rest fled in terror with the exception of a Metif, named 
Bourasso,, who^ grasping his gun, followed the Bear as it was retreating leisurely 
with its prey. He called to his unfortunate comrade that he was afraid of hitting 
him if he fired at the Bear, but the latter entreated him to fire immediately, without 
hesitation, as the Bear was squeezing him to death. On this he took a deliberate 
aim, and discharged his piece into the body of the Bear, which instantly dropped 
its prey to pursue Bourasso, He escaped with difficulty, and the Bear ultimately 
retreated to a thicket, where it was supposed to have died ; but the curiosity of the 
party not being a match for their fears, the fact of its decease was not ascertained. 
The man who was rescued had his arm fractured, and was otherwise severely 
bitten by the Bear, but finally recovered. I have seen Bourasso, and can add 
that the account which he gives is fully credited by the traders resident in that 
part of the country, who are best qualified to judge of its truth from their know- 
ledge of the parties. I have been told that there is a man now living in the 
neighbourhood of Edmonton-house, who was attacked by a Grisly Bear, which 
sprung out of a thicket, and with one stroke of its paw completely scalped him, 
laying bare the scull, and bringing the skin of the forehead down over the eyes. 
Assistance coming up, the Bear made off without doing him further injury, but 
the scalp not being replaced, the poor man has lost his sight, although he thinks 
that his eyes are uninjured. 

Mr. Drummond, in his excursions over the Rocky Mountains, had frequent 
opportunities of observing the manners of the Grisly Bears, and it often happened 
that in turning the point of a rock or sharp angle of a valley, he came suddenly 
upon one or more of them. On such occasions they reared on their hind legs and 
made a loud noise like a person breathing quick, but much harsher. He kept his 
ground without attempting to molest them, and they on their part, after attentively 
regarding him for some time, generally wheeled round and galloped off, though, 
from their known disposition, there is little doubt but he would have been torn in 
pieces had he lost his presence of mind and attempted to fly. When he dis- 
covered them from a distance, he generally frightened them away by beating on 
a large tin box, in which he carried his specimens of plants. He never saw 
more than four together, and two of these he supposes to have been cubs ; he 



more often met them singly or m pairs. He was only once attacked^ and tlieu 
by a female^ for the purpose of allowing her cubs time to escape. His gun on 
this occasion missed fire, but he kept her at bay with the stock of it, until some 
gentlemen of the Hudson's Bay Company, with whom he was travelling at the 
time, came up and drove her off. In the latter end of June 1826, he observed a 
male caressing a female, and soon afterwards they both came towards him, but 
whether accidentally, or for the purpose of attacking him, he was uncertain. He 
ascended a tree, and as the female drew near, fired at and mortally wounded her. 
She uttered a few loud screams, which threw the male into a furious rage, and he 
reared up against the trunk of the tree in which Mr. Drummond was seated, but 
never attempted to ascend it. The female, in the meanwhile retiring to a short 
distance, lay down, and as the male was proceeding to join her, Mr. Drummond 
shot him also. From the size of their teeth and claws, he judged them to be 
about four years old. The cubs of the Grisly Bear can climb trees, but when 
the animal is fully grown it is unable to do so, as the Indians report, from 
the form of its claws. Two instances are related by Lewis and Clark, and I have 
heard of several others, where a hunter having sought shelter in a tree from the 
pursuit of a Grisly Bear, has been held a close prisoner for many hours, by the 
infuriated animal keeping watch below. The Black and Brown or even the Polar 
Bear ascend trees with facility. Some interesting anecdotes of contests with this 
Bear, selected fi-om the narratives of Lewis and Clark, Major Long, and others, 
are related in Godman's Natural History, to which the reader is referred. 

The Grisly Bears are carnivorous, but occasionally eat vegetables, and are ob- 
served to be particularly fond of the roots of some species oipsoralea and hedysarum. 
They also eat the fruits of various shrubs, such as the bird-cherry, choke-cherry, 
and hippophde Cancuhnsis. The berries of the latter produce a powerful cathartic 
effect upon them. Few of the natives, even of the tribes, who are fond of the flesh 
of the Black Bear, will eat of the Grisly Bear, unless when pressed by hunger. 
Say and Gass mention a method which the Shoshonee or Snake Indians have of 
baking Bear's flesh in a pit filled with alternate layers of brush-wood and meat, 
and covered with earth *, which is nearly similar to the way in which the natives 
of the South-sea Islands prepare their dogs and hogs. 

The Grisly Bear inhabits the Rocky Mountains and the plains lying to the east- 
ward of them, as far as latitude 61°, and perhaps still farther north. Its southern 
range, according to Lieutenant Pike, extends to Mexico. There is a Brown 

* G ass's Journal, c^'c, p. 311. 


Bear on the Andes of Peru^ but whether it is of this species or not is not known *. 
Lewis and Clark could not ascertain that the Grisly Bear at all inhabited the 
country between the western declivity of the Rocky Monntains and the sea-coastj 
and remark that those which they saw about the great falls of the Columbia were 
more variegated in colour, and of a milder disposition than those near the sources 
of the Missouri, but certainly of the same species. Mr. Drummond observes that 
the Grisly Bears are most numerous in the woody country skirting the eastern base 
of the Rocky Mountains^ particularly in districts which are interspersed with open 
prairies and grassy hills. They vary, he says, much in colour, from a very light 
gray to a dark chestnut. The latter variety is common about the sources of the 
Peace River_, and, according to the Indians, is more ferocious than the gray one. 
The Black Bear, w-hich inhabits the same districts, and frequently varies there to 
a cream-colour, never associates with the Grisly Bear. 

The young Grisly Bears and gravid females hibernate, but the older males 
often come abroad in the winter in quest of food. Mackenzie mentions the den 
or winter retreat of a Grisly Bear, which was ten feet wide, five feet high, and 
six feet long. These dens are named ivatee by the Indians. As this Bear comes 
abroad before the snow disappears, its foot-marks are frequently seen in the 
spring, and when there is a crust on the snow, the weight of the animal often 
causes it to crack and sink for a yard or more round the spot trod upon. These 
impressions, somewhat obscured by a partial thaw, have been considered by the 
inexperienced as the vestiges of an enormously large quadruped, and the natives, 
although perfectly aware of the cause of the marks, are prone by their observations 
to heighten the wonder they perceive to be excited by them. Many reports of 
the existence of live Mammoths in the Rocky Mountain range, have, I doubt not, 
originated in this manner. Necklaces of the claws of a Grisly Bear are highly 
prized by the Indian warriors as proofs of their prowess. 

Cond.uiine's Travels, p. 82. Ulloa'= Voyage, 4G1 (quoted from Arctic Zoology, p. clxx.) 


[10.] 4. Ursus Maritimus. (Lin.) Polar ox Sea Bear. 

White Bear. Marten's Spitz. Trans., p. 107, t. 0,fig. c. An. lC7o. 

Ursus Maritimus. Lin. Syst. 

Ursus Albus. Brisson, Rtgne Animal, p. 2C0, sp. 2. An. 175C. 

L'ours Blanc. Buffon, vol. xv. p. 128. An. 1767- 

Ursus Marinus. Pallas's It. vol. iii. p. C91, et Spicel. Zool. xiv. 1. 1. An. 1780. 

Polar Bear. Pennant's Arctic Zoology, p. 53, and Jntrod. pp. Ixxxix and cxciii. An. 1784. 

Ursus Albus. Ross's Voy., App. p. xliv. with a plate of the head, p. 199. An. 1820. 

Ursus Maritimus. Parry's First Voy., Supp. p. clxxxiii. Franklin's First Journey, p. 648. 

Parry's Second Voy., App. p. 288. 
Bear. Lyon's Private Jouriial, pp. 13 and 377. An. 1824. 
Wawpusk (pi. Wawpuskwuck). Cree Indians. 
Nannook. Esquimaux. Nennook, Greenlanders. 

BufFoii had many doubts as to the Sea or Polar Bear being a distinct species 
from the Land Bear, of which there are white varieties in the northern countries. 
He acknowledges, however, that the distinctive characters which Marten, one of 
its earUest describers, has pointed out, would, if correct, establish it as a peculiar 
species. A further acquaintance with the animal has fully confirmed Marten's 


The Polar Bear is distinguished from the other species by its narrow head and muzzle pro- 
longed on a straight line with the flattened forehead ; its short ears ; long neck ; the greater 
length of its body in proportion to its height; the soles of the hind- feet equalling one-sixth of the 
length of its body ; and, lastly, the quality of its fur, which is very thick and long on the body, 
still more so on the limbs, and everywhere of a yellowish-white colour. The naked extremity 
of the snout, the tongue, margins of the eyelids, and claws, are black ; the lips purplish- 
black ; the eyes dark brown, and the interior of the mouth pale violet. 

I have met with no account of any Polar Bear, killed of late years, which 
exceeded nine feet in length, or four feet and a half in height. It is possible that 
larger individuals may be occasionally found; but the greatness of the dimensions 
attributed to them by the older voyagers has, I doubt not, originated in the skin 
having been measured after being much stretched in the process of flaying. 
Marten, who seems to have been a correct obsen^er, expressly states that the 
Polar Bear is of the same size with the German Bears. 

The great power of the Polar Bear is portrayed in the account of a disastrous 
accident which befel the crew of Barentz's vessel on his second voyage to Waigats 
Straits. "On the 6th of September, 1594, some sailors landed to search for a 


certain sort of stone^ a species of diamond. During- this search_, two of the 
seamen lay down to sleep by one another, and a White Bear, very lean, approach* 
ing- softly, seized one of them by the nape of the neck. The poor man, not 
knowing what it was, cried out, ' Who has seized me thus behind? ' on which his 
companion_, raising his head, said, ' Holloa^ mate, it is a Bear_,' and immediately 
ran away. The Bear having dreadfully mangled the unfortunate man's head, 
sucked the blood. The rest of the persons who were on shore, to the number 
of twenty, immediately ran with their matchlocks and pikes, and found the Bear 
devouring the body, which, on seeing them, ran upon them, and carrying another 
man away, tore him to pieces. This second misadventure so terrified them, that 
they all fled. They advanced again, however, with a reinforcement, and the two 
pilots having fired three times without hitting the animal, the purser approached a 
little nearer, and shot the Bear in the head, close by the eye. This did not cause 
him to quit his prey, for, holding the body, which he was devouring always by the 
neck, he carried it away as yet quite entire. Nevertheless, they then perceived 
that he began himself to totter, and the purser and a Scotchman going towards 
liim, they gave him several sabre wounds, and cut him to pieces, without his 
abandoning his prey*." 

In Barentz's third voyage, a story is told of two Bears coming to the carcass of a 
third one that had been shot, when one of them, taking it by the throat, carried it to 
a considerable distance, over the most rugged ice, where they both began to eat it. 
They were scared from their repast by the report of a musket, and a party of 
seamen going to the place, found that, in the little time they were about it, they 
had already devoured half the carcase, which was of such a size that four men had 
great difficulty in lifting the remainder f. In a manuscript account of Hudson's 
Bay, written about the year 1786, by Mr. Andrew Graham, one of Pennant's 
ablest correspondents, and preserved at the Hudson's Bay House, an anecdote of a 
different description occurs. " One of the Company's servants who was tenting 
abroad to procure rabbits (Lepns Americanus), having occasion to come to the 
factory for a few necessaries, on his return to the tent passed through a narrow 
thicket of willows, and found himself close to a White Bear lying asleep. As he 
had nothing wherewith to defend himself, he took the bag off" his shoulder and held 
it before his breast, between the Bear and him. The animal arose on seeing the 
man, stretched himself and rubbed his nose, and having satisfied his curiosity by 
smelling at the bag, which contained a loaf of bread and a rundlet of strong beer, 

• Chuhchill's Coll of Voij., vol. i. j'. 88. f Ibnh, vol. i. p. 115. 


walked quietly away, thereby relieving the man from liis very disagreeable 

The Polar Bears feed chiefly on animal substances, and as they swim and dive 
well, they hunt seals and other marine animals with great success. They are 
eyen said to wage war, though rather unequally, with the Walrus. They feed 
likewise on land animals, birds, and eggs, nor do they disdain to prey on carrion, 
or, in the absence of other food, to seek the shore in quest of berries and roots. 
They scent their prey from a great distance, and are often attracted to the whale 
vessels by the smell of burning kreng, or the refuse of the whale blubber. 
Captain Lyons thus describes the mode in which the Polar Bear surprises a seal. 
'' The Bear, on seeing his intended prey, gets quietly into the water, and swims 
to leeward of him, from whence, by frequent short dives, he silently makes his 
approaches, and so arranges his distance, that, at the last dive, he comes to the 
spot where the seal is lying. If the poor animal attempts to escape by rolling 
into the water, he falls into the Bear's clutches ; if, on the contrary, he lies still, 
his destroyer makes a powerful spring, kills him on the ice, and devours him at 
leisure." The same writer describes the pace of the Polar Bear, at full speed, as 
'"' a kind of shuffle, as quick as the sharp gallop of a horse." 

The principal residence of the Polar Bear is on fields of ice, with which he 
frequently drives to a great distance from the land. In this way they are often 
carried from the coast of Greenland to Iceland, where they commit such ravages 
on the flocks, that the inhabitants rise in a body to destroy them. Captain Sabine 
mentions that he saw one about mid-way between the north and south shores of 
Barrow's Straits, which are forty miles apart, although there was no ice in sight to 
which he could resort to rest himself upon ; and Captain Lyons informs us, that 
the Polar Bears not only swim with rapidity, but are capable of making long 
springs in the water. They are not known to travel far inland. They have been 
found in higher latitudes than any other quadruped, having been seen by Captain 
Parry in his most adventurous boat-voyage beyond 82 degrees of north latitude. 
The limit of their incursions southward on the shores of Hudson's Bay, and of 
Labrador, may be stated to be about the 55th parallel. They are often seen 
about York Factory in the autumn, having most probably drifted from the north- 
ward on the ice during the summer. Pennant, who has collected, from good 
authorities, much information relative to their range, states, that they are frequent 
on all the Asiatic coasts of the Frozen Ocean, from the mouth of the Obi east- 
ward, and abound in Nova Zembla, Cherry Island, Spitzbergen, Greenland, 
Labrador, and the coasts of Baffin's and Hudson's Bays. They were seen by 


Captain Parry within Barrow's Straits as far as Melville Island ; and the Esquimaux, 
to the westward of Mackenzie's river^ told Captain Franklin that they occasionally, 
though very rarely, visited that coast. The exact limit of their range to the 
westward is uncertain, but they are said not to be known on the islands in 
Behring's Straits, nor on the coast of Siberia to the eastward of Tchutskoinoss. 
They are not mentioned by LangsdorfF and other visiters of the north-west coast 
of America ; nor did Captain Beechey meet with any in his late voyage to Icy 
Cape. None were seen on the coast between the Mackenzie and Copper Mine 
River ; and Pennant informs us, that they are unknown along the shores of the 
White Sea, which is an inlet of a similar character. 

The Polar Bear being able to procure its food in the depth of even an Arctic 
winter, there is not the same necessity for its hibernating that exists in the case of 
the Black Bear, which feeds chiefly on vegetable matters ; and it is probable, that, 
although they may all retire occasionally to caverns in the snow, the pregnant 
females alone seclude themselves for the entire winter. It is mentioned in 
Le Roy's narrative of the residence of four Russian seamen for six winters in 
Spitzbergen, and also in the account of Barentz's winter in Nova Zembla, that the 
Bears disappeared with the sun, and returned again with that luminary, after an 
absence in the one case of four months, and in the other of three. Their retire- 
ment has been considered by some as a proof of their hibernation ; but, I think, the 
most probable explanation of it is that they went out to sea in search of food. 
Polar Bears were seen in the course of the two winters that Captain Parry 
remained on the coast of Melville Peninsula ; and the Esquimaux of that quarter 
derive a considerable portion of their subsistence not only from the flesh of the 
female Bears, which they dig together with their cubs from under the snow, but 
also from the males that they kill when roaming at large at all periods of the 
winter. Hearne states with more precision, and, I believe, from actual observa- 
tion, that the males leave the land in the winter time and go out on the ice to the 
edge of the open water in search of seals, whilst the females burrow in deep snow- 
drifts from the end of December to the end of March, remaining without food, and 
bringing forth their young during that period ; that when they leave their dens 
in March, their young, which are generally two in number, are not larger than 
rabbits, and make a foot-mark in the snow no bigger than a crown piece. He 
also informs us that the males are found in company with the females in August, 
and then exhibit great attachment to them. Mr. Andrew Graham's observations, 
written before the publication of Hearne's Narrative, confirm the account given by 
that traveller. *■' In winter,'' says he, ^' the White Bear sleeps like other species of 


the genus, but takes up its residence in a different situation^ generally under the 
declivities of rocks, or at the foot of a bank, where the snow drifts over it to a great 
depth ; a small hole, for the admission of fresh air, is constantly observed in the 
dome of its den. This, however, has regard solely to the she«Bear, which 
retires to her winter-quarters in November, where she lives without food, brings 
forth two young about Christmas, and leaves the den in the month of March, when 
the cubs are as large as a shepherd's dog. If perchance her offspring are tired, 
they ascend the back of the dam, where they ride secure either in water or ashore. 
Though they sometimes go nearly thirty miles from the sea in winter, they always 
come down to the shores in the spring with their cubs, where they subsist on seals 
and sea-weed. The he-Bear wanders about the marshes and adjacent parts 
until November, and then goes out to the sea upon the ice, and preys upon seals. 
They are very fat, and though very inoffensive if not meddled with, they are very 
fierce when provoked*.'' 

Captain Lyons records the Esquimaux account of the hibernation of the Polar 
Bear in the following words : " From Ooyarrakhioo, a most intelligent man, I ob- 
tained an account of the Bear, which is too interesting to be passed over in silence. 
' At the commencement of winter, the pregnant Bears are very fat, and always 
solitary. When a heavy fall of snow sets in, the animal seeks some hollow place 
in which she can lie down, and remains quiet, while the snow covers her. Some- 
times she will wait until a quantity of snow has fallen, and then digs herself a 
cave: at all events, it seems necessary that she should be covered by and lie 
amongst the snow. She now goes to sleep, and does not wake until the spring 
sun is pretty high, when she brings forth two cubs. The cave, by this time, has 
become much larger, by the effect of the animal's warmth and breath, so that the 
cubs have room enough to move, and they acquire considerable strength by con- 
tinually sucking. The dam at length becomes so thin and weak, that it is with 
great difficulty she extricates herself, when the sun is powerful enough to throw 
a strong glare through the snow which roofs the den.' The Esquimaux affirm that 
during this long confinement the Bear has no evacuations, and is herself the means 
of preventing them by stopping all the natural passages with moss, grass, or 
earth. The natives find and kill the Bears during their confinement by means of 
dogs, which scent them through the snow, and begin scratching and howhng very 
eagerly. As it would be unsafe to make a large opening, a long trench is cut of 
sufficient width to enable a man to look down, and see where the Bear's head hes^ 

* Graham, MSB. p. 20. 



and he then selects a mortal part into which he thrusts his spear. The old one 
being killed, the hole is broken open, and the young- cubs may be taken out by 
the hand, as, having tasted no blood and never having been at liberty, they are 
then very harmless and quiet. Females which are not pregnant roam throughout 
the whole winter in the same manner as the males. The coupling time is May." 

The flesh of the Polar Bear is, as stated by Captain Phipps (Lord Mulgrave), 
exceedingly coarse. The Russian sailors who wintered in Spitzbergen, found it, 
on the other hand, much more agreeable to the taste than the flesh of the rein- 
deer. I quote this fact here, not to show that there was any thing peculiarly 
gross in the taste of the Russians, but to have an opportunity of remarking, that 
when people have fed for a long time solely upon lean animal food, the desire for 
fat meat becomes so insatiable, that they can consume a large quantity of un- 
mixed, and even oily fat, without nausea. Our seamen relish the paws of the 
Bear, and the Esquimaux prefer its flesh at all times to that of the seal. Instances 
are recorded of the liver of the Polar Bear having poisoned people. 

The reader who is desirous of fuller accounts of the manners and habits of this 
very curious animal will be gratified by turning to Marten's Spitzbergen, Fabricius' 
Fauna Groenlandica, Pennant's Arctic Zoology, and Scoresby's Account of the 
Arctic Regions. I subjoin some well-authenticated measurements of Polar Bears. 


1 Phipps. 











Length from nose to tail 







„ the shoulder-blade 




Height at the shoulder 







Girth near the fore-legs 





„ of the neck 







Breadth of the fore-paw 




„ hind-paw 


Length from nostrils to hind head 





,, of fore-claws 



„ of hind-claws 



„ of tail 




«10 lbs. 

1160 lbs. 

1600 lbs" 

• Captain Lyon states that his specimen was unusually large. 

F 2 


[11.] 1. Procyon lotor. (Cuvier.) The Raccoon. 

Genus Procyon. Storr. Cuvier. 

Ui-sus lotor. Lin. Gmelin. vol. i. p. 103, 

Le Raton. Buffon, vol. viii. pp. 3.37, t. xliii. 

Raccoon Bear. Pennant's Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. C9. 

Procyon lotor. Cuvier's Regne An., vol. i. p. 143. Sabine, Frankl. Jour., p. 649. Harlan. Faun., p, SSf. 

The Raccoon. Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 103. 

This animal inhabits the southern parts of the fur districts^ being found as far 
north as Red River, in latitude 50°^ from which quarter about one hundred skins 
are procured annually by the Hudson's Bay Company. If there is no mistake 
as to the identity of the species, the Raccoon extends farther north on the shores 
of the Pacific than it does on the eastern side of the Rocky Mountains. Dixon 
and Portlock obtained cloaks of Raccoon skins from the natives of Cook's Rivefj 
in latitude 60°^ and skins, supposed to be of the Raccoon, were also seen at 
Nootka Sound by Captain Cook. Lewis and Clarke expressly state that the 
Raccoon_, at the mouth of the Columbia^ is the same with the animal so common 
in the United States. Desmarest says that the Raccoon extends as far south as 
Paraguay. It is an animal^ with a fox-like countenance, but with much of the 
gait of a Bear, and being partially plantigrade, it was classed by Linnaeus in 
the genus Ursus. In the wild state, it sleeps by day, comes from its retreat in 
tlie evening, and prowls in the night in search of roots, fruits, green corn, birds 
and insects. It is said to eat merely the brain, or suck the blood of such birds as 
it kills. At low water it frequents the sea-shore to feed on crabs and oysters. It 
is fond of dipping its food into water before it eats, which occasioned Linnaeus to 
give it the specific name of lotor. It climbs trees with facility. The fur of the 
Raccoon is used in the manufacture of hats, and its flesh, when it has been fed on 
vegetables, is reported to be good. The live animal is often seen in English 


The Raccoon has a round head, with a narrow, tapering nose, which projects considerably 
beyond the mouth. The end of the nose is naked and black, and it possesses much flexibility^ 
The lips are also black. The eyes are round and moderately large ; the pupils circular. The 
low, erect ears are elliptical, with their tips much rounded, and, together with their edges, are 
of a soiled white colour. The whiskers are strong. The muzzle is covered with short hairs, of a 



soiled white colour. This pale colour passes ia the form of a band round the cheek and 
over the eyes. A dark mark includes the eye and cheek, on each side, and there is also a 
mark of a similar colour between the eyes, continued from the forehead. The dark colour 
is produced by a mixture of grey, dark-brown and black hairs. The back is grizzled, its 
fur consisting of dirty white hairs, ringed with black. The belly is considerably paler. The 
tail is bushy, like the brush of a fox, and has a dirty white colour, with about six dark rings 
round it. The extremities are short, and all the feet have five toes, armed with long, strong 
claws, fitted for burrowing. There is a fulness of the skin on the flanks, which adds to the 
apparent shortness of the limbs. The animal walks on the hind and fore toes, but when it sits, 
brings the Avhole hind sole to the ground, and it often assumes an erect posture like a Bear. 
Carver quaintly describes the Raccoon as having the limbs of a beaver, the body of a 
badger, the head of a fox, the nose of a dog, the tail of a cat, and sliarp claws, by which it 
climbs trees like a monkey. 


Feet. Inches. Feet- Inches, 

l/engtli of head and body . . . 2 1 Length of tail (vertebraj) ... DJ 

head .... 6 Height of the back 1 1 

[12.] 1. Meles Labradoria. (Sabine.) American Badger. 

Genus. Meles. Brisson. 

Carcajou. Buffon, torn. vi. p. 117, pl- 23. (edit, de Paris en 30 vol. 1749-1789.) Quadrupedes enlum. 295. 

Common Badger. Pennant's Arctic Zoologi/, vol. i. p. 71. 

Badger var. (3. American. Pennant's //i.s<. Quadr., vol. ii. p. 15. 

Ursus Labradoriciis. Lin. Gmelin, vol. i. p. 102. 

Prarow. Gass's Journal, p. 34. 

Blaireau. Lewis and Clatike's Voyage, ^-c. vol. i.i^p. 50, 137, 213. 

Taxus Labradoricus. Say, Long^s E.vped., vol. i. p. 2C1. 

Meles Labradoria. Sabine, Franklin's First Journ., p. 649. Harlan's Faima, p. 57. 

American Badger. Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 179. 

Blaireau d'Am^rique. F. Cuvier, Hist. Nat. des Mamm. cum figura. 

Brairo et Siffleur. French Canadians. 

NannaspachK-neeskseshew. Mistonusk, (also aicaioteeJccBOO, " the animal that digs.") Cree Indians, 

Chocartoosh, Pawnees. 

Plate 2. 

Biiffon^ in the body of his great work^ doubts whether the Badger be an 
inhabitant of the American continent, notwithstanding that M. Brisson had 


described a small quadruped from New York, under the name of Meles alba*. 
Brisson's animal, according to M. Desmarest, proved to be merely an albino 
variety of the Raccoon f ; but BufFon afterwards, in the first addition to his 
article on the Glutton, described the skin of a true Badger, which he received, 
it is said, from Labrador, under the misapplied name of Carcajou "l- His 
specimen was imperfect, having only four toes the fifth having been rubbed 
off, as he supposes, in stuffing ; and Gmelin, who adopted the opinion of 
Schreber in considering it to be a distinct species from the European Badger, 
carelessly allowed '' palmis tetradadi/lls" to form part of the specific character. 
Shaw pointed out the differences between the two species more perfectly, 
and his observations have been confirmed and extended by Mr. Sabine, who 
described a specimen, obtained on the plains of the Saskatchewan by Captain 
Franklin's party. Kalm says that he saw the common Badger in Pennsylvania, 
where it is known by the name of the Ground Hog§. I suspect, however, that 
there is some mistake in his observation, because recent American naturalists do 
not mention it as an inhabitant of that state ; and the appellation of Ground 
Hog is applied by the country people to the marmots and several other animals that 
have the habit of burrowing in the earth \\. If there be, indeed, a true Badger on 
the Atlantic coast, it must differ in habits, and be perhaps a distinct species from 
the one described by Mr. Sabine, which inhabits a district of country very different 
in character. For the same reason, I have some doubts of Buffon's specimen 
having come from Labrador ^. The Blaireaux, seen by Lewis and Clarke on the 
plains of the Missouri, are doubtless specifically the same with those of the ad- 
joining and similar Saskatchewan country ; and even the Brairo, which the same 
travellers describe as an inhabitant of the open plains, and sometimes of the 
woods, of Columbia, presents no character, in their account of it, which denote 
it to be distinct from the Saskatchewan animal, except the curious and perhaps 
accidental circumstance of a double nail, like the Beaver's, on one of the toes of 
each hind foot. 

The Meles Labradoria frequents the sandy plains or prairies which skirt the 
Rocky Mountains as far north as the banks of the Peace River, and sources of 

* Brisson, Regne An., p. 255. 

•j- Desmarest's Mamm., p. 168 and 174. 

X The name of Carcajou belongs properly to the Wolverene. 

§ Kalm's Travels, vol. i. p. 189. 

II Gass, indeed, in noticing the Badgers of the Missouri, says that they are about the size of aground hog, and 
nearly of the same colour. — Gass's Journal, p. 34. 

^ Buffon says " qu'il venoit du pays des Esquimaux," but in fact it may have been brought actually from the banks 
of the Saskatchewan by some of the Canadian fur hunters. 


the River of the Mountains, in latitude 58°. It abounds on the plains watered by 
the Missouri, but its exact southern range has not, as far as I know, been defined 
by any traveller. The sandy prairies, in the neighbourhood of Carlton-house, on 
the banks of the Saskatchewan, and also on the Red River, that flows into Lake 
Winipeg, are perforated by innumerable Badger-holes, which are a great annoy- 
ance to horsemen, particularly when the ground is covered with snow. These 
holes are partly dug by the Badgers for habitations ; but the greater number of 
them are merely enlargements of the burrows of the Arctomys Hoodii and 
Richardsonii, which the Badgers dig up and prey upon. 

Whilst the ground is covered with snow, the Badger rarely or never comes 
from its hole ; and I suppose that in that climate it passes the winter from the 
beginning of November to April in a torpid state. Indeed, as it obtains the 
small animals on which it feeds by surprising them in their burrows, it has little 
chance of digging them out at a time when the ground is frozen into a solid rock. 
Like the Bears, the Badgers do not lose much flesh during their long hiberna- 
tion, for, on coming abroad in the spring, they are observed to be very fat. As 
they pair, however, at that season, they soon become lean. 

This Badger is a slow and timid animal, taking to the first earth it comes to 
when pursued ; and as it makes its way through the sandy soil with the rapidity 
of a mole, it soon places itself out of the reach of danger. The strength of its 
fore-feet and claws is so great, that one which had insinuated only its head and 
shoulders into a hole, resisted the utmost efforts of two stout young men who 
endeavoured to drag it out by the hind legs and tail, until one of them fired the 
contents of his fowling-piece into its body. Early in the spring, however, when 
they first begin to stir abroad, they may be easily caught by pouring water into 
their holes ; for the ground being frozen at that period, the water does not escape 
through the sand, but soon fills the hole, and its tenant is obliged to come out. 

The American Badger appears to be a more carnivorous animal than the 
European one. A female which I killed had a small marmot, nearly entire, 
together with some field-mice, in its stomach. It had also been eating some 
vegetable matters. 


Of a female American Badger, killed at Carlton-house, in the latter end of April. 

Its fur is very soft and fine, about three inches and a half long on the back, of a pui-plish- 
brown colour from the roots upwards, variegated with narrow black rings near its summits, 
and tipped with white, producing a pleasant and somewhat mottled or hoary gray colour, but 



exhibiting no brown tints when the fur lies smooth. The upper surface of the head is of a 
darker colour, bisected by a narrow Avhite line, which runs from the nose to the nape of the 
neck. This Avhite stripe is bounded by dark fur, which gradually fades into gray and white as 
it approaches the ears. A grayish-brown patch includes the eye, and extends to the tip of 
the nose. There is also a brownish patch on the cheek before the ears, but the rest of the 
cheek, the under-jaw, and the throat are white. Its belly is thinly coated with coarser whitish 
hairs, its legs are of a blackish-brown colour, and its tail of a dirty brown. It is low on its 
legs, has a broad, fleshy body, a flattish head, and very short,'round ears. Its claws are long, 
strong, and of a pale horn colour. The molar teeth are remarkably smooth and flat on the 
crowns for an omnivorous animal. It measures tAVO feet six inches from the nose to the root 
of the tail, and the length of its tail is six inches. 

The European Badger differs totally from the American one^ in its dark- 
coloured, much coarser^ and shorter fur ; in the well-defined white lines on the 
headj in its more conspicuous ears_, which are black tipped with white^ and in 
having- a larger head. The differences betwixt these animals are detailed in the 
following quotation from Mr. Sabine : — 

" The American Badger is generally less in size, and of a' lighter make ; the head, though 
equally long, is not so sharp towards the nose, and the markings on the fur are remarkably 
different ; a narroAv white line runs from between the eyes towards the back, the rest of the 
upper part of the head is brown, the throat and whole under jaw are white, the cheeks partly 
so ; a semicircular brown spot is placed between the light part of the cheeks and the ears ; 
the white marking extends in a triangular form a little above the eyes, and below the eyes 
in a line towards the fore part of the mouth, but the whole eye lies \\ithin the dark colour 
of the upper part of the head, which colour runs in a sharp angle at the corner of the eye 
into the white. The European Badger has three broad white marks ; one on the top of the 
head and one on each side, and between them are two broad black lines, which include the 
eyes and ears ; and the whole under parts of the throat and jaw are black. The upper 
parts of the body and sides in the American animal are covered with rather long, hue, grayish 
hairs, which in the other are darker, coarser, and longer ; the under parts in the former 
are lighter than the upper, in the latter they are darker ; the legs in the first are dark 
brown, in the other quite black; and though the animal is of larger size generally, its 
nails, which are dark, are smaller than the lidit horn-coloured nails of the American 
species ; and, finally, the tail of the European Badger is longer than that of the American." 

The specimen of the American Badger which Mr. Sabine comments upon^ was 
two feet two inches long, excluding the tail, which was three inches long. Buffon's 
specimen was two feet four inches in length, exclusive of the tail. He remarks 
that it had one molar tooth of a side fewer than the European Badger, and he 
compares the colour of its fur to that of the Canada lynx. The specimen of Meks 
Labradoria, in the Zoological Museum, certainly very much resembles the lynx in 


the colours of the upper aspect of its body. The Tlacoyotl, seu Coyotlhumidi of 
Fernandez_, seems to be very like the Meles Labradoria. " Inveni in agro 
Tetzcocano animal pilosum valde^ vocatum Tlalcoyotl, duas longum spithamas, 
unguibus melis^ aut Quanhpecotli similibus, brevibus cruribus et nigro vestitis pilo, 
brevissima cauda, corpore toto ex albo vergente in fulvum, sed dorso, ac superna 
parte capitis, et colli nigris, lineaque distinctis candenti ; caput est parvum, rostrum 
tenue, et longiusculum_, canini exerti, ac vita victusque eadem quae Quauhpecotli, 
i. e. vorax est_, nullisque parcit oblatis escis, nee tamen editur ejus caro*." The 
Ytzcuintecuani, and the Quanhpecotli, or Meles montanus or Texon, of the same 
author, are probably of nearly allied genera. The latter has a long tail. 

[13.] 1. GuLO Luscus. (Sabine.) The Wolverene. 

Genus. Gulo. Storr. Cuvier. 

Carcajou. La Hontan, Voyage, vol. i. p. 81. An. 1703. 

Quickhatcli or Wolverene. Ellis's Voi/. Hudson's Bai/, -p. 42, (. iv. An. 1748. Edwards^^ 103. 

Ursus luscus. Link. 5^y«<., p. 71. Linn. Gmelin, vol. i. p. 103. 

Ursus Freti Hudsouis. Brisson, Quadr., p. 188. An. 1756. 

Wolverene. Pennant's Hist. Quadr., vol. ii. p. 8, /. 8. Arctic ZooL, vol. i. p. CC. Hearne's Journey, p. 372., 

■Wolverin, Quiquihatch, or Carcajou. Graham's iV55., p. 13. 

Gulo arcticus, var. A. Glouton wolverene. Desjiarest, Mamm., p. 174. 

Gulo luscus. Sabine (Capt.) Suppl. Parry^s First Voy. clxxxiv. Sabine (Mr.) FranJclin's First Journey, p. 650. 

Richardson's ^pjoenii., Parry's Second Voy., p. 292. 
Kablee-arioo, EsauisiAux. Naghai-eh. Chepewyans. 
Ommeethatsees, okeecoohagew, and okeecoohawgees. Cree Indians. 
Carcajou. French Canadians. Quickehatch. English Residents at Hudson's Bay. 

The glutton of the northern parts of Europe, the rossomak of the Russians, has 
attracted the attention of naturalists from the many extravagant stories which 
have been told of its extraordinary voracity, and of its method of procuring relief 
when over-distended with food. Olaus Magnus, who, according to Buffon, is the 
earliest writer that mentions this animal, has collected the popular notions of its 
habits, though without giving full credit to them himself; and his account has 

* Fbancisci Fernandez {PhilUpi Secundi Prim. Medico) Hist. Anim. Novce Hisp., cap. xxxvii. p. 12. 



been copied by subsequent authors^ almost without alteration. ■"' The glutton," 
says he, " (Latbiice gulo) is the most noted of all tlie animals which inhabit the 
north of Sweden, for its insatiable appetite, whence it has obtained the appellation 
of jerf, in the language of that country^ of wilfras, in German, and rosomaka, in 
Sclavonian." '' It is wont, when it has found the carcase of some large beast, to 
eat until its belly is distended like a drum, when it rids itself of its load by squeez- 
ing its body betwixt two trees growing near together, and again returning to its 
repast, soon requires to have recourse to the same means of relief*." This trait 
in its character, however, is treated as a fiction by the traveller Gmelin^ who, in 
journeying through Siberia, had an opportunity of acquiring a knowledge of its 
habits from the hunters. Buffon, on the authority of the reports of preceding 
authors, describes it as a ferocious animal, which approaches man without fear, and 
attacks the larger quadrupeds without hesitation ; but he states that its pace is so 
slow that it can take its prey only by surprise, to accomplish which it employs an 
extraordinary degree of cunning. He terms it the " quadruped-vulture,'' and 
repeats the statement of Tsbrand, that it is accustomed to ascend a tree and lie in 
wait for the elks and rein-deer, dropping on their backs as they pass, and adhering 
so firmly by its claws, that all their efforts to dislodge it are in vain, and they 
speedily fall a prey to its voracity. It is even said to entice the rein-deer to come 
beneath the tree in which it lies concealed, by throwing down the moss which that 
animal is fond of, and that the arctic fox is its jackal or provider f. This 
character seems to be entirely fictitious, and to have partly originated in the 
name of '^glutton" having been given occasionally to the lynxes and sloths. I 
have, however, thought proper to recapitulate it here, previous to stating that it is 
very dissimilar to the habits of the American Wolverene^ which is by many able 
naturalists considered to be the same species. 

The Wokerene, is first noticed by LaHontan, who says ^hat it is very like a badger, 
but is larger and fiercer. He calls it the carcajou, which is the appellation by 
which it is still known to the French Canadian voyagers. Subsequent writers,, 
however, have occasionally, through mistake, given the same name to the 
American Badger, and also to several species o(felis, whence doubts have been 
excited as to the animal actually meant by La Hontan. The European labourers 
in the service of the Hudson's Bay Company term it Quickehatch, which is 
evidently derived from its Cree or Algonquin name of okee-coo-haw-gees, and 

* Glaus Magnus, Genl. Sepien., p. 138. 

■f A similar account has been told of the foxes in Canada driving the moose deer to a spot where the karkajou, 
described as having a long tail, is posted. — Voyage d'Amerique, vol. i, p. 272. An. 1723. 


without being disposed to rely strong-ly on etymological inquiries, I am inclined 
to refer the Carcajou, or, as it is sometimes pronounced Carcayou, of the 
Courmrs des bois, to the same source (p/cee-coo-haw-gew). Many other 
Knisteneaux or Cree terms have been adopted into the vernacular language of 
the Canadian voyagers. 

The Wolverene is a carnivorous animal, which feeds chiefly upon the carcases 
of beasts that have been killed by accident. It has great strength^ and annoys 
the natives by destroying their hoards of provision, and demolishing their marten 
traps. It is so suspicious^ that it will rarely enter a trap itself, but begiiming 
behind, pulls it to pieces^ scatters the logs of which it is built, and then carries 
off the bait. It feeds also on meadow mice, marmots^ and other rodentia, and 
occasionally on disabled quadrupeds of a larger size. I have seen one chasing 
an American hare^ which was at the same time harassed by a snowy owl. It 
resembles the bear in its gait, and is not fleet ; but it is very industrious, and 
no doubt feeds well, as it is generally fat. It is much abroad in the winter^ and 
the track of its journey in a single night may be often traced for many miles. 
From the shortness of its legs^ it makes its way through loose snow with difficulty, 
but when it falls upon the beaten track of a marten trapper, it will pursue it for 
a long way. Mr. Graham observes that '^ the Wolverenes are extremely mis- 
chievous^ and do more damage to the small-fur trade than all the other rapacious 
animals conjointly. They will follow the marten hunter's path round a line of traps 
extending forty, fifty^ or sixty mileS;, and render the whole unserviceable, merely to 
come at the baits, which are generally the head of a partridge or a bit of dried 
venison. They are not fond of the martens themselves, but never fail of tearing 
them in pieces or of burying them in the snow by the side of the path, at a con - 
siderable distance from the trap. Drifts of snow often conceal the repositories 
thus made of the martens from the hunter, in which case they furnish a regale 
to the hungry fox, whose sagacious nostril guides him unerringly to the spot. 
Two or three foxes are often seen following the Wolverene for this purpose *." 

The Wolverene is said to be a great destroyer of beavers, but it must be only 
in the summer, when those industrious animals are at work on land, that it can 
surprise them. An attempt to break open their house in the winter, even sup- 
posing it possible for the claws of a Wolverene to penetrate the thick mud walls 
when frozen as hard as stone, would only have the effect of driving the beavers 
into the water to seek for shelter in their vaults on the borders of the dam. The 

* Graham's MSS., p. 13. 
G 2 


Wolverene, although it is reported to defend itself with boldness and success 
against the attack of other quadrupeds, flies from the face of man, and makes 
but a poor fight with a hunter, who requires no other arms than a stick to kill it. 
It brings forth from two to four young once a year. The cubs are covered 
with a downy fur, of a pale or cream colour. It is found throughout the whole 
northern parts of the American continent, from the coast of Labrador and Davis' 
Straits to the shores of the Pacific and the islands of Alaska. It even visits the 
islands of the Polar sea, its bones having been found in Melville island, nearly in 
latitude 75°. It is not rare in Canada, but the extent of its range to the south- 
ward is not mentioned by American writers. 


This animal has a broad compact head, which is suddenly rounded off on every side to 
form the nose. In the shape of its jaws it resembles a dog. Its ears are low, rounded, 
and much hid by the surrounding fur. The back is arched ; the tail low and bushy ; the 
legs thick and short, and the whole aspect of the animal indicates strength, without much 
activity. The fur bears a great similarity to that of the black bear, but is not so long, nor 
of so much value. It is in general of a dark brown colour, passing in the height of winter 
almost into black. A pale reddish-brown band, more or less distinct in different individuals, 
and sometimes fading into soiled brownish-white, commences behind the shoulder, and run- 
ning along the flanks, turns up on the hip and unites with its fellow on the rump. The 
short tail is thickly covered with long black hair. There are some white markings on the 
throat and between the fore-legs, which are not constant in size or number. The legs are 
brownish-black. This animal places its feet on the ground much in the manner of a bear, 
and imprints a track on the snow or sand, which is often mistaken for that of the bear 
by Europeans on their first arrival in the fur countries. The Indians distinguish the tracks 
at the first glance by the length of the steps. The claws are strong and sharp. 


Length of head and body 
„ tail (vertebrae) 

„ tail with fur 







[14.] 1. MusTELA (PuTORius) VULGARIS. (Lin.) The Common 


Genus. Mustela. Linn. Sub-genus. Putorius. Cuvier. 
Blustela vulgaris. Lin. Gmelin, i., p. 99. 
Mustela nivalis. Lin. Fauna Suec, ii., p. 7- 
Common AVeasel. Pennant, Arctic Zool. i., p. 75- 
Putorius vulgaris. Cuvier, Regne An. 
Blustela vulgaris. Harlan. Fattn., i., p. 6\. 
No. 49. Museum Zool. Society. 

It is stated in Arctic Zoology, that this species inhabits the Hudson's Bay coun- 
tries, Newfoundland, and the United States, as far south as Carolina, becoming- in 
cold districts white in winter, like the Ermine. It is omitted in Godman's account 
of the animals of the United States ; and the Prince of Musignano is of opinion 
that what has been considered as the common weasel in the United States, is 
rtierely the ermine in its summer dress. Both species, however, are indubitably 
inhabitants of the American continent, the ermine extending to the most remote 
arctic districts, and the Weasel as far to the north, at least, as the Saskatchewan 
river. Captain Bayfield presented the Zoological Society with specimens of the 
Common Weasel, killed on the borders of Lake Superior, which agree in all 
respects with the European species, and I obtained similar specimens at Carlton 


The Weasel very much resembles the ermine ; but it is a much smaller animal, has a flatter 
forehead, a narrower and longer nose, and a much shorter tail. Its fur, short and of inferior 
quality, has, in summer, a dull yellowish- brown colour, deepening into chestnut brown on 
the upper part of the head and nose, and at the tip of the tail into blackish-brown. The 
under parts are yellowish-white, as are also the whole of the feet, and the interior of the legs 
and thighs. The entire of the under jaw is pure white, and the white extends half along the 
upper lip, terminating opposite the anterior part of the orbit, or at the posterior row of 
whiskers. The upper part of the cheek, between the white at the angle of the mouth, and the 
orbit, is included in the brown colour of the head. The tail is of the same colour above and 
below. The brown and white colours join by a straight well-defined line on the sides of the 
neck and belly, the latter colour occupying nearly one-third less of the circumference of the 
body than the brown. The claws are smaller and more curved than those of the ermine, and 
the extremities are more slender, but longer in proportion to its size. 



Of an old female killed at Carlton House. 

Length of the head and body 
„ head 

„ tail (vertebrse) . 
„ „ including hair 



. 1 


. 2 




Height of the ear 
From tip of the no 
of the orbit 

Inches. Lines. 


The Weasels of the fur countries become white in winter like the Ermine^ and 
are not distinguished from them by the traders. 

[15.] 2. MusTELA (PuTORius) ERMiNEA. (Llii. Gmel.) 

The Ermine, or Stoat. 

Mustela erminea. Lin. Gmelin., i. p. 98. 

Stoat- weasel. Pennant, Arctic Zool., i., p. 75. 

Mustela erminea. Parry's First Voy., Suppl. clxxxr. Franklin's First Journey, p. 652. Parry's Second 

Voy., App. p. 294. Lyon's Private Journal, pp. 82 — 107- 
Seegoos and Shacooshew. Cree Indians. Terreeya. EsauiMAUX. 

This well-known and very handsome little animal is a common inhabitant of 
America, from its most northern limits to the middle districts of the United States ; 
and many specimens, both in the brown winter and white summer fur, were 
brought home by the late expeditions of discovery. It is a bold animal, and often 
domesticates itself in the habitations of the fur traders, where it may be heard 
the livelong night pursuing the white-footed mouse (Aftis leucopus). Captain 
Lyon mentions his having seen an ermine hunt the footsteps of mice, like a hound 
after a fox, and he also describes their mode of burrowing in the snow. "" I 
now observed," says he, " a curious kind of burrow, made by the ermines, which 
was pushed up in the same manner as the tracks of moles through the earth in 
England. These passages run in a serpentine direction, and near the hole or 
dwelling-place the circles are multiplied, as if to render the approach more 
intricate." The same lively writer relates the manners of a captive ermine as 
follows : — '^ He was a fierce little fellow, and the instant he obtained day-light in 
his new dwelling, he flew at the bars, and shook them with the greatest fury. 


uttering- a very shrill passionate cry, and emitting- the strong- musky smell which I 
formerly noticed. No threats or teasing could induce him to retire to the sleeping- 
place, and whenever he did so of his own accord, the slightest rubbing on the bars 
was sufficient to bring him out to the attack of his tormentors. He soon took food 
from the hand, but not until he had first used every exertion to reach and bite the 
fingers which conveyed it. This boldness gave me great hopes of being able to 
keep my little captive alive through the winter, but he was killed by an accident." 
According to Indian report, the ermine brings forth ten or twelve young at a 
time. In the time of Charlevoix, ermine-skins formed part of the menues pelletries 
exported from Canada ; but their value at present is so little, that they do not 
repay the Hudson's Bay Company the expense of collecting ; hence very few are 
brought to England from that quarter. 


The ermine has a convex nose and forehead, a long slender body, and long cylindrical tail, 
with short and rather stout limbs. Its ears are low and rounded, and go more than half 
round the auditory opening. They are proportionably higher than the ears of the common 
weasel. In the winter time the fur in some specimens is of a pure white colour throughout, 
except on the end of the tail, which, together with a few of the anterior whiskers, are black. 
In other specimens there is a bright primrose-yellow tinge on the belly, the posterior part of 
the back, or the tail. The feet in the winter are clothed with hair on the soles, which projects 
so as to conceal the claws. In the summer the soles are nearly naked, and the fur on the 
upper parts resembles that of the common weasel in colour. 

Of a specimen killed at Fort Franklin, Great Bear Lake. 





LengtTi of tead and body 


Length of head 



„ tail (vertebrae) 

. 4 

Height of ear 



„ ,, including fur 


Distance between orbit and end of nose 


In the neighbourhood of Carlton House there is a variety of a larger size^ having a longer 
tail and longer fore-claws. 


Inches. Lines. 

Length of head and body . . . 12 

,, tail (vertebrae) .... 6 4 

„ „ including fur ... 6 6 


[16.] 3. MusTELA. (PuTORius) visoN. (Lin. Gmel.) 

The Vison- Weasel. 

Otay. Sagard Theodat, Hist, du Can. p. TAQ. An. 1636. 

Foutereau. La Hontan, Voyage., i. p. 81. An. 1703. 

Mink. Kalm, Journ. 

Le vison. Buffon, xiii. p. 308, t. 43. 

Mustela vison. Lin. Gmel, i. p. 94. 

Minx. Lawsox, Carol; p. 121. 

Mustela lutreola ? Forster, Phil. Trans., Ixii. p. 371. 

Minx Otter. Pex nant, Arctic Zool., i. p. 87. 

Vison-Weasel. Ibid. i. p. 78. 

Jackash. Hearne, Journey, p. 376. Graham, MSS., p. 6. 

Mustela vison. Cuvier, Regne An., i. p. 150, t. l.fig. 2. 

Mustela lutreola. Sabine, Franklin's Journ., p. 652. 

JIustela vison et M. lutreocephala. Harlan, Fauna, pp. 63, 65. 

The Mink. Godman, JVat. Hist, i. p. 206. 

Vison Weasel. British Museum. 

Shakwaeshew or Atjackashew. Cree Indians. 

Mink. Hudson's Bay Traders. Foutereau. Canadian Voyagers. 

This animal is very similar to the mustela lutreola of the north of Europe^ in 
form; and the name oimcenk, applied to the latter, is supposed by Pennant, with 
great probability, to have been transferred to the former by some Swedish 
colonists. La Hontan mentions a sort of small amphibious Weasels, under the 
name of Foutereaux, which is the appellation of the minks to this day amongst 
the French Canadian voyagers. Buffon described a specimen from Canada, pre- 
served in the museum of M. Aubry, under the name of Vison, and gives a correct 
figure, except that the form of the tail of the specimen liad been spoiled in 
mounting. Pennant admits the Vison into his list of species, having had merely 
an imperfect view of M. Aubry's specimen through its glass-case, and not recog- 
nising it to be the same with his minx or lesser otter, which he considers as 
identical with the Mustela lutreola. Forster, who received a Vison from Hudson's 
Bay, under the name of mink, expresses a doubt of its being the latter species ; 
and Baron Cuvier has placed the European mink in his sub-genus Putorius, whilst 
he ranges the Vison amongst the true martens. The Hudson's Bay Vison has the 
teeth of the polecats. I have not been able to trace the origin of the term Vison ; 
but a list of the furs exported to France, presented by a Montreal merchant to 
Kalm in 1749, informs us, that '^'^ the visons, or foutereaux, are a kind of martins 
that Hve in the water." There is no animal of the genus mustela inhabiting the 


northern parts of America^ which can be said to Uve in the water but the Vison ; 
the fisher, notwithstanding its name^ being- as much a land animal as the pine- 

The Vison passes much of its time in the water, and when pursued seeks shelter 
in that element in preference to endeavouring to escape by land^ on which it travels 
slowly. It swims and dives well_, and can remain a considerable time under water. 
Its short fur^ forming a smooth glossy coat, its tail exactly like that of an otter, 
and the shortness of its legs^ denote its aquatic habits. It preys upon small fish_, 
fish-spawn, fresh-water mussels, &c., in the summer ; but in the winter, when its 
watery haunts are frozen over, it will hunt mice on land, or travel to a considerable 
distance through the snow in search of a rapid or fall, where there is still some 
open water. Under the article Mustela Canadensis, the mistakes which have 
arisen from the habits of this animal having- been attributed to the Pekan or 
Fisher, are pointed out. The Vison, when irritated, exhales, next to the Skunk, 
the most fetid smell of any animal in the fur countries. The odour resides 
in a fluid secreted by two glands situated at the anus. It is not very timid when 
in the water, and will approach near to a canoe out of curiosity, diving however 
instantly on perceiving the flash of a gun, or any movement from whence it appre- 
hends danger*. It is easily tamed, and is capable of strong attachment. In a 
domestic state it is observed to sleep much in the day, and to be fond of warmth. 
One, which I saw in the possession of a Canadian woman, passed the day in her 
pocket, looking out occasionally when its attention was roused by any unusual 
noise. Like a cat, a tame Vison is easily offended, and will, on a sudden provo- 
cation, bite those who are most kind to it. It is fond of being caressed. The fur 
of the Vison is of little value, and at many of the remote parts their skins are taken 
by the traders from the Indians merely to accommodate the latter, but are afterwards 
burnt, as they will not repay the expense of carriage. The fur, however, is very 
fine, although short, and is likely, in the revolutions of fashion, to become valuable 

VV^e saw the Vison on the banks of Mackenzie's River as far north as latitude 
66°, and there is every reason to believe that it ranges to the mouth of that river, in 
latitude 69°. It is a common animal throughout the whole breadth of the continent 
of America, and we are told by Pennant that it exists as far south as Carolina. 
It has from four to seven young at a time. 

• It resembles a musk-rat in its mode of s-nimming, aud is shot in the water in like manner, by the hunters, as 
La Hontan has remarked. 




Dental formula, incisors |, canines J-Ei, grinders ^ = 34. 

The Vison has an anterior molar less in both jaws than the American pine-martin ; but the 
teeth of the two species differ in shape merely in the antipenultimate or carnivorous tooth of 
the lower jaw having only a slightly salient angle, in place of the interior very minute point, 
■which exists on the lower carnivorous tooth of the martin. Size.— Less than the pine-martin, 
but, from the greater length of its neck, it measures nearly as much from the nose to the tail. 
Shape.— The head is depressed and small; the nose short, flat, and thick; the eyes small, 
and far forward ; the ears low, nearly semicircular, and covered with short fur. The neck is 
long, and the body is long and slender, and has much flexibility. The legs are short, and the 
toes are connected by short hairy webs that are completely concealed by the fur, which is as 
long on the feet both above and below, as on the legs. The claws are nearly straight, sharp, 
and white, and scarcely project beyond the fur. The tail is round and thick at the root, from 
whence it tapers gradually to the tip, exactly resembling the tail of an otter in form. In the 
prepared specimens, the part of the tail next the body is usually too slender, whilst towards 
the tip it is over-stuffed, causing the hairs to stand out, and giving it a bushy appearance con- 
trary to nature. 

The fur is short on the head, and is longest on the posterior part of the body and tail. It 
is of two sorts — a very dense down, and longer and stronger hairs. The tips of the latter 
form a smooth shining coat both on the body and tail, which completely conceals the down. 
The colour of the down is intermediate betwixt brown and gray, being nearly that which 
Werner denominates brocoli-brown. The colour of the surface of the fur is chocolate or 
umber-brown ; a little paler on the head and belly, but deepening on the tail and posterior 
part of the back into blackish-brown. The lower jaw is white, with a narrow brown mark at 
the apex ; and there are occasionally some white markings on the throat, but they are not 
constant either in number or size. The whiskers are of the same colour with the fur, and are 
shorter than the head, but remarkably strong. There are two brown-coloured glands situated 
in the hollow between the tuberosities of the ischium and the tail, which have each a small 
cavity capable of containing a garden pea, and lined by a white, wrinkled membrane. The 
fluid they secrete is very fetid. 


Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of head and body' . .17 i Distance from centre of orbit to end of nose 1 

„ tail, including fur . 8 6 ,, end of nose to auditory opening 2 5 

„ head .... 3 3 Breadth between the ears . . 20 


[17.] 4. MusTELA Martes. (Linn.) The Pine-Martin, 

Genus. Mustek. Linn. Suh-genus. 3Iustela. Cuvier. 

Mustela martes. Linn. Gmelin, vol. i. p. 95. 

Pine-raartin. Pennant's Arctic ZooL, vol. i. p. 77. 

Mustela martes. Sabine, Franklin^s Journ., p. 651. Harlan's Fauna, p. 6/. 

Pine-Martin. Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 200. 

Wawpeestan. Cree Indians. A^^appanow. Monzonies. 

Wawbeechins. Algonuuins. Sable. American Fur-dealers. 

Martin. Hudson's Bay Cobipany's Lists. 

The Pine-martin inhabits the woody districts in the northern parts of America, 
from the Atlantic to the Pacific^ in great numbers, and has been observed to be 
particularly abundant where the trees have been killed by fire, but are still 
standing-. It is very rare, as Hearne has remarked, in the district lying north of 
Churchill river, and east of Great Slave Lake, known by the name of Chepewyan 
or Barren Lands. A similar district, on the Asiatic side of Behring's Straits, 
twenty-five degrees of longitude in breadth, and inhabited by the Tchutski, is 
described by Pennant as equally unfrequented by the Martin, and for the same 
reason, — the want of trees. The limit of its northern range in America is like that 
of the woods, about the sixty-eighth degree of latitude, and it is said to be found 
as far south as New-England. Particular races of Martins, distinguished by the 
fineness and dark colours of their fur, appear to inhabit certain rocky districts. 
The rocky and mountainous but woody district of the Nipigon, on the north side 
of Lake Superior, has long been noted for its black and valuable Martin-skins. 

The Martin preys on mice, hares, and partridges, and in summer, on small birds' 
eggs, &c. A partridge's head, with the feathers, is the best bait for the log traps 
in which this animal is taken. It does not reject carrion, and often destroys the 
hoards of meat and fish laid up by the natives, when they have accidentally left a 
crevice by which it can enter. The Martin, when its retreat is cut off, shows its 
teeth, sets up its hair, arches its back, and makes a hissing noise like a cat. It will 
seize a dog by the nose, and bite so hard, that unless the latter is accustomed to 
the combat, it suffers the little animal to escape. It may be easily tamed, and it 
soon acquires an attachment for its master, but it never becomes docile. Its flesh 
is occasionally eaten, though it is not prized by the Indians. The females are 
smaller than the males. They burrow in the ground, carry their young about six 
weeks, and bring forth from four to seven in a litter about the latter end of April. 
Mr. Graham says that this animal is sometimes troubled with epilepsy. 



The fur of the Martin is fine_, and it is used for trimmings, and also dyed so as 
to imitate sables and other expensive furs. Hence it has always been an 
important article of commerce. Upwards of one hundred thousand skins have 
long been collected annually in the fur countries. 


The form of the Martin is well known. It has a pleasing aspect. Its fur is about an 
inch and a quarter long, of a pale, dull, grayish-brown, or hair-brown colour, from the roots 
upwards, dull yellowish-brown near the summit, and tipped with dark brown or black. The 
lustre of the surface of the fur is considerable. The hair of the tail is longer, coarser, and 
darker, than that of the body. At the tip of the tail its length is three inches, and it has 
a blackish colour. The yellowish-white markings on the throat vary in different individuals. 
The darkest skins are most prized. The fur is in the highest order in the winter time ; in 
the beginning of summer, the dark tips of the hairs drop off, and the general colour of the 
fur is a pale orange-brown, with little lustre. The tips of the ears, at all times lighter than 
the rest of the fur, become very pale in the summer time. The natives remark that the fur 
of the Martin loses all its lustre, and consequently much of its value, upon the falling of the 
first shower of rain for the season. Length of the head and body from eighteen to twenty 

[18.] 5. MusTELA Canadensis. (Lin.) The Pekan, or Fisher. 

Le Pekan. Buff on, vol. xiii. p. 304, t. xlii. Opt. 

Miistela Canadensis. Linn. Gmelin, vol. i. p. 95. 

Fisher. Pennant's Arct. Zool., vol i. p. 82. Hist. Qicadr., vol. ii. p. 238. 

Mustela Pennanti. Erxlebein, 5'ys;., p. 470. 

Wejack. Hearne's Journ. Graham's MSS. 

Fisher or Black-fox. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 25. 

Fisher-weasel, or Pekan. Warden's United Slates. 

Mustela Pennanti. Sabine, Franklhi's First Journ., p. Col . 

Mustela Canadensis. Harlan's Fauna, p. 05. 

Pennant's Martin. Godjian's iVai. Ms^, vol. i. p. 203. 

Otchoek. Cree Indians. Woodshock. Hudson's Bay Company's Sale Lists. 

Wejack, or Fisher. Fur Traders. Pekan. Canadian Voyagers. 

This animal has been described by authors under many appellations. A con- 
siderable number of its skins are annually imported into England by the Hudson's 
Bay Company, and exposed in their sales under the names of Woodshocks or 


Fishers. The latter appellation, whatever its orig-in may have beeii^ has led to 
much confusion in the history of the species,, and has caused the habits of the 
mustela mson to be ascribed to it, Mr. Bartram^ as quoted by Pennant^ is the 
iirst written authority I can find for the narae^, and he distinctly sayS;, " though 
they are not amphibious, and live on all kinds of lesser quadrupeds, they are called 
Fishers." Wejack, the appellation under which Hearne mentions it, is a corruption 
of its Cree or Knisteneaux name, otchoek, and the word Woodshock has a similar 
origin. It is universally termed Pclcan by the Canadian fur-hunters^ which may 
be considered as evidence of its being the animal described by BufFon. Pennant 
had only an imperfect view^ through a glass case, of the Pekan, in a museum at 
Paris*, and does not appear to have recognised it in his fisher. Under the article 
PeJain, in Arctic Zoology, it is said that a skin of that species was sent from Hud- 
son's Bay, by Mr. Graham, labelled with the name o{Jackash. This name is given 
by the traders solely to the mustela vison, and I suspect that, through some 
accident, the label intended for a specimen of the latter animal had been affixed 
to a skin of the common Pine-martin. Hence the formation of a nominal species, 
by Pennant, and much of the confusion that has ensued. Large individuals of the 
common Pine-martin, in their summer dress, have a considerable resemblance to 
the Fisher, and might easily have been mistaken by Pennant for the animal he 
had imperfectly examined at Paris ; and having once named it the Pekan, it 
followed that a true skin of the Fisher, also received from Mr. Graham, was 
described as a distinct species. Pennant actually says that his Pekan agrees in 
dimensions and white marks with the European martin. 

The Pekan is a larger and stronger animal than any variety of the Pine-martin, 
but it has similar manners ; climbing trees with facility, and preying principally 
on mice. It lives in the woods, preferring damp places in the vicinity of water, 
in which respect it differs from the martin, which is generally found in the driest 
spots of tb.e pine forests. The Fisher is said to prey much on frogs in the 
summer season ; but I have been informed that its favourite food is the Canada 
porcupine, which it kills by biting on the belly. It does not seek its food in the 
water, although, like the Pine-martin, it will feed on the hoards of frozen fish laid 
up by the residents. 

It inhabits a wide extent of country, from Pennsylvania to Great Slave Lake, 
being thirty degrees of latitude, and I believe its range extends completely across 
the continent. It is found on the shores of the Pacific. It brings forth, once a 
year, from two to four young. 

* Arctic Zoology, vol. i. p. 78. 



The physiognomy of the Pekan is very different from that of the Martin. When the latter 
is threatened, its features resemble those of an enraged cat, but the expression of the Pekan's 
countenance approaches to that of a dog, although the apparent obliquity of its eyes give it 
a sinister look. The head has a strong, roundish, compact appearance, and contracts sud- 
denly to form the nose, which terminates rather acutely. The ears, low and semicircular, 
are far apart, so as to leave a broad and slightly rounded forehead : they are smaller in 
proportion than the ears of the Pine-martin. The eyes, situated where the head curves in 
to form the nose, appear more oblique than they really are. 

The fur, towards the roots, is fine and downy, and of a grayish or clove-brown colour ; 
yellowish-white upwards, and blackish-brown at the tips, with considerable lustre. It is short 
on the head, but on the body, particidarly on the posterior parts, it is as long, though less fine 
than the fur of the Pine-martin. On the head, shoulders, and fore-part of the back, so much 
of the white is seen that they are quite hoary, but towards the tail the colour deepens into 
blackish-brown. The throat, belly, and legs are brownish-black ; the colour is lighter on 
the sides. There is a white spot very frequently between the fore-legs or on the throat, and 
another between the hind-legs, but these marks are not constant. The tail is clothed with 
long black fur. The chin and nose are tipped with brown. The ears, which are covered 
with short hairs, are pale anteriorly, dark brown behind, and have whitish margins. The 
fore-legs are short and strong. The toes on the fore and hind feet are connected at the 
base by a short web, which is covered on both sides with hair. The claws are strong, curved 
and sharp. 

This animal is nearly twice the ordinary size of the Pine-martin, and has a longer tail ; 
and its fur is harsher, and much less valuable. Its body has the musky odour of the martin, 
but rather stronger. Some thousands of Pekans are annually killed in the Hudson's Bay 
countries, but they are less abundant than the pine-martins. 


Inches. Inches. 

Length of head and body . . .23 

„ head measured with a string from the 

nose over the forehead to the nape of the neck 6^ 
„ tail, including fur . . 16 

Breadth from the tip of one ear to the tip of the other 7 
Height of ear . . . . .1 

Length of fore-leg and foot . . .6 

„ hind-leg, foot, and thigh . . H 

(2. MusTELA Canadensis, varietas alba. White Pekan. 

This variety has the nose and feet brown ; the rest of the fur is white. Its 
dimensions are the same with those of the common variety. 
There is a specimen in the Hudson's Bay Museum, 


[19.] 1. Mephitis Americana, var. Hudsonica. 

The Hudson s Bay Skunk. 

Genus. Mephitis. Cuvier. 

Skuuk Weesel. Pennant's Arctic ZooL, i., p. 85. Hearne, Journei/, p. 377- 

Mephitis Americana. Sabine. Franklin's Journ.jTp. ti53. Zoological Mus. No. 08, 69. 

Seecawk. Cree Indians. 

This animal is prettily ornamented by a full bushy tail_, and broad lateral white 
stripes, which contrast pleasingly with the white colours of the rest of the body. 
Its fur, although long, is coarse, and is but little valued in commerce. The Skunk 
is not an uncommon animal in the district it inhabits, which does not, I believe, 
extend to the north of latitude 56° or 57°. It exists in the rocky and woody parts 
of the country, but is still more frequent in the clumps of wood which skirt the 
sandy plains of the Saskatchewan, I have not been able to ascertain the southern 
range of this variety of Skunk ; and, judging from Kalm's description, there 
appears to be a different one in Canada. The Skunk passes its winter in a hole, 
seldom stirring abroad, and then only for a short distance. It preys on mice, and 
in summer has been observed to feed much on frogs. It has a slow gait, and can be 
overtaken without difficulty, for it makes but a poor attempt to escape, putting its 
trust apparently in its power of discomfiting its pursuers by the discharge of a 
noisome fluid. This fluid, which is of a deep yellow colour, and is contained in a 
small bag placed at the root of the tail, emits one of the most powerful stenches in 
nature ; and so durable, that the spot where a Skunk has been killed will retain the 
taint for many days. Mr. Graham says, that he knew several Indians who lost 
their eye-sight in consequence of inflammation, produced by this fluid having been 
thrown into them by the animal, which has the power of ejecting it to the distance of 
upwards of four feet. I have known a dead Skunk, thrown over the stockades of a 
trading post, produce instant nausea in several women in a house with closed doors 
upwards of a hundred yards distant. The odour has some resemblance to that of 
garlic, although much more disagreeable. One may, however, soon become 
familiarised with it : for, notwithstanding the disgust it produces at first, I have 
managed to skin a couple of recent specimens by recurring to the task at intervals. 
When care is taken not to soil the carcase with any of the strong-smelling fluid. 


the meat is considered by the natives to be excellent food. It breeds once a year, 
and has from six to ten young" at a time. A. considerable number of animals of the 
genus Mephitis, natives of America, resembling- each other strongly in form and 
size, but differing- in the number and variety of their stripes and marking's, have 
been described by authors as so many distinct species. Baion Cuvier thinks that 
the present state of our knowledge of these animals does not warrant us in con- 
sidering them otherwise than as varieties of a single species, and of these varieties 
he enumerates fifteen*. I have now seen a considerable number of specimens, 
killed to the north of the Great Lakes, none of which presented any important 
deviation in their markings from the one principally referred to in the description 
which follows; and M. Desmarest remarks, that " the varieties (if they are to be 
considered as such, and not as species) are, for the most part, sufficiently uniform 
in the same district of country in the disposition of their stripes." The Hudson 
Bay variety, however, comes nearest to the description of the Chinche of BufFon ; 
ihe Viterra Mephitis oi GmeYiw, \y\\\c\\ is said to be an inhabitant of Chili. The 
FisJcatta, or Skunk, of Kalra, which inhabits Canada, has a white dorsal line in 
addition to two lateral onesf. 


The Skunk is low on its legs, with a broad fleshy body, wide forehead, and the general 
aspect rather of a wolverene than of a martin ; — eyes small ; ears, short and round. A nar- 
row white mcEsial line runs from the tip of the nose to the occiput, where it dilates into a 
broad white mark. It is again narrowed, and continues so until it passes the shoulders, when 
it forks, the branches running along the sides, and becoming much broader as they recede 
from each other. They approach posteriorly, and unite on the rump, becoming at the same 
time narrower. In some few specimens the white stripes do not unite behind, but disappear 
on the flanks. The black dorsal space included by the stripes is egg-shaped, the narrow end 
of which is towards the shoulders. The sides of the head and all the vinder parts are black. 
The hair on the body is long. The tail is covered with very long hair, and has generally two 
broad longitudinal white stripes above on a black ground. Sometimes the black and white 
colours of the tail are irregularly mixed. Its under surface is black. The claws on the fore- 
feet are very strong and long, being fitted for digging, and very unlike those of the martins. 

* Ossemens fossiles, 

■f Tlie earliest account of the Canada Skunk that I have met with, is by Sagard : — " Les enfans dii diable," dit il, 
" que les Hurons appelle Scaiiffaresse, et le commun de IMontagnais, Babougi Blanitou, ou Ouinesque, est une beste 
fort puante de la grandeur d'uu chat ou d'une jeune renard, mais elle a la teste un pen moins aigue, et la peau couverte 
d'un gros poil rude et enfunie, et sa grosse queue retroussee de mesme, elle se cache en hyver sous la neige, et ne sort 
point qu'au commencement de la lune du mois de Blars laquelle les Jlontagnais nomment Ouiniscon pismi, qui signifie 
la Lime de la Ouinesque. Cet animal, outre qu'il est defort mauvaise odeur, est tres malicieux, et d'uii laid regard."— 
F. G.^Sagard Theodat, Hist, du Canada, p. 748. 


[20.] 1; LuTRA Canadensis. (Sabine.) The Canada Otter. 

Genus. Lutra. Ray. Cuvier. 

Loutre de Canada. Buffon, vol. xiii. p. 32C. t. 44. 

Common Otter. Pennant, ^to^ Zoo/., vol. i. p. 86. 

Land Otter. Warden, United States, vol. i. p. 20G. 

Lutra Canadensis. Sabine, Franklin's Jotirn., p. G53. 

Lutra Brasiliensis. Harlan, Fauna, p. 72. 

The American Otter. God."»ian, iVa/. //is<., vol. i. p. 222. 

Neekeek. Cree Indians. Capucca. Inhabitants of Nootka. 

BufFon describes an Otter from Canada as diffeiing from the European species 
merely in its greater size, and the colour of its fur. Ray had previously enume- 
rated the Saricoviemie of La Plata, or the Carigueibeju (Sarigoviou) of Brasil^ as a 
species of his genus Intra, distinct from LiUtra vulgaris. Pennant^ in his History of 
Quadrupeds^ following Linnaeus and Brisson_, refers the Brasilian Otter to the Sea 
Otter^ of the following article ; but^ in his Arctic Zoology, he describes the 
Brasilian as a peculiar species confined to the warm parts of America ; whilst he 
considers the Otter of the northern rivers as identified with the Common Otter of 
Europe. Baron Cuvier again unites the Canada and Brasil Otters under the name 
of l' outre d'Amerique ; but the character ascribed by Margrave to the lutra Bra- 
siliensis, of its tail and feet being of the same length, will not by any means apply 
to the Canada Otter, and I have therefore followed Mr. Sabine, in considering the 
subject of this article to be a species peculiar to the northern districts of America. 
M. Frederick Cuvier not only separates the Otter of Canada from that of South 
America, but also describes a distinct species inhabiting an intermediate disti'ict 
{Lutra lataxina.)* 

The Canada Otter resembles the European species in its habits and food. In 
the winter season, it frequents rapids and falls, to have the advantage of open water ; 
and when its usual haunts are frozen over, it will travel to a great distance through 
the snow, in search of a rapid that has resisted the severity of the weather. If 
seen, and pursued by hunters on these journies, it will throw itself forward on 
its belly, and slide through the snow for several yards, leaving a deep furrow 
behind it. This movement is repeated with so much rapidity, that even a swift 

* Diet, des Sciences Nat., xxvii. 


runner on snow-shoes has much trouble in overtaking it. It also doubles on its 
track with much cunning-, and dives under the snow to elude its pursuers. When 
closely pressed, it will turn and defend itself with great obstinacy. In the spring- 
of 1826, at Great Bear Lake, the Otters frequently robbed our nets, which were 
set under the ice, at the distance of a few yards from a piece of open water. They 
generally carried off the heads of the fish, and left the bodies sticking in the net. 

The Canada Otter has one litter annually about the middle of April, of from 
one to three young. It inhabits the Mackenzie and other rivers nearly to the 
Arctic sea ; and there appears to be no difference betwixt the skins obtained 
on the shores of the Pacific, or in the neighbourhood of Hudson's Bay. Seven or 
eight thousand are imported annually into England. 


The Canada Otter may be distinguished from the European species, by the fur of its belly 
being of the same shining brown colour with that of the back. It is a much larger animal, 
and has, in proportion, a shorter tail than the European one. Its fur very much resembles 
that of the beaver, having the same general colours, and, like it, consisting of a very fine 
waved and shining down, intermixed with longer and coarser hairs. Hearne remarks, that the 
colour and quality of its fur varies much with the season. In summer, when the hair is very 
short, it is almost black ; but, as the winter advances, it turns to a beautiful reddish-brown, 
except a spot under the chin, which is gray. Otter-fur is nearly of the same fineness with 
beaver-wool, but being shorter, and not so well adapted for making felt, its price fluctuates 
more with the fashion. 

The length of the Canada Otter is about five feet, including the tail, which measures 
eighteen inches. 


[21.] 2. LuTRA (Enhydra) marina. (Erxlebein.) The Sea Otter^ 

Genus. Lutra. Ray. Suh-genus. Enhydra. Fleming. 

Sea-Beaver. Khascheninikoff, Hist. Kamsk. (Grieve's Trans.), p. 131. An. 1764. 

Lutra Marina. Stelleb, iV^ou. Cora. I'e^rop., vol. xi. p. 367, t.xvi. Erxlebein, %«<. .4/1.1777. 

Sea-Otter. Cook's Third Voy., vol. ii. p. 295. An. 1784. Pennant's Arctic Zooh, vol. i> p. 88. An. 1784. 

Meares' Foy., pp. 241-260. ^«. 1790. Menzies, P/jt/. Traw., p. 385. ^ra. 1796. 
Enhydra Marina. Fleming's PAjV. Zoo/., vol. ii. p. 187. An. 1822. 
Lutra Marina. Harlan. Fauna, p. 73. 
The Sea Otter. Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 228. 
Kalan. Kamskatdales. 

The Sea Otter inhabits the northern parts of the Pacific, from Kamskatcha to 
the Yellow Sea on the Asiatic side, and from Alaska to California on the 
American coast. It seems to have more the manners of a seal than of the 
Land Otter. It frequents rocks washed by the sea, and brings forth on land, but 
resides mostly in the water, and is occasionally seen very remote from the shore, 
sometimes, according- to Pennant, more than a hundred leagues. The fur of the 
Sea Otter being very handsome, was much esteemed by the Chinese, and, until 
the market at Canton was overstocked, prime skins brought extraordinary high 
prices. The trade for a considerable period was in the hands of the Russians, 
who soon after the discovery of the north-west coast of America, by Beering and 
Tschirikow, sent mercantile expeditions thither. Captain Cook's third voyage 
drew the attention of English speculators to that quarter, and vessels were 
freighted both by private adventurers and by the India Company, for the purpose 
of collecting furs on the American coast and conveying them to Canton. Pennant, 
alluding to this traffic, says, " what a profitable trade (with China) might not a 
colony carry on, were it possible to penetrate to that part of America by means 
of rivers and lakes." The event that Pennant wished for soon took place. Sir 
Alexander Mackenzie having traversed the continent of America, and gained the 
coast of the Pacific, his partners in trade followed up his success, by establishing 
fur posts in New Caledonia, and a direct commerce with China ; but the influx of 
furs into that market soon reduced their price. 


[E.xtracted from Meares' Voyage.'\ 

The Sea Otter is furnished with a formidable set of teeth ; its fore-paws are hke those of 
the River Otter, but of much larger size, and greater strength ; its hind-feet are skirted with a 
membrane, on which, as on the fore-feet, there grows a thick and coarse hair. The fur varies 

I 2 


in beauty according to the age of the animal. The young cubs, of a few months old, are 
covered with a long, coarse, white hair, which protects the fine down that lies beneath it. 
The natives often pluck off this coarse hair, when the lower fur appears like velvet, of a 
beautiful brown colour. As they increase in size, the long hair falls off, and the fur becomes 
blackish, but still remains short. When the animal is full grown, it becomes of a jet black, 
and increases in beauty ; the fur then thickens, and is thinly sprinkled with white hairs. 
When they are past the age of perfection, and verge towards old age, their skin changes 
into a dark brown, dingy colour, and of course diminishes in value. The skins of those killed 
in the winter are of a more beautiful black, and in every respect more perfect than those 
which are taken in the summer and autumn. The male Otter is beyond all comparison more 
beautiful than the female, and is distinguished by the superior jetty colour, as well as velvety 
appearance of his skin ; whereas the head, throat and belly of the female, are not only covered 
with fur that is white, but which is also of a veiy coarse texture. The skins in the highest 
estimation are those Avhich have the belly and throat plentifully interspersed with a kind of 
brilliant silver hairs, while the body is covered with a thick black fur, of extreme fineness, 
and a silky gloss*. 

[22.] 1. Canis lupus, occidentalis. The American Wolf. 

Genus. Canis. Linn. 

Missouri Wolf. Lewis and Clahk, vol. i. p. 283. 

Canis Lupus. Sabine, Franklin's Journ., p. 6oi. SxBiyi: (^Cavt.), Parry's roy., Stipp!., dxxxv. 

RicHAUDSON, Parry^s Second Voy., App., p. 290. 
Wolf. IjY OS's Private Journal, pp. 151, 339, &c. 

The Common Wolves of the Old and New World have been generally 
supposed to be the same species — the Canis liqms of Linnaeus. The American 
naturalists have^ indeed, described some of the northern kinds of Wolf as distinct ; 
but it never seems to have been doubted that a Wolf, possessing all the 
characters of the European Wolf, exists within the limits of the United States. 

* Not having been on the coasts where the Sea Otter is produced, I can add nothing to its history from my own 
• iljservation, and I have preferred taking the description of the fur from one who was engaged in the trade, to extract- 
ing a scientific account of the animal from systematic works, which are in the hands of every naturalist. In the 
narrative of Captain Cook's voyage, it is mentioned that a young Sea Otter brought on board had six lower incisors. 
Steller, and all succeeding systematic writers, describe it as having six incisors above and four below. Probably two 
of tlie lower ones drop out before the animal becomes adult. 



The Wolf to which these characters have been ascribed^, seems to be the "large 
brown Wolf" of Lewis and Clark, and, according to them, inhabits not only the 
Atlantic countries, but also the borders of the Pacific and the mountains which 
approach the Columbia river, between the Great Falls and rapids, but is not found 
on the Missouri to the westward of the Platte. I have seen none of these Brown 
Wolves ; but if their resemblance is so close to the European Wolf as Major Smith* 
states it to be, I have no hesitation in saying that they differ decidedly from the 
Wolf which inhabits the countries north of Canada. While attached to the late 
expeditions, I passed through thirty degrees of latitude and upwards of fifty of 
longitude on the American continent, and in the course of seven years travelled 
upwards of twenty thousand miles^ during the whole of which time I had almost 
daily opportunities of observing the form and manners of the Wolves, but I saw 
none which had the gaunt appearance, the comparatively long jaw and tapering 
nose^ the high ears^ long legs, slender loins, and narrow feet of the Pyrenean Wolf. 
In some of the districts which we traversed, the Wolves were very numerous, 
and varied greatly in the colour of their fur, some being white, others totally 
black, but the greater number were mixed gray and white, more or less tinged 
in parts with brown. These variations of colour, however, not being attended 
with any differences of form, nor peculiarity of habits, I deem them to be no more 
characteristic of proper species or even permanent varieties than colour would be 
in the domestic dog. All the northern Wolves, whatever their colours are, have 
certain characters in common wherein they differ from the European race ; and the 
Indian report of the extreme variations of colour being occasionally observed in 
Wolves of the same litter, strengthens my opinions. 


The American Wolf of the northern districts is covered with long and comparatively fine fur, 
mixed with a large quantity of shorter woolly hair, and it has a more robust form than the 
European Wolf. Its muzzle is thicker and more obtuse, its head larger and rounder, and there 
is a sensible depression at the union of the nose and forehead. Its more arched forehead is 
comparatively broad, the space between the ears being greater than their height. The ears are 
shorter, wider at the base, and more acute, and have, consequently, a more conical form, whilst 
the greater length of the hair on the side of the neck of this Wolf makes them appear even 
shorter than they are. Its neck, covered with a bushy fur, appears short and thick. Its legs 
are rather short, its feet broad, with thick toes, and its tail is bushy, like the brush of a fox. 

The European Wolf, on the contrary, has a coarser fur, with less of the soft wool inter- 
mixed with it. Its head is narrower, and tapers gradually to form the nose, which is pro- 

* Griffith's Animal Kingdom, vol. li. p. 348. 



duced on the same plane with the forehead. Its ears are higher and somewhat nearer to each 
other ; their length exceeds the distance between the auditory opening and the eye. Its loins 
are more slender, its legs longer, feet narrower, and its tail is more thinly clothed with fur. 
The shorter ears, broader forehead, and thicker muzzle of the American Wolf, with the 
bushiness of the hair behind the cheek, give it a physiognomy more like the social visage of 
an Esquimaux dog than the sneaking aspect of an European Wolf. BufTon enumerates black, 
tawny-gray and white, as the colours exhibited by the fur of the European Wolves. In the 
American northern Wolves the gray colour predominates, and there is very little of the 
tawny hue. The general arrangement of the patches of colour is, however, nearly the same 
in both races. 

Notwithstanding the above enumeration of the pecuharities of the American 
Wolf, I do not mean to assert that the differences existing- between it and its 
European congener are sufficiently permanent to constitute them, in the eye of the 
naturalist, distinct species. The same kind of differences may be traced between 
the foxes and native races of the domestic dog of the new world and those of the 
old ; the former possessing finer, denser, and longer fur, and broader feet, well 
calculated for running on the snow. These remarks have been elicited by a com- 
parison of live specimens of American and Pyrenean Wolves ; but I have not 
had an opportunity of ascertaining whether the Lapland and Siberian Wolves, 
inhabiting a similar climate with the American ones, have similar peculiarities 
of form, or whether they differ in physiognomy from the Wolf of the south of 
Europe. I have, therefore, in the present state of our knowledge, considered it 
unadvisable to designate the northern Wolf of America by a distinct specific 
appellation, lest I should unnecessarily add to the list of synonyms, which have 
already overburthened the science of Zoology. The word occidentalis, which I 
have affixed to the Linnean name of Canis lupus, is to be considered as merely 
marking the geographical position of the peculiar race of Wolf which forms the 
subject of this article. I have avoided adopting, as a specific name, any of the 
appellations founded on colour, because they could not with propriety be used to 
denote more than casual varieties of a species, in which the individuals shew such a 
variety in their markings. 

Wolves are found in greater or less abundance in different districts, but they 
may be said to be very common throughout the northern regions ; their foot- 
marks may be seen by the side of every stream, and a traveller can rarely pass 
a night in these wilds without hearing them howling around him. They are very 
numerous on the sandy plains which, lyuig to the eastward of the Rocky Mountains, 
extend from the sources of the Peace and Saskatchewan rivers towards the 


Missouri. There bands of them hang on the skirts of the buffalo herds, and prey 
upon the sick and strag-gling- calves. They do not, under ordinary circumstances, 
venture to attack the full-grown animal : for the hunters informed me that they 
often see wolves walking through a herd of bulls without exciting the least alarm ; 
and the marksmen, when they crawl towards a buffalo for the purpose of shooting it, 
occasionally wear a cap with two ears in imitation of the head of a wolf, knowing 
from experience that they will be suffered to approach nearer in that guise. On 
the Barren-grounds through which the Coppermine River flows, I had more than 
once an opportunity of seeing a single wolf in close pursuit of a rein-deer ; and I 
witnessed a chace on Point Lake when covered with ice, which terminated in a fine 
buck rein-deer being overtaken by a large white wolf, and disabled by a bite in 
the flank. An Indian, who was concealed on the borders of the lake, ran in and 
cut the deer's throat with his knife, the wolf at once relinquishing his prey, and 
sneaking off. In the chase the poor deer urged its flight by great bounds, which for 
a time exceeded the speed of the wolf; but it stopped so frequently to gaze on its 
relentless enemy, that the latter, toiling on at a ^'long gallop,"* with its tongue 
lolling out of its mouth, gradually came up. After each hasty look, the poor deer 
redoubled its efforts to escape ; but either exhausted by fatigue, or enervated by fear, 
it became, just before it was overtaken, scarcely able to keep its feet. The Wolves 
destroy many foxes, which they easily run down if they perceive them on a plain at 
any distance from their hiding places. In January, 1827, a wolf was seen to 
catch an Arctic fox within sight of Fort Franklin, and although immediately pursued 
by hunters on snow-shoes, it bore off its prey in its mouth without any apparent 
diminution of its speed f. The buffalo-hunters would be unable to preserve the 

• Lord Byron's description of a chase by Wolves is so cliaracteristic, tliat no apology is requisite for the insertion of 
the passage from whence this expression is borrowed : — 

" We rustled through the leaves like wind, 
Left shrubs and trees and wolves behind ; 
By night I heard them on the track, 
Their troop came hard upon our back. 
With their long gallop which can tire 
The hound's deep note and hunter's fire : 
Where'er we flew they followed on, 
Nor left us with the morning sun ; 
Behind I saw them scarce a rood, 
At day-break winding through the wood ; 
And through the night had heard their feet. 
Their stealing, rustling step repeat." 

•\- The same wolf continued for some days to prowl in the vicinity of the Fort, and even stole fish from a sledge, 
which two dogs were accustomed to draw home from the nets without a driver. As this kind of depredation could not 
be permitted to go on, the wolf was waylaid and killed. It proved to be a female, which accounted for the sledge-dogs 
not having been molested. 


g-ame they kill from the wolves^ if the latter were not as fearful as they are rapa- 
cious. The simple precaution of tying a handkerchief to a branchy or of blowing 
up a bladder, and hanging- it so as to wave in the wind^ is sufficient to keep herds 
of Wolves at a distance *. At times^ however, they are impelled by hunger to be 
more venturous, and they have been known to steal provisions from under a man's 
head in the night, and to come into a traveller's bivouac, and carry off some of 
his dogs. During our residence at Cumberland House in 1820, a wolf, which 
had been prowling round the Fort, and was wounded by a musket-ball and driven 
off, returned after it became dark, whilst the blood was still flowing from its 
wound, and cairied off a dog from amongst fifty others, that howled piteously, 
but had not courage to unite in an attack on their enemy f. I was told of a 
poor Indian woman who was strangled by a Wolf, while her husband, who 
saw the attack, was hastening to her assistance ; but this was the only instance of 
their destroying human life that came to my knowledge. As the winter advances 
and the snow becomes deep, the wolves being no longer able to hunt with success, 
suffer from hunger, and in severe seasons many die. In the spring of 1826 a large 
gray Wolf was driven by hunger to prowl amongst the Indian huts which were 
erected in the immediate vicinity of Fort Franklin, but not being successful in 
picking up aught to eat, it was found a few days afterwards lying dead on the snow 
near the Fort. Its extreme emaciation and the emptiness of its intestines shewed 
clearly that it died from inanition. The skin and cranium were brought to 
England, and presented to the Museum of the Edinburgh University ; and a 
drawing from it is to be engraved for Mr. Wilson's beautiful Illustrations of 

The American Wolf burrovrs, and brings forth its young in earths with several 
outlets like those of a fox. I saw some of their burrows on the plains of the 
Saskatchewan, and also on the banks of the Coppermine River. The number of 
young in a litter varies from four or five to eight or nine. In Captain Parry's and 
Captain Franklin's narratives, instances are recorded of the female Wolves asso- 
ciating with the domestic dog ; and we were informed that the Indians endeavour 
to improve their sledge-dogs by crossing the breed with wolves. The resem- 
blance between the northern wolves and the domestic dog of the Indians is so 
great, that the size and strength of the Wolf seems to be the only difference. I 

• The Wolves in the north of Europe are equally cautious. " To prevent the Wolves from destroying the rein- 
deer, the Laplanders tie them to some tree, and it seldom happens that they are attacked in that situation : for the 
Wolf, being a suspicious animal, is afraid that there should be some snare laid for him, and that this is employed for a 
bait to draw him thither." — Regnard. 

\ The track in the snow shewed that it was the wounded Wolf which had returned. 


have more than once mistaken a band of wolves for the dogs of a party of Indians; 
and the howl of the animals of both species is prolonged so exactly in the same 
key, that even the practised ear of an Indian fails at times to discriminate them. 

The following notices^ by Captain Lyons, of the wolves of Melville Peninsula^ 
are good illustrations of the strength and habits of the northern wolves in 
general : — " A fine dog was lost in the afternoon. It had strayed to the hum- 
mocks ahead without its master^ and Mr. Elder^ who was near to the spot, saw five 
wolves rush at_, attack, and devour it in an incredibly short space of time : before 
he could reach the place the carcase was torn in pieces^ and he found only the 
lower part of one leg. The boldness of the wolves was altogether astonishing^ as 
they were almost constantly seen amongst the hummocks^ or lying quietly at no 
great distance in wait for dogs. From all we observed^ I have no reason to 
suppose that they would attack a single unarmed man, both English and Esqui- 
maux frequently passing them without a stick in their hands ; the animals, however, 
exhibited no symptoms of fear, but rather a kind of tacit agreement not to be the 
beginners of a quarrel, even though they might have been certain of proving 
victorious." — " The wolves had now grown so bold as to come alongside, and on 
this night they broke into a snow -hut, in which a. couple of newly purchased 
Esquimaux dogs were confined, and carried them off, but not without som.e 
difficulty, for in the day-light we found even the ceiling of the hut sprinkled with 
blood and hair. When the alarm was given, and the wolves were fired at, one of 
them was observed carrying a dead dog in his mouth, clear of the ground, at a 
canter, notwithstanding the animal was of his own weight. Before morning they 
tore a quantity of canvass off the observatory, and devoured it." — " The Esqui- 
maux wolf-trap is made of strong slabs of ice, long and narrow ; so that a fox can 
with difficulty turn himself in it, but a wolf must actually remain in the position in 
which he is taken. The door is a heavy portcullis of ice, sliding in two well secured 
groves of the same substance, and is kept up by a line, which, passing over the top 
of the trap, is carried through a hole at the furthest extremity : to the end of the 
line is fastened a small hoop of whalebone, and to this any kind of flesh-bait is 
attached. From the slab which terminates the trap, a projection of ice, or a peg 
of wood or bone, points inwards near the bottom, and under this the hoop is lightly 
hooked ; the slightest pull at the bait liberates it, the door falls in an instant, and 
the wolf is speared where he lies." 


Var. A. Lupus griseus. Common Gray Wolf. 

Grey Wolf. Cook's Third Voyage, vol. ii. p. 293. Lewis and Clarke, vol. i. p. 206, 283. 

Common Gray Wolf. Schoolctiaft's Travels, p. 285. 

Canis lupus — griseus. Sabine, Franklin's Voy., p. 654. 

Canis lupus. Parry's First, Second, and Third Voyages. 

Mahaygan. Cree Indians, Yes. Chepewyans. 

Amarok. EsaruiAUX. 

Pennant^ in his Arctic Zoology^ remarks^ that '^ the wolves towards Hudson's 
Bay are of different colours — grey and white^ and some black and white ; the 
black hairs being mixed with the white chiefly along the back. In Canada they 
have been found entirely white." Lewis and Clark also say, '^'the large wolves 
of the Missouri are lower, shorter in the legs, and thicker than the Atlantic Wolf; 
their colour, which is not affected by the seasons, is of every variety of shade, from 
a gray or blackish-brown to a cream-coloured white." The gray, or rather the 
gray and white variety, is the Common Wolf from Lake Superior to the northern 
extremity of the Continent, and in the islands beyond it. It has been seen on the 
Atlantic coast from Nootka northwards. 

The following description, by Mr. Sabine, of a specimen procured at Cumberland 
House, in latitude 54°, and deposited by Captain Franklin in the British Museum, 
will make the reader acquainted with its appearance : — 


" It is very dissimilar in colour to the usual state of the (European) wolf, and is of a much 
greater size. The teeth are remarkably strong and large ; the ears sharp and erect, thickly 
clothed with dark-brown hair, tipped with gray ; above and below on the neck the hair is 
thick and bushy ; the whole of the body is covered with a mixture of long gray and black 
hairs, having some few white ones intermixed on the back ; the sides and belly are dark gray ; 
the tail is bushy, gray tipped with brown ; the legs are strong, covered with dark-brown hair ; 
claws strong, short, and arched." 

A specimen procured at Carlton House on the same river, and now in the Museum of the 
Zoological Society*, has the face, cheeks, throat, belly, hips, and tail, white, except a small 
part of the latter, adjoining the rump, where it is blackish. On the back and sides there 
is an intermixture of long black and Avhite hairs, which, with the grayish wool that partially 

* No, 33. Catalogite of the Museum. 



appears, gives a general grayish hue to these parts, deepening along the dorsal line into black. 
The hair on the back part of the cheeks is very bushy. In other individuals which I have 
seen, the mixture of dark-gray with black and brown forms distinct patches on an almost 
white ground. There is generally a darker line along the spine. 

The Gray Wolf differs in size in different districts^ and even in the same dis- 
trict individuals differing much in height and strength^ but (as far as one can judge 
from their teeth) of nearly equal age, are to be found. The wolves of the desert 
country lying to the north of Great Slave Lake^ and much frequented by rein- 
deer, are of great dimensions. Farther north again^ in the islands of the Polar 
sea, visited by Captain Parry^ they were generally smaller, their average height 
in that quarter being only about twenty-seven inches. Captain Sabine states those 
of Melville Island to be as big as a full-sized setter-dog. 

Of the prepared skin of a Gray Wolf killed at Cumberland House. 
Feet. Inches. 
Length of the head and body . . 4 I Height to the top of the shoulder 

tail . . . 1 2 

Feet. Inches. 

Of a Gray AVolf starved to death at Fort Franklin, April 1821, (measured before it was skinned.) 

Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches. 

Length of head and body . . .4 2 haunches, the feet being fiat on the ground, 

„ tail (vertebrae) . . .1 7 and the fur of the back pressed down . 2 8 

„ tail, including fur . .2 2 Height with the fur of the back in its natural 
Height at the fore-shoulder, and also at the rough state 3 

Of a specimen as mounted in the Zoological Museum, which was procured at Carlton House. 

Length of head and body . . 
„ tail (vertebrs) 

„ tail, including the hair 

Height of the back, — fur pressed down 







Height of the back, — fur rough 

. 2 




Distance from top of the nose to the orbit 




Height of the [ear, measured on the inner 










Var. B. Lupus albus. White Wolf. 

White Wolf. Lewis AND Clark, vol. i. p. 107 ; vol. iii. p. 263. 

Canis lupus — albus. Sabine. Franklin's Journ.,-^.'(ib5. 

White Wolf. IcoNEs. Fkanklin's Journ., p, 312. Lyon's Private Journ., p. 297. 

Wolves totally white are not uncommon in the most northern parts of America, 
particularly in districts nearly destitute of wood*. They are occasionally seen 
also on the plains of the Missouri. A Yellow Wolf, mentioned by Lewis and 
Clark, (vol. i. p. 40) may be perhaps classed with the white variety. 


The White Wolf figured in Captain Frankhn's narrative above referred to, was killed near 
Fort Enterprise, in February, 1821. Its ears were short and erect. Its fur was long and 
of a yellowish-white colour over the whole body, the nose alone having a slight tinge of gray. 

Its Dimensions were as follows ; 

Length of head and body . , 

„ tail . . . 

Height at both fore and hind quarters 
Girth behind the fore-legs 







Girth before the hind legs 




Length'of fore-leg and foot with toe-nails 





„ hind ditto ditto ditto 





Var. C. Lupus Sticte. Pie(ji Wolf. 

Wolves having black colours instead of gray, distributed in large patches on 
the sideSj are sometimes seen in the fur countries, associated with the Common 
Gray Wolves. On the banks of the Mackenzie, I saw five young wolves leaping 
and tumbling over each other, with all the playfulness of the puppies of the 
domestic dog, and it is not improbable that they were all of one litter. One of 
them was pied, another entirely black, and the rest shewed the common gray 
colours. I was unable to procure a specimen of the Pied Wolf. 

• Bluller informs us that white wolves are found on the Jenisei ; and Regnard says that the Lapland wolves " are 
almost all of a whitish-gray colour ; tliere are some of them while." It is desirable tliat these Siberian or Lapland 
wolves should ba compared with the Pyrenean races. 



Var. D. Lupus nubilus. The Dusky Wolf. 

Canis nubilus. Say. Long^s Exped., vol. i. p. 333. ' 
Dusky Wolf. Godman's Nat. Hist, vol. i. p. 265. 

Plate hi. 

Tlie Dusky Wolf differs little from the pure black variety which follows. It was 
considered by Mr. Say to be a distinct species, on account of its colour, a different 
physiognomy from that of the Common Red Wolf, its more robust form, and its 
shorter ears ; but, with the exception of colour, these characters are common to all 
the varieties of the northern American Wolf, and are in fact some of the peculiari- 
ties that distinguish them from Pyrenean wolves. 


Mr. Say's specimen had " a dusky colour ; the hair cinereous at the base, then brownish- 
black, then gray, then black ; the gray of the hairs combining with the black tips to produce 
a mottled appearance ; the gray predominating on the sides. Ears short, deep brownish- 
black, with a patch of gray hair within. The under parts dusky ferruginous, grayish with 
long hairs between the thighs, and with a large white spot on the breast ; the ferruginous 
colour very much narrowed on the neck, but dilated on the lower part of the cheeks ; 
legs brownish-black, with a slight admixture of gray hairs, excepting on the anterior edge of 
the hind thighs, and the lower edgings of the toes, where the gray predominated ; the tail was 
short, fusiform, a little tinged with ferruginous, black above, near the base, and at the tip ; 
the top of the trunk hardly attaining to the os calcis ; the longer hairs of the back, par- 
ticularly over the shoulders, resembled a short, sparse mane." 


Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches. 

Leugtli from anterior canthus of the eye to 

Length of bead and body . ... 4 3| 

,, the trunk of the tail ... 1 1 

„ ear from anterior angle to tlie tip 3| 
,, from the anterior angle of tlie ear 

to the posterior canthus of the eye .0 4 a 

the middle of the tip of the nose . . 5^ 

Distance between the anterior angles of the 

ears, rather more than , . . 3 

The Dusky Wolf, figured in this work, was killed at Fort Resolution on Great 
Slave Lake, in latitude 61°, and is now preserved in the Museum of the Zoological 



It is covered with long hairs, intermixed with a thick woolly down, more or less conspicuous 
on different parts of the body. The long hairs are mostly black, but there are a few white 
ones interspersed. The wool or down is of a dull yellowish-gray colour ; least of it is seen on 
the back, which has consequently nearly a black colour ; the fur covering the spine is long, 
blackish towards the roots, and shining black at the tips ; the sides are dusky-gray, many of 
the long hairs having apparently fallen off; the belly is blacker. The anterior parts of the 
legs are hoary from an intimate intermixture of black and white hairs, in which the former 
predominate. The posterior surfaces of the legs are covered with long, white and gray fur. 
The tail is black, with a few white hairs, and has a black tip. The wool on the tail is of the 
same colour with that on the body, but it is not visible until the long hairs are turned aside. 
The chin and extremity of the upper lip are white, and there are many long white hairs on 
the cheek. The feet are very hairy, the hair on the soles projecting beyond the claws, 


Of the specimen after it was mounted. 





Length of head and body . 

. 4 


Distance between the ears . . 


„ tail (vertebraj) . 

. 1 


„ from the top of the nose to the 

„ tail, with the fur 


. 1 


anterior part of the orbit . 


Height, pressing down the fur 

. 2 


,, between the eyes . . 


„ of the ear on the inner 




Length of the head . . .1 


Var. E. Lupus ater. Black American Wolf. 

Loup noir de Canada. Bufpon, vol. ix. p. 364. t. 4L {male.) 
Black Wolf. Say, Long's Exped., vol. i. p. 95. Franklin's Jouj-n., vol. i. p. 172. 
Griffith's Anim. Kirig. cum Icone, vol. ii. p. 348 (opt.) 
Godman's Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 207. Icone ex Grifiitliii icone mutuato. 
Canis Lycaon. Harlan's Fattn. Amer., p. 82. 

We saw some Black Wolves on the banks of the Mackenzie, but they are more 
common on the river Saskatchewan, and in districts further south. Mr. Say 
informs us that they abound on the Missouri. The Indians do not consider them 
to be a distinct race, but report that one or more black whelps are occasionally found 
in a litter of a Gray Wolf. In conceding- to their opinion, I do not mean to 
assert that the offspring- of Black Wolves are not most frequently black. Five 
Black Wolves are mentioned by Say, as having been taken from one den ; and Mr. 



Hood, in Captain Franklin's Narrative, records an instance in which a Black 
Wolf was shot, and three black whelps taken from her den. 

The Black Wolves differ in external appearance from the gray ones only in 
colour, and their haunts and habits are precisely the same. Buffon, in his descrip- 
tion of a young- Black Wolf from Canada, remarks that the ears were wider, further 
apart, and more pointed, than those of the European Wolf; the eyes smaller, and 
also further apart. The comparatively broad forehead, indicated by the greater 
distance between the ears and eyes, is, as I have already stated, common to all 
the varieties of the Wolf of the northern parts of America. The French naturalist's 
description of the behaviour of this Wolf, when turned out against a bull, is so 
characteristic, not only of the American Wolf, but also of the Indian dogs, when 
under the influence of fear, that I cannot resist quoting it at length : — " Cet 
animal," dit il, " avoit ete pris fort jeune en Canada, et apporte en France 
par un OfEcier de Marine, qui le garda dans sa maison pendant quelque terns ; 
mais I'animal etant devenu feroce en grandissant, il fut mis au combat de taureau 
a Paris, ou il ne montra pas beaucoup de courage lorsqu'on le fit entrer en lice 
mais des que Ton approchoit de la loge ou on le gardoit, il entroit en fureur, se 
jetoit brusquement en avant de toute la longueur de sa chaine, montroit les dents et 
aboyoit, non pas comme les chiens, mais seulement par des cris successifs et inter- 
rompus qu'il ne repetoit qu'apres d'assez longs intervales." 

I have frequently observed an Indian dog, after being worsted in combat, retreat 
into a corner, and howl at intervals for an hour together. They also howl piteously 
when apprehensive of punishment, and throw themselves into attitudes strongly 
resembling those exhibited by a wolf when caught in a trap. The plate given by 
BufFon is but an indifferent representation of the Black Wolf. The individual 
was not only young, but its fur, as is customary with animals in captivity, seems to 
have been in a bad state*. A most excellent etching, by Landseer, of a Black 
Wolf, kept in the Tower, has appeared in Griffith's translation of Cuvier's Regne 
AnimaL Though it may be remarked, that even in this the fur is not represented 
in the fine condition which the animal exhibits during the winter in its native 

Linnaeus has described the Black Wolf of Europe under the appellation of Canis 
Jjycaon ; and Baron Cuvier and other naturalists have followed his example in 
speaking of it as a distinct species ; but authors have not clearly pointed out any 

* The small size of this specimen, by the way, may have given rise to Gmelin's mistake in confounding it with the 
black fox under the name of Caiiis Lycaon. 


difference between the Canis Lycaon of Europe, and the Canis Liqms ; though it 
has happened that the pecuUar characters of the American Wolves have sometimes 
been ascribed to the Caiiis Lycaon, from the descriptions having been taken from 
American specimens. One can easily understand how Black Wolves accidentally 
congregating may produce an offspring of the same hue with themselves, until, by 
a concurrence of circumstances, the black variety is the predominating one in a 
particular district ; but the breed must be frequently contaminated by wolves of 
other colours. Pallas, in a letter to Pennant, says, " I have seen at Moscow 
about twenty spurious animals from dogs and Black Wolves. They are for the 
most part like wolves, except that some carry their tails higher, and have a kind 
of coarse barking. They multiply among themselves, and some of the whelps are 
grayish, rusty, or even of the whitish hue of the Arctic wolves *.'' 

Black Wolves are more frequent in the southern parts of Europe than in the 
northern ; and to the south of the Pyrenees they are said to be more common 
than the ordinary species or varietyf . In like manner the American Wolf is more 
common on the Missouri than farther north ; and it is reported to be plentiful in 
Florida, where, according to Bartram, the females are distinguished by a white 
spot on the breast X» 

Arctic Zoology, vol. i. p. 42. + Griffith, Atiim. Kingd., vol. ii. p. 348. 

X Warden, United States, vol. i. p. 207- Desmarest, Mammalogie, p. 198. 




[23.] 2. Canis latrans. (Say.) The Prairie Wolf. 

Small Wolves. Du Pratz, Louisiana, vol. ii. p. 54. 

Prairie Wolf. Gass's Journal, Sj^c, p. 50. 

Prairie M'olf and Burrowing Dog. Lewis and Clark, vol. i. pp. 102, 134, 283 ; vol. iii. pp. 22, 233. 

Schoolcraft's Travels, p. 285. 
Canis latrans. Say. Lony's Eaped., p. 2/, note, p. 332. 
Cased Wolves. Hudson Bay Cowtaxy's Lists. 
Meesteh-chaggoneesh. Cree Indians. 

Plate iv. 

This animal lias long been known to voyagers on the Missouri and Saskatche- 
wan as distinct from the Common Wolf. It is mentioned in Mr. Graham's MSS., 
and its skins have always formed part of the Hudson Bay Company's importa- 
tions^ under the name of Cased Wolves*. Lewis and Clark give a good descrip- 
tion of it (vol. i. p. 283), and Mr. Say has added the specific name. The Prairie 
Wolf has much resemblance to the common Gray Wolf in colour, but differs from 
it so much in size, voice and manners, that it is fully entitled to rank as a distinct 
species. It inhabits the plains of the Missouri and Saskatchewan_, and also, 
though in smaller numbers, those of the Columbia. On the banks of the Sas- 
katchewan, these animals start from the earth in great numbers on hearing the 
report of a gun, and gather around the hunter in expectation of getting the ofial of 
the animal he has slaughtered. They hunt in packs, and are much more fleet than 
the Common Wolf I was informed by a gentleman who has resided forty years 
on the Saskatchewan, and is an experienced hunter, that the only animal on the 
plains which he could not overtake, when mounted on a good horse, was the Prong- 
horned Antelope, and that the meesteh-chaggoneesh or Prairie Wolf was the next 
in speed. The Canadian stag is less fleet ; and as to the red fox, it is soon run down. 

The northern range of the Prairie Wolf is about the fifty-fifth degree of latitude, 
and it probably extends southwards to Mexico. It associates in greater numbers 
than the Gray Wolf of the same districts ; hunts in packs, and brings forth its 
young in burrows on the open plain remote from the woods. 

The Prairie Wolf, described by Lewis and Clark and Mr. Say, has a narrower 

* The skins are not split open like the large Wolf skins, but stripped off and inverted or cased, like the skin 
of a fox or rabbit. 



muzzle and longer ears than the one found on the Saskatchewan^ but the dif- 
ference is not so great as to enable us to speak of them as distinct varieties. 


The fur of the Prairie Wolf is of the same quaUty with that of the Gray Wolf, and consists of 
long hairs, with a thick wool at their base. The wool has a smoky or dull lead colour ; the long 
hairs on the back are white either for their whole length, or they are merely tipped with 
black. The prevailing colour along the spine is dark blackish-gray, sprinkled with white 
hairs. Its cheeks, upper lip, chin, throat, belly, and insides of the thighs are white. There 
is a light brown tint upon the upper surface of the nose, on the forehead, and between the 
ears, on the shoulders, on the sides, where it is mixed with gray, and on the outsides of the 
thighs and legs. The tail is gray and brown, with a black tip. Some individuals have a 
broad black mark on the shins of the fore-legs, like the European wolf. The ears are short, 
erect, and roundish, white anteriorly and brown behind. The tail is bushy, and is clothed like 
the body with wool and long hair. Some specimens want the brown tints, and have more of 
the gray colour. 

' Of No. 34, Zoological Museum, killed on the Saskatchewan. 

Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches. 

Distance between the end of the nose and 

the anterior angle of the eye 3| 

„ between the ears . . .0 3J 

,, between the eyes . . .0 2 J 

Length of head and body 

. 3 

„ tail (vertebra) 

. 1 

,, tail, with the fur 

. 1 


„ the ear, measured behind 



Of a scull of the Saskatchewan sort. 
Inches. Lines. 

Inches. Lines. 

From the incisors to the junction of the 
occipital and sagittal crests by callipers 

From ditto to ditto, following the curvature 
of forehead .... 

Length of nasal bones 

The OS incisivum projects beyond the nasal 
bones . ... 

The total length of the nose In a recent 
specimen ought to be about . . 

Greatest breadth of the scull, i. e. from the 
outside of one zygomatic arch to the out- 
side of the other 

From incisors along the base of the scull to 
the inferior margin of the occipital foramen 

There is a second specimen in the Zoological Museum,, brought from the 
plains of the Columbia, which has the narrow muzzle and long ears of Say's 


[24.] 3. Canis familiaris. (Linn.) Domestic Dog. 

Canis f. var. A. borealis. (Desmarest.) Esquimaux Dog. 

Canis familiaris var. N. borealis. Desmarest. Mamm., p. 194. 
Eskimaux Dog. Captain Lyon's Private Journal, p. 332. 244. 
Icones*, Parry's Second I'oi/age, p. 290 and 358. 

The great resemblance which the Domestic Dogs of the aboriginal tribes of 
America bear to the wolves of the same country^ was remarked by the earliest 
settlers from Europe f ^ and has induced some naturalists of much observation to 
consider them to be merely half-tamed wolves;];. Without entering at all into the 
question of the origin of the Domestic Dog, I may state that the resemblance 
between the wolves and the dogs of those Indian nations, who still preserve their 
ancient mode of life, continues to be very remarkable, and it is nowhere more so, 
than at the very northern extremity of the Continent, the Esquimaux dogs being 
not only extremely like the gray wolves of the Arctic circle, in form and colour, but 
also nearly equalling them in size. The dog has generally a shorter tail than the 
wolf, and carries it more frequently curled over the hip, but the latter practice is not 
totally unknown to the wolf, although that animal, when under the observation of 
man, being generally apprehensive of danger or on the watch, seldom displays this 
mark of satisfaction. I have, however, seen a family of wolves playing together, 
occasionally carry their tails curled upwards. 

In the Museum of the Zoological Society there is a specimen of an Esquimaux 
dog, which was brought originally from Baffin's Bay by Captain Ross's expedition, 
and which was afterwards the faithful attendant of Captain Parry's crews during 
the memorable winter of 1819, which they passed on Melville Island. The great 
likeness of this specimen to a gray wolf from Carlton House, preserved in the same 
case, must be obvious to ever}' one who has seen them, although their birth-places 
lie upwards of twenty degrees of latitude apart, and they are, therefore, not so 
favourable examples to shew the resemblance as if they had been natives of the 
same district. 

• In L'Hist. Nat. des Mammiferes, there is a plate and description of a supposed Esquimaux Dog, a present to the 
Jardin du Roi ; but Capt. Sabine informs us that it is a cross between a real Esquimaux bitch and a Newfoundland 
dog. — Appendix, Parry's First Voyage, p. clxxxvi. f Sjiith, Virginia, % Kalm. 





The Dog has short conical ears like the American wolf, but its nose is still shorter than that 
of the latter animal. Its nose, cheeks, belly, and legs^ are white. The fore-legs are destitute 
of the black mark above the wrist, which characterises the European wolf, and which is visible 
in some American wolves, but not in all. The top of the head and the back are almost black, 
but there is a narrow white line down the spine of the back, which I have not noticed in any 
coloured wolf. Its sides are thinly covered with long, black, and some white hairs, and 
there is a shorter dense coat of yellowish-gray wool, like tliat of the wolf, which is partly 
visible. The tail, like the back, is clothed with black and white hairs, the latter predominating 
at its tip. There is a thick wool on the tail concealed by the longer hairs. 

Of the specimen in the Zoological Museum. 

Feet. Inches. 
Length from the end of the nose to the tail 4 3 Height of the ears (inside) . .03 










of the tail (vertebra?) . 1 2 Breadth between the eyes . 2J 

„ „ including the fur at tip 15 „ „ ears . .0 4^ 

,, from end of the nose to the orbit 

Captain Lyon had so many opportunities of studying- the habits of the Esqui- 
maux dog, and his account of them is so much to the purpose^ that I think it 
advantageous to the reader to have it repeated here in his own words : — 

'' Having- myself possessed^ during- our second winter, a team of eleven very 
fine animals, I was enabled to become better acquainted with their good qualities 
than could possibly have been the case by the casual visits of the Esquimaux to 
the ships. The form of the Esquimaux Dog is very similar to that of our 
shepherd's dogs in England, but he is more muscular and broad-chested, owing 
to the constant and severe work to which he is brought up. His ears are pointed, 
and the aspect of the head is somewhat savage. In size, a fine dog is about the 
height of the Newfoundland breed, but broad like a mastiff in every part except 
the nose. The hair of the co-at is in summer, as well as in winter, very long, but 
during the cold season a soft downy under covering is found, which does not 
appear in warm weather. Young dogs are put into harness as soon as they can 
walk, and being tied up, soon acquire a habit of pulling, in their attempts to 
recover their liberty, or to roam in quest of their mother. When about two 
months old, they are put into the sledge with the grown dogs, and sometimes 
eight or ten little ones are under the charge of some steady old animal, where, with 
frequent and sometimes cruel beatings, they soon receive a competent education. 
Every dog is distinguished by a particular name, and the angry repetition of it has 
an effect as instantaneous as an application of the whip, which instrument is of an 


immense length, having a lash of from eighteen to twenty-four feet^ while the 
handle is of one foot only. With this, by throwing it on one side or the other of 
the leader, and repeating certain words,, the animals are guided or stopped. 
Wah-aya, aya, whooa, to the right. A-wha, a-wha, a-whut, to the left. A-look, 
turn, and whooa, stop. When the sledge is stopped, they are all taught to lie 
down, by throwing the whip gently over their backs, and they will remain in this 
position even for hours, until their master returns to them. A walrus is frequently 
drawn along by three or four of these dogs, and seals are sometimes carried home 
in the same manner ; though I have in some instances seen a dog- bring home 
the greater part of a seal in panniers placed across his back. The latter mode of 
conveyance is often used in summer, and the dogs also carry skins or furniture 
overland to the sledges when their masters are going on any expedition. It 
might be supposed that in so cold a climate these animals had peculiar periods 
of gestation, like the wild creatures ; but, on the contrary, they bear young at every 
season of the year, and seldom exceed five at a litter. Cold has very little 
effect on them ; for, although the dogs at the huts slept within the snow passages, 
mine at the ships had no shelter, but lay alongside, with the thermometer 
at 42° and 44°, and with as little concern as if the weather had been mild. 
I found, by several experiments, that three of my dogs could draw me on a 
sledge, weighing lOOlbs., at the rate of one mile in six minutes ; and as a proof 
of the strength of a well-grown dog, my leader drew 196lbs. singly, and to the 
same distance, in eight minutes. At another time, seven of my dogs ran a mile in 
four minutes, drawing a heavy sledge full of men. Afterwards, in carrying stores 
to the Fury, one mile distant, nine dogs drew 161 libs., in the space of nine 
minutes. My sledge was on runners neither shod nor iced ; but had the runners 
been iced, at least 401bs. might have been added for each dog." 

In another passage Captain Lyon says, ^'^Our eleven dogs were large, and even 
majestic looking animals ; and an old one, of peculiar sagacity, was placed at 
their head by having a longer trace, so as to lead them through the safest and 
driest places ; these animals having such a dread of water, as to receive a severe 
beating before they would swim a foot. The leader was instant in obeying the 
voice of the driver, who never beat, but repeatedly called to him by name. When 
the dogs slackened their pace, the sight of a seal or bird was sufficient to put them 
instantly to their full speed ; and even though none of these might be seen on the 
ice, the cry of ' a seal !' — ' a bear !' — ' a bird !' &c., was enough to give play to the 
legs and voices of the whole pack. It was a beautiful sight to observe the two 
sledges racing at full speed to the same object, the dogs and men in full cry, and 


the vehicles splashing- through the holes of water with the velocity and spirit of 
rival stag-e-coaches. There is something of the spirit of professed whips in these 
wild races ; for the young' men delight in passing each other's sledge, and jockeying 
the hinder one by crossing the path. In passing on different routes the right hand 
is yielded, and should an unexperienced driver endeavour to take the left, he would 
have some difficulty in persuading his team to do so. The only unpleasant cir- 
cumstance attending these races is, that a poor dog is sometimes entangled and 
thrown down, when the sledge, with perhaps a heavy load, is unavoidably drawn 
over his body. The driver sits on the fore-part of the vehicle, from whence he 
jumps when requisite to pull it clear of any impediments which may lie in the way, 
and he also guides it by pressing either foot on the ice. The voice and long whip 
answer all the purposes of reins, and the dogs can be made to turn a corner as 
dexterously as horses, though not in such an orderly manner, since they are con- 
stantly fighting ; and I do not recollect to have seen one receive a flogging without 
instantly wreaking his passion on the ears of his neighbours. The cries of the men 
are not more melodious than those of the animals ; and their wild looks and 
gestures, when animated, give them an appearance of devils driving wolves before 
them. Our dogs had eaten nothing for forty-eight hours, and could not have 
gone over less than seventy miles of ground ; yet they returned, to all appearance, 
as fresh and active as when they first set out." 

The Esquimaux dogs are likewise useful to their masters in discovering, by the 
scent, the winter retreats which the bears make under the snow. 

Canis f. var. B. lagopus. Hare Indian Dog. 

Plate v. 

This variety of Dog is cultivated at present, so far as I know, only by the Hare 
Indians, and other tribes that frequent the borders of Great Bear Lake and the 
banks of the Mackenzie. It is used by them solely in the chase, being too small 
to be useful as a beast of burthen or draught. 




The Hare Indian Dog has a mild countenance, with, at times, an expression of demureness. 
It has a small head, slender muzzle ; erect, thickish ears ; somewhat oblique eyes ; rather 
slender legs, and a broad hairy foot, with a bushy tail, which it usually carries curled over its 
right hip. It is covered with long hair, particularly about the shoulders, and at the roots of 
the hair, both on the body and tail, there is a thick wool. The hair on the top of the head is 
long, and on the posterior part of the cheek it is not only long, but being also directed back- 
wards, it gives the animal, when the fur is in prime order, the appearance of having a ruff 
round the neck. Its face, muzzle, belly, and legs, are of a pure white colour, and there is a 
•white central line passing over the crown of the head and the occiput. The anterior surface of 
the ear is white, the posterior yellowish-gray or fawn-colour. The end of the nose, the eye- 
lashes, the roof of the mouth, and part of the gums, are black. There is a dark patch over 
the eye. On the back and sides there are larger patches of dark blackish-gray or lead-colour 
mixed with fawn-colour and white, not definite in fonn, but running into each other. The 
tail is bushy, white beneath and at the tip. The feet are covered with hair which almost con- 
ceals the claws. Some long hairs between the toes project over the soles, but there are naked 
callous protuberances at the root of the toes and on the soles, even in the winter time, as in 
all the wolves described in the preceding pages. The American foxes, on the contrary, have 
the whole of their soles densely covered with hair in the winter. Its ears are proportionably 
nearer each other than those of the Esquimaux dog. 

The size of the Hare Indian Dog- is inferior to that of the prairie wolf, but 
rather exceeds that of the red American fox. Its resemblance, however, to the 
former is so great, that, on comparing- live specimens, I could detect no marked 
difference in form, (except the smallness of its cranium,) nor in the fineness of the 
fur, and arrangement of its spots of colour. The length of the fur on the neck, 
back part of the cheeks, and top of the head, was the same in both species. It, 
in fact, bears the same relation to the prairie wolf that the Esquimaux Dog does 
to the great gray wolf. It is not, however, a breed that is cultivated in the districts 
frequented by the prairie wolf, being now confined to the northern tribes, who 
have been taught the use of fire-arms within a very few years. Before that 
weapon was introduced by the fur-traders, a dog, so well calculated by the lightness 
of its body and the breadth of its paws, for passing over the snow, must have been 
invaluable for running down game, and it is reasonable to conclude that it was 
then generally spread amongst the Indian tribes north of the Great Lakes. 

The Hare Indian Dog is very playful, has an affectionate disposition, and is soon 
gained by kindness. It is not, however, very docile, and dislikes confinement of 
every kind. It is very fond of being caressed, rubs its back against the hand like 
a cat, and soon makes an acquaintance with a stranger. Like a wild animal, it is 


very mindful of an injury^ nor does it_, like a spaniel^ crouch under the lash ; but if 
it is conscious of having deserved punishment^ it will hover round the tent of its 
master the whole day, without coming within his reach, even when he calls it. Its 
howl, when hurt or afraid, is that of the wolf; but when it sees any unusual object, 
it makes a singular attempt at barking, commencing by a kind of growl, which is 
not, however, unpleasant, and ending in a prolonged howl. Its voice is very much 
like that of the prairie wolf. The larger dogs, which we had for draught at Fort 
Franklin, and which were of the mongrel breed in common use at the fur- 
posts, used to pursue the Hare Indian Dogs for the purpose of devouring them ; 
but the latter far outstripped them in speed, and easily made their escape. A 
yoimg puppy, which I purchased from the Hare Indians, became greatly attached 
to me, and when about seven months old ran on the snow by the side of my sledge 
for nine hundred miles, without suffering from fatigue. During this march it fre- 
quently, of its own accord, carried a small twig" or one of my mittens for a mile or 
two ; but, although very gentle in its manners, it shewed little aptitude in learning 
any of the arts which the Newfoundland dogs so speedily acquire, of fetching and 
carrying when ordered. This Dog was killed and eaten by an Indian, on the 
Saskatchewan, who pretended that he mistook it for a fox. 

Canis f. var. C. Canadensis. North American Dog. 

Attim. Cree Indians. Animous. Algonquins. 

'V^'^atts, Slouaccouss Indians, Sliong. Stone Indians. 

Hudtlier. Fall Indians. Ametoo. Black-feet Indians. 

Hey. Sahsees, or Circees. Tilling. Chetewyans. 

By the above title I wish to designate the kind of Dog which is most generally 
cultivated by the native tribes of Canada, and the Hudson's Bay countries. It 
is intermediate in size and form between the two preceding varieties ; and by 
those who consider the domestic races of dog to be derived from wild animals, 
this might be termed the offspring of a cross between the prairie and gray wolves. 
This breed wants the strength of the Esquimaux dog, and does not possess the 

MAMMALIA.. • 81 

affectionate and playful disposition of the Hare Indian variety. It is used at 
certain seasons in the chase^ and by some tribes as a beast of burthen or drauo-ht; 
but it has all the sneaking habits of the wolf, with less courage^ and without the 
intelligence of that animal. It unites with its companions to assail a stranger on 
his approach to the hut of its master ; retreats on the least show of resistance, 
or endeavours to get behind him^ and silently snaps at his legs. When opposed 
to another dog-^ it curls the upper lip very much^ shews the whole of its teeth_, 
and snarls for a long' time, before it ventures to bite. A little Scotch terrier, 
that accompanied us on the last expedition, disconcerted the largest of them by the 
smartness of his attack, and used to send an animal, more than four times his own 
size, howling' away, although the density of its woolly covering prevented his short 
teeth from wounding the skin. When they fight among themselves, the dog that 
is vanquished, is not unfrequently torn in pieces by the rest of the pack. They 
hunt the larger domestic animals in packs, snapping at their heels and harassing 
them until worn out, but scarcely ever venture to seize them by the throat. All 
the dogs of a camp assemble at night to howl in unison, particularly when the 
moon shines bright. 

The fur of the North American Dog is similar to that of the Esquimaux breed, 
and of the wolves. The prevailing colours are black and gray, mixed with white. 
Some of them are entirely black. Their thick woolly coat forms an admirable 
protection against the cold, and when they are fat they can lie all night on the snow 
without inconvenience during the most intense cold. In the summer time they are 
fond of making deep holes in sandy ground ; and this habit is retained by the mon- 
grel breed which the Canadian voyagers rear for draught. These often burrow 
completely underneath the out-buildings of a fort, and will in a single night make 
their way beneath the door of a store-house, if the precaution has not been taken of 
flooring it with wood. The flesh of these Dogs is esteemed before that of almost 
any other animal by the Canadian voyagers, and is eaten by some of the Indian 
tribes on the Saskatchewan and shores of the Great Lakes ; but the Chepewyan 
tribes hold the practice in abhorrence, because they consider themselves to be 
descendants of a dog. I quote Theodat's account of this variety of dog, written in 
the year 1630, because it applies pretty correctly to the North American dogs of 
the present day, and shews that at that early period, and perhaps even before the 
arrival of Europeans, they formed an esteemed article of the food of the natives : — 
" Les chiens du Canada sont un pen differens des nosties, sinon an naturel et au 
sentiment, qui ne leur est point mauvais. Us hurlent plustost qu'ils n'abayent, et 
ont tons les oreilles droictes comme renards, mais au reste tout semblables au matins 
de mediocre grandeur de nos villageois ; ils arrestent I'eslan et descouvurent la 



giste de la beste, et sont de fort petite despence a leur maistre, raais au reste plus 
propre a la cuisine qu'a tout autre service. La chair en est assez bonne et sent 
aucunement le pore ; j'en mangeois assez pen souvent;, car un telle viande est fort 
estimee dans le pays^ c'est pourquoy je n'en avois pas si souvent que j'eusse bien 
desire. lis sont fort importuns dans les cabanes_, marchent sur vous, et s'ils re- 
contrent le pot au descouvert ils ont incontinent leur museau aigu dans la sagamite, 
qui n'en est pas estim6e moins nette*." 

Canis f. var. D. Nov/E Caledonia. Carrier Indian Dog. 

Scacah. Carrier Indians. 

The Attnah or Carrier Indians of New Caledonia possess a variety of dog which 
differs from the other northern races. Mr. M'Vicar made me a present of an 
excellent example of this breeds, which I intended to have brought to England ; but 
it was stolen, and fell a sacrifice to the desire which a party of Canadian voyagers 
had to partake of a meal of dog's flesh. I regretted its loss the more, as, intending 
to have a portrait taken of it, I had neglected to draw up a detailed account of its 
characteristic features. 


It had erect ears, and a head large in proportion, even when compared with the Esquimaux 
dog. Its body was long, and its legs short. Its fur was rather shorter and sleeker than that 
of the other native dogs, and its body was studded with small spots of various colours. There 
was a good deal of intelligence in its countenance, mixed with wildness. It was extremely 
active, and could leap to a great height. The Carrier Indians use it in the chase. It was of 
the size of a large turnspit-dog, and had somewhat of the same form of body ; but it had 
straight legs, and its erect ears gave it a different physiognomy. 

* Sagard Theodat. Canada, p. 757. 


[25.] 4. Canis (Vulpes) lagopus. (Linn.) The Arctic Fox. 

Genus, Canis, Linn. Sub-genus, Vulpes. Desmarest. 

Pied foxes. James, Voi/,^.50. An. 1633. 

Canis lagopus. Linn. Syst., vol. i. p. 59. Forster, P^i^. Trans., 62, -p. 3^0. 

Arctic fox. Pennant, Arctic ZooL, vol. i., p. 42. Hearne, Journey, p. 363. 

Greenland dog. Pennant, Hist. Quadr., vol. i. p. 257 ? a young individual. 

Canis lagopus. Captain Sabine, Parry^s First Voy. Suppl. clxxxvii. Mr. Sabine, Franklin's Jour., 

p. 658. Richardson, Parry's Second Voy,, App. p. 290. Harlan, Fauna, p. 92. 
Isatis and Arctic fox. Godsian, IVat. Hist., vol. i. p. 268. 
Stone fox. Auctorum. 

Terreeanee-arioo. EsauiMAUX of Melville-Peninsula. Terienniak. Greenlanders. 
Wappeeskeeshew.makkeeshew. Cree Indians. Peszi. Russians. 


The Arctic Fox in its full ivinter dress is entirely of a pure white colour, or white with a 
slight tinge of yellow, except at the tip of the tail, where there are a few black hairs intermixed. 
Before the eyes, and on the lower jaw, the hair is short and sleek ; on the forehead and 
posterior part of the cheeks, it becomes considerably longer, and on the occiput and neck 
it equals the ears in height, and is intermixed with a soft wool or down. There is so much of 
the wool on the body, that it gives the fur the character of that of the Polar Hare. The ears 
are of a rounded form, and are covered with shorter hairs than the neighbouring parts : 
the shortest hair is on their edges, and it terminates so evenly with that on the back and 
front of the ear, as to seem as if it had been trimmed with a pair of scissars, and to render 
the ear thicker in appearance than it really is *. The long fur on the posterior part 
of the cheeks is directed backwards, and contributes to give a peculiar cast to the 
physiognomy, and an apparent great thickness to the neck, which features are common to the 
foxes, wolves, and native races of the domestic dog in the northern parts of America, and 
distinguish them from their congeners of the Old World. The vibrissce about the mouth 
are very strong, and are in some specimens nearly white, in others of a dusky-brown colour. 
The hair on the body is long, particularly on the sides. It is rather longer on the belly than 
on the back, but not so close and woolly. It is denser, and coarser on the tail than else- 
where. The shoulders and thighs are protected by long fur, but the fore-parts of the legs 
are covered with short hair, the hind-legs having the shortest and smoothest coat. On the 
posterior surface of the legs the hair is longer. The soles of the feet are covered with 
very dense woolly hair, of a dirty white colour, giving them that resemblance to the feet of 
a hare which is the origin of the Linnean name for thespecies. 

* This fox has shorter and rounder ears than any variety of the red fox. 
M 2 


In most specimens, the fur has a bluish-gray colour at its roots on the back, the shoulders, 
and outside of the thighs, but particularly on the neck and tail. The proportion of the 
length of the fur so coloured, varies with the individual and the season of the year. In 
some it is confined to so small a space at the roots as to be scarcely perceptible, and in others 
it is so great as to tarnish the whiteness of its surface. At almost all times the short hair 
clothing the posterior surface and margins of the ears is of a dark brownish-gray colour for 
half its length, so as to give them a bluish or blackish tinge, whenever it is ruffled. No 
naked callous places exist on the soles of this fox in the winter time. The claws are long, 
compressed, slightly arched, and have a light horn colour. 

Summer dress. — In the months of April or May, when the snow begins to disappear, 
the long white fur falls off, and is replaced by shorter hair, which is more or less coloured. 
A specimen, which was killed at York Factory on Hudson's Bay, in August, is described 
by Mr. Sabine as follows. " The head and chin are brown, having some fine white hairs 
scattered through the fur ; the ears, externally, are coloured like the head ; within they 
are white: a similar brown colour extends along the back to the tail, and from the back 
is continued down the outside of all the legs, but on the latter a few white hairs are inter- 
mixed ; the whole under parts, and the insides of the legs are dingy white ; the tail is 
brownish above, becoming whiter at the end, and is entirely white beneath." — On the 
approach of winter the fur lengthens, the white hairs increase in number, all the hairs 
become white at the tips, but retain more or less of the bluish or brownish-gray colour at 
tlie roots, until the fur is in prime winter order, when it is of its full length, and almost 
every where of a pure white colour from the roots to the tips. — The fur on the soles of 
tbe feet becomes thinner and shorter in the summer time, and several naked callous places 
then appear, but they are not so large as those which exist on the soles of the other North 
American Foxes at the same season of the year. 

It is necessary to observe that the majority only of the Arctic Foxes acquire the pure 
white dress even in winter; many have a little duskiness on the nose, and others, probably 
young individuals, remain more or less coloured on the body all the year. On the other 
hand, a pure Avhite Arctic Fox is occasionally met with in the middle of summer, and 
forms the variety named kakkortak by the Greenlanders. Hearne states that the Arctic 
Foxes, "when young, are almost all over of a sooty black; but as the fall advances, the 
belly, sides, and tail turn to a light ash-colour ; the back, legs, some part of the face, and 
the tip of the tail, change to a lead colour, and when the winter sets in, they become 
perfectly white. There are few of them which have not a few dark hairs at the tip of the 
tail, all the winter*." 

* Although. I am not aware that a compai-ison lietween recent specimens of the Arctic Foxes of tlie New and Old 
Worlds has been made so as to prove their identity of form, yet their perfect similarity of habits, and in the series of 
variations in their fur, may lead us to conclude that the species is the srane on both continents. The Siberian hunters 
informed Gmelin " that they often found Cfray and white individuals in the same litter, and that the fii'St have at birth 
a very deep gray colour, the latter a yellowish tint, the hairs being in both very short. Towards the end of the summer, 
■when the hair begins to increase in length, foxes are often met with, having a brown streak along the back, crossed 
hy a similar one at the shoulders. These individuals, sometimes termed cross foxes, become at length entii'ely white." 
All the different species of fox seem liable to produce a crucigerous variety. 




a full-grown specimen. 




Length of the head and body 



Distance from the wrist to the end of the 

„ tail (vertebrae) 


middle fore-claw . . . 

„ tail with the fur . 



„ from the tip of the nose to the 

„ head . . . . 


anterior angle of the eye . , 

Height of ears anteriorly . 


„ between the anterior angles of the 

„ ears posteriorly . 


eyes . . . . .0 

Breadth of the ears near their base . 


,, between the ears . . 

Distance from the heel to the tip of the mid- 

dle hind-claw . . . . 




Captain Lyon, during two winters passed on the Melville peninsula, studied with 
attention the manners of several of these animals, which were taken and kept as 
pets ; and his account contains so many interesting facts respecting their natural 
history, which are recorded nowhere else, that I shall make no apology for 
copying it into this work. " In form, the Arctic Fox bears a great resemblance 
to our European species, although considerably smaller ; and, owing to the great 
quantity of white woolly hair with which it is clothed, is somewhat like a little 
shock dog. The brush is full and large, affording an admirable covering for the 
nose and feet, to which it acts as a muff when the animal sleeps. Although the 
head is not so pointed as in our English Reynard, yet it has completely the air of 
cunning which is so observable in all species of foxes. The eyes are bright, 
piercing, and of a clear hazel. The face of the female was always remarked to be 
shorter than that of the male, and it has less of cunning and more of mildness in 
its general expression. The ears are short, and thickly covered with hair, having 
the appearance of being doubled at the edges, or rather of having been cropped. 
The cheeks are ornamented by a projecting ruflf, which extends from behind the 
ears quite round the lower part of the face, to which it gives a very pleasing 

" The legs are rather long than otherwise, and shew great strength of muscle. 
The feet, which are large, are armed with strong- claws. When the animal is 
standing still, the hind-legs are so placed as to give the idea of weakness in the 
loins, which is certainly not the case, as few creatures can make more powerful 
leaps. The general weight was about eight pounds, although some were as low 
as seven, and a few as high as nine pounds and a^ half when in good case. 

'^ The Arctic Fox is an extremely cleanly animal, being very careful not to 
dirt those places in which he eats or sleeps. No unpleasant smell is to be per- 
ceived, even in a male, which is a remarkable circumstance. To come unawares 
on one of these creatures is, in my opinion, impossible ; for even when in an 


apparently sound sleep, they open their eyes at the slig-htest noise which is made 
near them, although they pay no attention to sounds when at a short distance. 
The general time of rest is during the daylight, in which they appear listless and 
inactive ; but the night no sooner sets in than all their faculties are awakened ; 
they commence their gambols, and continue in unceasing and rapid motion until 
the morning. While hunting for food, they are mute, but when in captivity or 
irritated, they utter a short growl like that of a young puppy. It is a singular 
fact, that their bark is so undulated as to give an idea that the animal is at a 
distance, although at the very moment he lies at your feet. Although the rage 
of a newly-caught fox is quite ungovernable, yet it very rarely happened that on 
two being put together they quarrelled. A confinement of a few hours often 
sufficed to quiet these creatures ; and some instances occurred of their being 
perfectly tame, although timid, from the first moment of their captivity. On 
the other hand, there were some which, after months of coaxing, never became 
more tractable. These we supposed were old ones. 

" Their first impulse on receiving food is to hide it as soon as possible, even 
though suffering from hunger, and having no fellow-prisoners of whose honesty 
they are doubtfid. In this case snow is of great assistance, as being easily piled 
over their stores, and then forcibly pressed down by the nose. I frequently 
observed my dog-fox, when no snow was attainable, gather his chain into his 
mouth, and in that manner carefully coil it so as to hide the meat. On moving away, 
satisfied with his operations, he of course had drawn it after him again, and some- 
times with great patience repeated his labours five or six times, until in a passion, 
he has been constrained to eat his food without its having been rendered luscious 
by previous concealment. Snow is the substitute for water to these creatures, 
and on a large linnp being given to them, they break it in pieces with their 
feet, and roll on it with great delight. When the snow was slightly scattered on 
the decks, they did not lick it up as dogs are accustomed to do, but by repeatedly 
pressing with their nose, collected small lumps at its extremity, and then drew 
it into the mouth with the assistance of the tongue." In another passage. 
Captain Lyon, alluding to the above mentioned dog-fox, says, " He was small 
and not perfectly white ; but his tameness was so remarkable, that I could not 
afford to kill him, but confined him on deck in a small hutch, with a scope of chain. 
The little animal astonished us very much by his extraordinary sagacity : for, 
during the first day, finding himself much tormented by being drawn out repeatedly 
by his chain, he at length, whenever he retreated to his hut, took this carefully up 


in his mouth, and drew it so completely after him, that no one who valued his 
fingers would endeavour to take hold of the end attached to the staple." 

Hearne says, that, when taken young, the Arctic fox may be domesticated in some 
degree, but he never saw one that was fond of being caressed ; and they are always 
impatient of confinement. Notwithstanding the degree of intelligence which the 
anecdotes related by Captain Lyon shew them to possess, they are unlike the red 
fox, in being extremely unsuspicious ; and instances are related of their standing 
by, while the hunter is preparing the trap, and running headlong into it the 
moment he retires a few paces. Captain Lyon received fifteen from a single trap 
in four hours. The voice of the Arctic fox is a kind of yelp, and when a man 
approaches their breeding places, they put their heads out of their burrows, and 
bark at him, allowing him to come so near that they may be easily shot. They 
appear to have the power of decoying other animals within their reach, by imitating 
their voices. '' While tenting, we observed a fox prowling on a hill side, and 
heard him for several hours afterwards in different places, imitating the cry of a 
brent goose *." They feed on eggs, young birds, blubber, and carrion of any kind ; 
but their principal food seems to be lemmings of different species. 

The Arctic fox is an inhabitant of the most northern lands hitherto discovered, 
and in North America their southern limit appears to be about latitude 50°. They 
are numerous on the shores of Hudson's Bay, north of Churchill, and exist also in 
Behring's Straits ; but the brown variety, mentioned in the following pages, is the 
more common one in the latter quarter. They breed on the sea coast, and chiefly 
within the Arctic circle, forming burrows in sandy spots, — not solitary, like the red 
fox, but in little villages, twenty or thirty burrows being constructed adjoining to each 
other. We saw one of these villages on Point Turnagain, in latitude 68^°. Towards 
the middle of winter they retire to the southward, evidently in search of food, keep- 
ing as much as possible on the coast, and going much further to the southward in 
districts where the coast-line is in the direction of their march. Captain Parry relates 
that the Arctic foxes, which were previously numerous, began to retire from 
Melville Peninsula in November, and that by January few remained. Towards 
the centre of the Continent, in latitude 65°, they are seen only in the winter, and 
then not in numbers ; they are very scarce in latitude 61°, and at Carlton House, 
in latitude 53°, only two were seen in forty years. On the coast of Hudson's Bay, 
however, according to Hearne, they arrive at Churchill, in latitude 59°, about the 
middle of October, and afterwards receive reinforcements from the northward, until 

* Lyon's Private Journal, p. 424. 


their numbers almost exceed credibility. Many are captured there by the hunters, 
and the greater part of the survivors cross the Churchill River as soon as it is 
frozen over^ and continue their journey along the coast to Nelson and Severn 
Rivers. In like manner they extend their migrations along the whole Labrador 
coast to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Most of those which travel far to the southward 
are destroyed by rapacious animals ; and the few which survive to the spring, 
breed in their new quarters, instead of returning to the north. The colonies they 
found are, however, soon extirpated by their numerous enemies. A few breed at 
Churchill, and some young ones are occasionally seen in the vicinity of York factory. 
There are from three to five young ones in a litter. 

The Esquimaux take the Arctic foxes in traps, which are described by Captain 
Parry as being "^ extremely simple and ingenious. They consist of a small circular 
arched hut built of stones, having a square aperture at the top, but quite close 
and secure in every other part. This aperture is closed by some blades of whale- 
bone, which, though in reality only fixed to the stones at one end, appear to form a 
-secure footing, especially when the deception is assisted by a little snow laid on 
them. The bait is so placed that the animal must come upon this platform to get 
at it ; when the latter, unable to bear the weight, bends downwards, and after pre- 
cipitating the fox into the trap, which is made too deep to allow of his escape, 
returns by its elasticity to its former position, so that several may then be caught 
successively." They are also taken in the wolf-traps of ice, described in page 65, 
and all the rocky islands lying off the mouth of the Coppermine River are studded 
Avith square traps, built of stone by the Esquimaux, wherein the fox is killed by a 
flat stone falling upon him when he pulls at the bait. 

The fur of the Arctic fox is of small value in commerce when compared with that 
of any variety of the red fox. Its flesh, on the other hand, particularly when 
young, is edible ; whilst that of the red fox is rank and disagreeable. Captain 
Franklin's party agreed with Hearne, in comparing the flavour of a young Arctic 
fox to that of the American hare. Captain Lyon considered it to resemble the 
flesh of a kid. 


Canis lag. var. (3. fuliginosus. Sooti/ Fox. 

Canis Lagopi varietas. Pallas, glires, p. 12. An. 1778. 

Sooty Dog. Pennant, Hist. Quad., vol. i. p. 257. 

Kernektak. T ahhiciiis, Fauna Groeyil., p. 20. An. 1790. 

Canis fuliginosus. Shaw, Zoo/., vol. i. p. 331. 

Blue Fox (and Canis fuliginosus.) Mackenzie's Travels in Iceland, p. 337. 

Le chien brun. Desmarest, Blarmn. in notis, p. 205. 

Tree-innoeuck-kannortoot (black foxes.) EsauiMAUX. 

This is evidently a mere variety of the Arctic fox, similar to the black variety of 
the red fox_, although more common. It has the form and stature of the Arctic 
fox, and may be easily distinguished from the black or silver fox of commerce, by 
its round ears, and its very inferior fur. It differs from the ordinary summer 
or winter states of the Arctic fox, in being almost entirely of an uniform blackish- 
brown colour. 


One killed on Winter Island, in lat. 66°, on the 16th December, had the longest and 
darkest fur on the belly, the colour there being black with a slight tinge of brown. The face, 
from a sprinkling of short white hairs, was hoary, and there were a very few white hairs on 
the back, not sufficient, however, to vary the colour, unless on close inspection. The whole 
fur on the body was long, had a considerable lustre, and when blown inside, exhibited a 
bright ash-grey colour towards its roots. The fur on the soles of the feet was of a grayish- 
white colour, and as bushy as on the feet of the white variety in the winter time. The claws 
were of the same size and colour as those of the pure Avhite variety, and differed in form from 
those of the red fox. This individual had attained the full size of the Arctic fox. 

On Captain Franklin's last Expedition, similar specimens were seen in the summer near 
the mouth of the Mackenzie. A specimen procured by Captain Beechey in Behring's 
Straits, differed merely in having longer and finer fur, of a pure chestnut colour, without any 
admixture of white hairs. The face was yellowish-brown, with a white margin to the upper 
lip. The rounded ears were covered with silky fur on each side, and with shorter and paler 
fur on the margins. The fur on the tail was coarser, woolly, curled, and somewhat matted, 
and of a dull yellowish-brown, altogether very unlike the silky brush of the black variety of 
Canis fulvus. The tip of the tail in this specimen was of the same colour with the rest of it. 
The anterior surfaces of the legs were covered with yellowish-brown fur, forming a smooth 
shining coat, and the soles with dense yellowish-white, woolly hair. 



Otho Fabricius gives a clear account of the sooty variety of the Arctic fox 
in the following- passage : — " There are two kinds of Arctic fox," says he : " one 
bluish-black, with white wool on the soles of the feet, and occasionally white 
whiskers, is named by the Greenlanders kelaieJdak ; the other entirely white with 
the exception of the naked tip of the nose, which is called by the same people 
JcaJikortak. They are by no means different species, for they couple together ; 
and one variety produces young having the colours of the other ; nay^ I can 
even bear witness that the bluish individual will become white, and a white one 
bluish, according to its age." 

Pennant considers the Sooty Fox to be a distinct species which is numerous in 
Iceland ; and Sir George Mackenzie describes it as varying considerably in the 
shades of its fur, from a light brownish, or bluish-gray, to a colour nearly ap- 
proaching to black. He quotes the authority of Horrebow for their being 
brought from Greenland to Iceland occasionally on fields of ice. The Greenland 
fox, No. 164 of Pennant's History of Quadrupeds, described as of a brown 
colour abave, white beneath, with feet furred beneath, rounded ears, and as 
being of very small stature, seems to be nothing more than a young Arctic fox 
in its common autumn dress. 

On one occasion during our late coasting voyage round the northern extremity 
of America, after cooking our supper on a sandy beach, we had retired to repose 
in the boats, anchored near the shore, when two Sooty Foxes came to the spot 
where the fire had been made, and carrying off all the scraps of meat that were 
left there, buried them in the sand above high-water mark. We observed that 
they hid every piece in a separate place, and that they carried the largest pieces 
farthest off. A little Scotch terrier dog that accompanied us had precisely the 
same habit. It attended us closely at our meals ; and receiving much more 
from the men than it could eat, it carried the surplus always to the distance of 
two or three hundred yards, and hid it carefully, never putting two pieces in the 
same spot. I have quoted in page 86, Captain Lyon's observation of the Arctic 
fox seldom eating its food until it had been adapted to its taste by concealment. 



[26.] 5. Canis (vulpes) fulvus. (Desmarest.) The Americmi Fox. 

European Fox. Pennant, Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. 45. 

Red or large Fox. Hutchins, MSS. 

Large Red Fox of the plains. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 29. 

Renai-d de Virginie. Palisot de Beauvois, Bid. Soc. Phil. 

Canis fulvus. Desmarest, Mamm., p. 203. 

Red Fox. Sabine, Fraiiklin's Journ., p. 656. 

Makkeeshew. Cree Indians. 

Plate vr. 

This animal is very plentiful in the wooded districts of the fur countries^ about 
eight thousand being- annually imported into England from thence. It bears a 
strong resemblance to the Common European Fox, and until De Beauvois pointed 
out its peculiarities, it was considered to belong to that species. 


On comparing a fine specimen of the English Fox with an American Red Fox, each were ob- 
served to have dark markings on the sides of the muzzle, posterior parts of the ears, and fore-part 
of the legs ; the tails of both have an intermixture of black hairs, and are tipped with white. 
The Red Fox, however, differs in its long and very fine fur, and in the brilliancy of its colours. 
Its cheeks are rounder, its nose thicker, sliorter, and more truncated. Its eyes are nearer to 
each other. Its ears shorter, the hair on its legs is a great deal longer, and its feet are much 
more woolly beneath, the hair extending beyond the claws, which are shorter than those of 
the European Fox. In short the Red Fox differs from the European one in nearly the 
same characters that distinguish the gray American wolf from the Pyrenean one — in the 
breadth and capacity of its feet for running on the snow, the quantity of long hair clothing 
the back part of the cheeks, which in conjunction with the shorter ears and nose give the 
head a more compact appearance. The Red Fox has a much finer brush than the European 
one, and it is altogether a larger animal. Desmarest mentions differences in the form of the 
sculls of the two species. 

Mr. Sabine describes a skin of the Red Fox in prime order as having " a general bright 
ferruginous colour on the head, back, and sides, less brilliant towards the tail ; under the 
chin white ; the throat and neck a dark gray ; and this colour is continued along the first 
part of the belly in a stripe of less width than on the breast ; the under parts, towards the 
tail, are very pale red ; the fronts of the fore-legs and the feet are black, and the fronts of 
the lower parts of the hind-legs are also black ; the tail is very bushy, but less ferruginous 
than the body, the hairs mostly terminated with black, and more so towards the extremity 

N 2 


Dimensions are, 



Height at the shoulders 







„ of ears .... 
Distance from the end of the nose to the 




anterior angle of the eyes 



than near the root, giving the whole a dark appearance ; a few of the hairs at the end are 
lighter, but it is not tipped with white." The colour of the tip of the tail differs in different 

An individual, killed at Great Slave Lake, had its head and shoulders of a bright reddish- 
orange colour, which towards the rump acquired a gray tint by an intermixture of black and 
white hairs. On the tail the red hairs were mixed with gray and black ones, the tip was 
white. The soles of its feet were completely covered with fur. In the summer time the 
fur of the soles is worn off, and naked callous places appear, but they are not so large as 
in the English Fox. This specimen is now in the Museum of the Zoological Society, and 
from it the accompanying etching was made. 

Length of head and body 
„ head alone 
„ tail (vertebrae) 
„ tail with the fur 

The Red Fox burrows in the summer, and in the winter takes shelter under a 
fallen tree. It brings forth four young- about the beg-inning of May. They are 
covered at birth with a soft downy fur, of a yellowish-gray colour, the orange 
coloured hair not beginning to appear until they are five or six weeks old. Even 
the Indian hunters do not know the cubs at an early age from those of the Cross 
or Silver Foxes, and I therefore cannot now place the reliance I was once induced 
to do on their report of young cross foxes being found in the burrows of the Red 
Fox. I procured four cubs, a fortnight old, which several hunters said were cross 
foxes, but which proved eventually to be the red variety. These little creatures 
began very early to make burrows in the sandy floor of the house in which I kept 
them, and used to hide themselves during the day. They were, however, very 
tame, came when I called them, and would take food from my hand and carry it 
to their different places of concealment, never eating it when overlooked. I enter- 
tained hopes of bringing them to England, but they made their escape on the 
journey to the coast. 

The Red Foxes prey much on the smaller animals of the rat family, but they are 
fond of fish, and reject no kind of animal food that comes in their way. They are 
taken in steel traps, and also in fall-traps, made of logs, but much nicety is 
required in setting them, as the animal is very suspicious. Some of the best fox- 
hunters in the fur countries ascribe their success to the use of assafostida, castoveum, 
and other strong smelling substances with which they rub their traps and the small 
twigs set up in the neighbourhood, alleging that foxes are fond of such perfumes. 
The Red Fox hunts for its food chiefly in the night, but it is also frequently seen 


ill the day-time. In the winter time their tracts are most frequent on the borders 
of lakes, which they quarter much like a pointer dog-. They turn aside to almost 
every stump or twig sticking up through the snow, and void their urine on it like 
a dog. 

The Red Fox does not possess the wind of its English congener. It runs for 
about a hundred yards with great swiftness, but its strength is exhausted in the 
first burst, and it is soon overtaken by a wolf or a mounted huntsman. Its flesh 
is ill tastedj and is eaten only through necessity. 

Canis fulvus, var. j3. decussatus. American Cross Fox. 

Renard barre ou Tsinantontonque. Sagahd Theodat, Canada, p. 745. 

European Fox, var. /3. Cross Fox. Pennant, Arctic Zoo/., vol. i. p. 46. 

Canis decussatus. Geoffrov, Collect, du Mus. Sabine, Franklin's Journ., p. 656. Harlan, Fauna, p. 88. 

Cross Fox. Hudson Bay Company's Lists. 

Beloduschki. Russians. 

I am inclined to adhere to the opinion of the Indians in considering the Cross 
Fox of the fur traders to be a mere variety of the Red Fox, as I found on inquiry 
that the gradations of colour between characteristic specimens of the Cross and 
Red Fox are so small, that the hunters are often in doubt with respect to the 
proper denomination of a skin^ and I was frequently told " This is not a cross fox 
yet, but it is becoming so." The Canis crucigera of Gesner, which is considered, 
by Baron Cuvier to be a mere variety of the European Fox, differs from the latter 
animal in the same way that the American Cross Fox does from the red one^ and 
there is also a crucigerous variety of the Isatis or Arctic Fox. Mr. Hutchins^ 
however, remarks that the Cross Fox does not exceed the size of the European 
one, and is smaller than the Red Fox. If there really be a difference of size 
between the red and cross races inhabiting the same districts, they ought, perhaps, 
to be considered distinct species. 

The fur of the Cross Fox is valuable, and some vears ago it was worth four or 
five guineas a skin, whilst that of the Red Fox did not bring more than fifteen 
shillings. The difference of value seems to depend principally on the colour, for 
some of the red foxes appear to have as long and as fine fur. 



Of a very characteristic Specimen of the Cross Fox, quoted from Mr. Sabine. 

"The front of the head is gray, composed of black and white hairs,the latter predominating 
on the forehead ; the ears are covered with soft black fur behind ; and with long yellowish 
hairs within ; the back of the neck and shoulders are pale ferruginous, crossed with dark 
stripes, one extending from the head to the back, the other passing the first at right angles 
over the shoulders ; the rest of the back is gray, composed of black fur, tipped with white : 
the sides are pale ferruginous, running into the gray of the back ; the chin and all the under 
parts, as well as the legs, are black, a few of the hairs being tipped with white ; the under 
part of the tail and the parts of the body adjacent are pale yellow, the gray colour of the 
back extends to the upper part of the tail, at the commencement — the rest of the tail is dark 
above and lighter beneath, being tipped with white. The character of the fur is thick and 
long." The quantity of red fur, and the brightness of its colours, vary in different specimens; 
and the cruciform markings are scarcely apparent in some specimens, which from the fineness 
of their fur are acknowledged to be Cross Foxes. 

Canis fulvus, var. y. argentatus. Black or Silver Fox, 

Renard noir ou HahjTiha. Sagard Theodat, Canada, p. 744. 

European Fox var. a. Black, Pennant, Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 46. 

Renard noir ou Argente. Geoff ttOY, Collect, du Museum. 

Grizzle Fox. Hutchins, MSS. 

Renard Argente. F. Cuvier, Mamm. lith. 5 livr. 

Canis argentatus. Desmarest, Mammal., p. 203. Sabine, Franklin's Journey, p. 657. HaRLAN, 

Fauna, p. 88. 
The Black or Silver Fox. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 274. 
Tschernoburi, Russians. 

This variety is more rare than the Cross Fox, a greater number than four or 
five being seldom taken in a season at any one post in the fur countries*, though 
the hunters no sooner find out the haunts of one than they use every art to catch 
itj because its fur fetches six times the price of any other fur produced in North 
America. La Hontan speaks of a black fox skin as being in his time worth its 

• Foxes of a corresponding colour seem to be equally rare in Europe. " The Silver or Black Fox is so rare, that 
seldom more than three or four are taken in the course of a year on the Lofoden islands, and I never heard of its 
having been met with in the other parts of Norway." — A. de Capell Brooke, Travels in Norway, p. 285. 


weight in gold. Although, from what I observed^ I do not think that the Black 
Fox displays more cunning in avoiding the snare than the red one, yet its rarity, 
and the eagerness of the hunters to take it, cause them to think it peculiarly shy. 
*' It is to be remarked,'' says Pennant, " that the more desirable the fur is, the 
more cunning and difficult to be taken is the fox that owns it." Mr. Hutchins also 
informs us ''the blacker the fur the lesser the fox," but neither is this latter 
remark consonant with my own observation. 

Mr. F. Cuvier mentions that the smell of the American Black Fox is very 
disagreeable, but differs a little from that of the Common Fox of Europe. He 
thinks the identity of the American species with the Black Fox of the north of 
Europe doubtful. The Black Fox of America inhabits the same districts with the 
Red Fox, and is never seen far within the barren grounds. In some instances^ 
however, the Sooty Fox described in page 89 may have been mistaken for it. 


The Canis argentatus is sometimes found entirely of a shining black colour, with the 
e^cception of the end of tlie tail, which is white. It is more common to observe it with 
parts of its fur hoary from an intermixture of hairs tipped with white. A very fine specimen 
preserved in the Hudson's Bay Museum has the head and back hoary, most of the long 
hairs on those parts being white from the tip for a considerable way down. The downy fur 
at the root of the longer hairs has a dark blackish-brown colour. The nose, legs, sides of 
the neck, and all the under parts, are dusky, approaching to black. The tail is black. Its 
ears are erect, triangular, but not very acute, and are covered with a soft fur of a brownish- 
black colour. In some individuals the fur, which in most parts is hoary, has a shining black 
colour unmixed with white, from the crown of the head to the middle of the back and down 
the outside of the shoulders, being an approach to the cruciform arrangement. Like the two 
preceding varieties, the Black and Silver foxes have the soles of their feet thickly covered with 
wool in the winter, no callous spots being then visible. 



[27.] 3. Canis (vulpes) Virginianus. (Gmelin.) The Gray Fox. 

Gray Fox. Catesby, Carolina, vol. ii. p. 78. t. 78. Kalm, Travels, {Pinkert07i's Coll.) vol. xiii. p. 467. 

Pennant, Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 48. 
Canis virginianus. Gmelin, Syst., vol. i. p. 74. Sabine, Franklin's Journey, p. 654. Harlan, 

Fauna, p. 89. 
Virginian fox. Shaw, Zoo/., vol. i. p. 325. 
Canis cinereo-argenteus. Say, Long's Exped., vol. ii. p. 340. 
The Gray Fox (Canis cinereo.argentatus). Godman's Nat. Hist.,vo\. i. p. 280. 

This animal^ which is said to be the most common species of fox in the southern 
parts of the United States,, did not come under our notice on the late Expeditions, 
but it is here introduced to mark its most northern limit. Its skins are sometimes 
included amongst the Hudson Bay Company's importations from their most 
southern Canadian posts. Kalm says that the Gray Foxes are very common in 
Pennsylvania^ and in the southern provinces ; but scarce in the northern ones, on 
which account the French call them Virginian foxes. He also says that they 
are smaller, less destructive, less active, and have a less rank smell than the 
European foxes. The Gray Fox has been confounded by some writers with the 
Cross Fox, which it much resembles, though it is smaller in size ; by others with 
the Kit Fox, which has also gray colours. Dr. Godman informs us that the 
chase of this animal affords more pleasure to the American sportsmen than that of 
the Red Fox*, "^ because it does not immediately forsake its haunts and run for 
miles in one direction, but after various doublings, is generally killed near the 
place where it first started !" Catesby, on the contrary, says that "^ they give no 
diversion to the sportsmen, for after a mile's chase they run up a tree.'' The same 
author informs us that they breed in hollow trees. LangsdorfF relates that in 
California he saw a great number of foxes following the cows, and living upon the 
most friendly terms with the young calves. 

* He alludes here, not to the Canis fulvus, but to the C. vulpes vulgaris of this work. 


[28.] 4. Canis (vuLPES vulgaris) vuLPES? (Linn.?) The Fox? 

Canis viilpes. Harlan, Fauna, p. 86. 

Canis fulvus. Godman, Nat, Hist., vol. i. p. 276. 

M. Frederick Cuvier and M. Desmarest, who admit and describe the American 
Red Fox (C fulmis) as a distinct species, state the Common Fox to be also an 
inhabitant of North America. It does not exist in the countries north of Canada 
lying- to the eastward of the Rocky Mountains, and consequently did not come 
under our notice on the late Expeditions ; but it is admitted into this work, as 
being most probably an inhabitant of New Caledonia. Several of the voyagers 
who have visited the Atlantic coast of North America mention two kinds of red 
fox skins, in possession of the natives ; the one having a fine, long, silky fur, of a 
reddish-yellow colour {C. fulmis?) ; the other of a smaller size, having shorter and 
coarser fur, and less lively tints of colour (C vulpes ?). I think it very probable that 
an investigation into the characters of the American foxes will shew that the reddish 
Fox of the Atlantic states is a variety of the Canis cinereics, which has been mistaken 
for the European Fox. Dr. Godman states that these reddish foxes '' are numerous 
in the middle and southern states of the Union, and are every where notorious 
depredators on the poultry yards." Kalm says, "^ the red foxes are very scarce 
here (New York) ; they are entirely the same with the European sort. Mr, 
Bartram, and several others, assured me, that, accordhig to the unanimous 
testimony of the Indians, this kind of fox never was seen in the country before the 
Europeans settled in it. But of the manner of their coming over I have two 
different accounts : Mr. Bartram, and several other people, were told by the 
Indians, that these foxes came into America soon after the arrival of the 
Europeans, after an extraordinary cold winter, when all the sea to the northward 
was frozen. But Mr. Evans and some others assured me that the following 
account was still known by the people. A gentleman of fortune in New England, 
who had much inclination for hunting, brought over a great number of foxes 
from Europe, and let them loose in his territories, that he might be able to 
indulge his passion for hunting. This, it is said, happened at the very beginning 
of New England's being peopled with European inhabitants. These foxes were 
believed to have so multiplied, that all the red foxes in the country were their 



offspring-." Kalm* considers neither of these accounts as satisfactory ; indeed^ as 
to the former, none of the Indian tribes inhabiting- New England could possibly 
have any knowledge of the state of the sea to the north, and to this day the tribes 
dwelling- even twenty degrees of latitude nearer its shores are equally ignorant 
of it. The Esquimaux alone inhabit the coast, and it is unlikely that any accounts 
from them could be transmitted through ten or twelve intermediate nations^ most 
of whom have been from time immemorial at war with their neig-hbours. 

[29.] 6. Canis (Vulpes) cinereo-argentatus. The Kit Fox. 

Archithinew Fox. HuTCHiKs, 3/iS'5'. Pknnant, Arct, Zool. Suppl., -p. ^2. 

Kit Fox, or small burrowing Fox of the plain. Lewis & Clark, vol. i. p. 400 ; vol. iii.pp. 29, 282. 

Canis velox. Say, Long's E^rped., vol. ii. p. 339. Harlan, Fauna, p. 9L 

Canis cinereo-argentatus. Sabise, Frank/in's Journ., -p. 658. 

Le Ren.ard tricolor. F. CuviER, Hist. Nat. des Mamm. 

The Swift Fox. GoDJfAN, Nat. Hist., vol. i. p. 282. 

Kit Fox. Fur Tradebs. Chien de Prairief . Canadian Voyagers, 

The species which forms the subject of this article burrows in the open plains 
extending from the Saskatchewan to the Missouri^ and_, according to Lewis and 
Clark, also in the plains of the Columbia. Mr. Sabine has referred it to the 
Canis cinereo-argentatus of Schreber, or the Fulvous-necked Fox of Shaw_, and most 
probably correctly ; but many points with regard to its synonyms require to be 
cleared up^ as authors in their descriptions appear to have confounded it with the 
gray or Virginian Fox. Schreber himself may have partly produced the error, 
by terming the animal C. griseus in his text, and C cinereo-argentatus on the 
plate. It has long been known to the Hudson's Bay fur-traders, its skins forming 
a portion of their annual exports, under the name oi kit foxes. It is, as Mr. Sabine 
justly remarks^ the smallest of the American foxes ; but the measurement that he 
gives of two feet for the length of the head and body, being taken from a hunter's 
skin, which is always much stretched, is too great. I was unsuccessful in my 
endeavours to procure a recent specimen of this interesting little quadruped, 

• Kalm's Travels, (Pinkerion's Tr.) pages 13 and 467. 

-}- The name of" Prairie Dog" is bestowed also on the Louisiana marmot, and on other animals. 



although I saw many hunters' skins. The Saskatchewan river is the northern 
limit of its range. Its burrows are formed in the open part of the plains, 
at a distance from the woody country. According to Mr. Say, it excels even 
the antelope in fleefness ; and Lewis and Clark inform us that it is extremely 
vigilant, and betakes itself, on the slightest alarm, to its burrows, which are very 
deep. It seems to be the American representative of the corsac, inhabiting 
similar districts ; and possibly like the corsac its fur changes its colours with the 

OF A hunter's skin: — 

The nose is considerably shorter, and the face broader than in other foxes. The upper part 
of the nose is covered by very short hairs of a pale yellowish, or wood, brown colour, on each 
side of which there is an oval patch of brownish fur, rendered hoary by many of its hairs being 
tipped with white. The whiskers are strong, and of a black colour, fading into brown at their 
tips. The portion of the lip anterior to them is brownish white ; and the whole upper lip is 
margined by a stripe of white hairs about half an inch wide. There is, however, a narrow 
blackish-brown line between the white and the posterior angle of the mouth, which is prolonged 
round the margin of the lower lip. The upper part of the head, including the cheeks and 
orbits, the superior surface of the neck, the back and hips, are covered with fur of a pleasant 
grizzled colour, produced by an intermixture of hairs tipped with brown, black, and white. 
On the crown of the head, the yellowish-brown predominates, the white is equally diffused 
through it, there is no dark central Hne, and the grizzled colour unites gradually before the 
eyes with the unmixed fawn colour of the nose. The white hairs prevail immediately round 
the orbits, and there is much white on the cheeks. On the neck, where the fur lies smooth, 
the white, with a slight intermixture of black, is the colour of the surface, the yellowish-brown 
being seen only through the interstices of the longer hairs. Towards the rump less of the brown 
is seen, and more of the black hairs, but the white tips still predominate. The fur on the parts 
just enumerated appears, when blown aside, of a deep clove-brown, or brownish-gray colour 
from the roots for three-fourths of its length upwards ; it is then yellowish-brown, followed by a 
very narrow ring of black, a larger ring of pure white, and generally a minute black tip. There 
are also, particularly towards the posterior part of the back, many interspersed hairs con- 
siderably longer than the others, which are black from the root to the tip. The breadth of the 
grizzled colours on the neck does not exceed the distance betAveen the ears, but it gradually 
widens from the shoulders backwards. The sides of the neck, the shoulders and flanks, are of 
a dull reddish-orange, or very pale tile-red colour. The fur on these parts is longer but not so 
dense as that on the back, and is bluish-gray one half of its length, and reddish the remainder. 
On the flanks there are a few intermixed black hairs. The lower jaw is white, with a tinge 
of blackish-brown on its margins and towards its extremity. The chest exhibits the same 
reddish-orange colour with the sides ; the throat and belly and inner surfaces of the extremities 



are white. The fur on all the under parts is white towards the roots. The outside of the 
fore-legs and posterior parts of the hind-legs are brownish-orange, the upper surfaces of the 
feet are white ; and the soles are covered, with the exception of some callous spots, with 
brownish wool. The tail is full of woolly hair, but tapers at the end. The prevailing colour 
of its upper surface is yellowish-gray, with a considerable intermixture of black, and a few 
white hairs ; the under surface is brownish-orange, and the whole of the tip is black. The fur 
of the tail is ash-gray towards its base. 

Dimensions of a Hunter's Skin: — 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of head and body . 22 

„ tail . . 10 

„ tail including the fur at its tip 12 6 

Distance from the tip of the nose to the ante- 
rior angle of the eye . 2 
„ betweentheanterioranglesoftheeyes 1 2 
Length of whiskers . . 3 

The dimensions of a specimen described by M. F. Ciivier, are — 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of head and body (English measure) 21 6 I Length of tail . . 14 

„ head . . 5 | Height of back . . 13 

Mr. Say gives the dimensions of the cranium of his specimen, taken by calipers^ 
as follows : — 

Inches. Inches. 

The entire length from the insertion of the superior | Between the insertion of the lateral muscles at the 

incisors to the tip of the occipital ridge is rather junction of the frontal and parietal bones . J^ 

more than . . . • 4^5 Greatest breadth of this space on the parietal bones §f 

The least distance between the orbital cavities . A 


[30.] 1. Felis Canadensis. (Geofiroy.) Canada Lynx. 

Genus. Felis. Linn. 

Loup-cervier. (Anarisqua.) Sagard Theodat, Canada, p. 747- An. 1636. 

Loup-cervier or Lynx. Mo'bbs, Hudson's Bay, ■p.'iA. An. 1744. 

Cat-Lynx. Pennant, Arctic ZooL, vol. i. p. 50. 

Cat or Pishu. HvTcnivs, MSB. 

Lynx or Wild Cat. Heaune, Journey, p. 366. Mackenzie, Journey, p. 106, &c. 

Felis Canadensis. Geoffroy, Ann. du Mus. Sabine, Franklin's Journ , p. 059. 

Zoological Museum. No. 72. 
Peeshoo. Cree Indians and Canadian Voyagers. 

This is the only species of the genus which exists north of the Great Lakes, and 
eastward of the Rocky Mountains. It is rare on the sea-coast, and does not frequent 
the Barren Grounds^ but it is not uncommon in the woody districts of the interior, 
since from seven to nine thousand are annually procured by the Hudson's Bay 
Company. It is found on the Mackenzie River, as far north as latitude 66°. It 
is a timid creature^ incapable of attacking any of the larger quadrupeds ; but well 
armed for the capture of the American hare^ on which it chiefly preys. Its large 
paws, slender loins, and long, but thick, hind legs, with large buttocks, scarcely 
relieved by a short thick tail, give it an awkward, clumsy appearance. It makes 
a poor fight when it is surprised by a hunter in a tree ; for, though it spits like a 
cat, and sets its hair up, it is easily destroyed by a blow on the back with a slender 
stick ; and it never attacks a man. Its gait is by bounds, straightforward, with 
the back a little arched, and lighting- on all the feet at once. It swims well, and 
will cross the arm of a lake two miles wide ; but it is not swift on land. It 
breeds once a year, and has two young at a time. The natives eat its flesh, 
which is white and tender, but rather flavourless, much resembling that of the 
American hare. 

The early French writers on Canada, who ascribed to it the habit of dropping 
from trees on the backs of deer, and destroying them by tearing their throats and 
drinking their blood, gave it the name of Loup cervier. The French Canadians 
now term it indifferently Le Chat, or Le Peeshoo. The mistake of Charlevoix in 
applying to it the appellation of Carcajou, which is proper to the wolverene, has 
produced some confusion of synonyms amongst subsequent writers. Pennant con- 
sidered it as identical with the Lynx of the Old World ; Geoffroy St. Hilaire named 


it as a distinct species ; and Temminck has again^ under the name of Felis 
borealis, described the species as the same in both hemispheres. 


The head is round, the nose obtuse, and the face has much of the form of that of the 
domestic cat ; but the facial hue is more convex between the eyes. The ears are erect, 
triangular, and tipped by an upright, slender tuft of coarse, black hairs ; they are placed about 
their own breadth apart, and on their posterior surface they have a dark mark beneath the tip, 
which is continued near both margins downwards towards their bases. On the bodi/ and 
extremities the fur is hoary, most of the hairs being tipped with white ; on the crown of the 
head, and for a broad space down the middle of the back, there is a considerable intermixture 
of blackish-brown, and on the sides and legs, of pale wood-brown. In some specimens these 
colours produce an indistinct mottling, but in general there are no defined markings. A rufous 
tinge is also occasionally present about the nape of the neck, and on the posterior part of the 
thigh. The tail is coloured like the back, except the tip, which is black. The fur is close 
and fine on the back ; longer and paler on the belly. When blown aside, it shews, on the 
middle of the back, a dark liver-brown colour from the roots to near the tips ; but on the sides, 
it is, for the greatest part of its length, of a pale yellowish-brown, being merely a little darker 
near the roots. The legs are thick ; the toes very thick and furry, and are armed with very 
sharp, curved, awl-shaped, white claws, shorter than the fur. There are four toes on each foot, 
those on the hind feet being rather the largest, but both feet have much spread. 

Of a prepared specimen. 

Length of the head and body . . 3 1 

Height of the back .... 1 4J 

Length of the tail (vertebrse) ... 4 

„ tail, with the fur . , 4| 

„ black tuft on the ear . .0 IJ 

Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches. 

Height of the ear without the tuft mea- 
sured behind .... .0 2 
Distance from the tip of the nose to the 
fore-part of the ear ... 4| 


[31.] 2. Felis RUFA. (Guldensted ?) Bay Lynx? 

Bay Lynx. Pennant, Hist. Quadr., No. 171 ? Arctic ZooL, vol. i., p. 51 ? 
Felis rufa. Guldensted, Act. Petrop., 20. p. 449 ? 

Mr. Douglas brought a specimen of a Lynx from the Columbia River^ that is 
reported to have the same habits with the Canada Lynx, which it much resembles 
in size and form. No variety, however, of the latter inhabiting the fur countries 
to the eastward of the Rocky Mountains, presents the dark colour of the back, and 
the bright wood-brown on the sides, with the black spots on the belly, and the 
transverse black marks on the legs^ exhibited by this one. The hunters consider 
it to be quite distinct from the Canada Lynx. Neither does it correspond entirely 
with the descriptions given by authors of the Bay Lynx, although it much resem- 
bles that animal in the markings about the face. Mr. Douglas thinks that there 
are more than one non-descript animal of this genus, which inhabit the countries 
bordering on the Columbia. The skins procured in that quarter are generally 
carried to the China market, without passing through the hands of European 
furriers ; hence, they are not likely to have come under the inspection of M.. 
Temminckj who has so well described the Atlantic species. 


Size and general aspect, exclusive of colour, that of a small Canada Lynx. The colour of 
the hind head and of a broad dorsal stripe is blackish-brown, a little grizzled by a con- 
siderable number of the tips of the hairs being of a pale wood-brown. On these parts the fiir 
is hair-brown at its roots, and blackish-brown for the greater part of its length. On the 
dorsal aspect of the neck the fur is reddish-brown from the base to near the tips, where the 
longer hairs are ringed with wood-brown and black ; the colour of the surface is produced by 
an intimate mixture of the two latter, but, as on the back, there are neither spots nor streaks. 
The forehead has a hoary brown colour, with dark brownish markings. The eyelashes are 
black, the upper and under eyelids, most of the whiskers, and part of the upper lip, are white. 
The fur on the cheeks is yellowish-brown, with white tips, and there is a dark stripe under 
the eye, another on the back part of the cheek, and a third at the angle of the mouth. The 
ears are lined interiorly with pale hairs, and are covered posteriorly with blackish-brown fur. 
The tufts on their tips, if any existed, have fallen off. The sides of the neck and the flanks 
are pale chestnut, brown, rendered hoary by white tips equably but sparingly diffused. The 
same colour prevails on the shoulders, and outer aspects of the fore and hind extremities, 


prettily varied by a number of short transverse stripes of blackish-brown ; the insides of the 
extremities are paler, but exhibit the same transverse dark marks. The under jaw is white, 
except the tip of the chin, which is brownish. The throat is white. The chest is coloured 
and spotted nearly like the shoulders. The belly is white, tinged anteriorly with brown, and 
marked throughout with rather large blackish-brown spots. The tail is reddish-brown, with 
some blackish markings above; and is white underneath. It is shaped like the tail of the 
Canada Lynx. 

Length of the head and body . 33 

„ tail (vertebrae) . . 4 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of the head, including the curvature 

of the forehead . . . ,6 6 

Height of the ear . . . .2 

[32.] 3. Felis FAsciATA. (Rafinesque.) Banded Lynx. 

The Tiger cat. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 28. 

Lynx fasciatus. " Rafinescius, .(47n. iV/on<A. Mag. 1817, p. 46." Desmarest, iMamm. 
Harlan, Fauna, p. 100. 

I possess no other information respecting- this animal than what is contained in 
the following description of it by Lewis and Clark, It seems to bear considerable 
resemblance to the Canada Lynx_, but differs from it^ and from the preceding 
specieS;, in the transverse dorsal stripes. 


" The tiger cat inhabits the borders of the plains and the woody country in the neighbour- 
hood of the Pacific. It is of a size larger than the wildcat of the United States, and much the 
same in form, agility, and ferocity. The colour of the back, neck, and sides is of a reddish- 
brown, irregularly variegated with small spots of dark-brown: the tail is about two inches 
long, and nearly white, except the extremity, which is black. It terminates abruptly, as if it 
had been amputated. The belly is white, beautifully variegated with small black spots ; 
the legs are of the same colour with the sides, and the back is marked transversely with 
black stripes : the ears are black on the outer side, covered with fine, short hair, except at 
the upper point, which is furnished with a pencil of hair, fine, straight, and black, three- 
fourths of an inch in length. The hair of this animal is long and fine, far exceeding that 
of the wild cat of the United States." 


[33.] 1. Castor fiber, Americanus. The American Beaver. 

Genus. Castor. Linn. 

Castor. Sagard Theodat, Canada, p. 767- 

Castor fiber, Linn. ' Syst. 

Beaver Castor. Pennant, Arct. ZooJ., vol. i. p. 08. 

Castor ordinaire. Desmarest, Mamm. 

Castor Americanus. F. Cuvier. 

Castor fiber. Harlan, Fauna, vol. i. p. 122. 

The Beaver. Got) man, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 21. 

Ammisk. Cree Indians. Ttsoutaye. Hurons. 


The Beaver has the form of an oval sack. The greatest girth of its body is just before the 
hind legs, and it tapers gradually on every side from thence to the obtuse muzzle. The hind 
legs are situated far forward, and the part of the body that projects behind them tapers pretty 
suddenly to the setting on of the flat scaly tail. The incisors are smooth and orano-e-coloured 
anteriorly, and posteriorly they are narrower and white. The nose is very obtuse both vertically 
and horizontally. The eye is small, and is situated rather nearer to the ear than to the 
end of the nose ; the pupil is almost closed in a strong light. The ears are short, thick 
rounded, and well clothed with short fur ; the animal closes the auditory openings by 
folding them vertically. The fur consists of a dense coat of somewhat waved, shining, 
smoke-gray down, concealed by a long coarse hair, which lies smooth, and, when in 
season, has a shining chestnut-brown colour. In summer, the fur, previous to fallino- off 
changes its colour to a pale yellowish-brown, and some of the winter specimens have a very 
dark hue, approaching to blackish-brown. The tail is tongue-shaped, and is covered with 
oval, angular scales, which are not tiled, and are smallest along the margin of the tail. They 
are not hard ; some scattered hairs spring from their interstices, and the root of the tail is 
covered for a short space with finer but shorter hair than that of the back. The tail 
is flat horizontally. The fore-extremities are small and very short. The toes are well 
separated, and, with the palms, are very flexible. They are used like hands in conveying 
food to the mouth, but are so short that the animal is obliged to incline its head towards 
them. The fore-claws are somewhat compressed, strong, and fitted for digging. The middle 
one is the largest, the one on each side of it somewhat shorter, and the outermost and inner- 
most are the two shortest. The three exterior ones wear down, whilst the other two remain 
sharp. The hind-feet have long, hard, and callous soles, and their long toes are connected by 
a web, which extends even beyond the roots of the nails. The second toe has two nails, the 
under one of which is rounded with a cutting edge, and lies nearly at right angles to the upper 
one ; — there is a less perfect double nail on the inner toe. The other toes have simple 


nails, which bear a striking resemblance to those of the human hand, but are rather more 
compressed. When the animal sits erect, it rests on its hind-legs and tail ; but when it walks, 
it puts its fore-feet to the ground, and, then arching its body, brings forward its hind-legs, and 
trails the tail behind it. The whole hind sole touches the ground as it walks, but only the toes 
of the fore-feet. When the fore-feet are lifted, the toes are curled together, or the fist is closed, 
which gives them a peculiar appearance of weakness, like a paralytic hand ; they are spread out 
when they touch the ground. The motions of the Beaver are slow when it is not pursued. 

Of a full-grown Beaver (Spec. 420, Zool. Mus.), killed at Great Slave Lake. 

Inches, Lines. 
Distance from tip of nose to anterior part 

of the eye 2 ]0 

„ the posterior part of the orbit 

to anterior part of the ear ... 2 5 

Of a recent specimen of what is termed, by the Fur Traders, a three-quarter Beaver. 

Inches. Inches, 



Length of head and body 

. 40 

,„ head alone 



„ tail, scaly part 

. 11 


Length of head and body .... 30 

„ tail, scaly part . . . . 10 

Circumference before hind legs ... 30 

„ immediately behind fore-legs . 18 

The weight of a full-grown Beaver is about twenty- four pounds 

Length of fore-feet ...... 3 

„ of the sole of the hind foot . . 7 

Greatest breadth of the tail . . . ,54 

I have not had an opportunity of dissecting a Beaver ; but I was informed by the 
hunters^ that both males and females are furnished with one pair of little bags, 
containing castoreum, and also with a second pair of smaller ones betwixt the former 
and the anus, which are filled with a white fatty matter, of the consistence of butter, 
and exhaling a strong odour. This latter substance is not an article of trade; but 
the Indians occasionally eat it, and also mingle a little with their tobacco when 
they smoke. I did not learn the purpose that this secretion is destined to serve in 
the economy of the animal ; but from the circumstance of small ponds when inha- 
bited by Beavers being tainted with its peculiar odour, it seems probable that it 
affords a dressing to the fur of these aquatic animals. The castoreum, in its recent 
state, has an orange colour, which deepens, as it dries, into bright reddish-brown. 
During the drying, which is allowed to go on in the shade, a gummy matter exudes 
through the sack, which the Indians delight in eating. The male and female 
castoreum is of the same value, ten pairs of bags of either kind being reckoned to 
an Indian as equal to one beaver-skin. The castoreum is never adulterated in the 
fur countries. The flesh of the Beaver is much prized by the Indians and Cana- 
dian Voyagers, especially when it is roasted in the skin, after the hair has been 
singed off. In some districts it requires all the influence of the Fur Trader to 
restrain the hunters from sacrificing a considerable quantity of beaver fur every 


year_, to secure the enjoyment of this luxury; and Indians of note have generally 
one or two feasts in a season, wherein a roasted Beaver is the prime dish. Hearne 
terms it delicious food. It resembles pork in its flavour^ but the lean is dark- 
coloured, the fat oily, and it requires a strong stomach to sustain a full meal of 
it. The tail, which is considered a great luxury, consists of a grisly kind of fat, as 
rich, but not so nauseating, as the fat of the body. 

The Beaver attains its full size in about three years ; but breeds before that 
time. According to Indian report, it pairs in February, and after carrying its 
young about ten weeks, brings forth from four to eight or nine cubs, towards the 
middle or end of May. Hearne states the usual number of young, produced by 
the Beaver at a time, to be from two to five, and that he saw six only in two 
instances, although he had witnessed the capture of some hundreds in a gravid 
state *. The female has eight teats. In the pairing season the call of the Beaver 
is a kind of groan ; but the voice of the cubs, which are very playful, resembles 
the cry of an infant. When the Beaver cuts down a tree it gnaws it all round, 
cutting it however somewhat higher on the one side than the other, by which the 
direction of its fall is determined. The stump is conical, and of such a height as a 
Beaver, sitting on his hind quarters, could make. The largest tree I observed 
cut down by them was about the thickness of a man's thigh (that is, six or seven 
inches in diameter;) but Mr. Graham says, that he has seen them cut a tree 
which was ten inches in diameter. 

Pennant fixes the southern range of the American Beaver in latitude 30°, in 
Louisiana, not far from the Gulf of Mexico ; whilst Say mentions the confluence 
of the Ohio and Mississippi as their limit, which is about seven degrees further 
to the northward. In high latitudes they are confined to the wooded districts, 
there not being even willows enough for their subsistence on the banks of the 
small lakes and rivulets of the Barren Grounds. Their most northern rano-e 
is perhaps on the banks of the Mackenzie, which is the largest American river 
that discharges itself into the Polar Sea, and is also the best wooded, owing 
to the quantity of alluvial soil deposited on its banks. Beavers occur in that 
quarter as high as 67^° or 68' of latitude, and their range from east to west 
extends from one side of the continent to the other, with the exception of the 
Barren districts. They are pretty numerous in the country lying immediately to 

« I was informed by a hunter, that the Indians are accustomed, on breaking up a lodge of Beavei-s, to open the old 
female as soon as they kill her, for the purpose of ascertaining, by counting the dilatations of the tubular uterus, what 
number of young may be expected to be found in the washes Hearne also says, " On examining the womb of a Beaver, 
wTien not with young, there is always found a hardish round knob, for every young one of the last litter." 



the northward of Fort Franklin ; and from the swampy and impracticable nature of 
the country, they are not likely to be soon eradicated from thence. The Iroquois 
are the greatest Beaver takers in Canada, and their hunters now allot the beaver 
districts amongst themselves, and endeavour to preserve these animals from ex- 
tinction, by trenching- the beaver-dams of any one quarter only once in four or 
five years, and taking care to leave always a pair at least in a dam to breed. 
Further north the Indians, when they break up a beaver lodge, destroy, as far as 
they are able, both young and old, and the numbers of Beaver are consequently 
now very much reduced. Gangs of Iroquois were also introduced into the fur coun- 
tries to the north some years ago ; and by setting traps, which destroyed indiscri- 
minately Beaver of all sizes, they almost extirpated the species from their hunting 
grounds. The Hudson's Bay Company are, however, endeavouring to remedy this 
evil, by laying plans to insure an adequate supply of the very useful beaver-fur, 
although it is not likely that it can ever be so plentiful as it was formerly. In the 
year 1743, the imports of beaver-skins into the ports of London and Rochelle, 
amounted to upwards of 150,000 ; and there is reason to suppose that a consi- 
derable additional quantity was at that period introduced, illicitly, into Great 
Britain. In 1827, the importation of beaver-skins into London, from more than 
four times the extent of fur country than that which was occupied in 1743, did not 
much exceed 50,000. 

In some seasons a great mortality occurs amongst the Beavers from some 
unknown cause, many being found dead in their lodges. Towards the north, the 
fur of the Beaver is better, and continues in prime order through a greater portion 
of the year. At Great Slave Lake, in latitude 61°, July, August, and September, 
are the only months in which the beaver-fur of inferior quality is procured. In 
commerce, beaver-skins, cut open, stretched to a hoop, and dried in the ordinary 
marnier, are named beaver-porchment, and form by far the greatest part of the 
importation. When the beaver-skins have been made into dresses, and worn by 
the Indians, it is termed beaver-coat ; and, though it may have been in use a whole 
season, it still brings a good price. Inferior sized skins are named beaver-cub. 
An incisor tooth of a beaver is fixed in a wooden handle by the northern Indians, 
and used with great dexterity to cut bone. This was the instrument with which 
that people fashioned the horns of the rein-deer into spear-heads and fish-gigs ; 
but these bone weapons are now generally replaced by iron, and the beaver tooth 
has been supplanted by an English file. 

The best account of the manners of the Beaver, and the most free of extrava- 


gancies, is that given by Hearne ; and it agrees so exactly with the information I 
received from the Indian hunters, that were I to record the latter it would appear 
to be borrowed ahuost entirely from that traveller. I therefore prefer giving it 
in Hearne 's own words. 

" The beaver being so plentiful,, the attention of my companions was chiefly 
engaged on them, as they not only furnished delicious food, but their skins proved 
a valuable acquisition, being a principal article of trade as well as a serviceable one 
for clothing. The situation of the beaver-houses is various. Where the beavers 
are numerous, they are found to inhabit lakes, ponds, and rivers, as well as those 
narrow creeks which connect the numerous lakes with which this country abounds ; 
but the two latter are generally chosen by them when the depth of water and other 
circumstances are suitable, as they have then the advantage of a current to 
convey wood and other necessaries to their habitations, and because in general 
they are more difficult to be taken than those that are built in standing 
water. They always choose those parts that have such a depth of water as 
will resist the frost in winter, and prevent it from freezing to the bottom. 
The beavers that build their houses in small rivers or creeks, in which water 
is liable to be drained off when the back supplies are dried up by the frost, are 
wonderfully taught by instinct to provide against that evil, by making a dam 
quite across the river, at a convenient distance from their houses. The beaver 
dams differ in shape according to the nature of the place in which they are built. 
If the water in the river or creek have but little motion, the dam is almost 
straight ; but when the current is more rapid, it is always made with a con- 
siderable curve, convex toward the stream. The materials made use of are 
drift-wood, green willows, birch, and poplars, if they can be got; also, mud 
and stones intermixed in such a manner as must evidently contribute to the 
strength of the dam ; but there is no other order or method observed in the dams, 
except that of the work being carried on with a regular sweep, and all the parts 
being made of equal strength. In places which have been long frequented by 
beavers undisturbed, their dams, by frequent repairing, become a solid bank, 
capable of resisting a great force both of water and ice ; and as the willow, 
poplar, and birch generally take root and shoot up, they by degrees form a kind 
of regular planted hedge, which I have seen in some places so tall, that birds 
have built their nests among- the branches. 

'^ The beaver-houses are built of the same materials as their dams, and are 
always proportioned in size to the number of inhabitants, which seldom exceeds 
four old, and six or eight young ones ; though, by chance, I have seen above 



double that number. Instead of order or regulation being- observed in rearing 
their houses^ they are of much ruder structure than their dams ; for^ notwith- 
standing the sagacity of these animals^ it has never been observed that they aim 
at any other convenience in their houses^ than to have a dry place to lie on ; and 
there they usually eat their victuals, which they occasionally take out of the 
water. It frequently happens^ that some of the large houses are found to have 
one or more partitions, if they deserve that appellation ; but it is no more than a 
part of the main building, left by the sagacity of the beaver to support the roof. 
On such occasions, it is common for those different apartments, as some are 
pleased to call them, to have no communication with each other but by water; so 
that, in fact, they may be called double or treble houses, rather than different 
apartments of the same house. I have seen a large beaver-house built in a small 
island, that had near a dozen apartments under one roof; and, two or three 
of these only excepted, none of them had any communication with each other 
but by water. As there were beavers enough to inhabit each apartment, it 
is more than probable that each family knew their own, and always entered at 
their own doors, without any further connection with their neighbours than a 
friendly intercourse, and to join their united labours in erecting their separate 
habitations, and building their dams where required. Travellers who assert that 
the beavers have two doors to their houses, one on the land side and the other 
next the water, seem to be less acquainted with these animals than others who 
assign them an elegant suite of apartments. Such a construction would render 
their houses of no use, either to protect them from their enemies, or guard them 
against the extreme cold of winter. 

"^ So far are the beavers from driving- stakes into the ground when building 
their houses, that they lay most of the wood crosswise, and nearly horizontal, and 
without any other order than that of leaving a hollow or cavity in the middle ; 
when any unnecessary branches project inward, they cut them off with their 
teeth, and throw them in among the rest, to prevent the mud from falling 
through the roof. It is a mistaken notion, that the wood work is first completed 
and then plastered ; for the whole of their houses as well as their dams are, 
from the foundation, one mass of mud and wood, mixed with stones, if they can 
be procured. The mud is always taken from the edge of the bank, or the 
bottom of the creek or pond, near the door of the house ; and though their fore- 
paws are so small, yet it is held close up between them under their throat, that 
they carry both mud and stones, while they always drag the wood with their 
teeth. All their work is executed in the night ; and they are so expeditious, 


that in the course of one night I have known them to have collected as much 
mud as amounted to some thousands of their little handfuls. It is a great piece 
of policy in those animals to cover the outside of their houses every fall with fresh 
mud^ and as late as possible in the autumn^ even when the frost becomes pretty 
severe^ as by this means it soon freezes as hard as a stone, and prevents their 
common enemy;, the wolverene, from disturbing them during the winter. And as 
they are frequently seen to walk over their work, and sometimes to give a flap 
with their tail, particularly when plunging into the water, this has, without doubt, 
given rise to the vulgar opinion that they used their tails as a trowel, with which 
they plaster their houses ; whereas that flapping of the tail is no more than a 
custom which they always preserve, even when they become tame and domestic^ 
and more particularly so when they are startled. 

'' Their food consists of a large root*, something resembling a cabbage- stalk, 
which grows at the bottom of the lakes and rivers. They also eat the bark of 
trees, particularly those of the poplar, birch, and willow ; but the ice preventing 
them from getting to the land in the winter, they have not any barks to feed on 
in that season, except that of such sticks as they cut down in summer, and throw 
into the water opposite the doors of their houses ; and as they generally eat a 
great deal, the roots above-mentioned constitute a principal part of their food 
during the winter. In summer, they vary their diet, by eating various kinds 
of herbage, and such berries as grow near their haunts during that season. 
When the ice breaks up in the spring, the beavers always leave their houses, 
and rove about until a little before the fall of the leaf, when they return again to 
their old habitations, and lay in their winter-stock of wood. They seldom 
begin to repair the houses till the frost commences, and never finish the outer 
coat till the cold is pretty severe, as hath been already mentioned. When they 
erect a new habitation, they begin felling the wood early in summer, but seldom 
begin to build until the middle or latter end of August, and never complete it till 
the cold weather be set in. 

" Persons who attempt to take beaver in winter should be thoroughly- 
acquainted with their manner of life, otherwise they will have endless trouble to 
effect their purpose, because they have always a number of holes in the banks, 
which serve them as places of retreat when any injury is offered to their houses ; 
and in general it is in those holes that they are taken. When the beaver which 
are situated in a small river or creek are to be taken, the Indians sometimes find 

* Root of Nuphar luteum. — J. R. 


it necessaiy to stake the river across^ to prevent them from passing ; after which 
they endeavour to find out all their holes or places of retreat in the banks. This 
requires much practice and experience to accomplish^ and is performed in the 
following- manner. Every man being furnished with an ice-chisel, lashes it to the 
end of a small staff, about four or five feet long ; he then walks along the edge 
of the banks^ and keeps knocking his chisel against the ice. Those who are 
acquainted with that kind of work^ well know by the sound of the ice when they 
are opposite to any of the beavers' holes or vaults. As soon as they suspect any^ 
they cut a hole through the ice big enough to admit an old beaver^ and in this 
manner proceed till they have found out all their places of retreat, or at least as 
many of them as possible. While the principal men are thus employed, some of 
the understrappers, and the women, are busy in breaking open the house, which 
at times is no easy task, for I have frequently known these houses to be five or six 
feet thick ; and one, in particular, was more than eight feet thick in the crown. 
When the beavers find that their habitations are invaded, they fly to their holes 
in the banks for shelter ; and on being perceived by the Indians, which is easily 
done by attending to the motion of the water, they block up the entrance with 
stakes of wood, and then haul the beaver out of its hole, either by hand if they 
can reach it, or with a large hook made for that purpose, which is fastened to the 
end of a long stick. In this kind of hunting, every man has the sole right to all 
the beaver caught by him in the holes or vaults ; and as this is a constant rule, 
each person takes care to mark such as he discovers by sticking up a branch of a 
tree by which he may know them. All that are caught in the house are the 
property of the person who finds it. The beaver is an animal which cannot keep 
under water long at a time, so that when their houses are broke open, and all 
their places of retreat discovered, they have but one choice left, as it may be 
called, either to be taken in their house or their vaults : in general they prefer 
the latter ; for where there is one beaver caught in the house, many thousands are 
taken in the vaults in the banks. Sometimes they are caught in nets, and in 
summer, very frequently, in traps. 

" In respect to the beaver dunging in their houses, as some persons assert, it 
is quite wrong, as they always plunge into water to do it. I am the better 
enabled to make this assertion, from having kept several of them till they became 
so domesticated as to answer to their name, and follow those to whom they were 
accustomed, in the same manner as a dog would do ; and they were as much 
pleased at being fondled as any animal I ever saw. In cold weather they were 
kept in my own sitting room, where they were the constant companions of the 


Indian women and children^ and were so fond of their company, that when the 
Indians were absent for any considerable time, the Beaver discovered great signs 
of uneasiness ; and on their return, shewed equal marks of pleasure by fondling 
on them, crawling into their laps, lying on their backs, sitting erect like a 
squirrel, and behaving like children who see their parents but seldom. In general, 
during the winter, they lived on the same food as the women did, and vsere 
remarkably fond of rice and plum-pudding : they would eat partridges and fresh 
venison very freely, but I never tried them with fish, though I have heard they 
will at times prey on them. In fact there are few graminivorous animals that may 
not be brought to be carnivorous." 

Castor fiber, var. B, nigra. Black Beaver. 

Castor fort noir. Sagaud Theodat, Canada^ p. 767- 

Castor fiber, var. B. Castor noir. Desmarest, il/amTO. p. 278. 

Beaver, entirely black, but not differing in any other respect from those of the 
ordinary dark brown colour, are of occasional occurrence. I saw one or two 
which were kept as curiosities. Hearne, in speaking of this variety, says, " Black 
Beaver, and that of a beautiful gloss, are not uncommon ; perhaps they are more 
plentiful at Churchill than at any other Factory in the Bay ; but it is rare to get 
more than twelve or fifteen of their skins in the course of one year's trade." 


Castor fiber, var. C, varia. Spotted Beaver, 

Castor fiber, var. D. Castor varie. Desjiaeest, Mamm. 

This variety is more rare than the preceding-, and never came under my notice* 
Mr. Say mentions that an Indian had in the course of his life caught three 
specimens of Beaver with a large white spot on their breasts. 

Castor fiber, var. D, alba. White Beaver. 

White beaver. Dobbs, Hudson's Bay, p. 40. 

Castor fiber, var. C. Castor blanc. Desmaeest, Mamm. 

Castor albus. Beisson, Reg, An. 

An albino variety of the Beaver is of very rare occurrence. Hearne saw but 
one in the course of twenty years^ and it had many reddish and brown hairs along 
the ridge of the back, — its sides and belly were of a glossy silvery white. 
When the Indians find an individual of this kind, they convert the skin into 
a medicine bag, and are very unwilling to dispose of it. 


[34.] 1. Fiber Zibethicus. (Cuvier.) The Musquash. 

Genus Arvicola, Sub-genus Fiber. Cuvier. 
Rat-musque. Sagard Theodat, Canada, p. ^^l. 
Castor Zibetliicus. LiNX. Syst., xii. 1. p. 79. 
L'Ondatra. Buffon, torn. x. p. 1. 
Musk-rat, Law son, Carolina, p. 120. 
Musk-beaver. Pennant, Arctic ZooL, vol. i. p. 106. 
Musquash. JossELYN, New England. Hearne, Journey, p. 379- 
Mus Zibethicus. Lin. Gmelin, vol. i. p. 125. 

Fiber Zibethicus. Sabine, Franklin's Journey, p. C59. Harlan, Fauna, p. 132. 
Musk-rat. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 58. 
Ondathra. Hurons. 

Musquash, watsuss, or wachusk, also peesquaw-tupeyew (the animal that sits on the ice ia i 
round form). Cree Indians. 


The Musquash, or, as it is often named, the Musk-rat, has a thick flattish body, with a 
short head, indistinct neck, thighs hid in the body, very short legs, and large hind-feet. Its 
tail is compressed laterally, and has a length nearly equal to that of the body, excluding the 
head. It is furnished with large yellowish incisors, of which the upper ones are flatly rounded 
anteriorly, without grooves, and obliquely truncated on the cutting edge. The lower ones are 
chiselled away posteriorly, so as to come nearly to a point at the extremity, and are some- 
what longer than the upper ones. The lips, covered with coarse hair, turn inwards. The 
nose is short, thick, and obtuse, and is covered with short hair. The eyes, small and lateral, 
are much hidden by the fur. The ears, low and oblong, are covered with hair like that on 
the adjoining pai-ts of the head, and are not conspicuous. 

The fur much resembles that of the beaver, but is shorter ; the down is coarser and of 
much less value, and the long hairs are less strong and shining, and do not form so close a 
coat. Although the fur of the Musquash resists the water when the animal is alive, it is 
easily wetted immediately after death. The fur on the upper parts is somewhat longer than 
that beneath. Its colour externally is a dark umber-brown on the whole upper part of the 
head, including the ears, between the shoulders and on the back. The sides, anterior part of 
the belly, middle of the breast, lateral parts of the neck, and the cheeks, are of a shining 
yellowish-brown hue, the tint being deepest on the sides, but fading on the belly and cheeks 
into light wood-brown. The chin, throat, sides of the chest, and posterior part of the 
abdomen, are ash-gray, owing to the down being intermixed with few long hairs, and, con- 
sequently, more visible on those parts. The down on the upper parts exhibits, when blown 
aside, a dark lead-gray or blackish-gray colour from the roots upwards, the tips alone being 
tinged with brown ; on the under surface of the animal the down has a lighter bluish-gray 
colour, and its tips are brownish-gray. 

Q 2 


Ihe fore-extremities are short, only the wrist and fingers being visible beyond the body. They 
are covered exteriorly by a short, smooth, shining coat of hair, to the roots of the nails. Interiorly 
some long hairs curve over the wrist, and the palms and inner surfaces of the toes are naked. 
The nails are short, conical, very slightly curved, and much compressed. The second toe is 
the longest, the third is very nearly equal to it, the first is a little shorter, and rises higher up, 
and the thumb is by much the shortest and furthest back of all. The thumb has, however, a 
conspicuous phalanx, and its claw is as long and is of the same shape with those of the fingers, 
so that it ought not to be termed merely rudimentary. 

Nearly as little of the hind-legs appears as of the fore ones, but the feet are very much longer. 
The metatarsal bones are considerably longer than the toes, and the latter are separated their 
whole length. The hind-feet are turned obliquely inwards. Exteriorly, they have a shining, 
smooth, hairy covering, similar to that on the fore-feet, and, like it, of a grayish-brown colour ; 
but the margins of the soles and toes are furnished with an even row of long, shining, pale 
grayish-white hairs, curving inwards. The under surface of the feet is naked from the heel to 
the claws. The inner and outer toes arise nearly opposite to each other, and are about the 
same length. The remaining three arise from longer metatarsal bones, and their phalanges 
are nearly equal in length to each other. The two middle ones are united by a web, for 
about half the length of their first phalanges, and there is also a short web between the third 
and fourth toes. The claws of all the hind-toes are rather large, conical, slightly arched, thin, 
whitish, and excavated underneath. The hairs of the hind-feet do not extend much beyond 
the roots of the nails. From the shortness of its extremities, the Musquash runs badly, 
and is easily overtaken on land ; but it swims and dives well, though it cannot continue long 
under water. 

Its tail is compressed, convex on the sides, with its acute edges in a vertical plane. It 
is covered Avith a thin, sleek coat of short hairs, which allow a number of small, roundish 
scales, well separated from each other, to appear through them. Both hairs and scales are of 
a dusky-brown colour. The acute margins of the tail are covered with a close line of longer 
hairs, those on the upper edge being of a dark-brown colour, and those on the under one of a 
soiled-white. The tail is rather thicker in the middle than at the root, and it tapers gradually 
from its middle to its extremity, which is not acute. 


Inches. Lines. Inches. Li 


Length of head and body ... 14 

„ tail .... .8 B 

„ head ;{ 4 

,, whiskers ..... 2 

„ lower incisors ... 9 

Length of fore-feet to the end of middle claw 1 3 
,, hind feet, from heel to the end of 

the middle claw ... 3 2 

„ hind claws .... 6 

„ from end of the nose to the eye . 1 3 

There is a considerable variation in the size of individuals, as is common in all the species 
of the Linnean genus mus. 

The Musquashes have a strong- musky smell, particularly the male ones in the 


spring time ; yet their flesh is eaten by the Indians^ and when it is fat they prize 
it for a time, but are said to tire of it soon — it somewhat resembles flabby pork. 

In latitude 55°, the Musquash has three litters in the course of the summer_, and 
from three to seven young at a litter. They begin to breed before they attain 
their full growth. The districts in which they are most abundant are subject to 
inundations^ which,, covering all the low grounds, leave no resting places for these 
animals, and destroy great numbers ; in severe winters, also, they are sometimes 
almost extirpated from certain parts of the country by the freezing up of the 
swamps, which they inhabit. In such cases, being deprived of their usual food, 
they are driven by famine to destroy each other. They are likewise subject at 
uncertain intervals to a great mortality from some unknown cause. Their great 
fecundity, however, enables them to recover these losses in a very few years, 
although the deaths are at times so numerous, that a fur-post, where the Musquash 
is the principal return, is not unfrequently abandoned until they have recruited. 

The southern limit of the range of the Musquash may be stated to be some- 
where about latitude 30°, Bartram informs us, that they exist in the northern parts 
of Georgia and Florida ; and we have ascertained that they extend northwards 
nearly to the mouth of the Mackenzie, in latitude 69°. Their favourite abodes 
are small grassy lakes or swamps, or the grassy borders of slow-flowing streams 
where there is a muddy bottom. They feed chiefly on vegetable matters ; and 
in northern districts principally on the roots and tender shoots of the bulrush and 
reed-mace, and on the leaves of various carices and aquatic grasses. The sweet- 
flag (acorus calamus), of whose roots, according to Pennant, they are very fond, 
does not grow to the northward of Lake Winipeg. In the summer, they frequent 
rivers, for the purpose it is said of feeding upon the fresh-water mussels (Unio). 
We often saw small collections of mussel-shells on the banks of the larger rivers^ 
which we were told had been left by them. 

In the autumn, before the shallow lakes and swamps freeze over, the Musquash 
builds its house of mud, giving it a conical form, and a sufficient base to raise 
the chamber above the level of the water. The chosen spot is generally amongst 
long grass, which is incorporated with the walls of the house, from the mud 
being deposited amongst it, but the animal does not appear to make any kind of 
composition or mortar by tempering the mud and grass together. There is, 
however, a dry bed of grass deposited in the chamber. The entrance is under 
water. When ice forms over the surface of the swamp, the Musquash makes 
breathing holes through it, and protects them from the frost by a covering of 
mud. In severe winters, however, these holes freeze up, in spite of their cover- 


ings_, and many of the animals die. It is to be remarked that the small grassy 
lakes selected by the Musquash for its residence^ are never so firmly frozen nor 
covered with such thick ice as deeper and clearer water. The Indians kill 
these animals by spearing them through the walls of their houses, making their 
approach with great caution, for the Musquashes take to the water when alarmed 
by a noise on the ice. An experienced hunter is so well acquainted with the 
direction of the chamber, and the position in which its inmates lie, that he can 
transfix four or five at a time. As soon as, from the motion of the spear, it is 
evident that an animal is struck, the house is broken down, and it is taken out. 
The principal seasons for taking the Musquash are the autumn before the snow 
falls, and the spring after it has disappeared, but while the ice is still entire. In 
the winter time, the depth of snow prevents the houses and breathing holes 
from being seen. One of the first operations of the hunter is to stop up all the 
holes, with the exception of one, at which he stations himself to spear the 
animals that have escaped being struck in the houses, and come thither to 
breathe. In the summer, the Musquash burrows in the banks of the lakes, 
making branched canals many yards in extent, and forming its nest in a chamber 
at the extremity, in which the young are brought forth. When its house is 
attacked in the autumn, it retreats to these passages ; but in the sprhig they are 
frozen up. 

The Musquash is a watchful, but not a very shy animal. It will come very 
near to a boat or canoe, but dives instantly on perceiving the flash of a gun. It 
may be frequently seen sitting on the shores of small muddy islands, in a rounded 
form, and not easily to be distinguished from a piece of earth, until, on the 
approach of danger, it suddenly plunges into the water. In the act of diving, 
when surprised, it gives a smart blow to the water with its tail. Hearne states, 
that it is easily tamed, soon grows fond, is very cleanly and playful, and smells 
pleasantly (!) of musk.* 

The fur of this animal is used in the manufacture of hats. Between four and 
five hundred thousand skins are annually imported into Great Britain from North 

* It is singular tliat Hearne, who must have seen vast numbers of these animals, should describe the hind-feet as 
Vebbed, There is no vestige of a web ; although the marginal row of long hairs fits the feet to act as oars. 



Fiber Zibethicus, var. B, nigra. Black Musquash, 

It is not uncommon to find a Musquash of a very dark brown colour^, approach- 
ing to black ; but one covered with fur of a pure black colour is rare, though 
of occasional occurrence. 

Fiber Zibethicus, var. C, maculosa. Pied Musquash. 

I have seen, in the possession of an Indian, the skin of a Musquash which was 
ariegated with dark, blackish-brown patches, on a white ground. 

Fiber Zibethicus, var. D, alba. White Musquash, 

Fiber Zibethicus — albus. Sabine, Franklin's Journ., p. 660. 

An albino variety of the Musquash is not very unfrequent : I have seen 


[35.] 1. Arvicolal riparius. (Ord i*) Bank Meadow Mouse. 

Genus, Arvicola. Lacepede. Ctivier. 

Arvicola riparius. Ord, Journ. Acad. Sciences Phil, vol. iv. p. 305 ? 

Marsh Campagnol. Godman, JVa^. //is^, vol. ii. p. 67- 

A (riparius 9) supra hepalico-bruiineus [exfusco fuliyneoque mixtis), siibter plumheus, auriculis mediocri- 

bus pilis ohvelatis, Cauda longitudine capitis, pedibus albldis. 
Bank Jleadow-mouse of a dull brown colour, intimately mixed with black ; beneath bluish-gray : ears of a 

moderate size, nearly hid by the fur ; tail the length of the head ; feet white. 

It is so difficult to discriminate the different Meadow-mice by mere descriptions, 
that I have much hesitation in referring- any of my specimens to those which 
have been named by authors. I have not had access to a museum containing- 
many species ; and their forms and colours differ so little, that figures, unless 
very accurate, tend rather to mislead. Five species are common in the Hudson's 
Bay countries, exclusive of the lemmings ; and there are doubtless others which 
did not come under our notice. A considerable number have been described 
as inhabitants of the United States by Rafinesque, Ord, and others ; but the 
American naturalists are by no means agreed about the species, and have applied 
the names variously. The Meadow-mouse which I have referred to Mr. Ord's 
riparius, corresponds with the short account by that author in the Journal of 
Science ; but the description of Mr. Ord's specimen by Dr. Harlan, in his Fauna 
Americana, under the name of Arvicola palustris, differs in several particulars, 
and agrees more nearly with the Arvicola xanthognathiis of the following article. 

The animal which I am now about to describe was procured by Mr. Drummond, 
near the foot of the Rocky Mountains. Its manners are analogous to those of the 
common water-rat {Arvicola amphibius) , with which it may be easily confounded, 
although the shortness of its tail may serve as a mark of distinction. It frequents 
moist meadows amongst the mountains, and swims and dives well, taking at 
once to the water when pursued. It is distinguished from the other American 
species of this genus which have come under my notice, by the length and 
strength of its incisors, which are twice the size of those of the Arvicola xaiitho- 
gnathus, although the latter is the largest animal of the two. 


Shape — The head is rather large, and not easily distinguishable from the neck ; the 
incisors are much exposed, and project beyond the nose ; the upper ones are flattish ante 


riorly are marked with some scarcely perceptible perpendicular grooves, and have a somewhat 
irregular and rather oblique cutting edge ; the lower incisors are twice the length of the 
upper ones, narrower, slightly curved, and rounded anteriorly. Nose thick and obtuse. 
Whiskers black ; scarcely of the length of the head. Eyes small, much concealed by the 
fur. Ears moderately large, oval, rounded at the tip, covered on the outside with fur similar 
to that on the neighbouring parts, and on that account not easily distinguishable until the fur 
is blown aside. Body more slender posteriorly, the hind-legs not being so far apart as the 
fore ones. Tat/ about the length of the head, somewhat flat horizontally, tapering, and thinly 
covered with short hairs, which at the end form a small pencil-like point. Fore-legs short ; 
feet rather small, with four, slender, well-separated toes, and the rudiment of a thumb, which is 
armed with a minute nail. Claws small, white, compressed, and pointed. The third toe 
nearly equals the middle one, which is the longest ; the first is shorter than these two, and the 
outer one, which is the shortest of all, is half the length of the middle one. The hairs of the 
toes project over the claws, but do not conceal them. The toes of the Am(i-/eef are longer 
than those of the fore ones, and their claws are also somewhat longer. The inner one is the 
shortest, the second is longer than the third, and the third than the fourth ; but the difference 
between the three is but just perceptible. The first and fifth are considerably shorter than 
the others, and are situated further back. The first, or inner one, which is the smallest, from 
its shortness and position, resembles a thumb. The hind toes are turned a little inwards, as 
is usual in the meadow-mice ; but there is no provision either of webs or the arrangement of 
the hairs to give them much power in swimming. 

The fur on the back is about eight lines long, but not so soft and fine as in some others of 
the genus : it is nearly as long on the crown of the head and cheeks ; but it is shorter and 
thinner on the chest and belly. The specimen described was killed in summer ; in the winter 
perhaps the fur may be of a better quality. 

Colour — Incisors yellow. The whole dorsal aspect, including the shoulders and outside of 
the thighs, is of a dull, dusky, dark brown, proceeding from an intimate mixture of yellowish- 
brown and black. These colours are confined to the tips of the hairs, and are so mingled as 
to produce a nearly uniform shade of colour without lustre. From the roots to near the tips 
the fur has an uniform shining blackish-gray colour. The ventral aspect is bluish-gray. The 
margin of the upper lip, the chin and feet, are dull white. The tail is dark-brown above and 
whitish beneath, the two colours meeting by an even line. 



Length of head and body . . 7 

„ tail . . 2 

Tlie depressed or flat tail may cause this animal to rank with the Mijnomes of 
Rafinesque ; but it is certainly not the same with the Meadow Mouse figured in 
Wilson's Ornithology, plate 50_, with which Desmarest (Mamm. p. 286) unites it. 


[36.] 2. Arvicola xanthognathus. (Leach.) Yellow -cheeked 


A. xanthognathus. Leach. Zool. Misc., vol. i. p. CO. t. sxvi. 

A. {^xanthognatliiis) ladio nigroque varius {nee tamen maculosus) ventre argenteo-cinereo, malis fulvis, pedibus 

fuscescentibus sithtus albidh. 
Yellow-cheeked Bleadow-IMouse, with a brown and black dorsal aspect, silvery-gray belly, dull orange-coloured 

cheeks, and brown feet. 


Teeth corresponding in number with the rest of the genus. Incisors, pale-yellow, exte- 
riorly. Lower ones longer, paler, and nearly round. Upper ones shorter, stronger, slightly 
rounded, with even cutting edges. Of the upper molar teeth the posterior one is the largest, 
and has three grooves on its sides. The two anterior ones have two grooves each, making, 
in all, ten ribs or projecting angles, in the upper molar teeth of each side. Of the loiver molars, 
the anterior one is the largest, and has four grooves : the other two have two each, forming, in 
all, eleven ribs, which correspond to the angles of so many triangles on the grinding surfaces. 

Form. — The body is nearly cylindrical, of the size of the water-rat, legs short, nose rather 
obtuse, its tip on a line with the incisors. Ears, nearly circular, rather large when compared with 
those of other meadow-mice, sparingly hairy within, well covered exteriorly with fur of the same 
colour with the rest of the superior parts. Whiskers, about the length of the head. Tail, 
shorter than the head, tapering, well covered with hairs, lying smoothly and coming to a point 
at the end. Extremities — legs, covered with short hairs, lying closely and smoothly. The 
fore-feet have naked palms, and four toes, with a callus protected by a very minute 
nail, in place of a thumb ; the first toe is a little shorter than the third ; the second the 
longest, and the fourth the shortest. The toes are well covered with smooth hair above, and 
are naked below. The hair of the wrist projects a little over the palms. The claws are small. 
The hind-feet have five toes, of v/hich the three middle ones are nearly equal in length ; the 
outer one is considerably shorter, and the inner one is the furthest back and the shortest. 
The posterior half of the sole is covered with hairs, which curve inwards. The soles of the 
hind-feet are narrower and longer than the palms of the fore-ones. Fur, soft and fine ; about 
four lines and a half long on the head, and nine on the posterior part of the back. 

Colours. — The colour of the fur, from the roots to near the tips, is shining grayish-black. 
On the dorsal aspect of the head and body, the tips of the hairs are yellowish-brown or black, 
the black-pointed hairs being the longest. The colour resulting is a mixture of dark-brown 
and black, without spots, and appearing of different shades when moved in the light. The 
sides are a little paler than the back. The under parts are of a silvery bluish-gray, darkening 
into blackish-gray on two large patches anterior to the shoulders. There is a blackish-brown 


stripe along the centre of the nose. On each side of it there is a reddish-browii patch, which 
extends from the mouth to the orbit. Whiskers black. Tail brownish-black above, whitish 
beneath. Extremities, dark- brown, exteriorly ; whitish, interiorly. 

Length of head and body . from ok to 8 

„ head 1 10 

„ tail 1 C 

„ ears (breadth or height) . . 7 


Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 
Length of middle fore-toe and claw . 3 

„ „ hind-toe and claw . SJ 

„ hind-foot from heel to point of the 
claw of middle toe 19 

This species makes long canals under the mossy turf on the dry banks of lakes 
and rivers, and also in woods, but does not burrow deep into the earth. It is 
plentiful in some quarters^ but shews no disposition to enter the houses of the 
traders, and domesticate itself, like the following species. It is common in the 
immediate vicinity of Fort Franklin ; and Mr. Drummond found it in abundance on 
the Rocky Mountains in latitude 56°^ in places where the woods had been destroyed 
by fire. It has about seven young- at a birth. It was first described by Dr. Leach ; 
and an indifferent figure, half the natural size of a specimen^ which he obtained 
from Hudson's Bay, was published in the Zoological Miscellany. Mr. Say, in the 
narrative of Long's expedition, mentions a Meadow-Mouse, which he terras the 
Arviicola xanthognathus, as an inhabitant of the banks of the Ohio, but gives no 
description ; and Godman, who speaks of an animal under the same name, as 
common in the United States, and doing great injury to the banks, alludes to its 
diminutwe size, and evidently refers to some other species. The description 
quoted by Mr. Sabine^ in Franklin's Journey, under the title of Arvicola xantho- 
gnatha, does not belong to this animal, but to a much smaller species, which I have 
referred to the Arvicola Pennsylvankus of Ord, in the following article. 



[37.] 3. Arvicola Pennsylvanicus. (Ord.) JVilson's Meadow-Mouse. 

Short-tailed Mouse. Forster, Phil. Trans., vol. Ixii. p. 380. No. 18. 

Meadow-Mouse. Pennant's Arctic Zoo^., vol. i. p. 133?* Wilson, ^ra. Orni^A., vol. vi. p. 59. t. 50. f. 3. 

Arvicola Pennsylvanica. " Ord, Guthrie's Geography" (quoted from Harlan.) Harlan, Fauna, p. 145. 

A. {^Pennsylvanicus) roslro oltuso, auricuUs vellere suhcelatis, cauda bene, vestitd obtusa dimidium capitis longitudine 

cequanti, corpore fusco subter griseo-a/bo. 
Wilson's Meadow-SIouse, with an obtuse snout, a blunt hairy tail, half the length of the head, back brown, belly 

neai'ly white. 

This campagnol was considered by Forster and Pennant to be specifically the 
same with the Meadow- Mouse of the old continent {Miis agrestis, Linn. Mus 
arvalis, Penn. Arvicola vulgaris, Desm.), which it greatly resembles both in 
appearance and habits. It was first described by Wilson, whose specimen, how- 
ever^ was half an inch longer than I have ever seen it in the Hudson's Bay 
countries. This little animal is very abundant from Canada to Great Bear Lake^ 
and multiplies with rapidity in the neighbourhood of the trading posts. It seeks 
shelter in the barns and out-houses^ where it makes hoards of grain and of the seeds 
of leguminous plants. It is said to be very fond of the bulbous roots of the 
Philadelphia lily ; and it does much mischief in gardens by burrowing under 
the drills^ and carrying off the seeds. This is the species which is described in 
Captain Franklin's Journey (p. 660), under the name oiAnicola xanthognatha. 


The body and head have conjointly a short oval shape. The head is large, with an obtuse 
nose, and the lips are clothed with very short hairs. Margins of the nostrils and the septum 
naked ; upper lip very slightly cleft ; a hairy patch on the inside of the mouth. Incisors 
yellow, dentition precisely similar to that of the Arvic. xanthognathus. Eyes small ; whiskers 
about as long as the head, of a brownish-colour approaching to black at their roots. 
Ears large, with a wide auditory opening, protected by a large rounded tragus. External ear 
erect, oval, rounded above, thin and membranous, clothed with a few short hairs ; it is 
nearly six lines high, but is hid by the fur. The tail is cylindrical, and is thickly 
clothed with short adpressed hairs, a few of which project beyond the obtuse extremity, 
but they can scarcely be said to form a pencil or tuft. The extremities are short, and 

* There seems to be some mistake in Pennant's having ascribed the dimensions of six inches to this Meadow-Mouse. 
He quotes Buffon, who describes his specimen as little more than half that size. 


much concealed by the broad fleshy body. The palms of the fore-feet are naked, and 
have five little callous tubercles, of which one is common to the two middle toes, one to each 
of the other two toes, and two lie in contact with each other at the posterior part of the palm ; 
one of the latter two is larger than any of the others, and supports the rudiment of a thumb, 
consisting of a small papilla, protected by a minute and rather obtuse entire nail. The two 
middle toes spring together from the extremity of the palm, and are nearly equal to each 
other in length. The inner toe arises higher up, and is next to the middle ones in length. The 
outer toe is opposite to the inner one, but is still shorter. All the toes are covered above 
with short adpressed hairs, some of which project beyond the claws. The claivs are 
slender, pointed, very slightly arched, and have a lanceolate-shaped groove underneath. 
The feet are the only part of the fore-extremities which project beyond the fur of the body. 
The hind-feet have a pretty long and rather slender tarsus, clothed with short adpressed 
hairs. They have four toes similarly arranged with those of the fore-feet, but of greater length ; 
and an inner toe or thumb of the same form with the outer one, but situated further back. 
The hind-feet are longer than the fore-ones, and part of the leg projects beyond the fur of 
the body. 

Colour of all the upper parts, including the sides of the head, a hair-brown, or what is 
termed mouse-colour, without spots or mottling ; there is no reddish spot on the cheek or face, 
but there is a very slight reddish-brown tinge on the hairs about the ears. The under parts, 
including the chin and part of the neck, are light-gray. The brown of the sides and gray of 
the belly mingle without any well defined line of junction. The fur is fine and long, and 
when blown aside appears over the whole body of a dark bluish or blackish gray, the colours 
proper to the back and belly being confined to the tips of the hair. The tail is of the colour 
of the back above and of the belly underneath. 


Length of head and body 

„ tail 

„ head alone .... 



Many of these mice were killed at Carlton-house in the beginning of March, 
when the preceding description was drawn up. I should have hesitated in 
describing this animal as specifically distinct from the common meadow-mouse of 
Europe, had it not already received a distinct name. 



,[38.] 4. Arvicola Novoboracensis. Sharp-nosed Meadow-Mouse, 

Leminus Novoboracensis. " Rafinesque, Ann. of Nature" (q^uoteii from Desmarest, Mamm. p. 286). 

A. [Novohoracensis) naso r/racili acuta, aurlcuUs jnominuUs, cauda squamata nudiuscula caput mediocre longiiudine 

ea'cedenli, corpore super obscure, fusco ; subter sordide murino. 
8harp.nosed Meadow-Mouse, with ears slightly overtopping the fur, a slightly hairy scaly tail, more than half the 

length of the head, the body above dark brown ; beneath soiled brownish-gray. 

A Meadow-Mouse was observed by Mr. Drummond on the Rocky Mountains, 
inhabiting- dry places along' with the Arvicola xanthognathus, and having similar 
habits with that animal. It answers to the short description given of Mr. 
Rafinesque's hemnins Novoboracensis ; and although that is not sufficient to prove 
their identity_, I have adopted his specific name, to avoid the hazard of loading 
the science with another synonym. 


Shape. — The body is thick ; the head of a moderate size, tapers from the ears to the 
end of the nose ; the nose is slender and acute when compared with other species of this 
genus, and it projects a little way beyond the incisors, i/ars rounded, rising slightly above 
the surrounding fur, but they are not very conspicuous, as the hairs on their margins have the 
same colour with those of the head and back. The tail is covered with very short adpressed 
hairs, not close enough to hide the scales ; a few of the hairs converge to a point at the end of 
the tail. The/eys are very short, the feet small, and the claws weak and compressed ; a very 
minute nail occupies the place of a thumb. The fur is less fine than that of the Arvicola Penn- 
sylvanicus. On the back it is grayish-black from the roots to near the tips, which are reddish- 
brown, terminated by black. The resulting colour is an intimate mixture of brown and black, 
appearing in some lights dark reddish-brown, in others umber-brown, mixed with black. The 
superior parts of the head have the same colour with the back, except that there is an 
obscure rufous spot beneath the ear. The ventral aspect is yellowish-gray, which mingles on. 
the sides with the colour of the back. The feet are dark-gray. The upper surface of the 
tail is liver-brown, the under one grayish-white. 

Length of head and body 
,, head 


Inches. Lines. 

. 4 3 Length of tail 

. I 4 „ longest fur on the back . 

. 1 


scribed from a summer specimen. 


[39.] 5. Arvicola BOREALis. (Rich.). Northern Meadow-Mouse. 

Mouse, No. 15. Fouster, P/iiZ. Tram., 62. p. 380 ? 

Arvicola borealis. Richardson, ZooL Journ, No. 12, April, 1828, p. 517. 

Awinnak. Dog-rib Indians. 

A. {borealis) pentadaclylus, auricuUs vellere conditis, caudacajmt suhcuquanti, corpore villosissimo badio nigroque subter 

Northern Bleadow-lMouse, with a strong thumb-nail, ears concealed in the fur ; tail about as long as the head; fur very 

long and fine ; on the back chestnut colour mixed with black, on the belly gray. 

This animal was found in abundance at Great Bear Lake^ living in the vicinity 
of the Arvicola xanthognatlms, and having similar habits. It very much resembles 
the Arvicola Novoboracensis in size and general appearance ; but, on comparing 
them with each other, the A. borealis is seen to have a rounder and smaller head, 
a less prolonged upper jaw, shorter ears, and a shorter and differently clothed tail. 
It may also be distinguished not only from the A. Novoboracensis, but also from 
the A. xanthognatlms and .4. Pennsykaniciis , by the form of its thumb-nail, which, 
instead of being thin, obtuse and rounded, lying closely on one side of a little 
tubercle, is larger, strap-shaped, and projects from the extremity of a minute 
rudimentary thumb. It has its outer and inner surfaces alike in being rather 
convex, and a small obtuse point projects from its truncated end. The form of the 
thumb-nail allies this animal very closely to the Norway lemming, and to one or 
two species of American lemming ; but its claws are smaller and more compressed, 
and apparently not so well calculated for scraping earth as the broader claws of 
the lemmings. It may, however, be considered as an intermediate link between 
the two sub-divisions of the genus arvicola, and may without inconvenience be 
ranked either as a true meadow-mouse or as a lemming. 


The Northern-Meadow Mouse has the dentition and usual form of the campagnols, with a 
moderately large head, a convex forehead, and a short but acute nose projecting beyond the 
incisors. The eyes are small, and the ears, which, toward their margins, are thinly clothed 
■with hairs of the same colour with the adjoining parts, are low, rounded, and shorter than the 
surrounding fur. The body and head are clothed with fur, which is very long in proportion to 
the size of the animal. The fur on the upper parts is shining blackish-gray, from the roots to 
the tips, some of which are yellowish or chestnut-brown, some black. The hairs with black 
tip sare the longest, and are equally distributed amongst the others, giving the whole a dark 



umber or liver-brown colour, but producing no spots. There is a rufous mark under the ears. 
The fur on the back is about ten lines long, that on the crown of the head is three or four. 
The fur on the under parts (including the chin and lips) has a lead-gray colour, and is 
shorter than that covering the back and sides. The tail is round, well clothed with short 
stiff hairs, which do not permit any scales to be seen. It is clove-brown above, and grayish- 
white beneath. The hairs at the extremity of the tail are of the same length with the others, 
but converge to a point. The fore and hind extremities are clothed with short hairs of a 
clove-brown colour, mixed on the toes and hind-parts of the fore-feet, with some longer 
white hairs. The hind-toes are more slender and scarcely longer than the fore ones ; they 
turn obliquely inwards. The fore-claws are small, whitish, much compressed, arched, and 
acute, with a narrow, elliptical excavation underneath. The hairs of the toes reach to the 
points of the nails. The claws of the hind-feet resemble the fore ones, but are not so strong. 
The thumb of the fore-feet consists merely of a small strap-shaped nail, slightly convex on 
both sides, and having an obtuse point projecting from the middle of its extremity. 

Length of head and body . 

5) tail . . 

„ head alone 
Height of ear 

Described from spring specimens, after the snow had melted. 








Breadth of the ear . . .0 



Length of fore-feet to end of middle claw 




„ hind-feet, including heel and claw 



„ fur on the back . . 


[40.] 6. Arvicola (Georychus ?) helvolus. (Richardson. 

Tawny Lemming. 

Genus, An-icola. Cuvier. Sub-genus, Georychus. Illiger. Cuvier. 
Arvicola (Lemmus) helvolus. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12, 1828, p. 517. 

<4. Geo-RYCIIV s(/ic!voIus) 7iaso 2MUido obluso, pahnis pentadaeti/lis, capite/ulvo nigroque, corpora helvolo svhtervix 

Tawny Lemming, with a pale blunt nose , a thumb ; tawny and black head ; and a reddish-orange coloured body, 
a little paler beneath. 

The Lemmings are, by some authors, thought to possess characters which 
entitle them to form a distinct genus ; but I am inclined to agree with those who 
range them merely as a subdivision of the genus arvicola, characterised principally 
by the shortness of the ears and tail, and the larger and stronger claws, more 


fitted for digging-. In the short character of the species given above^ the insertion 
of the word Georychus is intended to indicate the presence of the characteristic 
features of the Lemmings. 

This animal was found by Mr. Drummond^ inhabiting alpine swamps, in latitude 
56° ; but he could not learn any thing of its habits. From the great similarity of 
its form^ and the strong resemblance in the shape of its claws to the Norwegian 
Lemming, we may infer that its habits do not differ much from those of that animal. 


Size of the Lapland Lemming. Body low, head oval, nose short, blunt, and nearly on a 
line with the incisors. Eyes small ; ears broader than high, shorter than the fur, clothed 
•with hair near the edges. Tail very short, clothed with stiff hairs, which are longest near its 
extremity, and there converge to a point. 

The fur of the body has a reddish-orange colour, palest on the ventral aspect. On the 
back and sides there are interspersed a number of longer hairs tipped with black, but they do 
not produce any spotting. On the upper part of the head, round the eyes, and on the nape of 
the neck, the black hairs are more numerous, and the fur of those parts has a mixed black and 
orange colour. The nose is grayish-brown, the sides of the face are pale orange, and the 
margins of the upper lip white. The tail is coloured like the body. The feet are brov.'nish. 
The fur on the body is about nine lines long, that on the nose and extremities is very short. 
The fur of the head is pretty long. 

The cutting edge of the upper incisors is obliquely excavated in a lunated form, arising from 
their outer edges being inclined backwards, so that these teeth do not appear so flat ante- 
riorly as those of the Arvicola xanthognathiis, which have straight cutting edges. The claws 
of both extremities are much alike, greatly compressed, with sharp points, and an oblong, 
narrow excavation underneath. They are larger than those of any of the meadow-mice 
described in the preceding pages, although the A. jjalustris and A. xanthognathiis are more 
than twice the size of the largest specimen of this animal. The thumb of the fore-feet 
consists almost entirely of a thick, flat, strap-shaped nail, resembling that of the Norway 
Lemming, and having, like it, an obliquely truncated summit. In the Tawny Lemming this 
summit presents obscurely two obtuse points. 

Length of head and body 
„ tail 
,, head . 










Inches. Lines- 
Length of fore-feet and claws . . 4^ 
hind-feet, from heel to end of claw 8 
fur on the back .... 9 


[41.] 7. Arvicola (Georychus) trimucronatus, (Richardson.) 

Backus Lemming. 

Arvicola trimucronatus. Richardson, Parry^s Second Voyage., App. p. 309. 

A. Georychus {trimucronatus) auriculis vellere sub-conditis, roatro nigro obtusiusculo, palmis pentadactylis unguihus (4) 
lanceolatis curvis ; imgue pollicari iigulato tricuspidato, corpore super obscure castaneo, latere ferrugineo 
suhter cinereo. 

Back's Lemming, with ears somewhat shorter than the fur ; a blunt, black nose ; four claws on the fore-feet, of a 
lanceolate form, and a strap-shaped thuralj-nail, with three small points at the end ; body, dark chestnut- 
colour above, reddish-orange or rust-colour on the sides, and gray beneath. 

This animal was discovered by Captain Back on the borders of Point Lake, in 
latitude 65°, on Captain Franklin's first expedition. Mr. Edwards, the Surgeon 
of the Fury, on Captain Parry's second expedition, brought a specimen from 
Igloolik, in latitude 69^° ; and specimens were obtained on Captain Franklin's 
last expedition on the shores of Great Bear Lake. At the latter place it was found 
in the spring, as soon as the ground began to thaw, burrowing under the mossy 
turf. In the winter it travels under the snow in a seraicylindrical furrow, very 
neatly cut to the depth of two inches and a half, in the mossy turf. These hollow 
ways cross each other at various angles, but occasionally run to a considerable 
distance in a straight direction. From their smoothness, it was evident that they 
were not merely worn by the feet, but actually cut by the teeth. Their width is 
sufficient to allow the animal to pass with facility. The food of this Lemming 
seems to consist entirely of vegetable matters. It inhabits woody spots. A female 
killed on Point Lake, June 26, 1821, contained six young, fully formed, but 
destitute of hair. 


Si::e, a little inferior to the Hudson's Bay Lemming, or nearly about that of the Norwegian 
Lemming. Head flat, covered by moderately long fur. Ears shorter than the fur, inclined 
backwards, thinly clothed. Eyes smaller than those of the English domestic mouse. Upper 
lip deeply cleft. The nose is obtuse, Avith a small, naked, but not pointed or projecting tip, 
and covered above with hairs of a deep black colour. Whiskers numerous, black at the roots, 
brownish or white at the extremities ; some entirely white. Inside of the mouth hairy, the 
hairs springing from projecting glandular folds. Teeth — incisors, somewhat yellowish ; upper 
ones presenting a conspicuous, but shallow groove, with an obliquely notched, cutting edge. 
Grinders, three on a side in each jaw. 


The Body is broad and rather flat, and is everywhere covered with a beautifully fine and 
soft fur, which is about nine lines long on the back, but rather shorter on the belly. The 
colour of the head and dorsal aspect of the neck and shoulders is a mixed reddish-gray, 
formed from the mingling of the clove-brown, yellowish-brown, and black tips of the hairs in 
nearly equal proportion. The back is chestnut-brown, but many of the longer hairs are tipped 
with black. The sides are reddish-orange, and the belly, chin, and throat, gray, intermixed 
with many orange-coloured hairs. The colours of this animal very strongly resemble those of 
the Tawny Lemming ; but its nose is deep black, whilst the nose of the latter is pale. The 
tail projects a few lines beyond the fur, is clothed with stiff hairs converging to a point, dark 
above, grayish-white below. 

The fore-legs are short, but the feet are moderately large, and turned outwards, like the 
feet of a turnspit dog. They are of a dark clove-brown colour above, and are clothed Avith 
longer white hairs posteriorly. The (4) toes are naked underneath, and are armed Avith 
moderate-sized strong nails, curved downwards, and inclined outwards. They are of aa 
oblong form, convex above, not compressed, are excavated underneath more broadly than 
the nails of any of the other American lemmings I have met with, and have sharp edges 
fitted for scraping away the earth. The thumb is almost entirely composed of a strong nail 
■which has two slightly convex surfaces, a strap-shaped outline, and a truncated extremity, 
from which three small points project. The palms are narrow. 

The posterior extremities are considerably longer than the fore ones, the thighs and legs 
being tolerably distinct from the body. The sole is narrow, long, and somewhat oblique, 
having its inner edge turned a little forwards. The toes are longer, and the claws as long, 
but more slender than those of the fore-feet, and they are much compressed. In the tawny 
lemming (No. 40.) the claws of both the hind and fore feet are compressed. 

Of a male killed at Fort Franklin. 

Length of head and body 
„ tail . 

„ head .... 
„ ears . . . 

„ whiskers ... 

A female was only 4^ inches long. 

Since this animal was described in the Appendix to Captain Parry's Voyage, above quoted, 
a second American species (^A. helvolus), armed with a thumb-nail, has been discovered, 
and the trivial name of Five-fingered American Lemming being no longer distinctive, I have 
given it a new English appellation, after the officer who first procured a specimen. 






Length of fur on the back . . 



,, palm and claw of middle toe, nearly 




,, claw of middle toe . . 



„ sole, and middle claw of hind-foot 




S 2 


[42.] 8. Arvicola (Georychus) Hudsonius. Hudson' s Bay Lemmijig. 

Mus Hudsonius. FonsTER, Phil. Trans., Ixii. p. 379. Pallas, Glir., p. 208. Lin. Gmel., 137. 

Hudson's rat. Pennant, Quadr., vol. ii. p. 201. Arctic Zoology, vol. i. p. 132. 

Hare-tailed Mouse. Hearne, Journ., p. 387- 

Lemmus Hudsonius. Captain Sabine, Parry's First Voij., Suppl, p. clxxxv. Mr. Sabine, Franklin's 

Journ., p. CGI. Diet, des Sciences Nat., torn. viii. p. 5CG. Harlan, Fauna, p. 14G. 
Arvicola Hudsonia. Richardson, Parry's Second Voy., App., p. 308. 
Hudson's Bay Lemming. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 73. 
Spec. 107 a. British Museum. 

A. Georychus (^Hudsonius') exauriculaius, wiguibus duohus anticis intermediis maximis compressis hi-mucronatis, 

{rmicrone una super alteriim). 
Hudson's Bay Iiemming, earless, T\ith two middle claws of the fore-feet unusually large, compressed, their very blunt 

extremity being rendered double by a deep transverse notch. 

This curious animal was first described by Forster, from a mutilated specimen, 
and afterwards more fully by Pallas, who received a number of its skins from 
Labrador, one of which he sent to Pennant. A specimen, preserved in the 
Museum du Roi, at Paris, is described in the Did. des Sciences, and there is an 
excellent specimen in the British Museum. 

We did not meet with this lemming in the interior of America, and I believe it 
has hitherto been found only near the sea. It inhabits Labrador, Hudson's Straits, 
and the coast from Churchill to the extremity of Melville Peninsula, as well as the 
islands of the Polar sea, visited by Captain Parry. Its habits are still imperfectly 
known. In summer, according- to Hearne, it burrows under stones, in dry ridges, 
and Captain Sabine informs us that in winter it resides in a nest of moss on the 
surface of the ground, rarely going abroad. The former author likewise acquaints 
us that it is very inoffensive, and so easily tamed, that if taken even when full 
grown, it will in a day or two be perfectly reconciled, very fond of being handled, 
and will creep of its own accord into its master's neck or bosom. 


The body is thick, the head short and rounded, nose obtuse, eyes very small, and there are 
no exterior ears. The legs are short, and the tail is so short, that only the stiff hairs of its end 
project beyond the fur of the hips. The upper incisors are whitish, curved, flat anteriorly, 
and have even cutting edges. The lower ones are a little longer and more slender. The fur 
is remarkably fine and pretty long, blackish-gray from the roots to the tips, which are on the 
dorsal aspect white, dark brown and black. The result is a beautiful mottling of these 


colours, in which the dark brown predominates on the crown of the head and dorsal hne : 
there is more white towards the sides. On the under parts of the cheeks, on the chest 
about the ears, and on the sides, a bright rust colour prevails. The ventral aspect is grayish- 
white, more or less tinged with the rust colour. The extremely short tail is closely covered 
with stiff white hairs that converge to a point at its end. 

The feet are clothed with long white hairs. On the fore-feet there are four toes, with a 
minute rudiment of a thumb, not armed with any nail whatever. The two middle toes are 
of equal length, and are each furnished with a disproportionately large claw, which is com- 
pressed, deep, very blunt at the extremity, and is there separated into two layers by a 
transverse furrow. The upper layer is thinner, the lower one has a blunt rounded 
outline. The latter has been described as an enlargement of the callus which exists beneath 
the roots of the claws of the lemmings and meadow-mice ; it appears to me, however, to be 
of the same substance with the superior portion of the nail. The outer and inner toes have 
curved, sharp, pointed claws. The hind-feet have five toes, armed with slender, curved claws, 
like those of the other lemmings. The two middle claws, however, in full-grown individuals, 
shew some approach to the peculiar form of those on the fore-feet. 

In the females and young, the subjacent production of the claws is less conspicuous. The 
description is drawn up from a summer specimen. In the winter, the tips of the hairs are 
Avhite, but Hearne says the white colour of their fur never appears so pure as that of the 


Inches. Lines. 
Length of body and head . . .5 4 I Length of tail .... 

„ head 1 4 „ middle fore-claw 






[43.] 9. Arvicola (Georychus) Grgenlandicus. Greenland Lemmings 

Mouse. Sp. 15. Foster, Phil. Trans.., Ixii. p. 379 ? 

Hare-tailed Rat ? Pennant, Arct. Zool, vol. i. p. 133 ? 

Mus Grcenlandicus. Traill, Scoresby's Gree7i/., p. 416. 

Arvicola Grcenlandicus, Richardson, Parry's Second Voy., App., p. 304. 

Owinyak. Esquimaux. 

A. Gieohy cnv s {Groinlandictis') exauriculatus, roslro acuta, pahnis ieiradaciylis Mrsutis ; unguibus apice cylindrico 

producio, linea dorsali nigra. 
Greenland Lemming, earless, with a sharp nose ; fore-feet hairy beneath, with four toes, armed with claws, having 

sharp cylindrical points ; a dark stripe along the middle of the back. 

Foster^ in the Philosophical Transactions^ notices a skin brought from Churchill, 
evidently of a lemming-^ but in too imperfect a state to enable him to determine 
the species. Both he and Pennant were inclined to refer it to the Mus lagurus of 
Pallas, because it agreed with that animal in having a dark line along the back ; it 
is more probable, however^ that the skin belonged to the species which forms the 
subject of this article, which has also a dark dorsal stripe, and is certainly an 
inhabitant of Hudson's Bay. It was first described, and the specific name affixed, 
by Dr. Traill^ from an individual procured by Captain Scoresby, on the east coast 
of Greenland ; and on Captain Parry's second expedition a considerable number 
were caught in Repulse Bay^ and are described in the Appendix above quoted. 
They were found in similar situations with the Hudson's Bay lemming, and were 
considered to be the females of that species, by the officers of the expedition, and 
as such noted in their journals. A number of them being put into a cage, 
fought until they destroyed each other. 


Size — rather less than the ^ater-rat (^Arvicola amphibius). In general form they resemble 
the other lemmings. Head rounded, narrower than the body, tapering shghtly from the 
auditory openings to the eyes, but from the latter the acumination is more sudden, and it 
terminates in an acute nose. The general colour of the superior and lateral parts of the 
head, is the same with that of the back. There are no external ears, but the site of the 
auditory opening is denoted by an obscure transverse brownish streak in the fur. The eyes 
are near each other, and small. The fur on the cheeks is a little puffed up, has a rufous 
tinge, and is bounded posteriorly by an obscure blackish semicircular line, which commences 


at the anterior angle of the eye. The 7iose, covered with short black hairs, intermixed poste- 
riorly with some hoary ones, is rendered prominent by a depression on each side, anterior to 
the cheeks. Its acute apex is covered with black hairs disposed in a circular manner, and no 
naked space can be discovered above the nares in the dried specimen. The upper lip is 
deeply divided. Incisors slightly yellowish, inferior ones twice the length of the upper ones. 
Whiskers long, partly black, partly white. Body thick, having a smooth dense covering of 
long and soft fur. The colour on the dorsal aspect is dark grayish-brown, arising from an 
intimate mixture of hairs tipped with yellowish-gray and black ; the black tips are the 
longest, and, predominating down the centre of the back, produce a distinct stripe. The 
ventral aspect of the throat, neck, and body, exclusive of some rusty markings before the 
shoulders, is of an unmixed yellowish-gray colour, which unites with the darker colour of the 
back by an even line running on a level with the tail and inferior part of the cheek. The fur, 
both above and below, presents, when blown aside, a deep blackish-gray shining colour from 
the tips to the roots. The tail is very short, and is of the same colour with the body at the 
root, but the part which projects beyond the fur of the rump is only a pencil of stiff white 
hairs, four or five lines long. 

The fore-extremities project very little beyond the fur; the palms incline slightly inwards, 
are small, and the toes are very short ; both are covered thickly above and below, with strong 
hairs curving downwards, and extending beyond the claws. The only naked parts on the foot 
are a minute, flat, unarmed callus, in place of a thumb, and a rounded smooth callus at the 
extremity of each toe. These callosities do not project forwards under the claws, and have 
no resemblance to the large, compressed, horny, under portions of the claws of the Hudson's 
Bay lemming. The claws are long, strong, curved moderately downwards, and also inclining 
inwards to the maesial line, with a more slight curvature. The second claw from the inside, 
which is considerably the longest, is nearly four lines in length. hX the root it has a 
compressed, conical form, and is much deeper than broad ; it is rounded above, and flat 
or slightly grooved near its root underneath, but its curved extremity is lengthened out in 
a slender cylindrical manner. The other fore-claws, though smaller, are similar to this one. 
The third from the inside is the next in size, and the two extreme ones are considerably shorter. 
The length of the whole palm and middle claw is only six lines. The claws are fitted for 
digging, but not for cutting roots. Hind-feet. — ^The soles are hairy, and the hairs project 
further beyond the claws than on the fore-feet. Toes five, of which the three middle ones are 
nearly of a length, the two extreme ones arise further back, and are shorter. The hind-claws 
are shorter than the fore ones, slightly arched, narrow, but not sharp at the points; they 
are thin, hollowed out underneath, and calculated to throw back the earth which has been 
loosened by the fore-claws. 

The description was drawn up from a male, killed August 22, in Repulse Bay. 

INIr. Scoresby's Greenland specimen differs solely in colour, which oh the upper parts is a 
mixture of mottled ash-gray with blackish-brown and reddish-brown, and on the belly and 
inferior parts is rufescent. 


Of the Repulse Bay male specimen. 
Inches. Lines. Indies. Lines. 

Length of the head and body . . 6 3 

„ tail 9 

„ fore-leg from palm to the axilla 1 1 

Length of longest fore-claw ... 4 

,, of palm and middle-claw . . 6 

„ whiskers .... 1 4 

Specimens from Repulse Bay and from Greenland are preserved in the Museum of the 
Edinburgh University. 

Of the four lemmings described in the preceding- pag-es^ three of them closely 
resemble lemmings of the old continent, described by Pallas,, and may be con- 
sidered as their American representatives. Thus the Tawny hemming approaches 
the Lapland Lemming (Pall. Glir. t. 12. B.) in size, and in the form of its thumb- 
nail. The latter differs in the colour of its fur^ which is more varied, and on the 
throat and abdomen is white, whilst (except on the top of the head, where there 
are some dark markings) the tawny lemming is of a rusty colour throughout, the 
under parts being merely a little lighter than the back. 

Back's Lemming again may be said to represent the Norway Lemming (Op. citat. 
t. 12. A.) The latter^ however, has the claws of its fore-feet much compressed^ 
and there are only two points on the end of the thumb-nail, instead of the three 
small points which characterise the thumb-nail of the former. The colours of its 
fur are also more lively and more agreeably varied, and its nose is whitish. 

With respect to the Hudson's Bay Lemming, I believe no animal has been dis- 
covered in the old world, possessing the singular production of the two middle 
fore-claws of that animal. 

The Greenland Lemming is most allied to the Ringed Lemming of Siberia (Op. citat. 
t. 11. B.) The Siberian animal, however^, is of a smaller size, and has an obtuse 
nose ; and the brown ring round the neck, surmounted by a paler one^ whence it 
derives the specific appellation of torquatus, does not exist in the American animal. 
The hare-tailed mouse (Op. citat. t. 13. A.) agrees with the Greenland lemming, 
and also with the ringed lemming, in having a dark, dorsal stripe ; but it may be 
readily distinguished from the former of these two, by its smaller size, obtuse nose, 
truncated furry tail, a large callus in place of a thumb, and a remarkable moveable 
callus on the palm. 



[44.] 1. Neotoma Drummondii. (Eich.) Rocky-Mountain Neotoma, 

Genus. Neotoma. Sat. 

Rat of the Rocky Mountains. Lewis and Clahk, vol. iii. p. 41. 

Myoxus Drummondii. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12, March, 1828, p. 517. 

N. (^Drummondii) Iriinescenti-cervina suiter alba, cauda Jloccosa corpus longitudine excedenti. 
Rocky-Mountain Neotoma, yellowish-brown above, white beneath, tail more bushy towards the extremity, 
longer than the body. 

Plate vii. 

This animal inhabits the Rocky Mountains, in latitude 57°, and though specimens 
of it have from time to time reached England^ but little is known of its habits. 
Mr. Drummond informs me that it makes its nest in the crevices of high rocks, 
and seldom appears in the day-time, but its place of abode may be detected by its 
excrement, which has the colour and consistence of tar, and is always deposited in 
one place. Its food most probably consists of herbage of various kinds, and of 
small branches of pine trees, because there is generally a considerable store of 
these substances laid up in the vicinity of its residence. It is very destructive. 
In the course of a single night, the fur traders who have encamped in a place 
frequented by these animals have sustained much loss, by their packs of furs 
being gnawed, their blankets cut in pieces, and many small articles carried entirely 
away. Mr. Drummond placed a pair of stout English shoes on the shelf of a 
rock, and, as he thought, in perfect security, but on his return, after an absence 
of a few days, he found them gnawed into fragments as fine as saw-dust. "When 
I published a short notice of this animal, in the Zoological Journal, I made use of 
the grateful privilege of a first describer, in distinguishing it by the name of my 
fellow-traveller, whose zeal for the promotion of every branch of natural history 
Avas unbounded. Not having had at that time an opportunity of examining the 
molar teeth, I was induced to refer it to the genus Myoxus, on account of its 
general appearance ; but having lately seen the scull of an individual obtained on 
the Rocky Mountains by Mr, David Douglas, I have been enabled to ascertain 
that it belongs to the genus Neotoma, founded by Mr. Say. It has a great 
resemblance, particularly about the feet, to his figure of the Florida-rat, published 
in the Philadelphia Journal of Science, but differs from that species in having a 


busby tail^ densely hairy, instead of a round tapering- one^ scaly and thinly hairy. 
In the softness of its fur, and general arrang-ement of its colours, it has much 
similarity to the common wood-rat. It differs, however, from the genus miis, as 
now restricted, in the form of its teeth, approaching more nearly to the genus 
arvkola in that respect than to any other, but receding from it, on the other hand, 
in the length of its tail, limbs, and in its general light, active form. Besides the 
specimen brought home by the Expedition, and from which the accompanying 
very correct engraving by Landseer was executed, there is another good 
specimen in the Museum of the Hudson's Bay Company ; a third, with a mutilated 
tail, in the Zoological Museum ; and a fourth, without a tail, and much over- 
stuffed, in the British Museum, all said to have come from the same quarter. I 
have also a hunter's skin, of a larger, and perhaps a specifically distinct kind, 
procured on the Rocky Mountains in latitude 63°. 


In size, this Neotoma equals the Norway rat, and it has a good deal of the character of 
that animal in its physiognomy. Its nose is compressed and narrow, but appears rather 
obtuse if viewed laterally. There is a very narrow, naked margin to the nostrils, the tip and 
sides of the nose being covered with short hairs. The upper lip is divided about three 
lines deep. 

Dental formula, incisors |, canines ^, grinders g = 16. 

The incinors have precisely the form of those of the meadow-mice, and wear away in the 
same manner at their points. The upper ones are short, slightly rounded, and not grooved 
on their anterior surface. The lower ones are long, narrow, and rounded anteriorly and 
on the sides. The molar teeth also very much resemble those of a meadow-mouse. (^. 
xanthognathus) . The grooves on their sides, however, instead of running to the base of 
the tooth, terminate abruptly, where it is immersed in the socket ; and some little distance 
below this termination, most of the grinders divide into two fangs. The two anterior pairs 
of lower grinders have these fangs very distinct, the space between the fangs being deep 
and wide ; but the upper grinders and the posterior pair in the lower jaw have them much 
shorter, and as it were coalesced. The first grinder in the upper jaw has the rudiments of 
three fangs. The grinders of both jaws have a slight inclination backwards, and they gradually 
decrease from before backwards in size, and in the height of the part which projects above 
the sockets, preserving however an even grinding surface. In the upper jaw, the first 
grinder has three grooves on its exterior side, and as many inside, with an equal number of 
rounded projecting columns or ribs of a side ; the second and third grinders have each two 
grooves, with three ribs exteriorly, and one groove with two ribs interiorly. In all, there 
are nine ribs on the exterior sides of the upper rows of grinders, seven on the interior sides. 


•and ten triangles, formed by the folds of enamel on their crowns. In the lower jaw, the first 
grinder has two grooves exteriorly, and three interiorly ; the second has two grooves on each 
side, and the third, one on each side. In all, there are nine ribs on the outsides, and eight on 
the insides of the lower rows of grinders, and nine triangular folds of enamel on their crowns. 
These triangles are disposed in a single series, or at least present, very obscurely, the double 
alternate arrangement which exists on the crowns of the grinders- of the meadow-mice. The 
grinders of a Neotoma further differ from those of the meadow-mice in the ribs on their sides 
being broader and more rounded, and in the first upper grinder, instead of the last one, being 
the largest. The whiskers are considerably longer than the head ; the anterior ones are 
white ; the posterior ones, which are longer and stronger, are black, more or less tipped 
•with white. The ears are large, oval, and rounded, closely covered on the back with 
short, adpressed, blackish-gray hairs, and they have a very narrow and obscure white margin. 
Their anterior surface is more sparingly hairy above, and is quite naked near the auditory 

The fur is remarkably fine, soft, and long, and has considerable lustre. The upper parts, 
including the head and cheeks, back, sides, and outer surface of the fore and hind thighs and 
legs, have a nearly uniform, light, yellowish-brown colour, intimately mixed with black hairs ; 
the resulting tint is between a hair-brown and a fawn colour. The black hairs are more 
abundant on the sides of the nose, down the middle of the head and back, and about the 
rump. The upper lip, chin, throat, all the under parts, the inside of the thighs, and the 
whole of the feet, from the wrist and ankle joints, are pure white. The fur is longest on 
the back and sides, a little shorter on the belly, and shortest about the nose, but the furry 
coat is close throughout, and is everywhere of a deep blackish-gray colour for two-thirds 
of its length from the roots. 

The tail at its commencement is cylindrical, and clothed with shorter hairs ; but the fur 
gradually lengthens towards its extremity, where it is upwards of an inch long, and is 
somewhat distichously arranged, particularly beneath. The whole of the fur of the tail is 
very close and woolly at bottom. For a short space next the rump, the tail is coloured above 
like the back ; but for the greatest part of its length it is of a dark lead-gray, arising from 
an intimate intermixture of blackish-gray and whitish hairs. Underneath it is throughout of 
a white colour, and when the tail is spread out, the Avhite hairs form to it an indistinct 
white tip. 

The /eef are thickly clothed above with fur, which conceals the claws. On the fore-feet 
there are four toes, which do not differ much from each other in length, the two middle ones 
being longer only in a very slight degree. There is a small callus in place of a thumb, which 
is situated behind the roots of the toes, and is protected by a minute adpressed nail. There 
are besides five callous eminences of considerable size on the palm ; three arranged in a 
triangular form at the roots of the toes, one a little longer posterior to the thumb tubercle, 
and another of equal size opposite to it. The claws are white, short, much curved, and 
very acute. The hind-feet have five toes, the four anterior of which much resemble those 

T 2 



of the fore-feet, but are a little stouter, and have more spread. The inner one, representing 
a thumb, is nearly as long as the outer one, though it is situated further back. The 
posterior half of the sole is hairy. The claws are like those of the fore-feet. 

Length of the head and body 

„ tail (vertebrae) 

„ tail with the fur 

„ whiskers 

Height of the ears posteriorly 
Breadth of ditto 
Distance from the tip of the nose to the 
anterior angle of the orbit . . 






Length from the wrist joint to the end of the 



middle claw 



„ of the middle fore-toe and claw . 



„ from heel to the end of the middle 





„ of the middle hind-toe and claw . 

,, of the fur on the back 



Height of the back of the prepared specimen 

standing on its palms and soles . 


•f 1. Mus RATTus. (Linn.) The Black Rat. 

Genus. Mus. Cuvieu. 

Black Rat. Pennant, Arct. Zool., vol. i. p. 129. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 83. 

Mus rattus. Haulan, Fmma, p. 148. 

This Rat was, most probably, not originally an inhabitant of North America, but 
was brought thither by the early European visitors of that continent. It seems to 
have multiplied exceedingly fast in its new quarters, until the introduction of the 
still more destructive brown rat thinned its numbers, and it has now become as 
rare as it is in Europe, from the same cause. We did not observe the black rat 
in any part of the fur countries ; and I may also venture to affirm, that it has not 
advanced farther north than the plains of the Saskatchewan. Indeed, I have no 
other reason for supposing that it may have got so far, than that an animal 
resembling a Musk-Rat, with a long round tail, is mentioned by the Indians of that 
quarter, under the name of mcesluhw appeceooshees. 


"f- 2. Mus DECUMANus. (Linn.) The Brown Rat, 

Brown Rat. Pennant, Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. 130. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 78. 

This very destructive animal came, according to the accounts of historians, from 
Asia to Europe about the beginning- of the seventeenth century ; was unknown in 
England before 1730, and, according to Dr. Harlan, did not make its appearance 
in North America until the year 1775. Pennant, writing in 1785, says he has no 
authority for considering it to be an inhabitant of the new continent, although he 
thinks it probable that it must by that time have been carried thither in ships. It 
is now very common in Lower Canada ; but I was informed that in 1 825 it had 
not advanced much beyond Kingston in Upper Canada. We did not observe it 
in the fur countries ; and if it does exist there, it is only at the mouth of the 
Columbia River, or at the factories on the shores of Hudson's Bay. 

•f 3. Mus MUScuLus. (Linn.) The Common Mouse. 

Mouse. Pennant, Arcf. ZooL, vol. i. p. 131. 
Mus musculus. Say, Long's E.rpecl., vol. i. p. 262. 
Common Mouse. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 8J. 

I have seen a dead mouse in a storehouse at York Factory filled with packages 
from England, and it is probable that the species may have been introduced into 
all the posts on the shores of Hudson's Bay ; but I never heard of its being taken 
in the fur countries at a distance from the sea-coast. Mr. Say informs us, that 
it was introduced at Engineer Cantonment, on the Missouri, by Major Long's 


[45.] 4. Mus LEucopus. (Rafinesque.) American Field-Mouse. 

Mus sylvaticus. Forster, Phil. Trans., vol. Ixii. p. 380. 

Field Rat, A, American. Pennant, Hist. Quad., vol. ii. p. 185. Arct. Zool., vol. i. p. 131. 

Mus leucopus. " Rafinesque-Smaltz, Am. Month. May., vol. iii. p. 444 ; 1818" (quoted from Desmarest, Mamm^ 

Harlan, Fauna, p. 151. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12. p. 518. 
Mus agrai-ius. Godman, Xal. Hist., vol. ii. p. 88 ? 
Appecooseesh. Cree Language. 

JU. (^leucopus), Cauda longa vestita, corpore griseo-lutescente subter abrupte albo, auriculis magnis. 
American Field JMouse, with a long hairy tail, hair-brown back, white belly and feet, and large ears. 

No sooner is a fur-post established than this little animal becomes an inmate of 
the dwelling-houses ; whilst the meadow-mouse^ described in p. 124, under the name 
o{ Arvicola Pennsylvanicus, at the same time takes possession of the outhouses and 
gardens. We observed it as far north as Great Bear Lake ; and if the synonyms 
prefixed to this article are correctly applied, it is not uncommon in the United 
States. It also extends from Hudson's Bay across the continent to the mouth of 
the Columbia River. The gait and prying actions of this little creature, when 
it ventures from its hole in the dusk of the evening, are so much like those of the 
English domestic mouse, that most of the European residents at Hudson's Bay 
have considered it to be the same animal, altogether overlooking the obvious 
differences of their tails and other peculiarities. The American Field-Mouse, 
however, has a habit of making hoards of grain or little pieces of fat, which, I 
believe, is unknown of the European domestic mouse ; and what is most singular, 
these hoards are not formed in the animal's retreats, but generally in a shoe left 
at the bedside, the pocket of a coat, a nightcap, a bag hung against the wall, or 
some similar place. It not unfrequently happened that we found barley, which had 
been brought from a distant apartment, and introduced into a drawer, through so 
small a chink, that it was impossible for the mouse to gain access to its store. 
The quantity laid up in a single night nearly equalling the bulk of a mouse, renders 
it probable that several individuals unite their efforts to form it. This mouse 
does considerable mischief in the gardens, and in a very few nights will almost 
destroy a plantation of maize, by tracing the rows for the purpose of collecting the 
seeds, and depositing them in small heaps under the loose mould, generally by the 
side of a stone, or piece of wood. From the facility with which it seems to 


transport the substances it preys upon, I suspected that it had cheek-pouches, 
but none were found on examination. The ermine is a most inveterate enemy 
to this species^ and pursues it into the sleeping- apartments. 

The Mus leucopus may be considered as the American representative of the 
European field-mouse {mus si/lvatkus, Linn.)^ which it greatly resembles^ and 
perhaps Pennant is quite right in terming it only a variety. The mus si/lvaticus 
appears to have generally a more tapering, acute tail. Dr. Godman's description, 
of the Mus agrarius cgrresponds so exactly with our animal, that I have quoted it 
as a synonym ; but the Mus agrarius of Pallas differs, in having small ears. Dr. 
Harlan mentions, that several varieties of the mus si/lvaticus exist in the neigh- 
bourhood of Philadelphia ; but his description, which seems to be a translation 
of Desmarest's account of the European animal, does not agree with any variety of 
the mus leucopus that I saw to the north. The varieties that I met with differed 
principally in the size of the body, and the length of the tail. Specimens from the 
mouth of the Columbia were considerably larger than those from Hudson's Bay. 


The American Field-Mouse has a larger head than the English domestic mouse ; but in its 
general form it is similar to that animal. On the other hand, its head is smaller than that 
of Wilson's meadow -mouse ; its body less fleshy, and it weighs less. Its muzzle is rather 
sharp. The whiskers are much longer than the head, part of them are black, the rest white. 
Eyes moderately large. Ears large, erect, membranous, of an elliptical form, with rounded 
tips, and covered rather thinly with short adpressed hans. 

The fur of the body is very fine, but not long, and is throughout of a dark, bluish-gray 
colour from the roots to near the tips. The colour of the upper parts is hair-brown, darkest 
on the crown of the head, and along the back; the sides are of a lighter hue, approaching to 
yellowish-brown, or sometimes, together with the hips, to reddish-brown. The cheeks have a 
still more lively colour than the sides, being somewhat rufous. The upper lip, a space on 
each side of the mouth, the chin, all the under parts, the inside of the thighs, and the whole 
of the legs and feet, are white. 

The tail is thickly clothed with short hairs lying pretty smoothly, no scales whatever being 
visible. Its upper surface is of a hair-brown colour, considerably darker than any other part 
of the animal, and contrasts strongly with the inferior surface, which is white ; the line of 
contact of the two colours is straight and well defined. 

Fore-feet, with four toes and six tubercles on the palm. Of the three anterior tubercles, 
one is seated at the common origin of the two middle toes, and one at the commencement of 
each of the other two toes, which arise farther back. The other three tubercles lie nearly in 
a line at the posterior part of the palm. The smallest of these is the interior one, and it 
occupies the usual site of the thumb, of which there is no other vestige, — not even a nail. 


The palms are naked, and the toes short. The hind-feet are long, particularly the tarsal 
bones, the hind toes being likewise a little longer than the fore-ones. There are six tubercles 
on the soles, — three at the roots of the toes, and three farther back ; of the latter three, 
the one next the inner toe or thumb is large, the posterior one is small, and the exterior one 


'^'iTon'Zus'e!*^' Columbia River Specimens. 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of Lead and body 3 7 . , 4 3 

„ head alone 1 1 . 

„ tail 2 3. .2 9 

Height of the ears C . 6^ 

„ of the back, when the animal stands on its 

palms and soles , " 2 9 . . 

[46.] 1. Meriones Labradorius. Labrador Jumping Mouse. 

Genus. Meriones. Illiger. F. Cuvier. 

Labrador Rat. Pennant, Arctic ZooL, yo\.\. -p. \Z2. 

Gerbillus Hudsonius. " Rafinesgue-Smaltz, Am. Month Mag., 1818, p. 44C." 

Sins Labradorius. ^A'Bns'E, Franklin's Journ., p. 6G1. 

Gerbillus Labradorius. Harlan, Fauna, p. 157- 

Labrador Jumping Mouse. God jtAN, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 97- 

Katse (the leaper). Chepewyan Indians. 


Pennant, in Arctic Zoology^ first described a specimen of this animal^ sent from 
Hudson's Bay by Mr. Graham, to the Museum of the Royal Society. Afterwards, 
in the third edition of his History of Quadrupeds^ he is inclined to consider it as 
identical with the mus longipes of Pallas, (the dipus meridianus of Gmelin,) an 
inhabitant of the warm^ sandy deserts, bordering on the Caspian sea. This 
opinion, which can scarcely be correct^ was formed from an imperfect inspection 
of the Hudson's Bay specimen^ whilst it was suspended in spirits^ and is opposed 
by differences in colour and other characters which he himself points out. From 
Pennant's time, until Mr. Sabine described an individual, brought from Cumber- 
land-house on Captain Franklin's first journey^, the Labrador Jumping Mouse 


does not appear to have attracted the notice of naturahsts. Pennant mentions a 
yellow lateral line in his specimen which did not exist in the one Mr. Sabine 
described, but this difference I attribute solely to the season in which they were 
procured. Mr. Sabine's specimen had its tail mutilated^ an accident very common 
to the whole family of rats. Pennant^ under the name of Canada Jerboid rat, and 
Colonel Davies, under that of Dipus Canadensis, describes another Jumping Mouse, 
which seems to differ from this in having- ears shorter than the fur, but in 
other respects to be very similar to it. The Gerhillus Canadensis of Dr. Godman 
agrees in description with Rafinesqne-Smaltz's Gerbilhis soridnus, (Desmarest, 
Maimn., p. 332.) but has larger ears than the Canada rat of Pennant; and a 
specimen in the Philadelphia Museum, described by Dr. Harlan, under the name 
of Gerbilhis Canadensis, appears to be entirely similar to the Labrador species. 
It is evident, therefore, that the Jumping Mice_, inhabiting different districts of 
America, require to be compared with each other before the true number of species 
and their geographical distribution can be ascertained. 

The Labrador Jumping Mouse is a very common animal in the fur countries as 
far north as Great Slave Lake, and perhaps further, but I was not able to gain 
any precise information respecting its habits. 


Dental formula, incisors ^, canines ^, grinders ^ = 18. 

Incisors of a deep orange colour. Upper ones short and strong, rounded anteriorly, each 
marked near its exterior margin with a deep and conspicuous furrow. The lower ones are 
longer and much m.ore slender, but they taper very slightly towards their tips, and are not so 
acute as the lower incisors of the genus mns. The grinders very much resemble in form those 
of the squirrels. The anterior one in the upper jaw is round and very small. The other three 
have slightly hollowed crowns, with points, as in the squirrels, on their outward margins. 
The second grinder has three of these points, and is also marked with a furro^v on its inner 
side. The third is very little larger than the second, and has four points on the outer margin 
of its crown, but no furrow on its inner side. The fourth is smaller than the two last- 
mentioned ones, but considerably larger than the first one; it has two points on its 
outer margin. In the lower jaw, the first and second grinders are nearly equal in size, and 
the third or last is smaller. The zygomatic processes are scarcely arched, the breadth of the 
scull being greater at their junction with the temporal bones than at their middles. 

The head of this animal is narrow, and the nose, which is also narrow, but with a small 
obtuse tip, projects about a line and a half beyond the incisors. The tip of the nose is covered 
with short, erect hair, and beneath it the minute round openings of the nostrils face sideways, 
and are protected anteriorly by a slight ventricose arching of their naked inner margins. 



The whole naked space at the nostrils is not above a line wide. The mouth is small and far 
back. The whiskers are fine, black, and longer than the head. The eyes are small. The 
ears are nearly five lines high, of a semi-oval form, broadly rounded at the tips. They are 
clothed behind, and also on the inside near the margins, with short black hairs, mixed with 
some yellow ones. Their edges are pale. 

Colour. The back and the upper parts of the head are covered with hairs of a dark liver- 
brown colour, mixed with a few brownish-yellow ones. The sides are brownish-yellow, slightly 
sprinkled with black hairs. The margin of the mouth, the chin, the throat, and all the lower 
parts of the body are white. The yellowish-brown of the sides joins the white of the belly by 
a straight line extending between the fore and hind extremities. In some specimens this 
yellowish-brown colour occupies as much space as the darker colour of the back ; in others, the 
latter encroaches so much on the sides as to leave merely a narrow yellowish line next the 
white ; whilst in autumn specimens, when the animal has just acquired a new coat of fur, the 
dark colour of the back adjoins the white of the belly. The fur of this animal is not so long 
or so fine as that of the common or meadow-mice. 

Extremities.— The fore ones are small and very short, the tip of the middle claw not pro- 
jecting above half an inch from the body. They are covered above Avith short, whitish hairs. 
The palms are naked, and there are four slender toes armed with small, nearly straight, 
compressed acute nails. There is also a minute rudiment of a thumb, protected by a rounded 
nail, and situated considerably behind the root of the inner toe. The hind-legs are long and 
very slender, and there are five hind-toes, each with a very long slender tarsal bone. The 
inner-toe is the smallest and furthest back ; the outer one is the next smallest, and the three 
middle ones are longer. They are all armed with small nails, not quite so much com- 
pressed as the fore ones. The upper surface of the feet and toes is covered with very short 
grayish hairs. The soles are naked to the heels. The tail is very long, tapers slightly, and 
is scaly, and thinly set with short hairs. It has no tuft at the end, but the hairs there are a, 
little longer than elsewhere. It is of a dark brown colour above, and white beneath. 


Length of head and hody • • 4 

„ head . . t .1 

„ tail . . .5 

„ from wrist joint to end of middle claw 






Length from knee to ankle joint 

. 1 


„ from heel to end of middle claw 

. 1 



Height of the ears posteriorly , 




MAMMALIA. 147 ^ 

[47.] 1. Arctomys empetra. (Schreber.) The Quebec Marmot, 

Genus Arctomys. Gmelin. Cuvier. 

Quebec Marmot. Pennant, ilisi. Qwarfr., 1st ed.. No. 259; 3d ed., No. 321. Arctic Zool., 

vol. i. p. 111. Bewick's Qitarf., 1st ed., p. 346. Fig. . 2d ed., p. 369. Fig. 
Mus empetra. Pallas, Glir., p. 75. An. 1778. 
Glis Canadensis. Erxlebein, Sys<., p. 363. 
Arctomys empetra. Schreber, Quad., p. 743 ; pi. 210. 
Common Marmot. Langsdorff's Traue/s, vol. ii. p. 73? 

Arctomys empetra. Sabine. Linn., ^rans., vol. xiii. p. 24. Harlan, Fawna, p. 160. 
Quebec Marmot. GoDMAif,Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 108. 
Weenusk. Cree Indians. Kath-liilloe-kooay. Chepewyans, 
Thick-wood Badger. Hudson's Bav Residents. 
SifBeur. French Canadians, who apply the same name to the other species of marmot, and 

to the badger. 
Tarbogan. Russian Residents on Kodiak ? 

A. (empetra) super ex s])acliceo nigroque canescens : subter helvohis, capite pedibusque nigrescenti-brunneis, genis 
albeseentibus, auriculis mediocribus plants rotundatis, cauda exfusca canescenti apicem versus nigrescenti 
dimidium corporis vix superanti. 

Quebec Marmot, on the upper parts hoary, with an intermixture of black, and bright wood-brown shining through ; 
on the inferior parts reddish-orange ; and on the head and feet, blackish-brown ; cheeks, whitish ; flat, 
round ears, of a moderate size ; tail, about half the length of the body, brown and hoary, with a black tip. 

Plate ix. 

This animal was first described by Pennant, under the name of Quebec Marmot, 
from a specimen kept alive in Mr, Brooks's menagerie. Pallas afterwards noticed 
what was supposed to be an animal of the same species, giving it the name of nms 
empetra ; and Mr. Sabine, in the Linnean Transactions^ has given a good descrip- 
tion of a specimen presented by the Hudson's Bay Company to the British 
Museum, The animal mentioned by Forster_, in the Philosophical Transactions^ 
as the Quebec Marmot, is not this species, but the Arctomys Parryi, to be after- 
wards noticed. 

The Quebec Marmot inhabits the woody districts from Canada to latitude 61°, 
and perhaps still further north. I was able to collect but little information 
respecting it. It appears to be a solitary animal, inhabits burrows in the earth, 
but ascends bushes and trees, probably in search of buds and other vegetable 
matters, on which it feeds. Mr. Drummond killed two individuals, — one, on some 
low bushes, and the other upon the branch of a tree. Pennant says, that the one 
which he saw was very tame, and made a hissing noise. Mr. Graham mentions, 
that this Marmot burrows in the earth, in a perpendicular manner, selecting dry spots 
at some distance from the coast, and feeds on coarse grass, which it gathers by the 
river-sides. The Indians take it by pouring water into its holes. When fat, its 



flesh is considered to be a delicacy. Its fur is of no value. It very much resem- 
bles the bobac of Poland^ in its form and general appearance. 


Dental formula, incisors f, canines "-E^, grinders ^ = 22. 
Incisors exserted, strong, white ; upjjer ones rounded anteriorly, marked near their inner 
sides by an almost obsolete groove, and having even cutting edges. Lower ones longer, 
nearly linear, and rounded anteriorly. Of the iqjjjer grinders the anterior one is the smallest, 
the posterior one the widest, and the other three are nearly equal to each other in size. The 
crowns of the four posterior grinders are widest exterioily, and exhibit a duplicature of enamel, 
folded as it were from the outer side in such a manner, that the inner crest of each tooth 
forms a single rounded eminence, a very little higher than the rest of the crown. The outer 
crest or edge of the tooth, consists of three lower and more acute points. The smaller ante- 
rior grinder has an oval crown divided into two sloping surfaces by a transverse ridge. In 
each of the grinders of the lower jaw, the bounding ridge of enam-cl forms an anterior and a 
posterior pair of points, of which the anterior pair is considerably higher, and particularly the 
inner point of that pair. The inner point of the posterior pair of each tooth wears away in a 
cup-shaped form. The area of a section of one of the lower grinders is obliquely quadrangular j 
whilst the areas of the four posterior upper ones are more nearly triangular. The lower molars 
increase slightly in size from the anterior to the posterior one, which is the largest. The frontal 
bone is flat and depressed between the orbits, and its nasal process rises, to form with the nasal 
bones an oblong arch. 

The body is thick and low, the head oblong, flat on the crown and between the eyes, with a 
sli"'htly arched obtuse nose, covered with short hairs. Septum and margins of the nostrils 
naked. There is a duplicature or depression on the inside of the cheek, forming the rudi- 
ments of a pouch, and capable of containing a small bean. Whiskers shorter than the head, 
entirely black. There are some black setcE on the eyebrows, a tuft containing about 
eight black hairs as strong as the whiskers, at the back part of each cheek, and a similar tuft 
between the posterior angles of the lower jaw. E%jes moderately large. Ears low, flat, and. 
rounded, the anterior edge only doubling in, to form a helix ; they are well covered with 
short, adpressed, hoary hairs on the inside ; posteriorly, they are clothed with hairs similar to 
those on the adjoining part of the head. The ears are conspicuous enough, unless when the 
fur is in prime order, and consequently long. The upper surfaces of the head and feet are 
covered with a thick, smooth coat, of rather short hair, having a shining dark umber-brown 
colour, which on the feet approaches to black. The end of the nose is, in some specimens, 
hoary ; in others brown. 

The /ur on the hack is of two kinds, — one, a fine wool or down, which, for half its length 
from the roots upwards, is of a blackish-gray colour, and, for the other half, is of a pure, 
shining, yellowish, or wood-brown. Intermixed with the down there are many longer hairs, 
which are brownish-black for two-thirds of their length, and are tipped with white. Some of 
them, however, are merely ringed Avith white, and are tipped with black. The resulting colour 



of the back is grizzled or hoary *, the white predominating over the black, and the light-brown 
of the shorter wool being also more or less seen, according as the fur is in good or bad order. 
The sides of the upper-lip, the point of the chin, the cheeks, and the sides of the neck, are 
soiled, reddish-white, which mixes gradually with the dark colour of the head. The under 
parts, including the throat, breast, belly, and fore and hind legs, are of a reddish-orange 
colour, without mixture. The fur there is thinner and rather shorter than on the back, of the 
same colour, for its whole length, and there is very little of the fine wool amongst it. On the 
sides the soft wool has reddish-orange tips, and is mixed with a few long, reddish-white hairs, 
forming a gradation betwixt the colours of the back and belly. 

The tail is flattish, but not distichous ; it is nearly linear, and is rounded at the tip. It is 
well clothed with hair, a little longer than that on the back, and is dusky above, from an 
intimate mixture of brownish-white and blackish-brown hairs, and is brownish-black under- 
neath, and at the tip. In some specimens the tail is almost entirely dark-brown, with a very 
slight sprinkling of hoary hairs. Legs, very short, and muscular. Fore-feet, with four toes, 
and the minute rudiment of a thumb. The toes are well separated, not being connected by 
the skin for more than a third part of the first joint. The palms are naked, and have three 
tubercles at the roots of the toes, and two much larger ones further back, of which the largest 
has a minute rudiment of a thumb on its inner side, covered by a small triangular nail. The 
middle toe is the longest; the first and third, which are equal to each other, are but a little, 
shorter, and the outer one is rather more than the length of its nail shorter than these. All 
the toes are covered with a smooth coat of hair above, and are perfectly naked underneath. 
The fore-claws are slightly arched, and rather obtuse ; they are so much compressed, that 
there is merely a slight excavation near the tip underneath, their edges from thence to their 
roots being in contact ; and their size, as compared with each other, is proportional to the toes 
to which they belong. The soles of the hind-feet are long and naked to the heel ; the callous 
tubercles are not so conspicuous as in the fore-feet. There are five hind- toes, which are 
about the same size with the fore-ones. The middle claw projects a very little beyond the 
one on each side of it. The outer toe is more than the length of its claw shorter, and the 
hiner one is still shorter and further back. 

When the fur is out of season it loses its lustre, and the down and most of the hair on the 
belly falls off, so that the animal can scarcely be recognised. 


* Inches. 

Length of head and body . . from 17 to 20 

„ the head alone ..... 4 

,, from end of nose to anterior part of orbit 1^ 
„ „ „ to auditory opening . 3 
„ from posterior part of the orbit to the audi- 
tory opening ...... 1 

Height of ear (posteriorly) ... . OJ 

Breadth of ear . .... 0} 

Distance between the eyes . . . • H 


Distance between the ears . , . , I a 

Length of tail (vertebra) ... . ,54 

,, including fur ... 7 

„ middle-toe and its claw • , • H 

,, middle claw alone . . . 0-[\ 

„ palm, middle-toe, and claw . • 1| 

„ from heel to tip of middle-claw, hind-foot 2| 

,, of middle hind-toe and its claw . . IJ 

Mr. Graham likens the colour of the back to a mixture of pepper and salt. 


[48.] 2 ? Arctomys ? pruinosus. (Pennant.) The Whistler. 

The hoary marmot. Pennant, Hist. Quadr., vol. ii. p. 130 ; Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. 112. 

Ground hog. Mackenzie, Vot/., p. 315. 

Whistler. Harmon's Journ., p. 427- 

Arctomys ? pruinosus. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12, p. 518, March, 1828. 

Quisquis-su. Cree Indians. Deh-dehie. Chepewyans. 

Skwey-kwey. Atnah Indians. Thidnu. Nagaileks. 

Souffleur or Mountain Badger. Fur-traders. 

A. {pndnoms) vellere corporis antiee rudi eanesoenti postioe fuscescenti, caiida pilosissima badia nigrague. 
Hoary Marmot, with long coarse fur, particularly on the chest and shoulders, where it is hoary ; hind parts dull 
yellowish-brown ; taU blackish-brown, bushy. 


" Tip of the nose black ; ears short and oval ; cheeks whitish ; crown dusky and tawny ; 
hair, on all parts rude and long ; on the back, sides and belly cinereous at the bottom, black 
in the middle, and tipped with white, so as to spread a hoariness over the whole ; legs black j 
claws dusky; tail full of hair, black and ferruginous. Size of the Maryland Marmot," 

The above is Pennant's description of a specimen which was preserved in the 
Leverian Museum, and said to have been brought from Hudson's Bay. That 
specimen is now lost, and the species does not appear to have come under the notice 
of any other naturahst. If I am correct in considering it as the same with the 
Whistler of Harmon, we may soon hope to know more of it, for the traders who 
annually cross the Rocky Mountains from Hudson's Bay to the Columbia and New 
Caledonia, are well acquainted with it. I failed in obtaining a specimen, as I did 
not visit the Rocky Mountains myself; and one which was procured for me by a 
gentleman was so much injured, that he did not think it fit to be sent. 

The Whistler inhabits the Rocky Mountains from latitude 45° to 62°, and 
probably further both ways ; — it is not found in the lower parts of the country. 
It burrows in sandy soil, generally on the sides of grassy hills, and may be fre- 
quently seen cutting hay in the autumn ; but whether for the purpose of laying it 
up for food or merely for lining its burrows, I did not learn. While a party of 
them are thus occupied, they have a sentinel on the look out upon an eminence, 
who gives the alarm on the approach of an enemy by a shrill whistle, which may 
be heard at a great distance. The signal of alarm is repeated from one to another 
as far as their habitations extend. According to Mr. Harmon, they feed on roots 


and herbs^ produce two young at a time, and sit upon their hind-feet when they 
give their young suck. They do not come abroad in the winter. 

Mr. Macpherson describes one killed in the month of May on the south branch 
of the Mackenzie as follows :— " It was 27^ inches long, of which the head 2J, 
and the tail 81. It is, I think, of the same genus with the Quebec Marmot. In 
the fore-teeth, and in the shape of the head and body, it resembles a beaver. 
The hair, especially about the neck and shoulders, is rough and strong. The 
breast and shoulders, down to the middle of the body, is of a silver-gray colour ; 
the rest of the body, and the brush, are of a dirty yellowish or brown. The head 
and legs are small and short in proportion to the body." 

Mr. Harmon represents them as about the size of a badger, covered with a 
beautiful long silver-gray hair, and having long bushy tails. Mr. Drummond says 
they resemble the badger of the plains (Meles Labracloria) in colour, but are 
of a rather smaller size. The Indians take the Whistlers in traps set at the mouths 
of their holes, consider their flesh as delicious food, and by sewing a number of 
their skins together, make good blankets. 

[49.] 3. Arctomys brachyurus. (Harlan.) Short-tailed Marmot, 

Burrowing squirrel. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 35. (but not of vol. i.) 

Anisonj'x brachyura. Rafinesque-Smaltz, Am. Month. Mag., 1817, p. 45. Desmarest, Mamm,, p. 329. 

Arctomys brachyura. Harlan, Fauna, p. 304. 

A. (brachyurus) auricuUs oUusmscuUs, corpore super xerampelino riihro tincto et sub-maculato, naso ventre pedibusque 
lateritiis, cauda depressd elliptiedfulva. albo marginata ; subter grisea. 

Short-tailed Marmot, with short obtusely pointed ears, the head and body above of a brownish-gray colour, tinged 
with red, and speckled with a lighter colour ; nose, feet, and under surface of the body, brick-red 5 a flat 
oblong oval tail, fox-red above, with a white margin, and iron-gray colour on the under surface. 

This animal inhabits the plains of the Columbia. It is known to us only by the 
description quoted below from the narrative of Captains Lewis and Clark. M. 
Rafinesque, evidently from a misapprehension of the account of its feet, has con- 
stituted for its reception the genus Anisonyx, the characters of which are fictitious * i 

• The SewelleT, which is also provisionally referred to Anisonyx, by M, Rafinesque, belongs to a distinct genus to be 
hereafter described under the name of Aplodontia, 


no character being assigned to it in the original description that can separate it 
from the marmots. 


" The burrowing squirrel (of the Columbia) somewhat resembles those found on the Mis- 
souri; he measures one foot and five inches in length, of which the tail comprises two and 
a half inches only : the neck and legs are short ; the ears are likewise short, obtusely pointed, 
find lie close to the head, and the aperture is larger than will generally be found among bur- 
rowing animals. The eyes are of a moderate size, the pupil black, and the iris of a dark 
sooty brown ; the whiskers are full, long and black ; the teeth, and indeed the whole contour, 
resemble those of the squirrel; each foot has five toes; the two inner ones (thumbs) of the 
fore-feet are remarkably short, and are equipped with blunt nails ; the remaining toes on the 
front-feet are long, black, slightly curved, and sharply pointed ; the hair of the tail is thickly 
inserted on the sides only, which gives it a flat appearance, and a long oval form : the tips of 
the hair forming the outer edges of the tail are white, the other extremity of a fox red ; the 
under part of the tail resembles an iron-gray ; the upper is of a reddish-brown ; the lower 
part of the jaws, the under part of the neck, legs and feet, from the body and belly downwards, 
are of a light brick red ; the nose and eyes are of a darker shade of the same colour ; the 
upper part of the head, neck and body, are of a curious brown-gray, with a slight tinge of 
brick-red ; the longer hairs of these parts are of a reddish-white colour at their extremities, 
and falling together, give this animal a speckled appearance." 

'' These animals form in large companies, like those on the Missouri, occupying 
with their burrows sometimes two hundred acres of land ; the burrows are 
separate, and each possesses, perhaps, ten or twelve inhabitants. There is a 
little mound in front of the hole, formed of the earth thrown out of the burrow, 
and frequently there are three or four distinct holes, forming one burrow, with 
their entrances around the base of these little mounds. The mounds, sometimes 
about two feet in height and four in diameter, are occupied as watch-towers by the 
inhabitants of these little communities. The squirrels, one or more, are irregularly 
distributed on the tract they thus occupy, at the distance of ten, twenty, or some- 
times from thirty to forty yards. When any one approaches, they make a shrill 
whistling sound, somewhat resembling tweet, tweet, tweet, the signal for their 
party to take the alarm^ and to retire into their intrenchments. They feed on the 
roots of grass, &c." 

The specific name of brachyiirus is not particularly happy in its application to 
this animal; the A. Richardsonil has a tail equally short; the tail of the A. 
Ludovicianus is even shorter ; that of the A. citillus both American and Siberian 
specimens is shorter still ; and that of the A. mugosaricus of Lichtenstein is fully 
twice as short in proportion to the length of the body. 


-f 4. Arctomys Monax. (Gmelin.) The Wood-Chuck, 

Bahama Coney. Catesby, Carolina, vol. ii. p. ^0. An. 1743. 
Monax, Edwauds, Birds, pi. 104. 

Maryland Marmot. Pennant, Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 111. Godman, Na(. i7is/., vol. ii. p. 100. 
Arctomys Monax. Sabine. Linn. Trans., vo]. xiii. Tp. 585. Hablan, i^a«na, vol. i. p. 158. 
GniFFiTHS, An. Ki7ig., vol. iii. p. 170. Cum figura, vol. v. No. 633. 

A. [monax) auriculis eonspicuis rotundatis, corpore ex ferrugineo cinerascenti, vulltt plumbeo, caiida fusca mediocri. 
Wood-Chuck, with prominent rounded ears; fur on the hody rust-coloured, tipped with gray; bluish-gray face; a 
moderately long, dark-brown, rather bushy tail. 

To render the list of American marmots^ given in this work, as perfect as our 

present knowledge permits, I shall insert here short compiled accounts of two 

species, which inhabit parts of North America, lying to the southward of the 

district to which this work more particularly relates. Of these the Wood-chuck, 

or Maryland Marmot, has been longest known to Naturalists. It is common in all 

the middle states, and is described, by Drs. Harlan and Godman, as living in 

society, and forming burrows in the sides of hills, which extend to great distances 

under ground, and terminate in various chambers, according to the number of 

inhabitants. The chambers are lined with dry grass, leaves, or other similar 

materials, and the animals pass the winter in them in a torpid state, after having 

closed the entrance. They feed on vegetables, are particularly fond of red-clover, 

and often prove injurious to the farmer, by the extent of their depredations. They 

sally forth in a body on their marauding excursions, generally at mid-day, and, 

having placed sentinels, proceed to fill their mouths. On the approach of danger, 

the sentinel gives the alarm by a clear, shrill whistle, and they betake themselves 

to their burrows with their utmost speed. If one of them is intercepted by a doo-^ 

it boldly offers battle, and bites severely. They are capable of being tamed, and 

become very playful, and fond of being handled. They are cleanly animals, 

removing all fragments of food, and even loose earth, from the mouths of their 

burrows, and carefully burying their excrement. The female produces six young 

at a litter. Dr. Godman, from whom chiefly the above account of the habits of 

this animal is borrowed, informs us that Edwards's figure is very unlike, and that 

the only good representation is that given in Griffith's Animal Kingdom, which is 

copied from a print done in America by Lesueur. He likewise mentions that it 

has ample cheek-pouches, and an extension of the skin between the toes, rendering 


the feet^ especially the hind ones^ distinctly semi-palmated. He also observes, 
that the width of the auditory opening seems, at first sight, ill adapted for the 
subterranean life which the Wood-chuck leads, but that it possesses the power of 
closing it accurately. 


[Extracted from Godman's Nat. Hist.] 

" The body of the Maryland Marmot is about the size of that of a rabbit, and is covered 
by long, rusty-brown hair, generally gray at the tips ; the face is of a pale, bluish ash-colour. 
The ears are short, but broad, and as if they had been cropped at their superior edges ; the 
tail is about half the length of the body, and is covered with dark-brown hairs, somewhat 
bushy at its extremity. The feet and claws are black; the claws are long and sharp." 
Warden says that, in Vermont, the largest weigh eleven pounds ; but that in the southern 
states they attain a greater size. 

"f 5. Arctomys (Spermophilus?) Ludovicianus. (Ord.) 

The Wistonwish. 

Gexus Arctomys. Gjielin. Sub-genus Spermophilus. F. Cuviek. 

Prairie dog. Gass, Journal, p. 50. An. 1807. 

Prairie dog, or Wistonwiiili. Pike, Journey, p. 207. An. 1811. 

Petit chien, Prairie dog, Barking squirrel, Burrowing squirrel. Lewis and Clark, vol. i. pp. 93, 95, 254, &c. 

Barking squirrel. Idem, vol. iii. p. 38 (but not the " bui-rowing squirrel," mentioned in the same volume). 

An, 1814. 
" Arctomys Ludovicianus. Ord, Guthi-ie's Geog., vol. ii. Tp. 302. An. 1815." 
Cynomys socialis et cinereus. " RAFiNEsauE-SiUALTZ. Am. Month. Mag. An. 1817-" 

Desmarest, iV/amm, p. 314. 
Monax Missouriensis. Warden-, United States, vol. i. p 225. An. 1819. 
Arctomys Ludovicianus. Say, Long's Journey, vol. ii. p. 334. Harlan, Fauna, p. IGO. 
Arctomys latrans. Harlan, Fauna, p. 30G. 
The Prairie Marmot. Godman, iVaZ. ^^i^-i., vol. ii. p. 114. 

.4. Spermophilus ? {Ludovicianus^) super cervinus pilis nigris interspersis : suiter sordide. albus, ungue pollicariconic» 

majusculo, cauda brevi apicem versus fuse o torquata. 
Wistonwish, having cheek.pouches ? back reddish-brown mixed with gray and black; soiled white belly; a rather 

large conical thumb-nail ; and a short tail banded with brown near the tip. 

This animal, which has acquired so many appellations since the year 1807, 
inhabits the banks of the Missouri and its tributaries. The best account of its 
habits are given by Lieutenant Pike, and Captains Lewis and Clark. M. 
Rafinesque, considering ihe petit chien, briefly noticed by Lewis and Clark, in their 


first volume, to be distinct from the barking squirrel, more fully described in their 
third volume, drew up from their notices the characters of his Cynomys socialis, and 
C. cinereus. Dr. Harlan has given the name of Arctomys latrans to the Cynomys 
socialis, at the same time treating of the Arctomys hudoviciamis as a separate 
species. An attentive perusal of Lewis and Clark's narrative, however, has led to 
the conclusion, that, in the passages cited above, these travellers speak only of one 
species of marmot under a variety of names *; and Mr. Say seems, also, to have 
been of this opinion. Lewis and Clark, vol. i., page 246, mention a small 
animal, about one-third of the size of their Missouri burrowing squirrel, but other- 
wise closely resembling it. They could not obtain a specimen, and its characters, 
therefore, have not been recorded by them ; but from their vicinity at the time to 
ihe plains of the Saskatchewan, from the general colour of the animal, and from 
their description of its earths, it most probably was the taivny marmot (No. 52) 
of this work. The genus Cynomys of M. Rafinesque corresponds to the Spermo- 
philus of M. F. Cuvier ; but the characters given by the latter author are more 
precise and more skilfully drawn up. The following account of the Wistonwish is 
quoted from Mr. Say, whose description was taken chiefly from a well-prepared 
specimen, presented by Lewis and Clark to the Philadelphia museum. It seems 
to differ from other American marmots, in the length of its thumb-nail, and to 
approach in that respect to the A.fulvus of Lichtenstein. 

"This interesting and sprightly little animal has received the name of Prairie 
dog, from a fancied resemblance of its warning cry, to the hurried barking of a 
small dog. The sound may be imitated, by the pronunciation of the syllable, 
^chek, chek, chek !' in a sibilated manner, and in rapid succession, by propelling 
the breath between the tip of the tongue and the roof of the mouth. As particular 
places are in general occupied by the burrows of these animals, such assemblages 
of dwellings are denominated Prairie-dog villages, by the hunters. They vary 
widely in extent, — some being confined to an area of a few m.iles, others are 
bounded by a circumference of many miles. Only one of these villages occurred 
between the Missouri and the Prairie towns ; thence to the Platte they were much 
more numerous. The entrance to the burrow is at the summit of the little mound 
of earth, brought up by the animal during the progress of the excavation below. 
These mounds are sometimes inconspicuous, but generally somewhat elevated 
above the common surface, though rarely to the height of eighteen inches. Their 
form is that of a truncated cone, on a base of two or three feet, perforated by a 

^ * The Burrowing Squirrel of tlie Columbia {Arctomys hrachyxtrus of Dr. Harlan, and of this work) is described by 
ttiem, in their third volume, as different from the Blissouri animal, mentioned also by the name of burrowing squirrel 
in their first volume. 



comparatively large hole or entrance at the summit^ or in the side. The whole 
surface, but more particularly the summit, is trodden down and compacted, like a 
•well-worn pathway. The hole descends, vertically, to the depth of one or two feet, 
whence it continues in an oblique direction downward. A single burrow may have 
many occupants. We have seen seven or eight individuals sitting upon one 
mound. The burrows occur usually at intervals of about twenty feet. They 
delight to sport about the entrance of their burrows in pleasant weather. At 
the approach of danger they retreat to their dens, or when its proximity is not 
too immediate, they remain, barking and flourishing their tails, on the edge of 
their holes, or sitting erect, to reconnoitre. When fired upon in this situation, 
they never fail to escape, or, if killed, instantly to fall into their burrows, where 
they aie beyond the reach of the hunter. As they pass the winter in a lethargic 
sleep, they lay up no provision of food for that season, but defend themselves from 
its rigours by accurately closing up the entrance of the burrow. The further 
arrangements, which the Prairie dog makes for its comfort and security, are well 
worthy of attention. He constructs for himself a very neat globular cell, with fine 
dry grass, having an aperture at top, large enough to admit the finger, and so 
compactly formed, that it might almost be rolled over the floor without injury." 


"The animal is of a liglit, dirty reddish-brown colour above, which is intermixed with some 
gray, also a few black hairs. This coating of hair is of a dark lead colour, next the skin, thea 
bluish-white, then light reddish, then gray at the tip. The lower parts of the body are of a dirty 
■white colour. The head is wide and depressed above, with large eyes ; the iris is dark brown ; 
the ears are short and truncated ; the tvhiskers of moderate length, and black ; a few bristles 
project from the anterior portion of the superior orbit of the eye, and a few also from a wart on 
the cheek ; the nose is somewhat sharp and compressed ; the hair of the anterior legs, and 
that of the throat and neck, is not dusky at the base. All the feet are five-toed, covered with 
very short hair, and armed with rather long, black nails : the exterior one of the fore-foot 
nearly attains the base of the next, and the middle one is half an inch in length ; the thumb is 
armed with a conic nail, three-tenths of an inch in length ; the fail is rather short, banded 
with brown near the tip, and the hair, excepting near the body, is not plumbeous at the base." 


Of the above specimen. 

Inches. Lines. 

Length of head and body 16 

„ the tail 2 9 

„ the tail, including the fur .... 3 4 

Lieutenant Pike's description, as far as it goes, agrees nearly with the above. " They have a 


dark brown colour, except their bellies, which are white ; their tails are not so long as those of 
the gray squirrels, but are shaped the same." In page 93 of the first volume of Lewis and 
Clark's narrative, where the animal is termed petit chien, it is stated that " The head resembles 
the squirrel in every respect, except that the ear is shorter ; the tail like that of the ground 
squirrel ; the toe-nails are long ; the fur fine, and the long hair is gray." In the third 
volume, where it is called barking squirrel, the following particulars are mentioned: — "This 
animal commonly weighs three pounds ; the colour is an uniform, bright brick- red and gray, and 
the former predominates; the under side of the neck and belly are lighter than other parts 
of the body ; the legs are short, and the breast and shoulders wide ; the head is short and 
muscular, and terminates more bluntly, wider, and flatly than the common squirrel ; the ears 
are short and have the appearance of amputation ; the jaw is furnished with a pouch to contain 
his food, but not so large as that of the common squirrel*^ ; each foot has five toes, and the 
two outer ones are much shorter than those in the centre. The two inner toes of the fore-feet 
are long, sharp, and well adapted to digging and scratching. From the extremity of the nose 
to the end of the tail, this animal measures one foot and five inches, of which the tail occupies 
four inches." 

Of the five preceding Marmots, the Arctomys Empetra has a slight folding of the 
lining of the mouth, forming the rudiment of a cheek-pouch ; the A. pruinosus 
has not been examined ; the presence or absence of cheek-pouches in the A. 
hrachyurus is not noted by its describers ; the " ample" cheek-pouches of the 
A. monax rest on the authority of Dr. Godman ; and those of the A. hudomcianus 
are mentioned by Lewis and Clark alone, whilst their having escaped the notice of 
so accurate an observer as Mr. Say, excites some doubt of their existence. The 
Spermophiles, described in the following pages, have all cheek-pouches, which, 
indeed, furnish the only character that distinguishes the sub-genus from the other 
marmots. The solitary mode of life attributed to the Spermophiles, and some 
other peculiarities, apply principally to A. citillus, and so many species have 
been added since M. F. Cuvier first described the genus Spermophilus, that its 
characters require to be re-modelled. 

• It is not easy to divine what the " Commou Squirrel " is which has ample cheek -pouches. 



£50.] 6. Arctomys (Spermophilus) Parryi. (Richardson.) 

Parry s Marmot. 

Genus Arctomys. Gmelin. Cdvieh. Sub.genus Spermophilus. F. Cuvier. 
Ground squirrel. Hearne's Journey, pp. 141 and 386. 
Quebec marmot. Forster, Phil. Trans., Ixii. p. 378. 
Arctomys alpina. Parry's Second Voy., p. CI, Narrative. 
Arctomys Parryi. Richardson, Parry's Second Voy., App., p. 316. 
Seek-Seek. EsatilMAUX. Thce-thiay (Rock badger.) Chepewyans. 

■A. Spermophilus (Parryi) auricuUs brevissimis, corpore super griseo nigrove creberrime. albo guttato ; subter 
helvolo, vultu, badio, caudd pedes posticos esctensos tertid parte superante plana versus apicem nigra margine 
extimo albescenti subtus helvold. 

Parry's Mai-mot, with cheek-pouches, very short ears, body thickly spotted above with white on a gray or black ground, 
pale rust-coloured beneath, face chestnut-coloured, the tail one-third part longer than the hind-feet, 
stretched out flat, black at the extremity, with a narrow white margin, rust-coloured beneath. 

Plate x. 
This spermophile inhabits the barren grounds skirting the sea-coast from 
Churchill in Hudson's Bay round by Melville Peninsula^ and the whole northern 
extremity of the continent to Behring's Straits, where specimens precisely similar 
were procured by Captain Beechey. It abounds in the neighbourhood of Fort 
Enterprise, near the southern verge of the barren grounds, in latitude 65°, and is 
also plentiful on Cape Parry, one of the most northern parts of the continent. It 
is found generally in stony districts, but seems to delight chiefly in sandy hillocks 
amongst rocks, where burrows, inhabited by different individuals, may be often 
observed crowded together. One of the society is generally observed sitting erect 
on the summit of the hillock^ whilst the others are feeding in the neighbourhood. 
Upon the approach of danger, he gives the alarm, and they instantly betake them- 
selves to their holes, remaining chattering, however, at the entrance until the 
advance of the enemy obliges them to retire to the bottom. When their retreat 
is cut off, they become much terrified, and seeking shelter in the first crevice that 
offers, they not unfrequently succeed only in hiding the head and fore-part of the 
body, whilst the projecting- tail is, as is usual with them when under the influence 
of terror, spread out flat on the rock. Their cry, in this season of distress, strongly 
resembles the loud alarm of the Hudson's Bay Squirrel, and is not very unlike the 
sound of a watchman's rattle. The Esquimaux name of the animal seek-seek is an 
attempt to express this sound. According to Hearne, they are easily tamed, and 
are very cleanly and playful in a domestic state. They never come abroad during 


. MAMMALIA. 15^ 

the winter. Their food appears to be entirely veg-etable ; their pouches being 
generally observed to be filled^ according to the season, with tender shoots of 
herbaceous plants^ berries of the alpine arbutus^ and of other trailing shrubs^ or 
the seeds of bents,, grasses, and leguminous plants. They produce about seven 
young at a time. 

The accompanying figure was drawn from a specimen procured on the bank& 
of the Mackenzie. 


Dentition the same as in the^. Richardsonii hereafter described. Forehead flat, straight j 
nose short, thick, and very obtuse, projecting a little beyond the upper incisors, and covered 
•with a close coat of very short, pale, yellowish-brown hairs. The face is clothed with short 
brownish-orange or reddish-brown hairs, mixed with a few coarser black ones. There are 
some short black ivhiskers on the upper lip, also a few black hairs over the eye and on the 
posterior part of the cheeks, none of them exceeding half the length of the head. The eyes 
are large fend promilient. The ear consists merely of a low, much rounded, hairy flap, not 
above two or two and a half lines high, and situated above the ayditory opening, which is 
large. The cheeks are of a paler red than the face, and in some specimens exhibit a con- 
siderable intermixture of gray. The cheek-pouches are pretty large, and open into the mouth 
immediately anterior to the grinders. The body, when the animal is fat, is thick, and flattish. 
on the back, with a considerable breadth posteriorly. It is covered above with a dense coat 
of short soft fur, consisting of a fine down, which has a dark smoke-gray colour at the roots, 
pale French-gray in the middle, and yellowish-gray at the summits ; and of longer hairs, of 
which the greater part are tipped with white, but many have lengthened black summits. The 
colours are so disposed as to produce a crowded assemblage of somewhat quadrangular white 
spots, margined and separated by black and yellowish-gray. The spots are nowhere well- 
defined, but they are most so on the posterior part of the back. On the upper aspect of the 
neck, and towards the sides, the white hairs, although numerous, do not produce spots. The 
throat, sides of the neck, outside of the shoulders, fore and hind legs, and the whole inferior 
aspect of the body have a colour intermediate, between brownish-red and brownish-orange, 
which is generally most intense on the sides of the neck, but varies in brightness with the 
season of the year. The hair on the belly and thighs is longer, and not so close as that of 
the back, and has less down intermixed with it. 

The tail is flat, and rounded at ihe tip ; its hair, particularly that inserted on the sides, 
being capable of a distichous arrangement. In this state it presents on its upper surface a 
mixture of gray, brown, and black in the centre, then a black border, becoming much broader 
towards the tip of the tail ; and, lastly, a narrow margin of soiled brownish-white. Under- 
neath it has an unmixed brownish-red colour to near the tip, where the black border and 
pale margin appear. The hairs of the tail become longer towards its extremity, and there 



they are blackish at the roots, then yellowish-brown for a short space, then brownish-black 
for more than half their length ; and, lastly, tipped with pale brownish-white. 

Extremities. — ^There is a tuft of four or five longer hairs on the posterior part of the 
fore-leg. The toes are well separated, and are covered above with short adpressed hairs. 
They are naked beneath, and have a callous enlargement at the roots of the claws. The 
palms are also naked, and have similar callous eminences to those mentioned in the 
description of A. Richardsonii. The very small thumb is protected and almost entirely 
covered by a short, convex, rounded nail, and is situated on 'the inner s ide of a large 
tubercle at the posterior part of the palm. The toes and claws have the same relative 
length to each other as those of the A. Richardsonii, but the claws are larger in proportion. 
The hind-feet are also similar in form to those of the animal just-mentioned. About half 
an inch of the sole, next the heel, is well clothed with hair, the remainder is naked. 






h of head and body 

12 to 14 

Length of the palm and middle fore-toe . 1 

, head . , 


„ the middle fore-claw . , 

, tail (vertebrse) 


„ from heel to point of middle hind- 

, tail including fur . 



claw . . , . 2 

, from the orbit to end of the 

nose 1 

„ the middle hind-claw . • 

, orbit , , 






Arctomys Parryi, var. (3, erythrogluteia. 

This variety^ procured by Mr. Drummond on the Rocky Mountains,, near the 
sources of the Elk River^ in latitude 57°, differs from the preceding merely in 
being- of somewhat smaller size, with a proportionally shorter head, longer tail, 
smaller claws, and an ear about as high again, and of a more ovate form. There 
is an obscure brownish streak down the centre of the back, the black hairs pre- 
dominate on the upper part of the neck, and the space between the ear and eye is 
occupied by an intimate intermixture of black and white hairs. The feet and 
posterior surface of the hips and thighs are of a bright brownish-red colour. In all 
other respects the resemblance to var. a, is very close. 



VAIl. /3. 





Length of head and body 


Length of middle fore, claw 


„ head 



„ from heel to end of middle hind- 

,, tail (vertebrse) 






,, tail, fur included 

. 5 


„ middle hind claw 


,, palm and middle fore-claw 



Arctomys Parryi, var. 7, ph^ognatha. 

There is a specimen of a third variety in the Museum of the Zoological Society, 
which was also brought from Hudson's Bay, but the particular district not 
mentioned. It is characterized chiefly by a well-defined, deep, chestnut-coloured 
mark under the eye. 


[51.] 7. Arctomys (Spermophilus) GUTTATUS ? The American Souslik. 

Mus citilliis, var. guttata. Pallas, Glir. tab. 6. B. ? 
Spermophilus guttatus. Temminck, Tab. Meth.? 

A. Spermophilus {guttatus Americanus) auricvUs nullis, corpore super xerampelino creberrime alho giUtato suiter 
ochreo, cauda abbreviaia corpore concolori, naso convexo fernighieo., palpebris labiisque albidis. 

American Souslik, without external ears, having the upper parts of a clove-brown colour, varied by small crowded white 
spots, the under parts and feet ochre-coloured, a short tail coloured like the body, convex reddish-brown. 
nose, and whitish eyelids and lips. 

Mr. Douglas broug-ht a small marmot from the western side of the Rocky 
Mountains,, and several injured specimens of the same species exist in the Museum 
of the Hudson's Bay Company. I can detect no external characters (except that 
the spots on its fur are more crowded and indistinct) to distinguish it from the mus 
noricus of Agricola or Hungarian Souslik, which I know only from the descriptions 
and figures given by authors ; but a scull of the latter preserved in the College of 
Surgeons^ although of the same size with the American animal, differs from it in 
having a more arched facial line, and in possessing an uniform degree of curvature 
from the occiput to the end of the nose. The American Soushk has a convex 
nose^ with the frontal bone depressed between the orbits as in the A. Richardsonii, 
It resembles the A. Farryi very closely in the colours and markings of its fur^ 
though it has not, when recent, one-third of the weight of that animal^ and its feet 
and claws are much smaller^ being less than those even of the A. lateralis. I 
have been able to collect no particular information respecting its habits. It 
seems to be confined to the western declivity of the Rocky Mountains. Buffon 
mentions that the name of Souslik given to the A. guttatus, on the Wolga, is 
intended to express the great avidity that animal has for salt^ which induces it to 
go on board vessels laden with that commodity, where it is often taken. 


Dentition precisely similar to that of A. Richardsonii. Incisors slightly yellow. Cheek- 
pouches. Nose obtuse; facial line slightly arched. Whiskers black, not strong. No external 
ears, the auditory opening being surrounded merely by a thickish margin, having the appearance 
of the cicatrix of an ear that has been cut off. Colour. — The upper surface of the nose is 
reddish-brown, mixed with a few black and some white hairs. The upper lip, the upper and 
under eye-lids, and the whole under jaw, are white. The cheeks and upper aspect of the 



head are of a mixed gray colour, produced by the fur being dark brown, ringed towards the 
tips with white and frequently tipped with black. The whole of the back and upper surface 
of the tail has a motled gray colour, produced by numerous small, somewhat quadrangular 
white spots, spread over a dark ground, of a colour intermediate between clove and liver- 
browns. The white nearly equals the brown in quantity, and the spots are less distinct 
towards the sides. The fur is short and not very fine, dark towards the roots, ringed with 
white above, and intermixed with longer hairs, having black tips. The throat, breast, belly, 
under surface of the tail, and the extremities, are of a pale ferruginous colour, approaching to 

The tail is rather slender, and, excluding the fur at its tip, is about the same length 
with the posterior extremities when stretched out, or about one-seventh of the length of 
the body. The extremities are shaped like those of the other spermophiles, but the toes and 
claws are more slender than usual. The palms are naked, and are entirely occupied by five 
tubercles, \\z. three at the roots of the toes, and two behind them of a larger size. At the 
base of the inner posterior tubercle there is a small convex obtuse nail, which is the only 
vestige of a thumb. As is usual in the spermophiles, the second fore-toe and claw is longer 
than the others, the third is scarcely longer than the first, and the fourth is the length of its 
-claw shorter than the third. The fore-claws are slender, much compressed, and slightly 
curved. The soles are naked, but in some measure protected by the hairs which curve in 
from the margins of the tarsus. The three middle toes are nearly equal in length, the fifth is 
considerably shorter, and the first is shorter than the fifth. The hind claws are much shorter, 
not so much compressed, less curved, and more excavated beneath than the fore ones. All 
the" claws are black. 

Length of the head and body . , 8 

„ body . .6 

„ head . , 2 

„ tail (vertebrae) . ) 

„ tail, including fur . 2 

„ from wrist joint to end of middle 

fore-daw . . .1 

„ middle fore-claw . 





Length from heel to end of middle hind-claw 
,, of the middle hind-toe and claw 
„ middle hind-claw 

,, cranium from end of the 

nasal bones to the occipital spine 
„ nasal bones 

Breadth of the frontal bones between the 
orbits .... 






liength of the head and body 
„ tail 

„ taU, including the fur 

Of a second specimen. 
Inches. Lines. Lines. 

• 9 6 [ Length from the anterior part of the orbit to 

I 6 the end of the nose . . •71 


Y 2 


[52.] 8. Arctomys (Spermophilus) Richardsonii. (Sabine.) 

The Tawny Marmot* 

Arctomys Richardsonii. Sabine, Linn. Trans., vol. xiii. p. 589. t. 28. Idem, Franklin's Journ., p. 662. i 
Griffith, An. Kingd., vol. v. p. 246. No. 639. British Museum, Spec. 110, 
Tawny American Marmot. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 111. 

A. Spermophilus {Richardsonii) super cervinus pilis nigris interspersis subter pallidior, cauda brevi corpore 

concolori margine pallido, auriculis brevissimis. 
Tawny Blarmot, with cheek-pouches ; hack yellowish -gray, interspersed with hlack hairs ; helly pale grayish-orange ; 

a short tail coloured like the body with a pale margin ; very short ears. 

Plate xi. 

This animal inhabits the grassy plains that lie between the north and south 
branches of the Saskatchewan River^ living in deep burrows, formed in the sandy 
soil. It is very common in the neighbourhood of Carlton-house,, its burrows being 
scattered at short distances over the whole plain. It can scarcely be said to live in 
villages, though there are sometimes three or four of its burrows on a sandy hum- 
mock, or other favourable spot. The burrows are proportionable to the size of the 
animal, generally fork or branch off near the surface, and descend obliquely down- 
wards to a considerable depth ; some few of them have more than one entrance. 
The earth scraped out in forming them is thrown up in a small mound at the mouth 
of the hole, and on it the animal seats itself on its hind-legs, to overlook the short 
grass, and reconnoitre before it ventures to make an excursion. In the spring, 
there are seldom more than two, and most frequently only one individual seen at 
a time at the mouth of a hole ; and although I have captured many of them at that 
season, by pouring water into their burrows, and compelling them to come out, I 
have never obtained more than one from the same hole, unless when a stranger 
has been chased into a burrow already occupied by another. There are many 
little, well-worn pathways diverging from each burrow, and some of these roads 
are observed, in the spring, to lead directly to the neighbouring holes, being most 
probably formed by the males going in quest of a mate. The males fight when 
they meet on these excursions, and it not unfrequently happens that the one which 
is worsted loses a part of its tail as he endeavours to escape. They place no 
sentinels, and there appears to be no concert between the tawny marmots 
residing in the neighbourhood, every individual looking out for himself. They 



never quit their holes in the winter ; and I believe they pass the greater part of 
that season in a torpid state. The ground not being thawed when I was at 
Carlton-house, I had not an opportunity of ascertaining how their sleeping apart- 
ments were constructed, nor whether they lay up stores of food or not. About 
the end of the first week of April, or as soon as a considerable portion of the 
ground is bare of snow, they come forth ; and, when caught on their little 
excursions, their cheek-pouches generally contain the tender buds of the ajiemone 
nuttalliana, which is very abundant, and the earliest plant on the plains. They are 
fat when they first appear, and their fur is in good condition ; but the males 
immediately go in quest of the females, and in the course of a fortnight they become 
lean, and the hair begins to fall off. They run pretty quick, but clumsily, and 
their tails at the same time move up and down with a jerking motion. They dive 
into their burrows on the approach of danger, but soon venture out again if they 
hear no noise, and may be easily shot with the bow and arrow, or even knocked 
down with a stick, by any one who will take the trouble to lie quietly on the grass 
near their burrow for a few minutes. Their curiosity is so great, that they are sure 
to come out to look around. As far as I could ascertain, they feed entirely on vege- 
table matters, eating in the spring the young buds and tender sprouts of herbaceous 
plants, and in the autumn the seeds of grasses and leguminous plants. Their cry, 
when in danger, or when angry, so nearly resembles that of the Arctomys Parryi, 
that I am unable to express the difference in letters. Several species of falcon 
that frequent the plains of the Saskatchewan, prey much on these marmots ; but 
their principal enemy is the American badger, which, by enlarging their burrows, 
pursues them to their inmost retreats. Considerable parties of Indians have also 
been known to subsist for a time on them, when the larger game is scarce, and 
their flesh is palatable when they are fat. I have no precise information respecting 
the range of this animal. It inhabits sandy prairies, is not found in thickly 
wooded parts, and nowhere, I believe, further north than latitude 55°. It is 
mentioned in the Appendix to Captain Franklin's Journey, that it was found on 
the shores of the Arctic Sea ; but incorrectly, as I have since ascertained that I 
had mistaken the preceding species for this one. It is one of the animals known to 
the residents of the fur-countries by the name oi ground squirrel ; and to Canadian 
voyagers, by that of siffleiir ; — it has considerable resemblance to the squirrels, 
but is less active, and has less sprightliness and elegance in its attitudes. It is 
most readily distinguished from the squirrels by the smallness of its ears ; the shape 
of its incisors, which are larger, but not so strong, and much less compressed ; the 
second, and not the third fore-toe, being the largest ; and its comparatively long 


claws^ and less bushy tail. It seems to be the American representative of 
the A. (spermophilus) concolor, or jevraska of Siberia. The Tawny Marmot has 
been hitherto known only by Mr. Sabine's account^ in the Linnean Transactions, of 
one obtained on Captain Franklin's first expedition. That description_, owing to 
the imperfections of the specimen, is incorrect, in ascribing to the animal '^ a 
tapering, sharp nose/' instead of a thick one, fully as obtuse as that of either the 
preceding or following species, and considerably more so than that of the Hudson's 
Bay squirrel. The figure, also, in the Linnean Transactions, is incorrect, in the 
shape of the ears, and does not give so good an idea of the form of the animal, as. 
Landseer's excellent etching in this work. 


Dental formula ; incisors f, canines IJ^, molars '^ = 22, 

The incisors are straw-coloured, rounded anteriorly, without the vestige of a groove, and 
not so much compressed as the incisors of a squirrel, being fully as broad transversely as 
they are from before backwards. The upper ones have even cutting edges, the under ones 
rounded edges. In general form and structure, the upper grinders are similar to those of the 
A7'ct. empetra, but they are rather more compressed, the duplicature of the plate of the 
enamel from without inwards being more acute in proportion. The lower grinders have also 
the same general form, but the points are more distinct, and the anterior pair of points on 
each tooth rise in a more remarkable manner above the posterior pair. 

Skull. — The os-frontis is flat between the orbits as in the Quebec marmot ; the nasal 
process, however, does not rise, but forms with the nasal bones part of a flat, elliptical arch, 
that extends from the occipital ridge nearly to the end of the nose, when it drops rather sud- 
denly. The margin of the orbits is a little raised. The distance between the orbits is only 
about 4 lines or 44 lines, being less than in the Arctomys Franklinii, and not above half the 
space that exists between the orbits of the Sciurus Hudsonim. The capacity of the cavity 
for containing the brain, is less in proportion than in the ^. Franklinii. The zygomatic 
process is broader than in the latter animal, and has a large, hollow surface, for the lodgment 
of the muscles. 

Body, a little shorter, but thicker than that of the Hudson's Bay squirrel. Head roundish, 
depressed ; nose obtuse ; the naked septum and margiri of the nostrils is of a blackish- brown 
colour. The end of the nose is covered with very short, grayish hairs ; the rest of the face, 
and dorsal aspect of the head, is coloured like the back, but has sometimes a darker yellowish- 
brown tinge. Whiskers, black, shorter than the head. Cheek-pouches, capable of containing 
a chestnut. Eyes, large. Ears, small, rounded, about a line high, situated above and 
behind the auditory opening, thick, and clothed with short hairs. There is no part of the 
auricle anterior to the auditory canal. 

The colour of the back is yellowish-brown, verging towards gray, intermixed with black 
hairs ; the fur is short and fine. On the sides the fur is a little longer, and has more of a 


yellowish-gray hue^ with few of the black hairs. The fur on the belly is longer but tliinner 
than that on the back, and its colour is between pale rufous and yellowish-gray. The cheeks, 
throat, and inside of the thighs are very pale ash-gray, verging towards white. The buttocks 
and under surface of the tail have generally more or less of a rufous tinge. The far 
throughout the body is shining pale ash-gray for the greater part of its length, the brown 
tints being confined to the tips. The black hairs which are intermixed, are longer than the 
others, and are of one colour their whole length. The tail is flat or depressed, nearly linear, 
and rounded at the end. It is less than one-fourth of the length of the body and head, and 
is clothed with hairs longer than the fur of the body, and capable of a distichicous arrange- 
ment. The upper surface of the tail is darker than the back, the central parts, when the 
hairs are spread out, being a mixture of black and rusty brown, in nearly equal proportions, 
but not banded or spotted, being only clouded. The extremities of the hairs, and, conse- 
quently, the margin of the tail, have a rusty colour, becoming paler towards the tips, which 
are almost white. The hairs of the tail at its extremity are the longest, being an inch in 
length, but the tail is by no means bushy. 

There are four toes and a minute thumb on the fore-feet. The toes are covered above 
with a close smooth coat of hair. On the naked palms there are five callous tubercles, one 
small one at the root of the inner toe, a similar one at the root of the outer toe, and one a 
little larger common to the two middle ones. Tliere is a pretty large one adjoining to the 
thumb, and one nearly as large and of a conical form opposite to it. The first and third toe 
are of tlie same length, the middle one is the longest, and the outer one is the shortest and 
furthest back. The thumb has a very short joint, and is armed with a small convex obtuse 
claw. The claws of the toes are long and much compressed, their edges being in contact 
beneath, nearly to the tips, where they separate to form a narrow groove. Hind-feet with 
five toes. Sole naked, its heel alone being protected by hairs which grow on its sides and 
curve over it. It has four smooth tubercles, one of which is common to the middle and fourth 
toe, and the other three are proper to the inner, second, and outer toes. The toes are slender 
and distinct, a slight duplicature only of naked skin appearing at their bases when they are 
pulled apart. The three middle toes differ little in length, and arise together ; the other two 
are considerably smaller, and have their origin further back. The claws are shorter than 
those of the fore-feet, though of similar shape, except that the edges are not in contact 
beneath. All the claws are dark brownish-black. 





Of a recent fafl- 

grown specimen. 




gth of body and head 

. 9 


Length from heel to tip of middle hind-claw I 

„ head 



„ of middle hind-claw . . 

„ body 

. 7 


,, of the cranium, from the end of the 

„ tail (vertebrae) 


nasal bone to the occipital ridge . I 

„ tail, including fur 

. 3 


„ of the nasal bones . . 

„ middle fore-claw 


Distance between the orbits in the scull . 

The females are generally smaller than the males. 


[53.] 9. Arctomys (Spermopiiilus) Franklinii. (Sabine.) 

Franklins Marmot. 

Arctomys Franklinii. Sabine, Lin. Trans., vol. xiii. p. 19. Franklin's Journ., p. 662. Harlan, Fauna, p. 167. 
Franklin's Marmot. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. xi. p. 109. 

A. SpEUMOrHiLus (Franklinii) corpore super cervino ferrugineove creherriml nigro maculato subter albido, vultu ex 
nigra canescenti, caudd elongata cylindrica pilis albis nigro ter quaterve torquatis vestita. 

Franklin's Marmot, with cheek pouches ; the upper surface of the body spotted thickly with black, on a yellowish-brown 
ground, under surface grayish-white ; face black and white, intimately and equally mixed ; tail long, cylin- 
drical, and clothed with hairs which are ringed alternately with black and white. 

Plate xii. 

This animal was seen only in the neighbourhood of Carlton-house^ where it lives 
in burrows dug- in the sandy soil, amongst the little thickets of brushwood that 
skirt the plains. It is about three weeks later in its appearance in the spring- than 
the Arctomi/s Richardsonii, probably from the snow lying- longer on the shady 
places it inhabits than on the open plains frequented by the latter. It runs on 
the ground with considerable rapidity, and never, as far as I could learn^ ascends 
trees. It has a louder and harsher voice than the A. Bfichardsonii, more resembling- 
that of the Sciurus Hudsonius when terrified. Its food consists principally of the 
seeds of leguminous plants^ which it can procure in considerable quantity as soon 
as the snow melts and exposes the crop of the preceding year. 


Franklin's Marmot has somewhat the shape of the Hudson's Bay Squirrel, but is larger. 
It is more slender than the Arctomys Richardsonii. Its nose is not so obtuse as that of the 
latter, but the difference is not great. The septum, naked margins of the nostrils, and margins 
of the lips are of a light flesh-colour. In the Arctomys Richardsonii these parts are dark, 
approaching to black. The ears are longer than those of the A. Richardsonii, having a 
jnore conspicuous erect rounded flap, covered with hairs similar to those on the crown of the 
head ; they resemble in form the ears of the Hudson's Bay Squirrel, but are not so large. 
Eye larger than that of Sciurus Hudsonius. Cheek-pouches of a moderate size. Whiskers 
mostly black. 

The fur is coarser than that o( A. Richardsonii ; it is about four or five lines long. The 
colour of the back is pale reddish-brown, minutely and regularly speckled with black. The 
tips of all the hairs are brown ; the black forms a ring beneath the brown ; below the black 



the hair is brownish-gray, and at the bottom bluish-black. Black specklings occur on the 
crown of the head, cheeks, and shoulders, but the tips of the hairs covering those parts are 
white. On the top of the head the hair is short, and there is a large proportion of black in 
that part. The eyelids are white, sometimes the brownish tints are very pale, and the animal 
is orizzly on all the upper parts as in the individual described by Mr. Sabine. The throat, 
chin, lower parts of the cheeks, inside of the thighs, and all the under parts are of a soiled 
white without spots. The fur on the belly is rather thin, but of the same length with that 
on the back. 

The hairs on the tail are longer than those on the back, and are barred with black and 
Avhite, which, when the hairs are distichously arranged, produces an indistinct appearance 
of lono'itudinal stripes. But when the animal is pursued, the tail is cylindrical, the hairs 
standing out in every direction. In this state, which was the only one in which I had an 
opportunity of observing the living animal, the black and white colours of the tail are 
intermixed, and in nearly equal proportions. The white forms the tips of the hairs, and 
when they are spread out, the tail consequently appears to be bordered with white. There 
is no difference of colour between the upper and under surface of the tail, in which respect 
this species of marmot differs from all the others I have seen except the A. Beecheiji and 
A. Douglasii. The scrotum is large and prominent in the spring, but not pendulous. The 
feet are formed like those of A. Richardsonii, and are covered with short hairs, black at the 
roots and white at the tips. The thumb has one joint, and is larger than those of the latter 
animal, but has a smaller nail, which is white. The Sciurus Hudsonius has a shorter thumb 
than either of these marmots, but it is armed with a more conspicuous nail. The hind-feet 
when stretched out reach to the middle of the tail. The palms are naked. The hind soles 
are hairy for about two-thirds of their length from the heels. The claws are dark at the base, 
and pale-brown at their points. 

On comparing the skull of this marmot with that of A. Richardsonii, the cavity for con- 
taining the brain appears greater in proportion, and there is a considerably greater breadth 
between the orbits. The margins of the orbits are not elevated as in the latter, but the bone 
lying between them forms a regular arch in a longitudinal direction, though it is flat trans- 
versely. The space between the orbits is not, however, so great as that between the orbits 
of Sciurus Hudsonius. The teeth do not differ from those of A. Richardsonii. 


Of a recent specimen full grown. 

Lines. '"*«=• Lines. 

Length of middle fore-claw . .0 6| 

„ from heel to end of middle hind-claw 2 2 

„ middle hind-claw . . 3| 

„ height of ear . .0 3^ 


I;ength of hody and head ... 10 6 

„ head . . .22 

„ body . . . . 8 4 

„ tail (vertebrae) . .53 

„ including fur . .63 


-f- 10. Arctomys (Spermophilus) Beecheyi. (Richardson.) 
Beecheys Marmot. 

QuauhtecallotlquapaclitU, ant Coztiocotequalliu. Fern axdez, Quad. Nov. Hisp., p. 8. ? nee tamen " Le 
CoqiMllin" du BUFFON. 

A. Speemophilus {Beecheyi), auriculis consjneids, corpore super rufescenti-albo fvUgneoq^ie minute maculaio 
undulatove suiter cervino, caudd elongata e nigro canescenti. 

Beechey's Marmot, -n-itli cheek-pouches, conspicuous ears ; body above minutely spotted or waved with reddish- 
white marks on a blackish -brown gi-ound, under parts pale brownish-yellow ; an unusually long, round 
tail of a mixed black and white colour. 

Platk xa B. 

Mr, Collie, surgeon of His Majesty's ship Blossom, informs me that this kind 
of Spermophile " burrows in great numbers in the sandy declivities and dry plains 
in tlie neighbourhood of San Francisco and Monterey^ in California, close to the 
houses. They frequently stand up on their hind legs when looking round about 
them. In running, they carry the tail generally straight out, but when passing 
over any little inequality, it is raised^ as if to prevent its being soiled. In rainy 
weather^ and when the fields are wet and dirty, they come but little above ground. 
They take the alarm when any one passes within twenty or thirty yards of them, 
and run off at full speed till they reach the mouth of their hole, where they stop a 
little and then enter it. They soon come out again, but with caution, and if not 
molested will proceed to their usual occupations of playing or feeding. Artemisias 
and other vegetable matters were found in their stomachs.'' 

I have not met with any description or notice of this animal by preceding- 
writers unless my quotation of Fernandez be correct. In colour, size, appearance 
of the tail, and in general form, it approaches closely to the Arctomys Franklimi ; its 
most evident distinctive character being the greater size of its ears. The specific 
name has been adopted in honour of the able and scientific Commander of the 
Blossom. The Arctomys Beecheyi is an inhabitant of more southern districts than 
that to which this work is confined ; but it is introduced here for the purpose of 
giving as complete a list as possible of the American marmots, which, until very 
latelv, have not received their due share of attention. 



Dentition precisely similar to that of the A. Richardsonii. Incisors orange-coloured. The 
shape of the scull resembles that of A. Franklinii, and in the size of its body it also cor- 
responds with that animal. Head broad, depressed ; nose very obtuse, covered with short 
brownish hairs. Cheek-pouches moderate sized. Whiskers strong, black. Eyes large ; eye- 
lids whitish. Ears flat, semi-oval, and thin like those of a squirrel, covered with short 
adpressed hairs, which project a little beyond the margin at the apex. At the base both the 
anterior and posterior margins of the ear fold in a little and are hairy. 

The /ur covering the ear behind is brownish-black, fading towards the posterior margin into 
pale brown. The hairs lining the inner surface of the ear are pale brown. The upper aspect 
of the head is clothed with short yellowish-brown hairs. A stripe of a darker brown colour, 
slightly sprinkled with white, is continued from the hind head to the back, on each side of 
which, from the ears to the shoulders, the fur is hoary. The whole dorsal aspect of the body 
is coloured by a mixture of blackish-brown and very pale wood-brown or brownish-white, so 
disposed that the whitish parts appear in small but not very distinct spots, which cover more 
space than the blackish tints which separate them from each other. These markings occupy 
,only the tips of the fur, which is short, close, lies smoothly, and has considerable lustre. 
When blown aside, the fur presents an uniform brownish-black tint, from the roots to near the 
tips. The upper parts of the cheeks are hoary; their lower parts, the margins of the mouth, 
the chin, the throat, and all the under parts, the insides of the thighs and shoulders, and the 
fore and hind legs and feet, are of an unspotted very pale brownish-yellow colour. The hair 
covering the belly is, as in the rest of the spermophiles, thinner and somewhat coarser than 
that on the back. The colours of the back and belly mingle a little at their line of junction 
on the sides. The tail is linear, covered throughout with hair an inch and a half long, which 
is capable of a somewhat distichous arrangement. In this state it presents three longitu- 
dinal brownish-white stripes, and two brownish-black ones on each side of the vertebrse ; 
one of the white stripes forms the margin of the tail, and the black one next it is the 
broadest. These stripes originate in the hairs being of a brownish-white colour at the root, 
then black, and so on in alternate broad rings to the tips, which are whitish. The animal 
when pursued resembles the A. Franklinii in carrying its tail horizontally, and it is most 
probable that the hairs will then stick out in every direction, when it will appear variegated 
and hoary but not striped. The rings of alternate black and white on the hairs of the tail of 
A. Franklinii are more numerous, smaller, and less distinct. 

The shape of the extremities is precisely the same as in the other American spermophiles. 
The fore-ones are proportionably larger than those ofy4. Richardsonii, ov A. Franklinii, 
Palms, naked ; thumb, larger than even that of ^. Parryi, and armed with a thin, convex, 
obtuse nail, adhering closely to its phalanx. Claws black, and similar to those of ^. Rich- 
ardsonii. The soles of the hind-fed are covered with hairs posteriorly, and furnished with 
naked tubercles anteriorly ; and the hind-claws are similar to those of the two spermophiles 
just mentioned. 

Z 2 


Lengtli of head and body ... 1 1 

„ head 2 3 

„ body .... 8 9 

„ tail (vertebrae) ... 5 

„ tail, including fur . . 6 6 

„ whiskers .... 2 


Inches, Lines. Indies. Lines* 

Height of the ear .... 6 

Width of ditto at its base ... C 

Length of middle fore-claw . . 6 

„ from heel to tip of middle hind-claw 2 2 

„ of middle hind-toe and claw . 1 

,; middle hind-claw ... 3J 

The following anatomical notices were furnished by Mr. Collie : — ^I'his spermophile has an 
epiglottis ; a firm, bony clavicle ; a large, simple stomach, resembling that of man in form, 
and equalling, in bulk, the whole stomach and liver. The intestinal canal is five times the 
length of the body, and it is not furnished within with valvules conniventes. The ctFcum is a 
large, curved, membranous pouch, three inches and a half long. The liver is of a dark-red 
colour, and has a large lobulus spigelii, but its left lobe is small. The gall-bladder is deeply 
imbedded in the liver. The spleen is oblong and purplish. There is no well-marked pancreas. 
The kidneys are situated close to the liver ; and there are no vestiges of capsules renales*. 

[54.] 11. Arctomys ? (SpERMOPHiLus ?) DouGLAsii. Doughs' s Marmot. 

A. SpEUMOPHiLUS ? (Doug/asii), auriculis conspicuis, corpore super anlici pruinoso linea interscapulari nigrescenti ;■ 
postice pallidi brunnescenti maculis fuligneis interstincto ; sicbler sordide albeseenti, Cauda elongaid 
cylindricd pilis albis nigra torquatis vestitd. 

Douglas's Marmot, with cheek-pouches, conspicuous ears, upper surface of the body hoary anteriorly, with a black 
stripe betwixt the shoulders ; pale-brown posteriorly, with many indistinct transverse dark marks ; tail 
long, cylindrical, and clothed with hairs, which are ringed alternately with black and white. 

Through the kindness of Mr. David Douglas^ I have received from the banks 
of the Columbia, a hunter's skin of an animal^ which very much resembles the 
preceding one. The skull and teeth are wanting, neither is it possible now ta 
ascertain whether cheek-pouches existed or not;, so that^ until more perfect speci- 
mens are procured, some doubt must remain as to its place in the system. The 

* Fernandez gives the following account of the Coztiocotequallin : — " Quauhtecallotl-quapachtli, aut Coztiocote- 
quallin a luteo alvi colore dictus, in duplam fere crescit niagnitudinem {Sciuri Mexicani) alboque, nigro et fusco colore 
promiscue tegitur, si ventrem excipias qui pallens est, ant fuh'us quemadniodum attigimus, et caudam gerit praelongam, 
pilosamque qua se interdum operit ; vivit in terraj foraminibus, et antris inclusus, in quibus qiioque educat prolem : 
vescitur indico frumenti, quod raptum ab arvis in hyemem recondit. Versutus est velut et reliqui, nee unquain. 
cicuratur, aut congenitam deponit feritatem." 


form of its claws^ however, the second fore-toe being- the long-est_, too-ether with 
the shortness of its tail and ears^ and the quahty and colours of its fur^ induce me 
to think that it is a true spermophile, nearly allied to A. Franklinii and A. Beechei/i. 
It agrees with these two, in the leng-th, form, and colours of its tail ; and the 
colours exhibited by its fur have such a general resemblance, that, although they 
can be readily distinguished by any one who has compared them, it is not easy to 
convey a distinct idea of the differences by description. The A. Dougksii is 
larger than either of the other two referred to ; and its claws are shorter. Its ears 
are less than those of A. Beechei/i ; but considerably larger in proportion than 
those of A. Franklinii. 


The fur, as in the other marmots, is of two kinds, — a short down, and longer and coarser 
hairs. The longer hairs are slender at their roots, become thicker upwards, and then taper 
suddenly near the points, which are acute. They are not so long, nor do they produce so 
fine and close a covering as the fur of any of the North American squirrels which have come 
under my notice. On the back the down has a blackish- brown colour, deepening into black 
over the spine ; on the sides, and also on the belly, it has a clove-brown colour; but the skin 
being apparently a summer one, there is very little down on the belly. The longer hairs are, 
for about two-thirds of their length, of a brownish-black colour, then brownish-white for a 
space, and lastly, terminated by fine black tips of various lengths. On the shoulders the 
hairs near their tips are pure white, instead of brownish-white, and the black tips are slender, 
and not conspicuous, except in the hairs covering the spine. 

Colours of the surface of the fur. — The sides of the mouth, and a narrow space round the 
eyes, are of a soiled, white hue. The tip of the nose is covered with very short, brownish 
hairs. The upper surface of the head is hoary, Avith a slight tinge of brown ; the hairs 
covering this part are short, and their black tips are much less conspicuous than their 
brownish-white parts. The ears are clove-brown posteriorly, deepening into blackish-brown 
at their margins ; they are of a paler brown anteriorly. The superior surface of the neck and 
anterior part of the back appear hoary from an intimate mixture of pure white and blackish- 
brown, in which the former greatly predominates except over the spine, where there is a stripe 
of blackish-brown, varied by a very few of the hairs being ringed with white. The predo- 
minating colour of the surface of the fur on the posterior part of the back, is brownish-white, 
on which there are many small, transverse, blackish specks, not distinctly marked. The 
whole under parts are of a soiled white colour, with a brownish tinge on the throat, on the 
inside of the thighs, and close to the tail. The extremities are whitish, with more or less 
of a brownish tinge. 

The tail is long for an animal of this genus, and exactly resembles in form and colour that 
of A. Franklinii. It is clothed with long hairs, white or brownish-white at the roots, thei> 


ringed alternately with black and white, and, lastly, tipped with white. There are three black 
rings on each hair, and the one next to the white tip is considerably broader than the others. 
The hairs are equally long on all sides of the tail, which has, therefore, a cylindrical form ; 
but if the animal is capable of giving them a distichous direction, there Avill then appear four 
white stripes, and three black ones on each side of its vertebrae, of which the exterior of the 
black ones will be the broadest, and the whole tail will have a white border. The whishers are 
black, and are shorter than the head. The external ears have a semi-ovate form, and are Avell 
clothed on both sides with short hair. The margins fold in at their base like the ears of a 
squirrel, or like those of ^. Beecheyi. 

The feet are shaped like those of the other spermophiles ; the hind soles, for more than 
half their length from the heels, are thickly clothed with hair. The claws are black. The 
thumb-nail very much resembles that of A. Beecheyi, but the thumb is not quite so large and 
distinct as in that animal. 

Length of the head and body . .13 6 

„ head ... 2 7 

„ tail (vertebrae) • .5 9 

„ ,, with fur . .73 


Inches. Lines- Inches. Lines. 

Length of middle fore-claw . .0 4 J 
,, from the heel to the tip of the middle 

hind-claw . . . .2 ] 

Height of the ear, measured posteriorly . 6 

[55.] 12. Arctomys (Spermophilus) lateralis. Say's Marmot. 

Small Gray Squirrel. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 35. 

Sciurus laterahs. Say, Long's Exped., vol. ii. p. 235 (vol. ii. p. 46. Amer. edit.) Harlan, Fauna, p. 181. 

The Rocky Mountain Ground Squirrel. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 144. 

Arctomys (Spermophilus) lateralis. Richardson, Zoo?. J'ozjrno?, vol. ii. No. 12, p. 519. April, 1828. 

A. Spermophilus lateralis'), linea in iitrogue latere liiteo-albu nigro marginata. 
Say's 3Iarmot, with a yellowish-white stripe, bordered with black, on each flank. 

Plate xiii. 

This animal is an inhabitant of the Rocky Mountains^ and the first notice of it 
occurs in Lewis and Clark's memorable expedition to the Pacific Ocean. Mr. Say 
first described it, and placed it among the squirrels in the sub-genus tamias. I 
havCj however, removed it to M. Frederick Cuvier's sub-genus spermophilus, on 


account of the form of its claws and incisors. It is_, indeed, intermediate between 
these very nearly allied sub-genera, with respect to its claws and teeth ; and its fur 
also is finer than that of the spermophilus Hoodiij but less so than the fur of 
tamias Li/steri. Its incisors are stronger and shorter^ in proportion to its size^ 
than those of the other marmots,, but less compressed^ and more slender than those 
of the squirrel. The claws likewise are rather more curved, and deeper at the 
base than those of the marmots ; but considerably larger, and not so sharp as the 
claws of a squirrel. The second toe from the thumb of the fore-feet is the 
longest, as in the spermophiles, and not the third, as in the squirrels. Its ears 
very much resemble the ears of a ground squirrel, but are not so much pointed. 
I have been able to collect no certain information respecting the manners of this 
little animal. Mr. Drummond obtained several specimens on the Rocky Mountains, 
in latitude 57°, and noticed that it burrowed in the ground. Lewis and Clark say 
that it is common to every part of the Rocky Mountains, where wood abounds. 


Fo7in of body, that of a spermophile or squirrel ; head, rather large ; legs, shorter than those 
of a squirrel. Incisors yellowish, flattened anteriorly, and narrower behind, but not shewing 
the fine and numerous grooves which are ■visible when the incisors of the Sciuriis Lysteri or 
quadrivittatus are viewed with a lens. Mouth situated about as far back as that o? Arctomys 
Hoodii. Forehead convex ; nose obtuse, covered with very short hairs, except a naked space 
round the nostrils. Whiskers black, shorter than the head. A few long black hairs over the 
eye, and on the posterior part of the cheek. Eyes, moderately large ; ears, rather larger in 
proportion than those oiA. empetra ; but smaller than the ears oi Sciurus Hudsonius or 
quadrivittatus, consisting of a somewhat triangular flat flap, much rounded at the apex, placed 
on the upper or meesial side of the auditory opening, thickly clothed on both surfaces with 
short hairs, and having a small doubling of the anterior margin to form a helix, which, where 
it approaches the auditory canal, is covered with longer hairs. The fur on the back is dark 
at the roots, then pale-smoke-gray for a space, then brown, and, lastly, its tips are barred 
with white and dark hair-brown. The colour of the surface, when the fur lies smooth, may 
be termed a hoary brownish-gray. There is no vestige of a dorsal line. A yellowish-white 
streak commences close behind each ear, and running backwards along the sides, terminates 
at the hip. It is widest in the middle, being there three lines broad, and in some specimens 
it is very faint on the neck, though its commencement at the ear is always distinct. The white 
streak is bounded above and below between the shoulder and the hip by a pretty broad border 
of brownish-black. The sides under the lower black border, all the ventral aspect, the inner 
surfaces of the extremities, and the breast and throat, are of a soiled yellowish-white, some- 



times tinged Avith brown. The cheeks, sides of the neck, and exterior parts of the fore and 
hind extremities, have more or less of a chestnut-brown hue. The crown of the head is 
brown, mixed with a little gray, and is darker on the msesial line. The ears are brown on the 
margins, but pale elsewhere. There is a white circle round the eye. The nose and forehead 
are pale yellowish-brown, and the upper lip and chin are nearly white. 

The tail is depressed or distichous, nearly linear, being only very slightly broader towards 
the tip. It is black above, with an intermixture of brownish-white hairs, and is bordered 
with the latter colour; yellowish-brown beneath, and margined with black and brownish-white. 

The feet are shaped like those of the four preceding spermophiles. The claws are much 
longer and better fitted for digging than those of the Sciiirus Lysteri or quadrivittatus. 
The thumb-tubercle is far back, and has a small, obtuse nail. The hind soles are naked to 
the heel, as are also the palms, and under surface of the toes. The upper surfaces of the feet 
are covered with short, yellowish-white hairs, which scarcely reach beyond the roots of the 
black claws. 



prepared skins. 


Lines. Inches. 





of body and head, from 7 

9 to 8 


Length of palm and middle fore-claw . 



head alone 



,, hind-sole and middle-claw 



nose to auditory opening 

. 1 


,, hind middle-claw 



tail (vertebra?) 



Height of ear .... 


,, including fur 

. 3 


Breadth of base of external ear . 



middle fore-claw 




[56.'] 13. Arctomys (Spermophilus) Hoodii. (Sabine.) 

The Leopard-Marmot. 

Leopard ground-squirrel. Schoolcraft, Travels, p. 313 and Index. An. 1821. 

Sciurus tridecem-lineatus. " Mitchell, Med. Ileposit07-'i/, An. 1821. Described from Mr. Schoolcraft's specimen." 

Arctomys Hoodii. Sabine, Lin. Trans., vol.xiii. p. 590, An. 1822. Idem. FrankUn''s Journ., p. (iC3. 

Striped and spotted ground squirrel. Say, Long^s Exped. 

Spermophile raye. F. CuviEn, Histoire Naturelle des Mamm. cum figura. I never saw this Marmot assume the 

rounded form given to it in this figure. 
Arctomys tridecem-lineata. Harlan, Fauna, p. 104. 
Hood's JIarmot. Godhan, vol. ii. p. 112. 

A. SrERsiopHiLUS (^Hoodii), dorso occupato lineis octo pallidc rii/escenli-croceis cum lineis novem fuscis alternantihus 
quarum qidnque latioribus serie guttarumcrocearum notatis et quaiuor {duobus nempe ulrinque) inferioribus 
interruptis, cauda gracili elongatd. 

The Leopard Marmot, with cheek-pouches, having its bacli striped with eight pale brownish-yellow lines, wliich alter- 
nate with nine broader chocolate-brown ones, of wliich the two inferior ones on each side are interrupted, 
and each of the other live is marked with a row of pale spots ; a long slender tail. 

Plate xiv. 

This, the most beautiful of the marmots, inhabits, in considerable numbers, the 
open parts of the plains in the vicinity of Carlton-house, on the Saskatchewan. 
Its burrows are interspersed among those of the A. Richardsonii, but may- 
be distinguished by their smaller entrances and more perpendicular direction. 
Some of them will admit a stick to be thrust straight down to the depth of 
four or five feet. The manners of the Leopard-marmot are similar to those 
of A. Richardsonii, but it is a more active animal, and of a bolder and more 
irritable disposition. When it has been driven to take shelter in its burrow^ 
it may be heard expressing- its anger in a shrill and harsh repetition of the 
syllable seek-se&k. This Marmot makes its appearance in spring, about the 
same period with the A. FranJclinii, the depth of burrow evidently preventing the 
warmth of the sun from reaching it so early as it does the A. Richardsonii. The 
males very soon after coming abroad go in quest of their mates, and from their 
boldness at that period, they are easily captured by the many beasts and birds of 
prey which frequent the plains. The males fight when they meet, and in their 
contests their tails are often mutilated. I observed several individuals which had 
been recently injured in this way, and it is rare to meet a male which has a tail 
equalling those of the females in length. Mr. Sabine's figure, and that in the 
Histoire Naturelle des Mamtniferes, have both been made from mutilated specimens. 

2 A 


The most northern habitat of this animal is, as far as I know^ latitude 55°, 
and, according- to Mr. Say^ they are not uncommon at Engineer Cantonment on 
the Missouri, and on the plains which extend from thence to the Arkansas. 
Mr. Schoolcraft mentions that they are numerous on the river St. Peter^ a 
tributary of the Missouri, and have been found destructive to the gardens. They 
also carry away g-rain from the fields at Carlton-house. They appear to be 
confined to the level sandy country, and not to inhabit the rocky and more 
thickly wooded parts. 

A female^ killed at Carlton-house on the 17th of May, had ten young- in 
the uterus. 

From recent Specimens. 

Dentition tlie same as that of yi. Richardsonii, 

Form of the body much hke a squirrel's. Top of the head convex, the forehead and nose 
forming a more remarkable curve than in A. Franklinii, and consequently considerably more 
than in A. Richardsonii. The nose is as obtuse in proportion as that of the former of these 
species, and of similar form. It is covered above and on the sides with very short pale- 
brownish hairs. The septum, and naked space round the nostrils, have a pale flesh colour. 
The mouth is farther back than that of ^. Richardsonii, but not so much so as that of the 
A. Franklinii, having nearly the position of the mouth of the Sciurus Hudsonius. Whiskers 
black, tipped with yellowish-brown, shorter than the head. The eyes are rather larger in pro- 
portion than a squirrel's. The ears consist of a very low lobe behind and above the auditory 
opening, covered on both sides and on the margin with short hairs ; it curves in anteriorly 
to form a minute helix, which is hairy. The inferior part of the auditory opening has a 
naked margin, Avhich is not elevated, and appears as if a portion had been cut away. 

Colour. — The end and sides of the nose, the lower part of the cheeks, the eyelids, the 
throat, belly, part of the sides, and the extremities, are covered with a moderately close coat of 
pale yellowish-brown hair, sometimes, especially on the shoulders and hips, tinged with 
rust-colour. The upper part of the cheeks and side of the head are covered with a mixture 
of pale yellowish-brown and black. The lower jaw is nearly white. On the back there are 
five stripes of a chocolate-brown colour, each stripe having down its middle a row of square 
spots nearly of the same colour Avith the fur on the belly. The central stripe, running from 
the crown of the head to the root of the tail, is a little broader than the others, and the pale 
spots in it are smaller. These chocolate stripes are separated from each other by narrower 
stripes of the same colour with the belly. There are also two narrower stripes of chocolate- 
brown on each side, less distinctly marked, and Avithout spots, but separated by yellowish- 
broAvn stripes ; — forming in all nine chocolate stripes and eight pale ones, five of the former 
being spotted with the pale colour. 

The linear tail is narrower and longer than the tails eidier of A. Franklinii or A. 

MAMMALIA. 179^. 

Richardsonii, having, when its hairs are distichously arranged, a pale chocolate-brchvn 
colour down its middle, bounded on each side by a deeper colour, approaching to black, 
and lastly the whole tail is margined by pale brownish-gray. The same colours occur on the 
under surface of the tail, but there is more of the pale-brown colour and less of the black. 

The feet are formed like those of A. Richardsonii. The thumb is smaller, but it has a 
larger nail; it has one joint and its nail is obtuse. 

Inches. Lines 
} palm, middle fore-toe, and 

. 94 

middle fore-claw . 3 

sole, middle hind-toe, and 

I 4 

middle hind-claw . 2 

The largest individual I saw was a male^ which measured nearly nine inches to 
the insertion of the tail. The females were smaller than the males. 


Of a recent Blale Specimen 



Length of head and body 



Length of 

„ head 




„ tail (vertebrae) 




„ tail including fur 




Distance from tip of the nose to the anterior 


angle of the orbit ... 



„ posterior angle of the orbit to 

the auditory opening 


In addition to the nine marmots described in the preceding- pages from speci- 
mens either recent or prepared, and to the four of which I have given compiled 
notices. North America most probably possesses many others^ among which may 
possibly be reckoned the Techallotl of Fernandez*^ which^ like the Costiocoteqiiallin 
(referred to the A. Beecheyi) feeds on grain, and lives in burrows. The author 
has not mentioned whether either of these two animals has cheek-pouches or not. 

The European species of the genus are : — 

1. A. BOBAC (Polish marmot). 

2. A. MARMOTTA (incwmot of the Alps). 

3. A. SPERMOPHILUS GUTTATus (sousUk oT mcinnot of the Wolga). 

* " Techallotl caudam fere depilem gestat, ac" breviorem, nee dodrantem vincit longitudine ; non cicuratur, sed 
perpetuo mordet atrociter et corrodit oblata omnia ; fusco et candenti colore promiscue tingitur ; et posterioribus quoque 
innixus pedibus oblatam edit alimoniam, sed precipue maizii spicas apprehensas anteriorlbus ; oculi sunt magni si illos 
cum ceteris partibus conferas ; vivit in antris quse unguibus facile excavat ; consternitque lana, gossipiove et quovis aho 
molli stramento, ac passeres voce imitatur." — .Fernandez, Quadi: Nov. Hisp., p. 9. 

2 A 2 


4. A. spERMOPHiLus ciTiLLUs seu uNDULATUs {Zizcl, Susct Or Hungarian 

5. A. SPERMOPHILUS coNcoLOR (Jevrusclika or Siberian marmot). 

The three last were described^ by Pallas^ as varieties of one species, which he 
named mus citillus. M. Lichtenstein has lately given the characters of the three 
following new ones, brought from Bucharia by M. Eversman : — 

6. A. FULvus, resembling the bobac, but having only eleven inches length, 
exclusive of the tail, which is three inches and one-third long. Its fur is of a 
shining, yellowish-brown colour, and is mixed with an ash-gray down. Its toes 
are slender, and much longer than those of the bobac, and its thumb-nail is 
peculiarly long. 

7. A. LEPTODACTYLus is niho inches long, exclusive of the tail, which is two 
inches and three-quarters. It is remarkable for the length of its toes, which is so 
great, that the distance from the heel to the root of the claw of the middle hind-toe 
is equal to one-fourth of the length of the body (whilst in the bobac and Siberian 
souslik, it does not exceed the eighth part). The sole is not naked, as in the other 
marmots, but is clothed, as well as the under surfaces of the toes, with the exception 
of the two middle ones, with close, coarse hairs. The thumb of the fore-feet is 
armed with a strong, obtuse nail, which curves inwards. The fur of the back is 
composed of long, crowded, silky hairs, of a gold-yellow colour, mixed with black 
down. The belly is white ; the crown of the head is grayish-brown, which colour 
forms sharp, angular projections towards the nose, and is intersected by a white 
stripe, occupying the space between the eye and the nose, and surmounted by a 
black streak reaching from the inner angle of the eye to the upper lip. The tail 
is coloured above like the back ; beneath, it has a shining, black centre, with a 
white border. 

8. A. MUGOSARicus, is nearly nine inches long, with a tail a little exceeding an 
inch, and is without nails to the fore-feet. The soles of the hind-feet are broad 
and short, having only about one-tenth of the length of the body. In other 
respects it perfectly resembles the souslik. 



[57.] 1. SciuRus (Tamias) Lysteri. (Ray.) The Hackee. 

Genus, Sciurus. Linn. Sub-genus, Tamias. Iluger. 

Escurieux Suisses. Sagahd-Theodat, Canada, p. 746. 

Ground squirreL Law son, Carolina, p. 124. Catesby, Caro/., vol. ii. p.'7i>. 

Edwards, vol. iv. t. 181. Kalm, vol. i. p. 322. t. i. 
Sciurus Lysteri. Ray, Synops. Quadr., p. 216. 
Le Suisse. Charlevoix, Nouv. Fr., vol. v. p. 198. 
Striped Dormouse. Pennant, Arct. Zool, vol. i. p. 126. 
Sciurus striatus. Harlan, Fauna, p. 183. 
Hackee. United States. 
Ohihoin. Hurons. 

Sc. Tamias (Lysteri), dorso brunnescenti-griseo postice helvolo lined centrali nigra percurso, lineaque in utroque latere 
alba breviori latiori super subterque nigra marginata, ventre albo, Cauda breviiisculd. 

The Hackee, with cheek-pouches ; a brownish-gray back, bright orange-brown buttocks, a slender black dorsal sti-ipe, 
and a broader white one on each flank, with a broad black border above and below it ; a white belly ; a 
shortish tail. 

Plate xv. 

This eleg-ant little animal is considered, by Pallas and subsequent writers^ to be 
the same with the Asiatic sciurus striatus ; but the descriptions given of the latter 
do not exactly correspond with American specimens, and I am not aware that 
the identity of the species on the two continents has been established by actual 
comparison. The observations of Pallas on the manners and form of the Asiatic 
animal apply so exactly to the American one_, that a passage or two may be 
quoted from his work with advantage : — 

" They dig their barrows in woody places, in small hummocks of earth_, or near 
the roots of trees ; but never, like the common squirrels, make their nests in the 
trunks or branches of trees, although, when scared from their holes, they climb 
with facility, and make their way from branch to branch with great speed. A 
winding canal leads to their nest, and they generally form two or three lateral 
chambers, to store their winter food in. The striped squirrel, in its manners, and 
from its having cheek-pouches, is allied to the hamster and citillus (type of the 
genus spermophilus), and is likewise connected with the latter by its convex nose, 
proper for an animal accustomed to dig. In its whole habit it differs from the 
squirrels which live in trees, and forms, with other striped squirrels, a division of 
the genus. It has a longer head than the common squirrel ; rounded ears, not 
tufted ; roundish, hairy tail, which it less frequently turns up ; a slender body, 
and shorter extremities. The fur, likewise, is very short, and less fine. Yet, in 


its diurnal habits^ and in not becoming torpid in winter^, it comes near the 
squirrels. It is difficult to tame." 

The hackee is common on the north shores of Lakes Huron and Superior ; but 
I do not believe that it exists in a higher latitude than the 50th parallel. Although 
very wild, it is fond of establishing its abode in the immediate vicinity of man, 
and multiplies greatly in cultivated places. 


Of a recent male specimen, killed in April at Penetanguishene. 

Dental formula ; incisors, f ; can. ^; grinders, *Ei = 20. 

Incisors of a deep yellowish-brown colour, and marked with a number of very fine longi- 
tudinal furrows. They are compressed, as is usual in squirrels, but they are not so strong in 
proportion as the incisors of the Hudson's Bay squirrel, though they are longer. The lower 
incisors are twice as long as the upper ones. The molars are nearly equal to each other in 
size, and their crowns have nearly circular slightly excavated areas, with a small notch 
exteriorly ; they are surrounded by a thin plate of enamel, which acquires a black crust. 

Form. — Body slender ; the head tapers from the ears to the nose ; the forehead is slightly 
convex, but the crown of the head is depressed ; the nose is not very obtuse, and is clothed 
with short hairs. The nostrils open downwards, and their margins and septum are naked. 
The ivliishers are fine, rather shorter than the head, and of a black colour. There are also 
some fine black hairs on the cheek, and one or two longer ones springing from the eyebrow. 
Eyes, large ; earsy ovate, rounded, erect, covered with short hair, and without tufts on their 
margins. The cheek-pouches, which are of moderate size, and extend but a very short way 
behind the ear, open into the mouth between the incisors and grinders. There are nine 
transverse folds or plaits on the palate, of which the five posterior ones are divided by a 
msesial ridge. 

Colour. — The dorsal aspect of the head is covered with yellowish-brown hairs, which are 
mixed Avith a smaller number of black ones. There is a black spot near the tip of the nose. 
The eyelashes are black, the eyehds white ; there is a dark brown streak between the eye 
and the ear, and a broad, yellowish-brown stripe extends from the nose, under the eye, 
to behind the ear, deepening in its middle to chestnut-broAvn. The anterior part of the 
back is hoary-gray, from a mixture of black and white hairs. The rump, hips, and exterior 
surfaces of the thighs are of a bright orange-brown colour, mixed with a few black hairs. A 
dark dorsal line commences at the occiput, and reaches to within an inch of the tail. This 
hne is brownish at its commencement, but deepens to black posteriorly. There are also, on 
each flank, two black lines, which commence behind the shoulders, extend to the hips, and 
are separated by a moderately broad white stripe. All these stripes are more or less bordered 
with brown. The sides, beneath the stripes, present a mixture of gray and very light brown. 
The fur, covering the throat, chin, belly, and inner surface of the extremities, is longer and 


thinner than that on the dorsal aspect, and is white throughout its -whole length. The fur on 
the upper parts of the body forms a smooth coat, and is blackish-gray at its roots. There is 
no defined line of separation betwixt the colours of the back and belly. 

Tail, sub-distichous, not bushy, brown for a small space at its root, afterwards grayish 
approaching to black on its upper surface, the black hairs predominating over the whitish 
ones. Underneath it is reddish-brown, Avith a margin of hoary- black. When the hind-legs 
are stretched out, they reach within a quarter of an inch of the tip of the tail. 

Extremities. — The fore-feet have four toes, and an imperfect thumb ; the palm is naked, 
with five tubercles, three of which are situated at the roots of the toes, and two larger ones 
behind. On the inner side of one of these there is a minute wart in place of a thumb, entirely 
covered by a thin, roundish nail ; the claws are curved, compressed, and sharp-pointed, 
convex above, and channelled underneath ; they bear the same proportion to the size of the 
animal that those of the Hudson's Bay squirrel do ; are much smaller than the claws of the 
spermophiles, and are partially concealed by the hairs of the toes. There are five toes on the 
hind-feet, — the three middle ones nearly of equal length, the outer and inner ones shorter ; 
the hind part of the sole is hairy. 



a recent specimen. 

Length of head and body 

„ head .... 

. 6 


Height of ears 
Breadth of ditto 



„ tail, including fur 

. 3 


Length of middle fore-claw . 



„ „ (vertebrse) . 




[58.] 2. SciuRUs (Tamias) quadrivittatus. (Say.) 

Four-banded Pouched Squirrel. 

Sclurus quadrivittatus. Say, Long's Exped., vol. ii. p. 34!). (vol. ii. p. 45, Amer, Ed.) Harlan, Fauna, p. 180. 

Four-lined squirrel. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 137- 

Four-banded squirrel. Griffith, An. Kingd., vol. v. No. 665. 

Sciurus (Tamias) quadrivittatus. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12, p. 519, April, 1828. 

Sassacka-wappiscoos. Cbee Indians. 

Sc. Tamias {quadrivittatus'), lineis quinque nigresceniihus cum quaiuor albis alternantibus dorsumque totum ocaqyanti- 
bus, lateribus fcrrugineis, veiiire cinereo, cauda gracili elongata fuligneo spadiceoque varia. 

Four-banded pouched Squirrel, having five blackish lines and four alternating white ones occupying the whole back ; 
reddish-brown sides and gray under parts ; with a long slender tail exhibiting dusky and light-brown colours. 

Plate xvi. 

This diminutive squirrel is common throughout the woody districts, as far north 
as Great Slave Lake, if not farther. It is found at the south end of Lake Winipeg-, 
in latitude 50°, and within that range it seems to replace the Sciurus Lysteri. 
Mr. Say observed it on the Rocky Mountains near tlie sources of the Arkansas and 
Platte ; and Mr. Drummond brought specimens from the sources of the Peace River, 
which rises on the same ridge. It is an exceedingly active little animal, and very 
industrious in storing up provision, being generally observed with its pouches full 
of the seeds of leguminous plants, bents, and grasses. It is most coinmon in dry 
sandy spots, where there is much underwood, and is often seen in the summer 
time sporting among the branches of willows and low bushes. It is a lively, 
restless animal, troublesome to the hunter, and often provokes him to destroy it 
by the angry chirrupping noise that it makes on his approach, and which is a 
signal of alarm to the other inhabitants of the forest. During the winter it 
resides in a burrow with several openings made at the root of a tree, and is never 
seen on the surface of the snow at that season. When the snow disappears, many 
small collections of hazel-nut shells, from which the kernel has been extracted 
by a minute hole gnawed in the side, are to be seen on the ground near its 
holes. Mr. Say states its nest to be composed of an extraordinary quantity of 
the burrs oi xanthitim, portions of the upright cactus, small branches of pine-trees, 
and other vegetable productions, sufficient in some instances to fill a cart. On 
the banks of the Saskatchewan the mouths of their burrows are not so protected. 
The four-banded squirrel is, in common with the hackee, named Le Suisse by the 



French Canadians, an appellation which_, according to Father Theodat_, arose 
from their skins being rayed with black_, white, red and gray, like the breeches 
of the Switzers who formed the Pope's guard. The same author informs us that 
they bite bitterly when taken. 


Dental formula, incisors |^, canines °-^, grinders ^, = 22. 

Incisors much compressed, like those of the squirrels. The upper ones are short, and 
their even cutting edges have an inclination backwards. Their anterior surfaces are of a deep 
yellow colour, flatly convex, and under the microscope they appear to be marked with 
longitudinal grooves. They are narrower behind. The anterior grinder of the upper jaw has 
a round crown, and is very much smaller than the others, which resemble those of the 
Sciurus Hudsonius. The inferior grinders are intermediate in form between the correspond- 
ing teeth of the squirrels and those of the spermophiles, their areas not being so much 
hollowed as in the former, nor presenting points so high as in the latter. The frontal bone 
is more arched between the orbits than in the Sciurus Hudsonius, and its proportional 
•breadth is not so great. The scull has an uniform slight curvature from the occiput to the 
end of the nose ; the cavity for containing the brain is larger, the orbit is much smaller in 
proportion, and the zygomatic arch less projecting than in the Hudson's Bay squirrel, or than 
in any of the spermophiles noticed in this work. 

Form. — The head is long, and tapers considerably from the eyes to the end of the nose, 
which is not, however, remarkably sharp. The mouth is situated far back. The ivhiskers 
are black and rather shorter than the head. The eye is small when compared with a 
squirrel's. The ear is erect, semi-ovate, obtuse and flat, except a slight duplicature at the 
base of the anterior margin ; it is covered on both sides with a coat of short hair. The 
cheek-pouches extend to the angle of the jaw. The bodij has a more slender form than that 
of the squirrels in general. 

Colour of the head.— A narrow black line runs from the nostrils to the anterior part of the 
orbit, and is continued from behind the orbit to near the ear. The cartilaginous margins of 
the eyelids are black, but the eyelids themselves, both upper and under, are grayish-white. 
This white marking is continued fromthe ear to the end of the nose, in two lines, separated 
from each other by the black line above-mentioned. The upper white line reaches the end 
of the nose, where it is separated from its fellow on the opposite side of the face by a narrow 
meesiaUine of a dark brown colour. The under white line, after passing over the under eyelid, 
is lost in the white of the upper and lower lip ; and there is a dark brown streak immediately 
below its posterior part. The upper aspect of the head is dark hair-brown, sprinkled with 
a few hoary specks. This colour is bounded by the white line, which passes over the 
upper eyelid, and it is continued forward of a darker hue till it ends acutely at the tip of the 
nose. This arrangement of colour gives a peculiar character of sharpness to the features, 
and causes the nose to appear more pointed than it really is. 

2 B 


Colour of the body. — A black or blackish-brown dorsal line commences between the ears 
and terminates in the dark colours of the upper surface of the tail. A similar but rather 
broader line begins at each shoulder and ends on the buttocks near the tail ; and on each 
flank there is another line, -which extends from the shoulders to the haunches ; they are 
separated on each side of the back by two other lines of equal breadth and of a grayish-white 
colour, intermixed or bordered with reddish-brown hairs. These lines conjointly, viz. the 
five dark ones and four pale ones, occupy the whole back, and there is none of the beautiful 
gray ground which exists betwixt the lateral stripes of the hackee. The sides are bright 
reddish-brown mixed with chestnut colour. The thighs and buttocks are hair-broAvn. The 
upper and under lips, the throat, the belly, and the insides of the extremities, are pale 

The tail is long and narrow, linear, or perhaps rather thicker at the root than at the tip, 
covered above with hairs, which are light wood-brown at the roots, then blackish-brown, 
and lastly wood-brown at the tips. The hairs are capable of an obscure distichou_s arrange- 
ment, and the resulting colour is an ill-defined border of wood-brown, bounding a mixture of 
blackish-brown, with a httle wood-brown. The under surface of the tail presents an un- 
mixed reddish-brown colour in the centre, bounded by a black line which is faintly bordered 
by reddish-brown. 

Extremities. — The fore-feet are shaped like those of the Hudson's Bay squirrel, and have 
four toes, with a small thumb of only one joint, armed with an obtuse nail. Palms naked. 
Claws black, compressed, curved, and sharp like those of the squirrels, better fitted for 
climbing than for digging. Posterior extremities long. Hind-feet with five slender toes 
divided to the base, and four naked callous eminences on the sole at their roots : the rest of 
the sole is well clothed with short hairs. Both the fore and hind-feet are covered above with 
a smooth coat of pale grayish-brown hair. The hind soles are longer and more slender than 
those of the spermophiles described in this work, and considerably more so than those of 
the sciurus Hudsonius. The hind-claws likewise differ very much from the curved, sharp, 
hind-claws of the last-mentioned animal, and have more resemblance to those of the 

Of a recent specimen killed at Carlton-liouse. 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of the head and body . . 5 6 Height of the ear . . .0 4| 

„ tail 4 3 Breadth of the ear at its base .0 5 

5i head 1 5 j Length from the heel to the tip of the 

„ from end of the nose to the centre | middle hind-claw .... 1 3 

of the orbit . . . .0 7 ' „ of hind and fore-claws, about . 1 

„ from the end of the nose to the ! 

auditory opening .... 1 1 

The tails of this kind of squirrel, particularly of the males^ are often mutilated 
in their contests with each other, and they are very liable to be broken off in the 
attempt to catch them, so that it is rare to obtain a specimen with a perfect tail. 


[59.] 3. SciuRus HuDSONius. (Pennant.) The Chickaree. 

Genus, Sciurus. Linn. 

Escurieil comnuin ou Aroussen. Sagaud-Tiieodat, Canada^ p. 746. 

Common Squirrel. Fouster, Phil. Trans., Ixii. p. 378. An. 1772. 

Sciurus vulgaris, var. E. Erxlebein, Syst. An. 1777. 

Hudson's Bay Squirrel. Pennant, Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 1 IC. Hist, of Quadr., vol. ii. p. 147. 

Common Squirrel. Heaune, Journ., p. 385. 

Ked Barking Squirrel. Schoolcraft's Journ., p. 273. 

Red Squirrel. AVarden, United States, vol. i. p. 330, No. 54. 

Sciurus Huilsonius. Ejusdem, vol. i. p. 231, No. 56. Sabine, FrankUii's Journey, p. 663. Harlan, 

Fauna, p. 185. (The Sc. Hudsonius of Gmelin is a Pteromys.) 
Ecureil de la Baie d'Hudson. F. Cuvier, Hist. Natxirelle des Mammiferes, 
Hudson's Bay Squirrel. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 138. 
Chickaree. United States. Aroussen. Hurons. Annekcootchass. Cree Indians. 

Plate xvii. 

This squirrel is an inhabitant of the forests of white spruce, which cover a 
great portion of the surface of the earth in the fur countries. The limits of its 
range to the southward have not been mentioned by American writers_, but they 
say that it is common in the middle states. It is found as far north as the spruce 
trees extend, that is, to between the sixty-eighth and sixty-ninth parallel of 
latitude, and it is one of the most numerous animals in the northern districts. It 
digs its burrows, generally at the root of one of the largest and tallest trees it can 
select, and forms four or five entrances, around which very large quantities of the 
scales of spruce-fir canes are in process of time accumulated. It does not come 
abroad in cold or stormy weather, but even in the depth of winter it may be seen, 
during a gleam of sunshine, sporting among the branches of its tree. On the 
approach of any one, it conceals itself behind a branch, but soon betrays its 
position by the loud noise it makes, somewhat like the sound of a watchman's 
rattle, and from whence it has obtained tlie expressive appellation of Chickaree. 
When pursued and harassed it makes great leaps from tree to tree, but as 
soon as it observes the way clear, it descends to the ground and seeks shelter 
in its burrow. It does not appear to quit the tree beneath which it burrows, by 
choice, unless when it makes an excursion in the spring in quest of a mate. In 
the fur countries it subsists chiefly, if not entirely, on the seeds and young buds of 
the spruce-fur. In the winter it collects the cones from the tree and carries them 
to the entrance of its burrow, where it picks out the seeds beneath the snow. 
Like the English squirrel, it makes hoards on the approach of severe weather. 

2 B 2 


The flesh of this squirrel is tender and edible, but that of the male has a strong- 
murine flavour. The Indian boys kill many with the bow and arrow, and also 
take them occasionally with snares set round the trunks of the trees which they 
frequent. Hearne states that they are hard to tame. Their skins are of no value^i 
have never formed an article of trade, and are not applied to any purpose even 
by the Indians. 


Dental formula, incisors |, canines ^, grinders l^\ or ^ = 20 or 22. 

Incisors, strong, very much compressed, deep at their roots from before backwards; flat 
on the sides ; convex and of a deep orange colour anteriorly. The upper ones have an even 
chisel-shaped cutting edge. The lower ones are not much longer and are more pointed. 
Grinders. — The squirrels are said to have five grinders in the upper jaw when young. The 
Hudson's Bay squirrel loses the small anterior one very early, as, after examining a great 
many specimens, I found none with more than four on a side in the upper jaw. In the tamia& 
and spermophiles the fifth grinder remains when the animal is full grown, but is pro- 
portionably larger in the latter than in the former. The inner surface of the upper grinders 
of the Hudson's Bay squirrel are more obtuse, and consequently their areas are less Avedge-- 
shaped than those of the grinders of the Spermophiles. They are likewise more excavated 
on the crowns, and have less elevated ridges of enamel. The lower grinders have also 
excavated crowns, and the two anterior points of each tooth do not form an elevated crest 
as in the spermophiles. The under jaw is shorter but rather stronger than in the latter 
genus, and the space for the lodgement of the brain is larger. There is also a much greater 
distance between the orbits ; the frontal bone is flat ; and the nose less arched than in the 
genera tamias and spermojiliilus. 

Form. — Nose obtuse, forehead very slightly arched. Mouth rather far back. Whiskers 
black, longer than the head. Ears rounded, somewhat concave ; the posterior margin doubles 
forwards to form a valve over the auditory opening, and the anterior one curves in to form a 
helix. Both sides of the ear are covered with hair; that which clothes the outside being 
longest, and when the fur is in prime order, projecting upwards beyond the margin; but there 
is not at any time a distinct tuft on the tip of the ear, like that which ornaments the common 
English Squirrel. 

Colour. — There is a short blackish central stripe on the end of the nose ; the sides of the 
nose are pale brown, sometimes almost white. A broad stripe of bright chestnut com- 
mences between the ears, and is continued down the back and along the tail nearly to its 
tip : this chestnut colour is intimately speckled with black, and mixes more or less gradually 
with the colour of the sides in different specimens. The forehead, cheeks, sides, and exterior 
surfaces of the extremities are of a grayish-brown speckled colour, resulting from minute 
black specks being equally distributed over a pale yellowish-brown or wood-brown ground. The 
upper and under eyelids, a space round the mouth and the throat, are white. The belly and 



inner sides of the extremities are smoke-gray. These colours vary with the season and 
condition of the animal. In some seasons the chestnut-coloured dorsal stripe commences 
behind the shoulders, is of a less bright hue, mingles more gradually with the colour of the 
sides, and is not continued so far down the tail. The outer surfaces of the extremities have 
occasionally an orange hue. The belly is in some instances nearly white, in others pretty 
dark gray, from the number of black hairs interspersed over it. In summer specimens, 
when the fur on the belly becomes thin, the colours of the upper and under parts are separated 
by a blackish-gray line, extending from the shoulders to the thighs. This line is produced 
by the roots of the fur being seen, and is not perceptible in the northern specimens, 
whose fur is finer and longer ; nor have I noticed it in more southern specimens procured 
in the winter. The fur on the back is fine and of a blackish-gray colour, from the roots for 
half its length upwards ; the remainder of its length is wood-brown, with two or three rings 
of black ; the tips of the longest hairs are black. The fur on the belly is in the winter 
rather longer than that on the back, bluish-gray at the roots, then white, with a ring or two 
of black below the tips. 

The tail is somewhat depressed, and is linear. It is full of long hair, but is not nearly so 
bushy as the tail of the English squirrel. Its hairs are capable of a somewhat distichous 
arrangement, and then it presents on its upper surface a bright chestnut centre, and a light, 
brown margin, separated from the chestnut by a black band, most distinct near the tip of the 
tail. Beneath, the tail exhibits an intimate mixture of light brown and black, the latter 
forming a band near the tip. The hairs on the upper surface of the tail carry the bright 
brown colour to their roots, many of those beneath are black throughout their Avhole length, 
but the majority of the under ones are brown, with a black tinge near their tips. 

The extremities are covered with longer fur than those of the spermophiles ; the limbs are 
robust ; the fore-feet have four toes, with the rudiment of a thumb, covered by an obtuse, 
thin nail, closely applied ; the third toe is rather the longest, the second is next m length ; 
the first and fourth are shorter, and arise further back. In the spermophiles, on the contrary, 
the second toe is decidedly the longest, and the first does not arise so far back as in the 
Hudson's Bay squirrel. The claws are very much compressed, and so much curved, as to feel 
hooked ; and they are very acute. The palms and under surfaces of the toes are naked. The 
hind soles are thickly hairy from the heel to the naked tubercles at the roots of the toes, which 
are five in number, are rather stout, and not long ; the outer toe is longer than the innermost 
one ; the hind claws are of the same form with the fore-ones, but are rather smaller. The 
long hairs on the toes reach to the points of the claws. The scrotum is large, and m the 

spring is rather pendulous. 

Of a recent specimen. 
Inches. Lines. I°<:l»es. Lines. 

Length of tead and body ... 8 6 Length of fur on the hack ... 10 

head 2 4 ,■,■:■, at the tip of the tail . . 1 G 

tail (vertehrs) ... 5 Height of the ears (measured posteriorly) GJ 

„ including fur . . . G C Measurements of the scull : — 

palm and middle fore-claw . 1 Distance between the orbits ... 7 

sole and middle hind-claw . . 1 10 Length of nasal-bones ... G 


SciuRus HuDSONius, var. (3. Columbia Pine-Squirrel. 

Small brown Squirrel. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 37. 

Lewis and Clark describe a small squirrel which inhabits the banks of the 
Columbia, and has similar habits with the Hudson's Bay one. It is most probably 
a distinct species ; but as all our knowledge of it is derived from the short account 
of it given by those authors, I have,, as its discoverers have not bestowed on it 
a specific name, ranked it, for the present, merely as a variety of the sciurus 

The DESCRIPTION given of it is as follows : — 
" The small brown squirrel is a beautiful little animal, about the size and form of the red 
squirrel {Sc. Hudsonius) of the A.tlantic states, and Western lakes. The tail is as long as the 
body and neck, and formed like that of the red squirrel ; the eyes are black; the whiskers 
long and black, but not abundant ; the back, sides, head, neck, and outer part of the legs are 
of a reddish-brown ; the throat, breast, belly, and inner part of the legs are of a pale red ; 
the tail is a mixture of black and fox-coloured red, in which the black predominates in the 
middle, and the red on the edges and extremity; the hair of the body is about half an inch 
long, and so fine and soft, that it has the appearance of fur ; the hair of the tail is coarser, and 
double in length. This animal subsists chiefly on the seeds of various species of pine, and is 
always found in the pine-country." 

The sciurus riijiventer of Geoffroy, an inhabitant of the country around New 
Orleans, has much similarity in colours to the above animal ; but neither the 
description given by M. Desmarest, nor that by Dr. Harlan of the New Orleans 
specimens, correspond exactly with the account of Lewis and Clark. The sciurus 
rufiventer seems to have a shorter tail. 


[60.] 4. SciuRus NIGER. (Linn.) Black Squirrel. 

Sciurus niger. Say, Long's Expedition, vol. i. p. 262. 
Otcliitamon. Algonquins. 

So much confusion has crept into the accounts of the American squirrels^ that 
great uncertainty, respecting the species alluded to by authors^ must exists until 
some resident naturalist favours the world with a good monograph of the squirrels 
of that country. The black squirrels have been considered by some to be a 
variety of the sciurus cinereus, or of the sc. vulpimis, and by others have been 
referred to the sc. capistratus. M. Desmarest describes a small black squirrel^ 
which is distinguished from the large black variety of the masked squirrel, by the 
softness of its fur. Pennant's black squirrel is evidently the sc. capistratus of 
later writers. 

The squirrel, which is the subject of this article, is larger than the iciirdl gris 
de la Caroline of M. F. Cuvier (lesser gray squirrel. Pennant, Hist. Quad.), and 
rather smaller than the 'Marge gray squirrel " of Catesby. It is not an uncommon 
inhabitant of the northern shores of Lakes Huron and Superior, where the greater 
or smaller gray squirrels are never seen, and is by far the largest squirrel existing 
on the eastern side of the Rocky Mountains, to the northward of the Great Lakes. 
It does not extend further north than the 50th parallel of latitude, but its range 
to the southward cannot be determined until the species of American squirrels are 
better known. It is probable that it is not rare in the United States. There are 
at present two pairs of American gray squirrels in the menagerie of the Zoological 
Society, which differ from each other in size, and in the smaller kind (lesser gray 
squirrel) having a tawny-coloured belly. Both these kinds have, as was pointed 
out to me by Mr. Vigors, U peculiar wideness in the posterior part of the body, 
and a fulness of the skin of the flanks, being an approach to the form of a 
pteromiys. In the sciurus Hudsonius, the hind quarters are as slender and distinct 
from the flanks, as in common European squirrels ; and there does not appear to 
have been any peculiar extension of the skin of the flanks, in the specimen of a 
black squirrel procured for me at Penetanguishene, by Mr. Todd, surgeon to the 
naval depot there, and from which the following description was drawn up. 


Of a full grown but young individual. 

Dental formula, incisors, |, canines "E^, grinders ^ — 22. 
Incisors, much compressed, very strong, and having a deep orange colour on their exterior 
surfaces. The first or deciduous fjrinder is round and very small, the others are precisely 
similar in form to the grinders of the Hudson's Bay squirrel. 

Form. — Its head is somewhat narrower and its nose sharper than that of the large gray 
American squirrel. Its frontal bone is not so flat between the orbits as that of the Hudson's 
Bay squirrel, and has a nearly regular flat elliptical curve from the occipital ridge to the 
end of the nose. Its scull is about twice as big as that of a Hudson's Bay squirrel. Ears 
elliptical rounded at the tip, covered with short fur, and entirely without tufts. 

Fur. — The whole fur is black, that on the back being particularly close and having a glossy 
hue. When blown aside it appears downy towards the roots, and has a grayish-black colour 
without lustre. The fur is much shorter and coarser than that of the gray squirrels. On the 
dorsal aspect of the head it is of a shining black colour, without any lighter coloured spots 
about the muzzle or behind the ear. On the cheeks and throat it is of a brownish-black. 
The tail is clothed with long hair, unmixed with down, except close to the body. The feet 
are clothed with a smooth coat of short black hair. The claws are curved, much compressed, 
and sharp, exactly resembling those of the gray squirrel. The thumb tubercle is armed with 
a rounded nail closely adhering to it. The claws of the hind-feet are somewhat sharper than 
the fore ones, but are similar in form and nearly of equal size. 

Length of the head and body 

„ head . . . , 

,, tail (vei'tebrje) 

„ tail including fur . 

V palm to the tip of the middle 

fore, claw .... 

)j .. third or longest fore-toe and claw 

Of the Penetanguishene Specimen. 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines- 

Length from the thumb to the tip of the middle 
fore-claw . . .13 

„ of the sole, middle hind-toe, and claw 2 8 

„ middle hind-toe and claw 

„ longest claws . 

„ fur on the back 

,, fur on the sides of the tail 

,, fur at the end of the tail 


















Of the Scull of the same Specimen. 

Inches. Lines. 
Smallest breadth of the os frontis between the orbits . . 9 

Length of the nasal bones . . . . . 9i 

There is a specimen of rather larger dimensions, procured at Fort William, on 
Lake Superior, and presented to the Zoological Society by Captain Bayfield, It has 
a few white hairs scattered amongst the fur of the body and rather more in the tail. 

Lewis and Clark mention their having met with gray squirrels on the 
Columbia ; but from our ignorance of the species to which they belong, they cannot 
be admitted into this work. 


[61. J 1. Pteromys Sabrinus. Severn River Flying Squirrel. 

Genus Pteromys. Cuvier. Sciuropterus. F. Cuvier. 

Greater Flying-Squirrel. Forster, Phil. Trans., vol. l.^ii. p. 379- 

Severn-River Squirrel. Pennant, Hist. Quad.,vo\. ii. p. 153. Arct. Zool., vol. 1. p. 122. 

Sciurus Hudsonius. Gmelin, Si/sl., vol. i. p. 153. 

Sciurus Sabrinus. Shaw, ZooL, vol. ii. pt. i. p. 157. 

Pteromys Sabrinus. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12. p. 519, April, 1828. 

Pt. (Sabrinus), super ex ruhesoenti brtinneus, cauda planiusculd corpus suhoequanti dorsoque concolori, lohulo 

membrance volitantis rotundato. 
Severn River Flying-squirrel, pale reddish-brown above ; tail flattisli, nearly as long as the body, and of the 

same colour with the back ; flying membrane having a small rounded projection behind the wrist. 

This is a very distinct species from the much smaller Assapan, (Pt. volucella) 
which is common in the United States. It was first described by Forster^ who saw 
a specimen brought from Severn River that falls into James's Bay, and was con- 
sidered by him to be the same species with the European flying squirrel, which 
it much resembles. I have followed Pennant and Shaw in separating it from 
the latter, on account of its longer tail, different coloured far, and the smalhiess 
of the rounded projection of the flying-membrane behind the wrist. 

The Severn River Flying Squirrel does not extend its range further north than 
latitude 52' (unless the Rocky Mountain one prove to be only a variety of it.) 
Mr. Tod sent me a specimen from Penetanguishene on Lake Huron, and I have 
seen others from Moose Factory, at the bottom of James's Bay. 


Dental formula, incisors f , canines ^J, grinders ~ = 22. 

Head round, nose short and obtuse, covered above with a smooth shining coat of Hght 
gray hair. Incisors nearly even with the end of the nose, anteriorly of a deep orange colour. 
TFhishers black, longer than the head. Eyes large, surrounded by a blackish -gray marking 
in the fur. Flying-membrane extending from the wrist to the middle of the hind leg, nearly 
straight, having only a very slight rounded projection close to the wrist. 

The fur is every where remarkably fine and soft. On the dorsal aspect of the head, body, 
and flying-membrane, it is of a deep blackish-gray colour from its roots to its tips, which are 
of a pale reddish-brown, and which form the colour of the surface when the fur lies smoothly. 
There is no different coloured stripe on the flying-membrane, but the dark colour of the 
roots of the fur is more easily seen there. The outer surfaces of the fore and hind-feet are 

2 C 


pale bluish-gray. The margins of the mouth, sides of the nose, cheeks, and whole ventral 
aspect of the body are white, with in some parts a slight tinge of buff colour, particularly on 
the under surface of the flying-membrane. The tail is depressed, slightly convex on its 
upper surface, but quite flat or even somewhat channelled beneath. It is broadest about an 
inch from the body, and then tapers gradually but slightly towards the extremity, which is 
rounded. The flattened form is given to the tail, not so much by the distichous arrange- 
ment of the hair, as by the fur on its sides being much longer than that on its upper surface. 
Its colour above is nearly that of the back, with an intermixture, however, of black hairs ; 
beneath it has a bright buff" colour. 

The extremities are small. The fore-ones are connected with the flying-membrane down 
to the wrist, and the feet are hairy both above and below. There are four toes on the fore- 
feet, which are short, and the claws are small, compressed, curved, sharp-pointed, and white. 
Under their roots there is a compressed callus projecting from the end of each toe. The third 
toe is the longest, then the second, next to it the outer one, and lastly the inner one ; but the 
difference of length betwixt them is not great. There is a flat callus in place of a thumb, 
armed with a very minute nail. There are five hind-toes, of which the inner one is the 
shortest, then the outer one, and the remaining three are nearly equal to each other. The 
claws resemble those of the fore-feet, and are almost concealed by the hair of the toes. The 
soles are covered with a dense brush of soft white fur like the feet of a rabbit or hare. 

Of the skin of a Lake Huron specimen. 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines.. 

Length of the head and hody . . ^ 9 Length of the hind-sole, middle toe and 

,, head , . .20 claw . . . . .1 4 

„ tail (vertebrae) . .4 Greatest breadth of the tail . .1 9 

„ tail including fur .50 Width from margin of one flying-membrane 

„ fore palm, middle-toe, and to the margin of the opposite one . 4 

claw 9 


Pteromys Sabrinus. var. (3. alpinus. Rocky Mountain 
Flying- Squirrel. 

Pteromys alpinus. Richardson, Zool. Journ. No. 12. p. 519. March, 1828. 
Specimens in the Zoological Mijseum and Hudson Bay Co.'s Mus. 

Pieromys {alpinus), super luteo-fiiscus, caudd plaiiA fuligned corpus lo7igitudine excedenti, margine membranai volitanlis 

Rocky Mountain Flying-Squirrel, yellowish-brown above ; tail flat, longer than the body, blackish-gi-ay ; flying mem. 

brane with a straight border. 

Plate xviii. 

This animal was discovered by Mr. Drummond, on the Rocky Mountains^ living- 
in dense pine-forests, and seldom venturing from its retreats, except in the night. 
I have received specimens of it from the head of the Elk River, and also from the 
south branch of the Mackenzie. It approaches nearer to the Pt. volans of Siberia 
in the colour of its fur than to Ft. Sabrinus, but it has much resemblance to 
the latter in its form. It is entirely destitute of any rounded process of the flying 
membrane behind the fore-leg* ; and when its scull is compared with that of 
Pt. Sabrinus^ the frontal bone between the orbits appears narrower. The size of 
its limbs and tail is also greater. These remarks were made on a comparison 
of the specimens of this animal, and of the Pt. Sabrinus, which I at first received, 
and I was induced to think that they were specifically distinct ; but having lately 
had an opportunity of examining a more complete suite of specimens from 
Hudson's Bay, doubts were excited on the subject, and although it is probable, 
from the distance between their respective localities, that they may prove eventually 
to be distinct, I think it better at present to describe them as mere varieties. 
Except that the size of both these species is considerably greater than that of Pt. 
volans, they might be united with that species, without any great inconvenience. 


Dentition the same as in Pt. Sabrinus. Head and extremities larger than in the latter 
animal ; and its tail is also longer, flatter, and has a more elliptical form. The flying-mem- 

* In the accompanying plate the artist has fore -shortened the tail, so that it does not appear to possess its relative 
length to the body, and the position he has given to the fore-foot has produced a slight rounding of the flying-membrane 
at the elbow. The true form of the membrane is given in the figure in the distance. 




brane is not so full as in the latter, and its border is straight. The end of the nose is hair- 
brown, and the fur about the month and on the sides of the nose has a dark smoke-gray 
colour. The ears are thin and membranous in appearance, thinly covered on both sides 
with short adpressed hairs, but having some fur at their base posteriorly, similar to that on the 
adjoining parts of the head. Their form is semi-oval with rounded tips. The surface of the 
fur on the back has a yellowish-brown colour, without any tendency to the more red hue of 
the back of the Pt. Sabri7ms. The fur of the throat and belly is a grayish-white, without 
any tinge of buff-colour ; the tail has a flat, oblong, oval form, and has a blackish-brown 
colour above, and is merely paler beneath. 

The extremities are shaped like those oi Pt. Sabrinus, but are larger in proportion. The 
soles, palms, and under surfaces of the toes, are well covered with fur, except a small callous 
eminence at the end of each toe, five eminences on the palm of which the two posterior ones 
are the largest, and four on the soles situated at the root of the toes. The brush of soft fur 
near the outer edge of the soles is as conspicuous as in the Pt. Sabrinus. 


Length of head and body . . 

„ tail (vertebrae) 
„ ,, including fur , 
„ palm, middle fore-toe and claw 
„ sole, middle hind-toe and claw 
,, whiskers 
Breadth between the outer edges of the flying 


. 8 






Height of the ears posteriorly 

Dimensions of the scull. 
Length from tip of nasal bones to occipital 
ridge of nasal bones ... 1 

„ of nasal bones . . . 

Breadth at the posterior part of the zygo- 
matic process . . . .1 
Breadth of frontal bone between the orbits 


There is a specimen in the Hudson's Bay Mnseum, which measures nine inches 

from the end of the nose to the origin of the tail. 


Geomys. (Rafinesque.) Sand-Rat. 

Geomys. ", Amer. Month. Mag, for 1817, ?• 45." Desmarest, Mamm., p. 314. 

Lesson. Man. de Mammal., p. 200. 
Ascomys. Lichtenstein ? Saccomys. F. Cuvter ? 
Pseudostoma. Say ? 

Plate xviii C. Fig. 1 to 6. 


Dental formula, incisors, f , canines ^, grinders ~ = 20. 

Incisors strong ; linear and flattish anteriorly ; narrower posteriorly, and chamfered away 
evenly from their insertion into the sockets to their tips. The upper ones are generally 
marked with one or more grooves anteriorly; the lower ones have sometimes a faint groove 
op their exterior sides. The second and third pairs of grinders in each jaw are quite simple 
in their structure, each tooth consisting merely of a slightly curved cylinder of enamel, 
without roots, compressed from before backwards, with a longitudinal depression or shallow 
furrow on one side, which it renders more acute than the opposite one ; the acute side of the 
grinders faces outwards in the upper jaw, and inwards in the lower one. The crowns of these 
teeth are flat, and have a transversely pear-shaped area, composed of soft bone, enclosed by 
a rim of enamel, but there are no transverse ridges. The posterior pair of grinders in each 
jaw are not so much compressed as those just described, but are nearly cylindrical, and have 
a roundish, slightly angular crown. The anterior pair, above and below, differ still more 
widely from the rest in being double, each of them being composed of two cylinders, 
shaped like the other teeth, and connected with each other by a narrow neck : the anterior 
cylinder is smaller than the other, and the long diameter of its crown is parallel to the 
axis of the jaw, and consequently is at right angles to the transverse pear-shaped crown of 
the posterior cylinder, and to the crowns of the teeth which succeed it. The upper grinders 
incline slightly backwards, the lower ones have a similar inclination forwards, and the grinding 
surfaces of both are very even. 

The lower jaw is particularly thick and strong, and its symphysis which slopes upward^ 
nearly in the same direction with the incisors is about one-third of its whole length. The 
palate is very narrow, and in the scull exhibits a central longitudinal crest of bone, wit?i a 
deep and partially covered furrow on each side of it for the passage of vessels. 

The head is large and depressed ; the nose short. On examining the scull, the frontal 
and nasal bones are observed to be in the same plane, and the zygomatic arch is but a 
little depressed below the crown of the head. 

The nostrils are small round openings, facing downwards and somewhat laterally, separated 


from each other by a naked furrowed septum, and surrounded by a small naked space ; their 
inner margins are a little arched or ventricose. 

The mouth is small, being contracted by an union of the lips behind the upper incisors. 
The cheek-pouches are large and pendulous, thinly clothed with short hairs, or sometimes 
almost naked, opening into the mouth by the side of the molar teeth. 

The eyes are small and far apart. There is no other external ear than a slightly raised 
margin to the auditory openings, which are large. 

Body cylindrical. Tail of moderate length, round and tapering, more or less hairy. 

Extremities short, with five short toes to each foot. The palms are naked, and have a 
remarkable callous protuberance, projecting like a heel at their posterior part. The second 
and fourth toes are united nearly the whole length of their first phalanges to the middle one 
by skin. The fifth toe is considerably smaller and much further back than these, and the 
thumb is the smallest of all, and is situated a little further back than the fifth toe. The fore- 
claws are long, compressed towards their roots, slender and awl-shaped near their points, 
acute and considerably curved ; the middle one is the longest, the thumb one is small and 
more blunt, and the others are of intermediate sizes, proportionable to the length of their 
respective toes. The hind-feet are more slender than the fore-ones, and their soles, which 
are entirely naked, are narrower than the palms. The outermost and innermost hind-toes 
are situated further back than the other three, of which the middle one is the longest. The 
hind-claws are much shorter and more obtuse than the fore-ones, are excavated underneath, 
and are but slightly compressed. 

The fur resembles in quality that with which the meadow-mice are clothed. The tail and 
feet are covered with shorter and coarser hair. 

Habit. — The sand-rats burrow in sandy soils and feed on acorns, nuts, roots, 
and grass, which they convey to their burrows in their cheek-pouches. They 
throw up little mounds of earth like mole-hills^ in the summer_, but are not seen 
abroad in the winter^ nor do they throw up earth during- that season. Their 
pouches when full have an oblong form, and nearly touch the ground,, but when 
empty they are retracted for three-fourths of their length. Their interior is very 
glandular^ particularly round the orifice that opens into the mouth. 

Remarks. — M. Rafinesque-Smaltz^ in 1817^ founded his genus georays on the 
hamster of Georgia {geomys pinetis), described by Mitchill_, Anderson^ Meares, 
and others, and referred to it, as a second species, the Canada pouched-rat 
{mils biirsarms of Sha.\v). He at the same time ranged under another genus, 
named by him diplostoma, some Louisiana or Missouri animals, known to the 
Canadian voyagers by the appellation of gatiffres, and remarkable for their large 
cheek-pouches, which open forwards exterior to the mouth and incisors, to which 
they form a kind of hood. These two genera have been adopted by few 


naturalists ; and the American systematic writers have either overlooked M. 
Rafinesque's species entirely, or referred them all to the mus bursarius. In the 
latter case^ they are undoubtedly wrong, for there are at least six or seven distinct 
species belonging- to one or other of these genera, which inhabit America ; and I 
think that both geomi/s and cUplostoma will eventually prove to be good genera : — 
the Sand-rats belonging to the former having cheek-pouches^ which are filled from- 
within the mouth, and the gaiiffres or camas-rats of the latter genus having their 
cheek-pouches exterior to the mouthy and entirely unconnected with its cavity. 
I have had no opportunity of examining the geomys pinetis, which is the type of 
the genus; but Mr. Leadbetter^ with his wonted liberality, has permitted me to 
inspect an individual of a hitherto undescribed species from Cadadaguios ; and 
Mr. David Douglas veiy kindly sent me a specimen of another species, which he 
captured on the banks of the Columbia, and which forms the subject of the 
following article. From these two the characters of the genus, given in the preced- 
ing pages, were drawn up, the description of the teeth, and the views of the scull, 
being made from the latter. With regard to the Canada pouched-rat, great doubt 
still exists as to whether it belongs properly to geomys or to diplostoma. It was 
first described by Dr. Shaw, and an engraving published in the Linnean Trans- 
actions, from a drawing by Major Davies, of a specimen sent to Governor Prescot, 
from the interior of Canada. Judging merely from that figure and description, I 
should have httle doubt of the cheek-pouches opening into the mouth, and of their 
being precisely similar in form and functions to the cheek-pouches of the sand- rats ; 
but I have been told, on good authority, that the identical specimen described by 
Shaw (and which, on the dispersion of Mr. Bullock's collection, passed into the 
hands of M. Temminck) is, in fact, similar to the gaufFres, in having cheek-pouches 
that open exteriorly, and that consequently Major Davies's drawing represented 
them in an unnatural, inverted position. Mr. Say, under the generic name of 
pseudostoma, gives the characters of a Missouri gaufFre, with cheek-pouches 
opening exteriorly, and he identifies his specimen with the mifs bursarius. He 
alludes to the Georgia hamster, as belonging to the same genus, without giving 
any further account of its characters than merely quoting Dr. Barton's remark, of 
its being only half the size of the Missouri one. His account of the dentition of the 
Missouri gauffre corresponds, as far as it goes, pretty closely with that of the 
Columbia geomys. Dr. Harlan and Dr. Godman refer the Georgia, Canada, and 
Missouri animals, to one species. 


[62.] 1. Geomys Douglasii. (Rich.) Columbia Sand-Rat. 

G. {Douglasii), super fuligneus suiter pedihusque pallidior, caudd dimidium corporis superanti. 

Columbia Sand-rat, of a dusky-brown colour above, paler beneath, and on the feet, with a tail exceeding half the body 
in length, 


Plate xviu C. Fig. 1 to 6, 


The head is large and depressed ; the nose obtuse, particularly when viewed sideways. The 
nostrils are small and round, situated at the extremity of the nose, and separated by a 
furrowed septum about a line wide; they have a small naked margin, and the narrow upper 
lip betwixt them and the roots of the upper incisors is covered with short hair. Mouth 
moderately large ; lips hairy. Incisors, strong, exserted, orange-coloured 5 upper ones with a 
fine but distinct furrow on their anterior surface, close to their inner edges ; lower ones with 
a similar furrow on their sides, close to their outer edges. Cheelc-poiiches large, much 
resembling the thumb of a lady's glove, in form and size, and hanging down by the sides of 
the head ; they have a pale buff-colour, and are of a soft membranous texture, nearly bare 
outside, ha\ing merely some very short, soft, scarcely visible, white hairs, scattered over them, 
Viith a reticulation of darker nerves : within they appear glandular, and their openings into 
the mouth are sufficiently wide to admit the point of the little finger, being nearly equal to 
the diameter of the pouch itself. The fore-side of the pouch is posterior to the eye, and the 
hind-side is opposite to the ear ; its tip, which must touch the ground when the animal walks, 
is very obtuse. The whiskers are short and soft. 

Body, shaped like that of a mole, and covered with short, soft, dense, velvety fur, of an 
uniform dusky-brown colour. The fur on the belly and feet has a lighter hue. Tail, more 
than half the length of the body, round, tapering, and obtuse ; covered with hair, particularly 
near its root. 

Legs, short and thick. Fore-toes short, but very flexible ; the three middle ones united at 
their bases by skin ; the outer one is smaller and further back, and the thumb is very small, 
but is armed with a claw similar in form to the others, though it is much smaller. The claws 
are very sharp-pointed, compressed, curved, and about as long again as their respective toes. 
The 2Jcdm is naked, and its posterior part is filled by a large, rounded, callous eminence. 
The hind-feet are a little more slender than the fore-ones, and they are armed with smaller 
claws, shaped like those on the hind-feet of the spermophiles. The hind-soles are entirely 
naked, without any conspicuous tubercles ; the heel is naked and narrow. 

Lengtli of head and body , 

,, head . . 

„ tail (vertebras) 

,, cheek-pouches 
Diameter of cheek-pouches, about 
Distance from the end of tlie nose to the eye 

,, „ of the nose to the 

auditory opening 

,, between the eyes 
Length from wrist-joint to end of the middle- 
claw . . t • ■ 



. 6 



Length of the middle fore-toe, excluding the 




claw .... 

. 2 


„ from the heel to end of middle claw, 



measured along the sole 


. 1 




Dimensions of (he scull. 
Length from the extremity of the upper jaw 

to the occipital crest (by calipers) 
Breadth, including the zygomatic arches 

,, of frontal bone between the orbits , 
Length of the lower jaw from the condyles to 


. 1 

its anterior extremity 



Plate xvni C. 

Fig. 1, 2, and 3. Views of the scull (nat. size.) I Fig. 5. A'iew of the palate and upper teeth (magnified. 

— 4. View of the lower jaw (nat. size.) ] — C. View of the first upper grinders (magnified.) 

The specimen here described is a female, which was taken in her nest^ with 
three young ones^ by Mr. Douglas, near the mouth of the Columbia. When put 
into my hands, the fur had mostly fallen off, but the specimen was in other respects 
perfect, and what was wanting has been supplied in the description from Mr. 
Douglas's notes. The state of ossification of the scull shewed the animal to be 
an old one. Mr. Douglas acquaints me, that the outside of the pouches was 
cold to the touch, even when the animal was alive, and that on the inside they 
were lined with small, orbicular, indurated glands, more numerous near the 
opening into the mouth. When full, the pouches had an oblong form, and, when 
empty, they were corrugated or retracted to one-third of their length ; but 
they are never inverted so as to produce the hood-like form of the pouch of 
a diplostoma. When in the act of emptying its pouches, the animal sits on its 
hams like a marmot or squirrel, and squeezes his sacks against the breast with his 
chin and fore-paws. 

These little sand-rats are numerous in the neighbourhood of Fort Vancouver, 
where they inhabit the declivities of low hills, and burrow in the sandy soil. 
They feed on acorns, nuts [coiijlus rostrata), and grass, and commit great havoc in 
the potatoe-fields adjoining to the Fort, not only by eating the potatoes on the 
spot, but by carrying off large quantities of them in their pouches. The specific 
name is a small tribute of respect for the zeal and intelligence of its active and 
dilisrent discoverer. 




•f* 2. Geomys ujvibrinus. (Rich.) Leadbeater's Sand-Rat. 

G. {umhrinus), super umhrinus subler griseus, gula pedihusque albidis, cauda grisea vestitd longitudine capitis. 
Leadbeater's Sand-Rat, of an umber-brown colour on the dorsal aspect, gray below, witli white feet and throat, and a 
gray hairy tail, as long as the head. 


The head is large ; the nose, wide and obtuse, and, with the exception of the naked margins 
of the nostrils, covered with fur similar in colour and quality to that on the crown of the head. 
The nostrils are small round openings, half a line apart, with a furrowed septum, and having 
their superior margins naked and vaulted ; a narrow, hairy, upper lip, not exceeding a line 
in width, separates the nostrils from the upper incisors. The whiskers are white, and are 
shorter than the head. The incisors are much exserted, and are without grooves on their 
anterior surfaces, which are slightly convex, and of a deep yellow colour. The lips unite 
behind the upper incisors, so as to form a naked furrow leading towards the mouth, which is 
rendered more complete by the stiffness of the hairs on each side of it. The cheek-pouches 
are of a soiled buff-colour, and are clothed throughout their exterior surface with very short, 
soft, whitish hairs, which do not lie so close as entirely to conceal the skin. The middle of 
the pouch is opposite to the ear, and its anterior margin extends forwards to between the eye 
and the angle of the mouth ; its tip is rounded. 

The body, in shape, resembles that of a mole. It is covered with a smooth coat of fur, of 
the length and quality of that of a meadow-mouse ; but possessing more nearly the lustre and 
appearance of the fur of a musk-rat. For the greater part of its length from the roots 
upwards, it has a blackish-gray colour. On the upper and lateral parts of the head, and over 
the whole of the back, the tips of the fur are of a nearly pure umber-brown colour, deepest 
on the head, and slightly intermixed with chestnut-brown on the flanks. The belly, and fore 
and hind legs, are pale gray, with, in some parts, a tinge of brown. The sides of the mouth 
are dark-brown, with a few white hairs intermixed. The chin, throat, feet, and claws, are 
white. The tail is round and tapering, and is well covered with short grayish-white hairs j 
the hairs on the sides of the fore-feet are rather stiff, and curve a little over the naked palms ; 
those on the hind-feet are shorter ; the posterior extremities are situated far forward. 


Length of the head and body 

„ head 

„ tail 

Distance from the end of the nose to the 
anterior angle of the orbit , . 

Diameter of the orbit, about 






Distance from the posterior angle of the orbit 
to the auditory opening 

,, „ posterior part of the Avrist 

tubercle to the tip of the middle fore-claw 
Length of the middle fore-claw 
Distance from the heel to the tip of the mid- 
dle hind-claw .... 


Although this animal is not an inhabitant of the fur countries, the above 
description has been inserted with the view of rendering the account of the genus 
more complete. I received no information respecting its manners or food. The 
specimen came from Cadadaguios, a town in the south-western part of Louisiana. 


[63.] 3? Geomys ? BURSARius. Canada Pouched- Rat. 

Mus bursarius. Shaw, Linnean Trans., vol. v. p. 227, ?>• 8. 

Canada rat. Shaw, Zool., vol. ii. part 1. p. 100. 

Geomys cinereus. " Rafinesqtje-Smai-tz, Amer. Month. Mag., 1817-" Desmarest, Mamm. in iiotis ad pag. 315. 

Hamster du Canada. Des.marest, Mamm., p. 312. 

This animal was not seen by us on the late expeditions,, and, as has been 
mentioned in a preceding- page (199)^ it is still a matter of doubt whether it ought 
to be included in this genus or in the following one. The specimen figured by 
Major Davies^ in the Linnean Transactions, was of a pale gray colour^ and nine 
inches and a half long from the nose to the root of the tail, which measured two 
inches and a half. The belly was paler than the back, and the cheek-pouches 
were covered with very short pale hairs. Its superior incisors were deeply 
grooved in the middle, and more faintly close to their inner margins. 

The tiican of Fernandez has been considered by some as identical with the 
mus bursarius of Shaw, but without sufficient grounds. Fernandez describes it 
merely as a fat, thick, gnawer, a span long, clothed with tawny fur, having a long 
murine nose, short round ears, a short tail, very short legs, crooked claws ; and 
he adds that it is scarcely abl to see in day-light, leads a subterranean life, and 
feeds on roots and seeds, which it hoards up in its burrows. He also mentions 
that there are several other kinds of moles in New Spain which cannot see at all. 

2D 2 


[64.] 4? Geomys ? TALPOiDEs. (Richardsoii.) 

Mole-shaped Sand-Rat, 

Cricetus ? talpoides. Richardson, Zool. Journ., No. 12, p. 018. 
Ootaw-chee-goeshees. Cree Indians ? 

G. 9 {talpoides), super siibterque cinerascenti-niger, gula caudaque hrevi a/bis, pedibus posticis sub-tetradactylis. 
Jlole-shaped Sand-rat ? of a grayish-black colour, with white chin, throat, and tail, and only four perfect toes on the 

The specimen described in this article was presented to the Zoological Society 
by Mr. Leadbeater^ who obtained it from Hudson's Bay^ but it was not accom- 
panied by any notice of its precise habitat or a description of its manners. I am 
inclined to identify it v\'ith a small animal inhabiting the banks of the Saskatchewan, 
which I know only from the accounts of the residents and the mounds it throws 
up in the form of mole-hills^ but generally rather larger. It lives entirely under 
ground, and during the winter it must either sleep or confine itself to its old paths, 
as the soil is then too much frozen to permit it to make new roads. As soon as 
the snow disappears in the spring, and whilst the ground is as yet only partially 
thawed, little heaps of earth newly thrown up attest the activity of this animal. I 
could not, however, procure a specimen, the soil being, at the period I was residing- 
on the banks of the Saskatchewan, still too much frozen to permit me to reach the 
animal by digging. The earth thrown up then I suppose to have been merely 
the clearings of the galleries which it had made during the preceding year. It 
inhabits only sandy banks, and its food probably consists principally of roots. 
It cannot, like the English mole, feed on earth worms, for none exist in those 
latitudes *. 

As the teeth of the specimen could not be examined, the genus to which it 
belongs is uncertain ; but from its strong general resemblance to G. Douglasii and 
G. umbrinus, it is placed with them at present. Some uncertainty also exists as 
to the form of its cheek-pouches, which have been partially inverted in mounting, 
probably from an attempt of the artist to imitate the cheek-pouches of a diplostoma; 
but if so, he has been unable to give them the hood-like form of the pouches of 
the latter. 

* I was told by a gentleman who has for forty years superintended the cultivation of considerable pieces of ground 
on the banks of the Saskatchewan, that during the whole of that period he never saw an earth-worm turned up. 



Body shaped like that of the mole ; head rather small, but when the pouches are distended 
it must have considerable breadth. The obtuse nose is covered with short hairs. The; 
incisors are very strong, and have flat, anterior surfaces ; the upper ones are short and straight' 
and are each marked with a single very fine groove, close to its inner edge ; the under ones 
are long, curved inwards, and not grooved. The whiskers are composed of fine hairs as long 
as the head. The eyes are small and far back. The auditory opening is capable of receiving 
the head of a pin, and is slightly margined. The pouches are covered on the outside with 
fur of the same colour with that on the back, but beneath and on their posterior margins 
their hairy covering is white. On the head and body the fur is of a grayish-black colour 
its Avhole length, with a faint brownish reflection in some lights, and it is as fine as that of 
the common mole, but not quite so close and velvety. The chin and throat are white. The 
tail is very short and cylindrical, and is covered by a close smooth coat of short white hairs. 

The extremities are very short ; the fore-foot has four toes and the rudiment of a thumb. 
Of these the middle toe is the longest, and has the largest claw ; the first and third are equal 
to each other in length ; the outer one is shorter and far back, and the thumb is still farther 
back, and consists merely of a short claw. The fore-claws are long, compressed, slightly- 
curved and pointed. There are four short toes on the hind-foot, armed with compressed 
claws much shorter than the fore-ones, and the rudiment of a fifth toe, so small that it wa,S 
discovered only after very minute inspection. 


Of the specimen in the Zoological JMuseum. 

Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines, 

Length of the fur on the hack . .06 

„ from the tubercle at the posterior 
part of the palm to the end of the middle 
fore-claw . . , .0 10^ 

„ of middle fore-claw , .04 

,, from the heel to the tip of the mid- 
dle hind-claw . .0 11 

Length of head and body . . 

„ tail . . . . 

„ from end of nose to the eye 
,, from ditto to the auditory opening 
„ from back part of the eye to the 
auditory opening , . 

Height of the back . . . 

Length of the lower incisors . . 












[_65.'] 1. DiPLOSTOMA? BULBivoRUM. (Rich.) Camas-Rat. 

Genus. Diplostoma. RAFiNESQtTE-SjiALTz ? (Desmarest, Mamm.) 

Plate xviii B. 

There is a specimen of a quadruped in the Hudson's Bay Museum, which 
Mr. David Douglas informs me is the animal known on the banks of the Columbia 
by the name of the Camas-rat, because the bulbous root of the Quamash or Camas 
plant (Scilla esculenta) forms its favourite food. The scull is wanting-, and the 
animal, therefore, cannot be with certainty referred to a genus, but the form of 
its exterior cheek-pouches leads me to think that it may belong to the diplostoma of 
M. Rafinesque-Smaltz. There is, however, a discrepancy in the number of its 
toes and in the presence of a tail, which, if M. Rafinesque's specimen was perfect, 
is decisive against this arrangement. The characters of the genus diplostoma, as 
quoted by M. Desmarest, are as follows : — 

" Diplostoma (Am. Month. Mag. 1817.) — Mouth double ; the exterior one 
formed by two great pouches, which extend as far back as the shoulders, and 
meet before the incisors, all of which are furrowed ; four molar teeth of a side 
in each jaw ; body cylindrical ; neither tail nor ears ; eyes hid by the fur ; four 
toes on each foot. This genus is nearly allied to that of the mole-rat, but differs 
in its cheek-pouches, and in the number of its toes. Two species were discovered 
by Bradbury on the Missouri. They live beneath the surface of the earth and eat 
roots. The early French travellers named them ganffres." . 


Form. — Body like that of a great mole, with a head that appears large and clumsy owing 
to the swelling out of the cheek-pouches. The nose being margined by a slight prolongation 
of the superior edge of the cheek-pouch appears flat and broad, but its tip and nostrils are 
comparatively small ; it does not project in the least beyond the plane of the incisors. 

The incisors are entirely exserted, are stronger than those of the musk-rat, and have three 
convex sides. The anterior 'side is the broadest, is without grooves, and has a yellowish 
colour. The upper incisors have even cutting edges, and project forwards and downwards 
immediately from under the nostrils, instead of standing out from a cleft in the upper lip. 
The lower ones are linear, with round tips, and project nine lines above their sockets, being 
longer than the upper ones. The true month is a vertical slit, nearly an inch long, situated 



behind the incisors and hidden by them. The lips, wliich in fact are right and left, and not 
upper and under, are covered with white hair. There is a hollow space of about half an inch 
in length between the upper incisors and the upper corner of the mouth, which is partially 
•naked, but is protected by some coarse white hairs that incline over it. The inferior incisors 
are situated in the lower angle of the mouth, but the lips come into apposition behind them. 
No part of either upper or under incisors that projects beyond the sockets is covered by the 
lips. On each cheek there is a wide pouch, not communicating with the cavity of the mouth,, 
but opening forwards, and with its fellow forming a kind of hood, in the middle of which are 
placed the mouth, incisors, and extremity of the lower jaw, the latter having an upward direc- 
tion. The pouch is widest at its mouth ; its anterior margin commences on the side of the 
nose, about half an inch from its tip, and curving downwards is united with the lower jaw, a 
little more than an inch from the insertion of the incisors. The integument forming the 
outer parietes of the pouch is covered externally by fur of the same quality and colour with 
that on the head and body ; and when the animal is viewed in profile, the cheek appears 
merely a little puffed up, but exhibits no membranaceous or bag-like projection like the pouches 
in the genus geomys. Interiorly the pouches are clothed with a shorter and coarser hair, 
particularly the side forming the parietes of the mouth, Avhich is well covered with short 
white hairs ; the opposite side of the lining of the pouch is furnished, howe\er, merely with 
scattered patches of hair, and is in some places quite naked. Each pouch has a semi-cup- 
shaped cavity when distended ; — the distance from the union of its upper margin with the 
nose to that of its lower margin with the chin, is about two inches, and its depth is nearly 
as much. The whiskers are very short. The eyes (which appear to have been small) are 
situated about an inch from the tip of the nose. The auditory ojienings are moderately 
large, but there are no external ears. 

Fur. — The body and head are covered with short fur like that which clothes the 
meadow-mice. On the dorsal aspect it has a colour intermediate between chestnut and 
yellowish-brown, darker on the crown of the head than elsewhere. On the belly the brown 
is mixed with a considerable portion of gray. The lips, the lower jaw, the lining of the 
pouches, and a narrow space round the anus are covered with white-fur. Close to the upper 
part of each side of the mouth there is a rhomboidal mark, which is clothed with hair of a 
liver-brown colour. The fur on the back has that dark, shining, lead-gray colour, from the 
roots to near the tips, which is usually seen in the meadow-mice. 

The tail is short, round, and tapering, with an obtuse tip, and is thinly clothed with hairs 
of a pale brown colour. The extremities are short, and are covered down to the wrist and 
ankle joints with fur similar to that on the body. There are five toes on each foot. The 
fore-feet are hairy above, with naked palms, Avhich have a large callous tubercle at their 
posterior part, resembling a heel, as in the genus geomys ; behind this tubercle there is a 
tuft of strong while hairs. The toes are short; the middle one is the longest, the one on each 
side of it are a little shorter ; the fifth or exterior toe is much shorter and considerably further 
back, its extremity (without the claw) reaching only to the root of the third toe. The thumb 
is still shorter and further back than the fifth toe. The claws are long, strong, slightly 


curved, and much compressed. Their edges are in contact beneath at their insertions into 
the ends of the toes, and separate a httle towards their points, being very similar in form to 
the claws of the spermophiles, but not so strong in proportion to the size of the animal. The 
middle claw is the longest ; those belonging to the thumb and outer toe are much shorter and 
more conical than the rest, but they are in other respects similar, the thumb-claw differing in 
that respect from the obtuse, rounded flat thumb-claw of a spermophile. 

The hind-feet are covered above with whitish hairs. The soles are naked and narrow, and 
the toes short. The first and fifth toe are so much smaller and further back than the others, 
that, at first sight, there appear to be only three hind-toes. Of these three the middle one 
is longer than the one on each side of it ; and of the other two, the first toe is a little further 
back, but somewhat larger than the outer or fifth one. The hind nails are short, conical, 
obtuse, and more or less excavated underneath. The nail of the fourth toe is more spoon- 
shaped than the others. 

Length of the head and body . . .11 

„ „ head .... 3 

Breadth of the head behind the eyes, when 

the pouches are distended ... 3 6 

Length of the tail .... 2 6 

„ pahii, middle fore-toe and claw . 1 

,, middle fore-toe ... 3 

,, middle fore-claw ... 4: 


Inches, Lines. Inches. Lines. 

Length of middle hind-toe ... 4 

,, middle hind-claw ... 2 

„ upper incisors (the exposed portion) 6 

,, lower incisors ditto . !> 

,, from the orbit to the tip of the nose 1 2 

,, of the orbit, about . . 3 

,, from the orbit to the auditory opening 6 

Height of the back, about ... 4 

,, sole, middle hind-toe and claw 1 C j Length of the fur on the back ... 6 

M. Rafinesque has not detailed the characters of his diplostoma fiisca from the 
Missouri sufticiently to enable ns to judge how far it differs from the camas-rat; 
but the furrows on the upper and lower incisors of his species, and no mention 
being" made of the white fur about the mouth, lead me to consider it as distinct. 
The want of a tail, and the smaller number of toes on his specimen, may have 
been owing to an injury the skin had sustained^ as he had not an opportunity of 
examining the recent animal. 

Mr. Schoolcraft gives a description of a '^'^ gopher" that he procured at the 
Falls of St. Anthony, on the Mississippi, which I shall transcribe, as it contains 
the fullest account of the habits of these animals which I have met with. " It is 
about ten inches long from the nose to the tail, with a body shaped very much 
like that of a large wharf rat, which it also resembles in the colour of its hair and 
the length and nudity of its tail. Its legs are short, and each foot is furnished 
with five long and sharp claws. It has two large fore-teeth in each jaw, resembling 
those of the squirrel, but its most remarkable character is a pouch on each side of 
the jaw, formed by a duplicature of the skin of the cheek. These project inwardly, 
where they are accommodated by an unusual width and flattening out of the head. 


As the animal lives wholly under ground like a mole, these pouches serve the 
purpose of bags for carrying- the earth out of their holes. They are filled with the 
fore-claws, and emptied at the mouth of the hole by a power which the animal 
possesses of ejecting- the pouches from each cheek in the manner that a cap or 
stocking is turned. In this way it works its path under ground^ and ploughs up the 
prairies in many places in such a manner, that the white hunters of the Missouri and 
Arkansas frequently avail themselves of the labours of the gopher by planting- 
corn upon the prairies which have been thus mellowed. It lives entirely upon 
the roots of plants^ eating all with indiscriminate voracity, and has been found 
particularly destructive to beets, carrots, and other tap rooted plants in the military 
gardens at St. Peter's*." 

Mr. Schoolcraft's account of the manners of the Mississippi gauffre, and the 
mode in which it uses its cheek-pouches, is evidently the testimony of an eye- 
witness, and may be compared with Mr. Douglas's equally clear and precise 
description of the habits of the Columbia sand-rat. A minute examination of the 
specimens in my possession induces me to place implicit reliance on both these 
accounts. The skin of the geomt/.s Douglasii, even when thoroughly soaked, cannot 
be made to fold in, so as to produce the hood-like cheek-pouch of a gauffre, neither 
can the pouch of the diplostoma bulbwomm be everted, so as to become pen- 
dulous. Its bottom alone can be turned out, by which it is emptied of its contents 
in the manner mentioned by Mr. Schoolcraft ; but the lining of the exterior parietes 
of the pouch is firmly united to the external skin, and is incapable of being everted. 
The incisors in form and position, the form of the mouth, the ears, eyes, extremities, 
and tail of the sand-rats, bear, however, a very close resemblance to those of the 
gauffres, and they cannot be finally established as separate genera, until their 
dentition has been compared. The Camas-rats are very common on the plains of 
the Multnomah River, and may, as Mr. Douglas informs me, be easily snared in 
the summer. 

* Schoolcraft, Journ., p. 365. 



Aplodontia. (Richardson.) Sewellel. 

Aplodontia. Richardson, ZooL Journ. January, 1819. 

Dental formula ; incisors f, canines ^E^j grinders ^ = 22. 

Incisors, very strong, flatly-convex anteriorly without grooves ; narrower behind. Grinders 
simple, remarkably even on the crowns. The first in the upper jaw, small, cylindrical, and 
pointed, is placed within the anterior corner of the second one, and exists in the adult. The 
rest of the grinders are perfectly simple in their structure, without roots, and have slightly 
concave crowns, which are merely bordered with enamel without any transverse ridges or 
eminences. On the exterior side of the four posterior pairs of upper grinders, and the inner 
side of all the lower ones, there is an acute vertical ridge extending the whole length of the 
tooth, formed by a sharp fold of enamel. When the grinders are in situ, there is a wide 
semicircular furrow between each pair of ridges, formed by the two adjoining teeth. The side of 
each tooth opposite the ridge is convexly semicircular. The second grinder in the upper jaw, 
and the first in the lower one, are a little larger than the more posterior ones, and the former 
has a projection of enamel at its anterior corner, producing a second though smaller vertical 
ridge, within which the first small grinder is situated and leans towards it. There is a slight 
furrow on the exterior sides of the lower grinders, most conspicuous in the first one. 

Palate narrow, bounded by perfectly parallel and straight rows of grinders. 

Head flat and broad, nose a little arched, thick and obtuse. Loiver jaw thick and strong, 
with a large triangular process, concave behind, projecting at its posterior inferior angle further 
out than the zygomatic arch. The transverse diameter of the articulating surface of the 
condyle is greater than the longitudinal one. The jaw is altogether stronger than is usual in 
the Rodentia. 

" Cheek-pouches none" *. 

Eyes very small. Ears short and rounded, approaching in form to the human ear, and 
thickly clothed on both sides with short hair. 

Body thick and short, clothed with fur like that of a musk-rat, but not so long or fine. 

Limbs robust, short ; feet moderately strong, Avith naked soles. Five toes on all the {eet^ 
rather short, but well separated. The thumb of the fore-feet is considerably shorter than 
the other toes. Claws, particularly the fore-ones, very long, strong, much compressed, and 
but little curved. 

Tail very short, concealed by the fur of the hips. MammcB six, the anterior pair situated 
between the fore-legs. 

Habits. — Animals forming small societies, feeding on vegetable substances, and living in 

* Mr. David Douglas. 


Plate. 18 .C. 


[66.] 1. Aplodontia leporina. (Richardson.) The Sewellel, 

Sewellel. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. p. 39. 

Anisonyx ? rufa. RAFiNEsaTJE-SsiALTz. Desmaeest, ilfamm., p. 330, in notis. 

Arctomys rufa. Harlan, Fauna, p. 308. Griffith's Anim. Kingdom, vol. v. p 245. sp. 636. 

Marmot, No. 17- Hudson's Bay Museum. 

Aplodontia leporina. Richardson, Zool. Journ. January, 1829. No. 15. p. 335. 

Plate xviii C. Fig. 7 to 14. 

Form. — The Sewellel stands very low on its legs, and has a short thick body like that of a 
rabbit, with a rather large head. The nose is thick and obtuse, and is covered with a dense 
coat of very short fur. The nostrils are like those of a rat, small and roundish, and are 
separated by a narrow furrowed septum, but the fur comes close to their margins. The 
mouth is rather small, considering the size of the incisors, the lips are thick, clothed with 
stifiF hairs, and a stiff brush of white hair projects into the mouth from the upper lip, near 
its union with the lower one. Whiskers very strong, longer than the head, partly black, 
partly white. There are also some long stiff hairs over the eye and on the cheek. The eye 
is very small, the opening between the eyelids not exceeding two lines in length. The 
external ear strongly resembles the human one in form. It rises about four lines above the 
auditory opening, has a small fold of the anterior part of its base inwards, and is prolonged 
posteriorly and beneath the opening in form of a narrow thick margin representing the lobe 
and anti-tragus. There are also folds and eminences in the concavity of the auricle, such as 
exist in the human ear. The whole of the ear is clothed with a very short, close and fine 
coat of pale hairs, and on its inner side there are some longer and darker ones, which 
pi-oject beyond its margin. 

The stump of the tail is scarcely half an inch long, and has a slender cylindrical form. It 
js covered with fur of the same colour and length with that oh the neighbouring parts, and is 
scarcely perceptible, so that the animal on a cursory view might be considered to be tail-less. 

The legs are very short, and are covered down to the wrists and heels with fur similar to 
that on the body. A little above the wrist joint, on the inner side, there is a small tuft of 
stiff white hairs. The feet are shaped somewhat like those of a marmot. 

Fore-feet. — .The palms and under surfaces of the toes are nalied. There are three small 
callous eminences at the root of the toes, disposed as in the marmots, one of them being 
common to the two middle toes, one proper to the fore-toe, and the third to the little toe. 
There is a large prominent callus at the root of the thumb, and one nearly of the same size 

2 E 2 


on the opposite side of the palm. The thumb is of sufficient length to be of use in grasping^ 
and its upper phalanx is closely covered by a smooth rounded nail. As in the marmots, the 
second toe is the longest, the third is a little shorter, the first is about two lines shorter than 
the second, and the fourth or last is scarcely shorter than the first, being considerably longer 
than the thumb. The claws are large and very much compressed, so that their edges are in 
contact beneath nearly their whole length. They are slightly arched above and nearljr, 
straight below. The hind-feet are more slender than the fore ones, and the claws are about 
one-half smaller, rather more arched, and less compressed, their edges separating beneath so 
as to form a narrow oblong groove towards their points. The soles are longer than the 
palms, and are naked to the heel. They are furnished with four callous eminences situated 
at the roots of the toes, and two placed further back, all more conspicuous than those on the 
hind-feet of the American spermophiles. The innermost and outermost toe are nearly equal 
in length, and are shorter than the three others. 

Fur. — The quality of the fur is very much like that of a rabbit when out of season. It 
consists of a close short fur, four or five lines long, mixed with longer hairs. The latter are 
most numerous about the sides of the neck and fore-part of the back. They are scattered 
over the posterior part of the back and belly, and are numerous on the shoulders and thighs. 
The sides and upper part of the nose are covered with short fur, and the fur on all the feet 
is short. 

Colour. — Incisors yellow ; claws white. The general hue of the hack is intermediate 
between umber and chestnut browns, without any tendency towards a rufous hue, and it is 
rendered darker by most of the long scattered hairs on that part being black. The belly is 
grayish, or clove-brown, and many of the long hairs there, and on the sides, are tipped with 
white. The nose is clothed with short hairs, nearly of the colour of the back j the lips are 
whitish, and there is a pretty large spot of pure white on the throat. The position of the 
mammce in the female is indicated by brown circular marks. The fur has no lustre on its 
surface, and little beauty ; that on the back, when blown aside, exhibits a grayish-black 
shining colour, from the roots to the brownish tips. 

Of a full-grown specimen. 
Inches. Inches. Lines, 

Length of head and body . . 14 

„ tail . . . .00 

„ from the elbow to the wrist joint 2 

„ ,, the wrist joint to the end of the 
middle-claw ... 1 9 

„ of thumb . . .0 3 

,, middle toe . . C 

„ middle-claw . . .0 C 

„ from the knee-joint to the heel 2 2 

,, „ heel to the tip of the middle 

claw . , . .20 

,, of middle hind toe and claw . 9 

Dimensions of the scull of same spenimen. 
Breadth of the scull, measured from the out- 
side of one zygomatic arch to the outside of 
the other, posteriorly . , 2 4 

Length of the orbit . . .10 

AVidth of ditto, posteriorly . 1 ft 

Smallest distance between the orbits, measured 

across the frontal bone . .0 3^ 

Width of the palate . .03 

Length of the nasal bones . .1 1 

Greatest breadth of each nasal bone . 3 

mXmmalia. 213 

References to Plate xviii C. 

Fig. 7, 8, 10. Different views of the anterior half of the 

skull (nat. size.) 
— 9. Lower jaw with one condyle broken off. 

Fig. 11. Upper molar tooth. 

— 12, 13. Views of the upper surface of the fore-feet. 

— 14. Sole of the hinif-feet. 

Amongst Mr. Douglas's specimens;, there is a young one, with more white hairs 
interspersed through its fur, and some differences in the form of its scull, which 
seem to point it out as a second species. The breadth of its frontal bone, between 
the orbits, where least, is six lines, being twice the breadth of the same bone in 
A. hporina. Its nasal bones are as broad as in the latter, but are three lines 
shorter. The dentition is perfectly the same in both^ but in the young specimen 
there is a new set of grinders in the lower jaw, which have destroyed the greater 
part of the bodies of the old grinders, leaving merely a long process before, another 
behind, in each socket, resembling fangs. The specimen is not sufficiently perfect 
to enable me to give its characters as a distinct species, but I have little doubt of 
its being so. 

Since the account of this genus was published in the Zoological Journal^ Mr. 
Douglas has placed in my hands an Indian blanket or robe, formed by sewing the 
skins of the sewellel together. The robe contains twenty-seven skins, which have 
been selected when the fur was in prime order. In all of them the long hairs 
are so numerous as to hide the wool or down at their roots, and their points have 
a very high lustre. The general colour of the surface of the fur is between 
chestnut and umber browns, lighter, and with more lustre on the sides. Some of 
the skins^ which are in the best order, have the longer hairs on the back of the 
head, and between the shoulders almost black. It is probable, however, that 
these are the skins of two species of sewellels, in the robe, and that one of them 
wants the white mark on the throat. The down of all the skins of the robe has a 
shining blackish-gray colour. 



[67.] 1. Hystrix piLOsus. (Catesby.) Canada Porcupine. 

Genus Hystrix. Linn. Erethizon. F. CuviEit. 

Hystrix pilosus, Americanus. Catesby, Carol. App., p. 30. An. 1741. 

The Porcupine, from Hudson's Bay. Edwards, Birds, p. 52. Fig. 

Cavia Hudsonis. Klein, Qwadr., p. 51. An. 1751. 

Hystrix Hudsonius. Brisson, Regn. An., p. 148. An. 1750. 

Hystrix dorsata. Linn., Syst., p. 5?. An. 1757. 

L'Urson. Btjffon, vol. xii. p. 42C. t. 55. An. 1776. 

Canada Porcupine. Forster, Phil. Trans., vol. Ixii. p. 374. Pennant, Quadr., vol. ii. p. 126. 

Arct. Zool., vol. i. p. 109. 
The Porcupine. Hearne, Jojtrwa/, p. 381. Hutchins, Jl/S'5'. 
Erethizon Dorsatum. F. Cuvier, Mem. de Mus., vol. ix. p. 413. 
Hystrix dorsata. Sabine, Frankliii's Journ., p. 664. Harlan, Fauna, p. 190. 
Canada Porcupine. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. ICO. The figure represents only four toes on the 

hind feet, instead of five. 
Cawquaw. Cree Indians. Ooketook. Esquimaux. 

This sluggish and unsightly animal early attracted the notice of travellers to the 
northern parts of America. Buffon invented for it the appellation '' urson/' by 
which he intended to recall the memory of Henry Hudson, the illustrious but 
unfortunate discoverer of the country, where the animal chiefly abounds, and also 
to denote its spiny armature, resembling that of the common hedgehog (I'herisson). 
Linne gave it the specific name of dorsata, but I have preferred Catesby 's prior 
epithet oi pilosus, which seems to be equally, if not more, appropriate. 

The Canada porcupine is found on the banks of the Mackenzie, as high as 
latitude 67°, and, according to American writers, it ranges as far south as 
latitude 37°. It is said to be very rare in Virginia ; but to be numerous in some 
parts of Kentucky ; and it is reported to have multiplied greatly, of late years, near 
Oneida Lake, in the state of New York*. In the fur countries, it is most numerous 
in sandy districts, covered with the jnnus Baiiksiana, on the bark of which it 
delights to feed. It also eats the bark of the larch and spruce firs, and the buds 
of various kinds of willow. In the more southern districts, it is said to feed chiefly 
on the bark and leaves of the pinus Canadensis and tilia glabra, and to be fond of 
sweet apples and young maize, which it eats in a sitting posture, holding them to 
its mouth with the fore-paws. It travels slowly, and Hearne remarks, that " the 
Indians, going with packets from fort to fort, often see them in the trees, but not 
having occasion for them at the time, leave them until their return, and should 

* CozzENS, Lyceum Kat. Hist., New York, vol. i. p. 190. 


their absence be a week or ten days, they are sure to find them within a mile of the 
place where they had seen them before." Mr. Hutchins observes^ that^ " in walk- 
ing, the tail is drawn along the snow^ making a deep tracks which is often the 
means of betraying the animal ; but its haunts are most readily discovered by the 
barked trees on which it has fed, which, if done the same winter, is a sure sign that 
the porcupine is near the spot. They are usually found on the branches, and, on 
approaching them, they make a crying noise, like a child. The tree, being cut 
down, the animal is despatched by only striking it on the nose." It is readily 
attacked by the Indian dogs, and soon killed, but not without injury to its assailants, 
for its quills, which it erects when attacked, are rough, with minute teeth directed 
backwards, that have the effect of rendering this seemingly weak and flexible 
weapon a very dangerous one. Their points, which are pretty sharp, have no 
sooner insinuated themselves into the skin of an assailant than they gradually bury 
themselves, and travel onwards until they cause death", by wounding some vital 
organ. These spines, which are detached from tlie porcupine by the slightest 
touch, and probably by the will of the animal, soon fill the mouths of the dogs, 
which worry it, and unless the Indian women carefully pick them out, seldom 
fail to kill them. Wolves occasionally die from the same cause. The Canada 
porcupine makes its retreat amongst the roots of an old tree, and is said to pass 
much of its time in sleeping. When disturbed, it makes a whining or mewing 
noise. It pairs in the latter end of September, and brings forth two young ones 
in April or May. Its flesh, which tastes like flabby pork, is relished by the Indians, 
but is soon nauseated by Europeans. The bones are often deeply tinged with a 
greenish yeUow colour. Like other animals, which feed on coarse vegetable sub- 
stances, it is much infested by intestinal worms. The quills or spines are dyed of 
various bright colours by the native women, and worked into shot-pouches, belts, 
shoes, and other ornamental articles of dress. 


Form, — Body thick and clumsy, back much arched in a reg ular curve from the nose to 
the buttocks, when it droops more rapidly to the tail, which is very low. Legs very short. 
Tail short, thick, rounded at the tip, and turned a little upwards. Nose flattish above, broad 
and abrupt. There is a narrow naked margin round the nostrils, but there is no smooth 
dividing line on the upper lip. Eyes lateral, very small, and round. Ears situated behind and 
above the auditory opening, covered as thickly with fur as the neighbouring parts, and entirely 
concealed by it. Incisors nearly as strong as those of the beaver. . They curve forwards a 
little so as to project beyond the nose, are convex anteriorly, narrower behind, and are not 


much compressed. They have a yellow colour. The crowns of the grinders as they wear 
acquire an even surface. 

Fur. — The upper-lip is covered with short hair of a dull yellowish-brown colour. The 
cheeks and forehead are clothed with liver-brown hair, moderately long, interspersed with 
a, very few black and white hairs. The hair on the body, both above and below, is long, 
and of a dull liver-brown colour, intermixed on all the upper parts and on the hips with still 
longer hairs, some of which are entirely black, others entirely white, and a third set black at 
the roots and white at the tips. The white hairs are most numerous on the posterior part 
of the body. There are also many round spindle-shaped, sharp-pointed spines or quills 
fixed amongst the hair which covers the upper parts. The spines commence on the crown 
of the head, and are there short, thick, very sharp-pointed, and veiy numerous. There are a 
good many longer and more slender ones on the shoulders and fore-part of the back. There are 
also many on the sides and middle of the back, but these are still more slender and flexible as 
well as less conspicuous. The buttocks and thighs are thickly set with long, very strong, and 
sharp spines. Some of the spines are entirely white, others brown at the tips. The throat 
and helly are covered with brown hair, not so long as that on the back, lying more smoothly, 
and unmixed with either white hairs or spines. The tail is covered with brown hair above 
and below, and soiled white hair on its margin and tip. There are many small spines 
amongst the hair on its upper surface. 

The lega are covered with brown hairs, mixed on their exterior surfaces with some white 
ones. The palms are nearly oval, or rather egg-shaped, being semicircular before and 
narrower behind. There are four very short toes on the fore-feet, which are armed with long, 
compressed, curved, blackish claws, grooved underneath their whole length. Their points are 
not acute. The middle or second fore-toe is rather the longest, the one on each side of it 
is scarcely inferior in length, and the outer one is a little smaller and somewhat further back. 
The hind-soles are oval, approaching to circular, larger than the palms, destitute of hair and 
covered with a rough skin like shagreen. There are five toes on the hind-foot, which do not 
differ much from each other in length, but their roots and consequently their extremities are 
arranged in a curved line, corresponding with that of the anterior margin of the soles. The 
hind-claws resemble the fore-ones. The hair which covers the upper surface of the feet curves 
down by the sides of the soles, and being worn even, as if clipped off, it forms a thick marginal 
brush, which considerably increases the diameter of the soles, and fits them for walking on 
the snow. 

The Canada porcupines vary in the depth of their colours. Pennant informs us that Sir 
Ashton Lever had a white one. 

Length of the head and body 

„ tail 

Height of the centre of the back 
Length of hair on the body j . 






. 30 

Diameter of the eye 




Breadth of the uose . 


. 14 

Length of the longest claw 

. 1 





[68.] 1. Lepus Americanus. (Erxlebein.) The American Hare. 

Genus. Lepus. Linn. 

Lievre, (Queutonmalisia.) Sagard-Theodat, Canarfa, p. 747. An. 1636. 

Hare, Hedge-coney. Lawson, p. 122. Catesby, App., xxviii. 

Eabbit. Smith, Fo!/., vol. i. p. 156. An. 1748. 

American Hare. Kalji, Travels, vol. i. p. 105 ; vol. ii. p. 45. 

Lepus Aniericanus. Euxlebein, Syst., An. 1777- 

Lepus Hudsonius. Pallas, Glires, p. 30. An. 1778' 

American Hare. Fousteti, Phil. Trans., vol. Ix'n.Tp. 376. Pennant, Arct.' ZooL, vol. 1. p. 90. Hearne, 

Journ.^Tj). 3S4. 
Lepus Americanus. Bavi^^e, Franklin's Journ., p. 664. Richardson, Append. Parry'' s Second Voy., p. 324. 

Harlan, Fauna, p. 193. 
The American Hare. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 157. 
Wawpoos. Cree Indians. Kah. Chepewyans. 
Rabbit. European Residents at Hudson's Bay. 
Leiapin. French Canadians. 

This is a common animal^ in the woody districts of North America, from one 
extremity of the continent to the other. It abounds in Mackenzie's River as high 
as the sixty-eighth parallel of latitude * ; but on the barren grounds to the eastward 
of the Coppermine, and on the extensive plains or prairies through which the 
Missouri and Saskatchewan flow, it is replaced by other and larger species. 

The American Hare does not burrow. In the northern districts it resides 
mostly in willow thickets, or in woods where willows or dwarf birch constitute 
much of the underwood. The bark of the willow forms a great part of its food 
in the winter, but in the summer it eats grass and other vegetables. It is reported 
to do much damage in cultivated districts, to fields of cabbage or turnips. In the 
fur countries, few are killed in the summer, because the natives can then procure 
abundance of water-fowl and game of various kinds. In the winter, however, 
they are more sought after^ and in the Hare-Indian country, on the banks of the 
Mackenzie, where larger animals are scarce during that season, they constitute 
the chief food of the natives. They are principally taken in snares set in the paths 
that they make through the snow, and fixed to a pole which springs up when the 
noose is drawn, care being taken to obstruct their passage on one side of the 
noose by a small hedge of branches. To prevent them from cutting the snare 

* From a clerical error in the appendix to Capt. Franklin's Narrative, it is stated that the American hare does not 
exist " further north than Carlton-house." It should have been " further north than Fort Enterprise." 

2 F 


instead of endeavouring- to pass through it, it is occasionally rubbed with a little 
of their own dung-. The Hare-Indians, when they come to a place where the 
hare-tracks are numerous, beg'in their operations by beating a circular path in the 
snow, so as to enclose a pretty large clump of wood, knowing that the hares will 
not readily cross such a path. They next bar the ways by little hedges, in the 
gaps of which they set snares, and then they enter the circle and beat amongst 
the bushes with their dogs to drive the hares into the nooses. On the success of 
this operation the supper of a whole horde often depends, as, with the usual 
improvidence attendant on a hunter's life, these Indians seldom keep any stock of 
provision by them. Unless when disturbed, the American hare rarely runs about 
during the day. It has numerous enemies, such as wolves, foxes, wolverenes, 
martins, ermines, snowy owls, and various hawks ; but the Canada lynx is the 
animal which perhaps most exclusively feeds upon it. It has been remarked that 
lynxes are numerous only when there are plenty of hares in the neighbourhood. 
At some periods a sort of epidemic has destroyed vast numbers of hares in par- 
ticular distiicts, and they have not recruited again until after the lapse of several 
years, during which the lynxes were likewise scarce. In the spring and summer 
the hares are much infested by a large species of cmiex. In the fur countries 
this hare becomes white in the winter. This change takes place in the 
northern districts in the month of October, and the animals retain their white 
coat until the end of April, when it begins to fall off, and is replaced by their 
shorter and coloured summer dress. The white colour is less perfect in more 
southern districts, and to the southward of New England, according to Pennant, 
the brown dress endures all the year. The same author says that the winter 
coat, in northern districts, consists of a multitude of long white hairs, twice the 
length of the summer fur, which still remains beneath. After a careful exa- 
mination, however, of many specimens in different states, I agree with the clerk 
of the California* in thinking that the change to the winter dress takes place 
by a lengthening and blanching of the summer fur ; whilst the change in the 
beginning of summer consists in the winter coat falling off during the growth 
of new and coloured fur. 

The winter skins of this animal are imported by the Hudson's Bay Company 
under the name of rabbit-skins ; but from their small value the importation does 
not at present exceed eight or ten thousand in a year, as they will not cover the 
expenses of carriage from the interior. Mr. Jeremie relates that in one season 

• Voyage in search of a North. IVcst Passage. 



twenty-five thousand were taken at the post at which he resided in Hudson's Bay, 
and gTeat numbers might still be obtained in some districts^ were it an object 
to do so. In some parts of the fur countries the natives line their dresses with 
hare-skinSj and the Hare-Indians sometimes tear the skins with the fur into strips, 
and plait them into a kind of cloth. They resort to this expedient, however, only 
from the scarcity of deer-skins and moose-leather, which form closer and bettei 


The form of this animal is similar to that of the other species of the genus amongst which 
there is a great resemblance, and it is so like that of the common European rabbit, that it is 
universally called " the rabbit" by the English residents at Hudson's Bay. Its average 
■weight is about four lbs. 

Dental formula ; incisors, | ; canines ^; grinders, 5::^ = 28. 

Incisors, white ; superior ones linear, flattened anteriorly with a deep groove near their 
inner margins, rounded laterally, without a groove there ; inferior ones quite flat and smooth 
aiiteriorly, and on the sides ; somewhat narrower behind ; with slightly oblique cutting edges. 

In the ivinter this animal is covered with a thick coat of fine long fur, which, when lying 
smooth, appears every where of a pure white colour, except a narrow border on the posterior 
margins of the ears, and round their tips, and about one-third down their anterior margins, 
whicli are blackish-brown, on account of the dark roots of the hair being visible on these parts. 
The ivhiskers, which are three inches long, are some of them black throughout, whilst 
others are black only at the base. There are four or five long black hairs ovei the eyes, 
and a narrow margin of the eyelids is blackish-brown. 

The fur on the back, when blown aside, shews a blackish-gray colour for more than one- 
third of its length from the roots upwards ; then a clear yellowish or wood-brown for rather 
a shorter space ; and, lastly, a pure snow-white to the tips. There are also interspersed 
many longer and rather stronger hairs, which are white their whole length. The fur on 
the throat is similar to that on the back, but on the belly it is almost entirely wliite, there 
being merely a slight tinge of gray at the roots. The fur on the upper aspect of the head 
is shorter than that on the body, and the brown colour beneath the white tips is much 
darker. The fur on the ears is blackish-brown from beneath the white tips to the roots. 
The tail appears entirely white in winter, but the fur is coloured towards its base like that 
on the back, though with less of the pale brown in its middle parts. The fur on the outer 
and anterior aspect of the extremities corresponds in colour with that of the back, whilst the 
fur on the inner aspects is white nearly its whole length, as on the belly. The fore-nails are 
narrow, nearly straight, and very sharp. The hind-ones are broader and longer. Their 
colour on both feet is nearly white. 

In its summer dress, the fur on the upper parts is shining blackish-gray at the roots as in 

2 F 2 



winter, but towards the tips it is ringed with yellowish-brown and black. On the back, the 
black is in large proportion, and the resulting colour of the surface is a dark umher-brown, 
mixed with yellowish-brown. On the head there is more brown, and it has a brighter tint. 
There is more black on the crown of the head than on the cheeks ; the sides of the muzzle 
are paler, and are sprinkled with white. A white circle surrounds the eye, but the margins 
of the eyelids are black as in Avinter. The under jaw is smoke-gray, the throat unmixed 
yellowish-brown. The white colour commences between the fore-legs, extends over all the 
belly, and predominates on the extremities ; but wherever the fur on the latter is ruffled, 
the brown colours of the roots of the fur are seen. The sides present a dull, pale, yellowish- 
brown colour, with a few scattered black hairs. The ears are nearly naked in the summer, 
but the fur generally remains on their margins of a mixed white and blackish- brown, the 
latter colour prevailing at their tips. The tail is white underneath ; on its upper surface the 
gray and brown colours appear through the white. Whiskers as in winter. 


Of full-sized individuals. 

■ Inches. 

Length of Lead and body . . 19 

„ from nose to the tip of the middle 
claw of the hind leg, when sti-etched out . 27 

,, of head, measured with a line over 
the curvature of the forehead . 4 

,, of head, measured with callipers . 3 
„ ears, in their winter fur (posteriorly) 3 


ears, from rictus to apex 
tail (vertebra;) . 

tail, including fur . 
whiskers . . 

Fore Extremities. 
from carpal joint to point of middle 


Length of middle toe and claw 

,, the middle fore-claw alone 
Ilind Extremities. 

„ from knee joint to end of middle 

,, of tibia 

,, from heel to end of middle claw 

,, heel to root of middle toe 

,, of middle toe and claw 

„ middle claw 

„ tlie scull, from the insertion of the 
incisors to occipital spine (measured by 
calliper compasses) 


















[69.] 2. Lepus glacialis. (Leach.) Polar Hare. 

Varying Hare. Pennant, Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. 9-1. Hearne, Journey, p. 302. 

Lepus timidus. Fabricius, Fauna Grcenl., p. 25. 

Lepus glacialis. Leach, Ross's Voyage. Capt. Sabine, Suppl. Parry's First Voy., clxxxviii. Sabine (Mr.),. 

Franklin's Journ., p. GC4. Richardson, Appendix Parry's Second Voy., p. 32L Harlan, 

Fauna, p. 194. 
The Polar Hare. Godman, JVat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 162, 
Kaw-choh. Copper and Hare Indians. 
Ookalik. EsauiMAUX. Rekaleek. Greenlanders. 

This animal was, down to the period of Captain Ross's voyage to Baffin's Bay, 
considered as the same with the varying- hare ; although Pennant had remarked 
that its size was greater than that of the latter animal. Dr. Leach first noted 
Captain Ross's specimens .as belonging to a distinct species ; and Captain Sabine 
enumerated its specific characters in the Appendix to Captain Parry's First Voyage. 
Many specimens_, brought home by the late arctic voyagers, exist in various 
museums in Great Britain. The-Polar Hare inhabits both sides of Baffin's Bay, 
and is common on the Barren Grounds, at the northern extremity of the American 
continent. Its most southerly known habitat is the neighbourhood of Fort 
Churchill, on Hudson's Bay, which is in the 58th parallel of latitude ; but it may, 
perhaps, extend further to the southward on the elevated ridge of the Rocky 
Mountains, or on the eastern coast of Labrador. It is not found in wooded 
districts ; hence, it does not come further south on the line of the Mackenzie and 
Slave Lake than latitude 64°. It was found in latitude 75° on the North Georoian 
Islands. Although it does not frequent thick woods, it is often seen near the 
small and thin clumps of spruce fir, which are scattered on the confines of the 
Barren Grounds. It seeks the sides of hills, where the wind prevents the snow 
from lodging deeply, and where, even in the winter, it can procure the berries of 
the alpine arbutus, the bark of some dwarf willows, or the evergreen leaves of the 
Labrador tea-plant (ledum) *. It does not dig burrows, but shelters itself amongst 
large stones, or in the crevices of rocks, and in the winter time its form is 
generally found in a wreath of snow, at the base of a cliff. The Polar Hare is 
not a very shy animal, and on the approach of a hunter it merely runs to a little 
distance, and sits down, repeating this manoeuvre as often as its pursuer comes 

* On the barren coast of Winter Island, the hares went out on the ice to the ships, to feed on the tea-leaves, 
thrown overboard by the sailors.— Lyon's Private Journal. 


nearly within gunshot^ until it is thoroughly scared by his perseverance, when it 
makes off. It is not difficult to get within bow-shot of it, by walking round it, and 
gradually contracting the circle — a method much practised by the Indians. In 
the late boat-voyage along the northern coast, we landed on a rocky islet, off 
Cape Parry, which, though not above three hundred yards in diameter, was 
tenanted by a solitary alpine hare. The whole party went in pursuit of this poor 
animal ; but it availed itself so skilfully of the shelter of the rocks, and retreated 
with so much cunning and activity from stone to stone, that none of us could 
obtain a shot at it, although it never was able to conceal itself from our search for 
more than a minute or two at a time. 

The winter fur of the Polar Hare is of a snow-white colour to the roots, and is 
more dense, and of a finer quality than that of the American hare. It bears a 
close resemblance to swan-down. The fur is in prime order in latitude 65°, about 
the end of October, and begins towards the end of April to be replaced by the 
summer coat, which is more or less coloured. I have killed individuals at the 
time they were losing their winter fnr, and have seen others exhibiting dark 
colours later in the season, but have not been able to obtain a full-grown summer 
specimen. Fabricius informs us that, in Greenland, the Polar Hares retain their 
white colour all the summer. Captain Sabine states, that some full-grown spe- 
cimens, killed on Melville Island (lat. 75 ), in the height of summer, had the hair 
of the back and sides of a grayish-brown colour towards the points, but the mass 
of fur beneath still remained white ; the face and front of the ears were of a 
deeper gray. Tlie fur was interspersed with long solitary hairs, which, in many 
individuals, were banded with brown and white in the middle of summer. The 
weight of a full-grown Polar Hare varies, according to its condition, from 7 to 141bs.^ 
and a similar variation, in the weight of the common British hare, is known to 
exist. Its flesh is whitish, and well flavoured, being greatly superior to that of 
the American hare ; and also much more juicy than the alpine or varying hare of 

According to Indian information, the Polar Hare brings forth once in the year, 
and from two to four young at a time. Fabricius says that, in Greenland, they 
produce eight young at a birth, in the month of June : they pair in April. 


Of a full-grown winter specimen, from Bear Lake. 

Size. — Equal to that of the largest English hare, superior to that of the varying or Alpine 
hare of Scotland. Scull one-third larger than that of the American hare, with a larger 


orbital cavity, and smaller space for containing the brain. The breadth of the frontal bone 
or distance between the orbits is not greater than in the smaller scull of the American hare. 
The margins of the orbits project considerably, so as to produce a well-marked depression in 
the anterior part of the frontal bone, included between them. 

Dental formula, incisors |, canines ^, grinders ^, = 28. 

Incisors white, four-sided. Upper ones with a conspicuous but rather shallow groove near 
their inner margins anteriorly, and another groove on their sides. The posterior or supple- 
mental upper incisors have two grooves on their posterior faces, which give them a prismatical 
form. The cutting edges of the incisors are nearly even. 

The fur is every where entirely white, except on the tips of the ears, which are brownish- 
black. The back and margins of the ears are covered with a close coat of hair, which is 
white to the roots. The hairs lining the interior of the ear are white and moderately long, 
but they are not so close as to prevent the dark skin from partially appearing. The hair on 
the tips of the ears is mostly brownish-black to its base, a little of it only, where it adjoins to 
the white fur, shewing a wood-brown colour near its roots. The whiskers in some specimens 
are entirely white, in others partially black. The fur on the back is remarkably close and 
fine, that on the belly is longer and not quite so close. The extremities are covered with a 
smooth coat of hair of a pure white colour to the roots. The brush on the soles has a soiled 
yellowish-white colour. The fore-toes are short, and their claws are of a dark-brownish horn 
colour, and are very long and considerably curved, but their general shape nearly resembles 
that of the claws of the common hare. They are more curved and blunter than the claws 
of the American hare, and project much further beyond the fur. The hind-claws are rather 
broader than the fore-ones, dark at the roots and pale at the tips. The tail is covered with 
pretty long fur, woolly at the roots, and of a pure white colour its whole length. The irides 
are of a honey-yellow colour. The skin of the polar-hare, when in full winter dress, is so 
tender, that it is difficult to take it off without tearing it. 


Length of the head and body . . 22 

,, from the nose to the point of the mid- 
dle claw, when the hind leg is stretched out 30 

„ of the head, from the occipital spine 
to the end of the nose, measured over the 
forehead, and pressing down the fur . 5 

,, of the head, measured with a pair of 
calliper compasses . . .4 

„ of the ears, including the fur, mea. 
sured posteriorly . . . 

„ the ears, from rictus to apex . 

,, „ black fur at the tip of the ear 

,, „ tail (vertebrae) 

„ „ tail, including the fur 

„ „ whiskers . 













Inches, Lines. 

Fore Extremities, 

Length from wrist joint to point of the middle 

claw . . t, ,3 4 

„ of middle toe and claw . 1 10 

,, the middle fore-claw . .1 

Hind Extremities. 
„ from the heel to the base of the mid- 
dle toe . . • . 4 
„ of middle toe and claw . 2 6 
„ from the heel to the end of the middle 
claw . ... 6 6 

,, of the scull, from the insertion of the 
incisors to the occipital crest, measured by 
callipers . . 




Of a Polar hare, three months old, killed on the 12th of August at Repulse Bay. 
The head and back are hoary, from an intermixture of hairs entirely black, with others 
which are black at the base and white at the tips. When these hairs are blown aside, they 
permit a shorter yellowish-gray down to be seen. On the breast, flanks, and thighs, the 
longer hairs have fewer white tips, and are more thinly scattered, allowing much of the down 
to become visible ; the down on these parts has a bluish-gray colour. The belly, feet, and 
tail are entirely white. The hairs on the belly are very long. The ears have a similar colour 
witli the back, but the proportion of black hairs is rather greater. Their margins are white, 
and there is a small brownish-black spot at their tips. 


Inches. Lines. 
Length of the head and body , . . .17 6 

,, ,, ears .... 36 

A nearly mature foetal specimen was of a blackish-brown colour on all the 
upper parts and outsides of the extremities. 

[70.] 3. Lepus Virginianus. (Harlan.) Prairie Hare. 

Varying Hare. Lewis and Clark, Jortrney, &c., vol. ii. p. 178. 
The Varying Hare ? Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 163. 
Lepus Virginianus. Harlan, Fauna, p. 312. 
Prairie Hare. Fur Traders. 

The servants of the North-west and Hudson's Bay Companies have long 
been acquainted with this animal^ but it is still very imperfectly known to 
naturalists. The best account of it is contained in the narrative of Lewis 
and Clark's interesting Journey to the Columbia ; but Dr. Harlan first named 
it as a species distinct from the Lepus variabilis. It is a common animal on 
the plains through which the north and south branches of the Saskatchewan 
flow, and which extend as far eastward as the Winepegoosis and southern 
extremity of Winepeg lake, and to the southward, unite with the plains of 
the Missouri, where this hare is also found^ as well as on the great plains of 
the Columbia. I have not heard of its existing- further north, than latitude 55°. 



It frequents the open plains, where it lives much after the solitary manner of the 
common European hare^ without burrowing ; it is also occasionally met with among 
the small clumps of poplars and willows,, with which the plains are studded near 
their confines ; but it does not resort to the thick woods, like the American 
hare. It possesses great speed. I was not successful in the attempts I made to 
obtain specimens of this hare, a mutilated hunter's skin, in the winter dress, being 
all I could procure. Mr. Drummond killed a full-grown individual on the banks 
of the Saskatchewan, in the month of September, and remarked that, as far as his 
recollection went, there was no difference betwixt it and the common English hare. 
Owing to a succession of wet weather, and want of convenience for drying speci- 
mens, the skin unfortunately became putrid, and was thrown away. 

Of a mutilated winter skin. 

The fur is not quite so dense and fine as that of the Polar hare, but more so than that of 
the American hare. It is everywhere of a pure white colour on the surface, except on the 
borders of the ears. The whiskers and muzzle are white. There are no coloured rings round 
the eye, but when the fur there is blown aside, it is seen to be of a very pale wood-brown or 
fawn colour for about two-thirds of its length from the roots upwards. On the upper aspect 
of the head, the wood-brown colour of the concealed parts of the fur is deeper, and is mixed 
with a little bluish-gray. On the cheeks the fur is longer, and white to very near the roots^ 
where it is bluish-gray. On the sides of the neck, the fur is bluish-gray for a short space at 
the roots, then of a buff colour intermediate between pale wood-brown and cream-yellow for 
two-thirds of its length; and, lastly, white at the tips. On the hack, the fur is white for one- 
third of its length from the roots, then pale brownish-yellow or buff colour for less than a 
third ; and, lastly, white to the tips. The fur on the helly and le(js is white its whole length. 
The ears have a pretty broad wood-brown or fawn-coloured border along their anterior 
margin, and a narrower one tovvards the base of the posterior margin ; the fur on these 
borders is blackish-brown towards its roots. The back of the ear between the fawn-coloured 
margins is covered with entirely white fur. The ear has a brownish-black tip about the same 
size with the black tip of the ear of the Polar hare. 

Length of the head and body . .22 

,, fur of back ..14 

„ fur of belly . . .2 4 

,, whiskers ..36 


Inches. Lines. Inches. Lines. 
Length of the ears, meastu-ed posteriorly, in- 
cluding fur . . . .4 

,, ,, from rictus to apex, with- 
out fur .... 3 
,, fur, at tip of the ear . 6 

The Description of this .species of hare, by Lewis and Clark, is as follows : — 
" They weigh from seven to eleven pounds; the eve is large and prominent, the pupil of a 
deep sea-green, the iris of a bright yellow and silver colour ; the head, neck, back, shoulders, 

2 G 


and outer parts of the legs and thighs are of a lead colour ; the sides, as they approach the 
belly, become gradually more white ; the belly, breast, and inner parts of the legs and thighs 
are white, with a light shade of lead colour ; the tail is covered with white, soft fur, not quite 
so long as on the other parts of the body; the body is covered with a deep, fine, soft, close 
fur. The animal assumes these colours from the middle of April to the middle of November ; 
during the rest of the year it is of a pure white, except the black and reddish-brown of the ears, 
which never changes. In March, a few reddish spots are sometimes mixed with the white on 
the head and upper parts of the neck and shoulders. This animal can leap twenty-one feet. 
Its food is grass and herbs, and in winter it feeds much on the bark of aromatic shrubs, 
which grow on the plains. These hares are generally found separate, and never associate in 
greater numbers than two or three." 

Dr. Godman has given the following- account of a specimen belonging- to the 
Prince of Musignano, which was killed on the Blue Mountains of Pennsylvania. 
This species is said to be common throughout the mountainous regions of the 
United States ; but its identity with the Lepiis Virginianus of Harlan has not 
been ascertained, and it may be observed, that nothing is said in Dr. Godman's 
description respecting the fawn-coloured margins of the ear, which distinguish 
the Lepus Virginianus, in its winter dress, from the Polar hare. 

" In its summer dress the general colour of this hare is a light reddish-brown, which is 
lighter on the breast and head, becoming darker from the superior parts of the shoulders to 
the posterior parts of the body. The hairs are coloured in the following manner : — They are 
plumbeous at the base, then light yellow, then dusky, then reddish-brown, and finally, black 
at tip. The under jaw is white, and this colour extends backwards until opposite the 
' bases of the ears. The belly and legs are white, faintly tinged with light reddish-brown ; the 
tail is whitish, which colour is superiorly mingled with bluish or lead colour. The ears are 
externally bluish-white, and darker at the tip ; internally they are of a faint reddish-white. 

" In ivinter dress the general colour is pure white, the fur being long, soft, fine, and in 
greatest quantity upon the breast. The hairs are plumbeous at the base, then reddish, and 
at tip of a snowy whiteness. The ears are slightly tipped with dark lead colour, and 
edged within by brown and white hairs intermixed. The whiskers are entirely white or black 
at the base and white at tip. The feet are thickly clothed with hair, that conceals the 
slightly-curved nails, which are long and narrow at the base." 

Of a recent specimen. 

Feet. Inches. 
" Totnl length . . . ,2 7 ' Length of fore-arm 

Height to top of fore-shoulder . 10 

,, top of thigh . . .1 2 

Length of head ... 4 

„ the ears . . .0 4 

Distance from eyes to the end of the nose 1 1 

the tliigh 
the tail 










{71.] 4. Lepus (Lagomys) princeps. (Richardson.) 

The Little- Chief Hare, 

Genus, Lepus. Linn. Sub-genus, Lagomys. Cuvier. 

Lepus (Lagomys) princeps. Richardson, ZooL Journal. No. 12, p. 520. March, 1828. 

Lepus Lagomys (princeps), fuscus subfer ffriseufs, capite brevi, auriculis rotundatis. 

The Little-Chief Hare ; tailless ; colour blackish-brown, beneath gray ; head short and thick ; ears rounded. ] 

This highly interesting little animal inhabits the Rocky Mountains^ from 
latitude 52° to 60\ Through the kindness of Mr. Macpherson, I obtained some 
specimens from the River of the Mountains, or south branch of the Mackenzie ; 
and Mr. Drummond killed several near the sources of the Elk River. There is 
likewise a good specimen in the museum of the Hudson's Bay Company. 

Mr. Drummond informs me, that the Little-Chief Hare frequents heaps of loose 
stones^ through the interstices of which it makes its way with great facility. It is 
often seen at sun-set, mounted on a stone, and calling to its mates by a peculiar 
shrill whistle. On the approach of a man, it utters a feeble cry, like the squeak 
of a rabbit when hurt, and instantly disappears, to re-appear in a minute or two, 
at the distance of twenty or thirty yards, if the object of its apprehension remains 
stationary. On the least movement of the intruder, it instantly conceals itself 
again, repeating its cry of fear, which, when there are several of the animals in the 
same neighbourhood, is passed from one to the other. Mr. Drummond describes 
their cry as very deceptive, and as appearing to come from an animal at a great 
distance, whilst, in fact, the little creature is close at hand ; and, if seated on a gray 
limestone rock, its colour is so similar, that it can scarcely be discerned. These 
animals feed on vegetables. Mr. Drummond never found their burrows, and he 
thinks that they do not make any, but that they construct their nests amongst 
the stones. He does not know whether they store up hay for the winter or not, 
but is certain that they do not come abroad during that season. 

The trivial name which I have adopted for the species, is a translation of the 
Indian appellation, buckathrce kah-yawzw. The Little-Chief Hare resembles the 
pika {lagomys alpimis) in its alpine habits and general form. It is, however, a 
smaller animal, the largest of our specimens falling short of seven inches, which is 
the length of the smallest pika seen by Pallas. I have not had an opportunity of 

2 G 2 


comparing it with a specimen of the pika ; but a scull of the latter, preserved in 
the museum of the College of Surgeons, is twice the size^ and differs in form. The 
pika has not only a larger head^ but its fur is described as coarse^ and its colours 
as dissimilar to those of the Little-Chief Hare. The pika is said, by Pallas, 
to inhabit Karaskatcha ; and, by Pennant_, to have been discovered on the 
Aleutian Islands. 

The Little-Chief Hare presents differences in its teeth from those of the true 
hares^ which fully entitle it to rank in a distinct genus ; and it is further entitled 
to that distinction from the naked tubercles at the end of its toes, and its very 
different habits. 


Size somewhat less than the Alpine Pika of Siberia ; length 6| inches. 

On comparing the scull of this animal with those of the true hares, there appears a larger 
cavity in proportion to its size for the reception of the brain. The breadth of the scull too 
behind is increased by very large and spongy auditory processes. The bone anterior to the 
orbit is not cribriform as in the hares, although it is thin, and there is no depression of the 
frontal bone between the orbits. 

Dental formula, incisors ^, canines ^, grinders ^5 = 26. 

Incisors white, anterior upper ones marked with a deep furrow nearer their interior margins, 
and having cutting edges, which present conjointly three well-marked points, the middle one 
of which is common to both teeth, and is shorter than the exterior one. These incisors 
are much thinner than the incisors of a hare, and are scooped out like a gouge behind. 
The small round posterior or accessary upper incisors, have flat summits. The lower 
incisors are thinner than those of the hares, and are chamfered away towards their summits 
more in form of a gouge than like the chisel-shaped edge of the incisors of a hare. 
Grinders. — The upper grinders are not very dissimilar to those of the hare on the crowns, 
but the transverse plates of enamel are more distinct. They differ in each tooth, having a 
very deep furrow on its inner side, which separates the folds of enamel. This furrow is nearly 
obsolete in the hares, whilst in this Lagomys it is as conspicuous as the separation betwixt 
the teeth. The small posterior grinder which exists in the upper jaw of the adult hares is 
entirely wanting in the different specimens of the little-chief hare which I have examined. 
The lower grinders, from the depth of their lateral grooves, have at first sight a greater 
resemblance to the grinders of animals belonging to the genus arvicola than to those of a 
hare ; their crowns exhibit a single series of acute triangles with hollow areas. The first 
grinder has three not very deep grooves on a side, and is not so unlike the corresponding 
tooth of a hare as those which succeed it. The second, third and fourth, have each a groove 
in both sides, so deep as nearly to divide the tooth, and each of their crowns exhibits two 
triangular folds of enamel. The posterior grinder forms only one triangle. 



Shape. — The body of the little-chief hare is moderately thick, and the head is short and 
broad with an arched forehead. The whiskers are longer than the head. The ears are lar^-e 
and nearly round, but do not, as far as I can judge from the prepared specimens, appear to 
have the incurvation of their anterior margins, which gives the funnel shape to the ears of 
the pika, as described by Pallas. An obtuse projection of the rump is the only vestige 
of a tail. 

The fur is soft to the touch, and differs in quality from that of the hare, being less downy 
and having more the character of the fur of a meadow-mouse. It is of an uniform, shining 
grayish-black colour for three-fourths of its length from the roots upwards, then partly 
yellowish-brown, and partly white, and on the superior parts of the body, most of the hairs 
have short black tips. The black predominates on the posterior part of the back, but even 
there it is mixed with brown. Yellowish-brown prevails on the shoulders and sides ; the 
under part of the protuberance which represents the tail is white, and all the under parts of 
the body are smoke-gray, tinged on the chest and some parts of the belly Avith brown. The 
fur on the back is about three-quarters of an inch long, that on the belly is somewhat shorter. 
In some specimens the principal colour of the head is yellowish-brown, in others there are 
many black hairs scattered over the crown. The ears have a narrow white border, and are 
pretty well clothed anteriorly with white hairs tipped with black. The hairs which cover 
them posteriorly are longer, and nearly black for their whole length. 

The extremities are white with a brownish tinge. The soles of the feet are clothed with 
dusky-brown hair. The claws are black, short, arched, much compressed, but not very 
sharp, and are concealed by the fur of the toes. There is a large naked black tubercle at 
the root of each of the four fore-claws, and a fifth minute tubercle far back near the 
exterior margin of the rather broad and flat palm. The thumb is a little further back than 
the outer toe, but not so far as the last-mentioned tubercle. It is very short, and has no 
naked callus at its base, but its claw is as large as those of the toes. There are four toes 
on the hind-foot, each terminated by a naked callus and claw, similar to those on the 


Length of head and body 

,, head 

,, from nose to auditory opening 

„ from nose to centre of pupil 
Height of the ear 
Breadth of the ear 

Lengtli from heel to the middle claw of the 
hind-foot . . , , 

„ fur on the back 







Inches. Lines. 
Length of largest whiskers ..29 
„ fore-foot, from wrist-joint to end 
of middle claw . . . .0 9 

Breadth of fore-palm at the thumb . 4 

Length of the scull from incisors to occipital 

spine .... 1 6 

Total breadth of the scull at the auditory 
openings ..... 9 


-f 1. LipuRA HuDsoNiA. (Illiger.) Tail-less Marmot. 

Genus, Lipura. Illiger. 

Tail-less Marmot. Pennant, Arct. ZooL, vol. i. p. 112. Hist. Quadr., vol. ii. p. 137. 

Bewick, Quadr.,-p. .374. 
Daman de la baie d'Hudson. Schreber, t. 240. C. 
Arctomys Hudsonius. Turton, Linn., vol. 1. p. 90. 
Hyrax Hudsonius. Shaw, ZooL, vol. ii. p. 225. 

This animal was first described by Pennant from a specimen preserved in the 
Leverian Museum^ and said to have been brought from Hudson's Bay. It has not 
been obtained from that quarter since Pennant's time, and there is much reason to 
doubt the habitat assigned to the animal^ though there appears to be none to 
question the genuineness of the specimen. 

The characters attributed to the genus lipura, by lUiger, are : " two superior 
incisors ; four inferior ones, obhquely truncated ; an interval between the incisors 
and the grinders^ which are composed of folded layers of enamel ; a pointed 
muzzle ; body covered with coarse hair ; no tail ; feet, with four toes, armed 
with fiat nails. 

Pennant describes the animal as being of the she of the common marmot 
(^. e. head and body, 16 inches long) with short ears; head and body of a 
cinereous brown ; the ends of the hairs white ; two cutting teeth above, four 
below ; no tail." 


[72.] 1. Equus caballus. (Linn.) The Horse. 

The Horse. Warden, United States, p. 234. 

Wild Horse. Long, Journ., vol. ii. p. 313 ; vol. iii. p. 107. 

Herds of wild horses^ the offspring of those which have escaped from the 
Spanish possessions in Mexico_, are not uncommon on the extensive prairies that 
lie to the west of the Mississipi. They were once numerous on the Kootannie 
Lands^ near the northern sources of the Columbia, on the eastern side of the 
Rocky Mountain ridge, but of late years they have been almost eradicated in 
that quarter. They are not known to exist in a wild state to the northward of 
the fifty-second or fifty-third parallel of latitude. The young stallions five in 
separate herds, being driven away by the old ones, and are easily ensnared by 
using domestic mares as a decoy. The Kootannies are acquainted with the 
Spanish-American mode of taking them with the lasso. Major Long mentions 
that " horses are an object of a particular hunt to the Osages. For the purposes 
of obtaining these animals, which in their wild state preserve all their fleetness, 
they go in a large party to the country of the Red Canadian River, where they are 
to be found in considerable numbers. When they discover a gang of the horses, 
they distribute themselves into three parties, two of which take their stations at 
different and proper distances on their route, which by previous experience they 
know the horses will most probably take when endeavouring to escape. This 
arrangement being completed, the first party commences the pursuit in the 
direction of their colleagues, at whose position they at length arrive. The second 
party then continues the chase with fresh horses, and pursues the fugitives to the 
third party, which generally succeeds in so far running them down as to noose 
and capture a considerable number of them." 

The domestic horse is an object of great value to the nomadic tribes of 
Indians that frequent the extensive plains of the Saskatchewan and Missouri, for 
they are not only useful in transporting their tents and families from place to 
place, but one of the highest objects of the ambition of a young Indian is to 
possess a good horse for the chase of the buffalo, an exercise of which they are 
passionately fond. To steal the horses of an adverse tribe is considered to be 
nearly as heroic an exploit as killing an enemy on the field of battle, and the 


distance to which they occasionally travel, and the privations they undergo on 
their horse-stealing excursions, are almost incredible. An Indian who owns a 
horse scarcely ever ventures to sleep after nightfall, but sits at his tent door with 
the halter in one hand and his gun in the other, the horse's fore-legs being at the 
same time tied together with thongs of leather. Notwithstanding all this care, 
however, it often happens that the hunter, suflfering himself to be overpowered by 
sleep for only a few minutes, awakes from the noise made by the thief gallopping 
off with the animal. 

Tlie Spokans, who inhabit the country lying between the forks of the Columbia, 
as well as some other tribes of Indians, are fond of horse-flesh as an article of 
food ; and the residents at some of the Hudson's Bay Company's posts on that 
river, are under the necessity of making it their principal article of diet. 

[73.] 1. Cervus ALCES. (Linn.) Moose Deer. 

Gents, Cervus. Lixx. 

Elian, stag-g, or aptaptou. De Mont's Kova Francia, p. 250. An. 1C04. 

Eslaii ou oiignat. Sagard-Theodat, Co?!ffrfa, p. 749. An. 1G3C. 

Orignal. La Hontan, Voy., p. 72. An. 1703. 

Bloose deer. Dudi-ey, Phil. Trans. No. 368. p. IG5. An. 172L 

Orignac. Hist, de rAmerique. An. 1723. 

Orignal. Charlevoix, Nouv. France, vol. v. p. 185. An. 1744. Denys, Descr. de VAmer., vol. i. p. 2?. p. 1C3 ; 

vol. ii. pp. 321, 425. Du Pratz, Louis, vol. i. p. 301. 
Moose deer. Pennant, ^re^ic Zoo^., vol. i. p. 17. Cum fig. An. 1784. 

Moose. Umfreville, i/j/f/s. £«?/. An. 1790. Heriot's Trai'. An. 1807. With a good figure. 
Moose deer. Warden, United States, vol. i. p. 328. Godman, Nat. Hist.,vo\. ii. p. 274. 
Cervus alces. Harlan, Fauna, p. 229. Griffith, An. King., vol. iv. p. 72. A good figure of the head. 
"Orignac. Basque Settlers in Canada." (De Monts.) 
Orignal. French Canadians of the present day. 
Moosoa. Cree Indians. Denyai. Chepewyans. 
" Sondareinta. Hurons." (Theodat.) 

The Moose Deer is said to derive its present English name from its Algonquin 
and Cree appellation of mongsoa or moosoa. It early attracted the attention of 
travellers in America, and various descriptions of it appear in their works, some 
oi which are quoted above. Live specimens have occasionally been brought to 


England, and one was sent to his late Majesty, from Churchill, in Hudson's Bay. 
Naturalists have generally considered the moose deer to be the same species with 
the elk of the northern parts of the old world*=. The Anglo-Americans, however, 
having given the trivial name of elk to the Canada stag or red deer, some confusion 
has occasionally crept into the accounts published by travellers, of the size, man- 
ners, and geographical distribution of the moose ; and it has also sometimes been 
confounded with the rein deer, from its possessing, in common with that animal, 
palmated horns. The fact, that few of the American quadrupeds have been found 
precisely similar to their European representatives, ought to excite doubts of the 
identity of the moose and Scandinavian elk, until it is established by satisfactory 
comparisons. This does not appear, however, to have been hitherto done, and 
some differences between them are hinted at by La Hontan. Major Smith also 
mentions, that the lower parts of the antlers of the American animal more often 
separate into branches than those of the European one. 

Du Pratz informs us that, in his time, moose deer were found as far south as the 
Ohio ; and Denys says, that they were once plentiful on the island of Cape Breton, 
though at the time that he wrote they had been extirpated. At present, according 
to Dr. Godman, they are not known in the state of Maine ; but they exist in consi- 
derable numbers in the neighbourhood of the bay of Fundy. They frequent the 
woody tracts in the fur countries to their most northern limit. Several were seen on 
Captain Franklin's last expedition, at the mouth of the Mackenzie, feeding on the 
willows, which, owing to the rich alluvial deposits on that great river, extend to the 
shores of the Arctic sea, in lat. 69°. Further to the eastward, towards the Copper- 
mine river, they are not found in a higher latitude than 65°, on account of the scarcity 
on the Barren Grounds of the aspen and willow, which constitute their food. I have 
not been able to ascertain whether they occupy the whole width of the continent or 
not. Mackenzie saw them high up on the eastern declivity of the Rocky Moun- 
tains, near the sources of the Elk river ; but I suspect that they are rarely, if ever, 
found to the westward of the mountains. Authors mention that the moose gene- 
rally form small herds in Canada. La Hontan, who travelled in that country in 
1683, says, that whilst he accompanied the Indians they hunted the elk with dogs^ 
when there was a crust on the snow ; and that, after a chase of a few leagues, they 
generally found ten, fifteen, or twenty of them in a body : in three months his party 
killed fifty-six, and might have taken as many more. It is probable, however, that 

* According to BuflFon, the elk was unknown to the Greeks ; and the word alee first occurs m the writings of Julius 
€sesar, and was probably adopted by him from the Celtae. Its Celtic name is elch ; and Swedish, eelg. 

2 U 


La Hontan in this passage confounds the Canada stag and moose deer together. 
He mentions the animal being able to run, in the summer season, for three days and 
nights in succession, and the excellent flavour of its flesh, — facts which apply to the 
moose deer, but not to the Canada stag ; on the other hand, the weight of the horns, 
which, he says, sometimes amounts to four hundred weight, is true only of the stag. 
In like manner, the accounts of the other early writers on Canada are liable to sus- 
picion. In the more northern parts, the moose deer is quite a solitary animal, more 
than one being very seldom seen at a time, unless during the rutting season, or 
when a female is accompanied by her fawns. It has the sense of hearing in very 
great perfection, and is the most shy and wary of all the deer species ; and on this 
account the art of moose-hunting is looked upon as the greatest of an Indian's 
acquirements, particularly by the Crees, who take to themselves the credit of 
being able to instruct the hunters of every other tribe. The skill of a moose- 
hunter is most tried in the early part of the winter ; for during the summer the 
moose, as well as other animals, are so much tormented by musquitoes, that they 
become regardless of the approach of man. In the winter the hunter tracks the 
moose by its foot-marks in the snow, and it is necessary that he should keep con- 
stantly to leeward of the chase, and make his advances with the utmost caution, for 
the rustling of a withered leaf, or the cracking of a rotten twig, is sufficient to alarm 
the watchful beast. The difficulty of approach is increased by a habit which the 
moose deer has of making daily a sharp turn in its route, and choosing a place 
of repose so near some part of its path, that it can hear the least noise made by 
one that attempts to track it. To avoid this, the judicious hunter, instead of 
walking in the animal's footsteps, forms his judgment, from the appearance of the 
country, of the direction it is likely to have taken, and makes a circuit to leeward, 
until he again finds the track. This manoeuvre is repeated, until he discovers, by 
the softness of the snow in the foot-marks and other signs, that he is very near the 
chase. He then disencumbers himself of every thing that might embarrass his 
motions, and makes his approach in the most cautious manner. If he gets close 
to the animal's lair, without being seen, it is usual for him to break a small twig, 
which, alarming the moose, it instantly starts up ; but, not fully aware of the 
danger, squats on its hams, and voids its urine, preparatory to setting off. In 
this posture it presents the fairest mark, and the hunter's shot seldom fails to take 
effect in a mortal part. In the rutting season the bucks lay aside their timidity, 
and attack every animal that comes in their way, and even conquer their fear of man 
himself. The hunters then bring them within gun-shot, by scraping on the blade- 


bone of a deer, and by whistling-, which, deceiving the male, he blindly hastens to the 
spot, to assail his supposed rival. If the hunter fails in giving- it a mortal wound as 
it approaches, he shelters himself from its fury behind a tree ; and I have heard of 
several instances in which the enraged animal- has completely stripped the bark 
from the trunk of a large tree^ by striking with its fore-feet. In the spring time, 
when the snow is very deep, the hunters frequently run down the moose on snow- 
shoes. An instance is recorded in the narrative of Captain Franklin's second 
journey, where three hunters pursued a moose-deer for four successive days, until 
the footsteps of the chace were marked with blood, although they had not yet got 
a view of it. At this period of the pursuit the principal hunter had the misfortune 
to sprain his ankle, and the two others were tired out ; but one of them, 
having rested for twelve hours, set out again, and succeeded in killing the 
animal, after a further pursuit of two days' continuance. Notwithstanding the 
lengthened chase which the moose can sustain, when pursued on the snow, 
Jlearne remarks that it is both tender-footed and short-winded ; and that, 
were it found in a country free from underwood, and dry under foot, it would 
become an easy prey to horsemen and dogs. The same author informs us, that 
in the summer moose-deer are often killed in the water by the Indians, who have 
the fortune to surprise them while they are crossing rivers or lakes, and that at 
such times they are the most inoffensive of animals, never making any resistance. 
" The young ones, in particular," says he, " are so simple, that I remember to 
have seen an Indian paddle his canoe up to one of them, and take it by the poll, 
without experiencing the least opposition ; the poor, harmless animal seeming, at 
the same time, as contented alongside the canoe, as if swimming by the side of its 
dam, and looking up in our faces with the same fearless innocence that a house- 
lamb would, making use of its fore-foot almost every instant, to clear its eyes of 
mosquitoes, which at that time were remarkably immerous. The moose is the 
easiest to tame and domesticate of any of the deer kind," 

With respect to the food of the moose, the same traveller says, " Their legs are 
so long, and their necks so short, that they cannot graze on the level ground like 
other animals, but are obliged to browze on the tops of large plants and the 
leaves of trees in the summer, and in winter they always feed on the tops of 
willows and the small branches of the birch tree, on which account they are never 
found during that season but in such places as can afford them a plentiful supply 
of their favourite food ; and although they have no fore-teeth in the upper jaw, yet 
I have often seen willows and small birch trees cropped by them in the same 
manner as if they had been cut by a gardener's shears, though some of them were 

2 H2 



not smaller than a common pipe-stem* ; they seem particularly partial to red 
willows" (cornus alba.) To the eastward of the Rocky Mountains the evergreen 
leaves of the gualtheria shallon hvm, according to Lewis and Clark, a favourite, 
part of the food of the moose-deer. 

The flesh of the moose is more relished by the Indians and residents in the fur 
countries than that of any other animal, and principally, I believe^ on account of its 
soft fat. It bears a greater resemblance in its flavour to beef than to venison.^ 
^' The flesh of the moose/' says Hearne^ '* is very good, though the grain is but 
coarse^ and it is much tougher than any other kind of venison. The nose is most 
excellent^ as is also the tongue, though by no means so fat and delicate as that of 
the common deer (rein-deer.) The fat of the intestines is hard like suet ; but all 
the external fat is soft like that of a breast of mutton, and_, when put into a bladder, 
is as fine as marrow. In this they differ from all the other species of deer_, of 
which the external fat is as hard as that of the kidnies." 

The moose acquires a large size, particularly the males, which^ I have been, 
informed, occasionally attain a weight of eleven or twelve hundred pounds. Moose 
dung is in form of oval, brown pellets. Their skins, when properly dressed^ make 
a soft, thick, pliable leather, excellently adapted for moccasins, or other articles 
of winter clothing. The Dog-ribs excel in the art of dressing the skins, which is 
done in the following manner. They are first scraped to an equal thickness 
throughout, and the hair taken off by a scraper, made of the shin-bone of a deer, 
split longitudinally ; they are then repeatedly moistened and rubbed, after being 
smeared with the brains of the animal, until they acquire a soft, spongy feel ; 
and lastly, they are suspended over a fire, made of rotten wood, until they are well 
impregnated with the smoke. This last-mentioned process imparts a peculiar 
odour to the leather, and has the effect of preventing it from becoming so hard, 
after being wet, as it would otherwise do. 

The DESCRIPTION of the moose, by Major Smith, being the fullest and most 
correct I have met with, I have quoted almost the whole of it. 

" This animal is the largest of the genus, being higher at the shoulders than the horse ; its 
horns weigh sometimes near fifty pounds f : accordingly, to bear this heavy Aveight, its neck 
is short and strong, taking away much of the elegance of proportion so generally predominant 
in the deer ; but when it is asserted that the elk wants beauty or majesty, the opinion can 

• The wooden pipe-stems used in Hudson's Bay are about the thickness of the little finger. 

-j- Hearne says, that the horns of the moose sometimes exceed 601bs., and have a harder texture than any other deer- 
horns to be found in the fur.-countries. 


be entertained by those who have seen the female only, the young, or the mere stuffed 
specimen : for us who have had the opportunity of viewing the animal in all the glory of 
his full grown horns, amid the scenery of his own wilderness, no animal could appear more 
majestic or more imposing. It is, however, the aggregate of his appearance which produces 
this effect ; for when the proportions of its structure are considered in detail, they certainly 
•will seem destitute of that harmony of parts which in the imagination produces the feeling 
of beauty. The head, measuring above two feet in length, is narrow and clumsily shaped, 
by the swelling upon the upper part of the nose and nostrils ; the eye is proportionably small 
and sunk ; the ears long, hairy, and asinine ; the neck and withers are surmounted by a 
heavy mane, and the throat furnished with long coarse hair, and in younger specimens 
encumbered with a pendulous gland : these give altogether an uncouth character to this 
part of the animal. Its body, however, is round, compact, and short ; the tail not more 
than four inches long, and the legs, though very long, are remarkably clean and firm ; this 
length of limbs, and the overhanging lips, have caused the ancients to fancy that it grazed 
walking backwards. The hair of the animal is coarse and angular, breaking if bent. 

" Its movements are rather heavy, and the shoulders being higher than the croup, it does 
not gallop, but shuffles or ambles along, its joints cracking at every step, with a sound heard 
to some distance. Increasing its speed, the hind-feet straddle to avoid treading on its fore- 
heels, tossing the head and shoulders like a horse about to break from a trot to a gallop. It 
does not leap, but steps without effort over a fallen tree, a gate, or a split fence. During its 
progress it holds the nose up, so as to lay the horns horizontally back. This attitude prevents 
it seeing the ground distinctly ; and as the weight is carried very high upon its elevated legs, it 
is said sometimes to trip by treading on its fore-heels, or otherwise, and occasionally to give 
itself a heavy fall. It is probably owing to this occurrence that the elk was believed by the 
ancients to have frequent attacks of epilepsy, and to be obliged to smell its hoof before it 
could recover; hence the Teutonic name of Elend (miserable), and the reputation, especially 
of the fore-hoofs, as a specific against the disease." 


[73.] 2. Cervus tarandus. (Linn.) The Rein-Deer, 

or Caribou. 

Genus Cervus. Linn. Sectio, Rangiferini. 

Caribou ou Asne sauvage. Sagard-Theodat, Caraac^a, p. 751. An. 1636. La Hontan, t. i. p. 77- An. 1703. 

Charlevoix, Nouv. France, t. v. p. 190. 
Rein-deer, or Rain deer. Dbage, Voy., vol. i. p. 25. Dobbs, Huds. Bay, pp. 19, 22. Pennant, Arctic Zool.y 

vol. i. p. 22. Cartwright, Labrador, pp. 91, 112, 133. Franklin, First Journey, &c., pp. 240, 245. 

Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 283. 
Common deer. Hearne, Journ.,^. 195, 200. Parry's and Lyon's iVarraiu'e*,. passim. 
Cervus tarandus. Sabine, Svppl. Parry's First Voy., p. exc. Richardson, App. Parry's Second Voy., p. 326. 

Ross, Parry''s Third Voy. Harlan, Fauna, p. 232. 
Carre-boeuf, or Caribou. French Canadians. 

Attebk. Cree Indians. Ettbin. Chepewyans and otter Northern Indians. 
Tooktoo. Esquimaux. Tukta. Greenlanders (Fabricius.) 

The rein-deer inhabits the arctic islands of Spitzbergen and the northern 
extremity of the old continent ; its range, according to Baron Cuvier, never 
having extended to the southward of the Baltic. It has long been domesticated, 
and its manners are well ascertained, and have been carefully described by able 
naturalists. It varies in size according to the district in which it is fed ; the 
breed which the Laplanders train to the sledge being of small stature when com- 
pared with the large kind reared in the north of Asia by the Tungusians, who ride 
upon them. The rein-deer or caribou of North America are much less perfectly 
known. They have indeed so great a general resemblance in appearance and 
manners to the Lapland deer, that they have been always considered to be the 
same species, without the fact having ever been completely established. Pennant 
states that the rein-deer are most numerous in the countries surrounding 
Hudson's Bay, and that their most southern residence is the northern parts of 
Canada*. They exist in Greenland, Labrador, and Newfoundland, but are not 
known in Iceland. They extend most probably completely across the northern 
parts of the American continent, and are mentioned both by Pennant and 
Langsdorff, as inhabitants of the coast opposite to the Fox or Aleutian islands. 
They do not appear, however, to extend so far to the southward on the Pacific 
coast as they do in Labrador, and on the shores of Hudson's Bay. Some parts 

* Dr. Harlan informs us, that the rein-deer extend as far south as the district of Maine, but without quoting his 
authority. Charlevoix says, that it is so unusual for them to come so far south as Quebec, that he knew of only one 

individual having wandered thither The one he alludes to, on being chased, precipitated itself from Cape Diamond, 

and, swimming across the St. Lawrence, was killed by some Indians, who were encamped on Point Levi. 


of New Caledonia seem to be altogether destitute of them. According to 
Pennant, they are not found on the islands that lie between Asia and America, 
but are numerous in Kamtschatka. The Koreki, a nation bordering on the 
latter country, are said to keep immense herds of rein-deer, some rich individuals 
possessing to the enormous extent often or twenty thousand. The limits assigned 
by writers to the rein-deer in America are liable to some uncertainty, because 
the term of caribou, by which they are generally known, has, particularly in 
Canada, been applied to very distinct species of deer*. Be this, however, as 
it may, there are two well-marked and permanent varieties of caribou that inhabit 
the fur-countries, one of them confined to the woody and more southern districts, 
and the other retiring to the woods only in the winter, but passing the summer 
on the coast of the arctic sea, or on the Barren Grounds, so often mentioned in 
this work. The early French writers on Canada, and Jeremie, Ellis, Dobbs, 
Umfreville, and others, who have given an account of that part of the Hudson 
Bay Company's possessions which lie to the southward of Churchill River, treat 
of the woodland variety only. Hearne's descriptions of the rein-deer, on the 
other hand, relate principally to the Barren Ground kind, with which he was 
thoroughly acquainted ; and it is of this variety that specimens have been brouo-ht 
home by the late arctic expeditions. Neither variety has as yet been properly 
compared with the European or Asiatic races of rein-deer, and the distinguishing 
characters, if any exist, are still unknown. Major Smith, indeed, observes that 
" a probable distinction, by which some, if not all the varieties of caribou may be 
distinguished from the rein-deer of the old continent, is, that their horns are 
always shorter, less concave, more robust, the palm narrower, and with fewer 
processes than those of the former." I have had but little opportunity of ascer- 
taining how far these remarks apply to the woodland variety of caribou, but I can 
with confidence say, after having seen many thousands of the Barren Ground kind, 
that the horns of the old males are as much if not more palmated than any antlers 
of the European rein-deer to be found in the British museums. The annexed cuts 
were made from drawings by Captain Back, of the antlers of two old buck 
caribou, killed on the Barren Grounds in the neighbourhood of Fort Enterprise. 
It is to be recollected, however, that the antlers of the rein-deer assume an almost 
infinite number of forms, no two individuals having them alike. 

" Thus, Mr. Henry, when he mentions Caribou that weigh 4001bs., must have some other species of deer in view. 




Cervus tarandus, var. a., arctica. Barren Ground Caribou. 

Common Deer. Heahne, Journey, p. 195-200. 

Bedsee-awseh. Coppeu Indians and Dog-ribs. 

Bedsee-choh. {Male) Iidem. Tsootai. {Female) Iidem. 

Tampeh. {Female, with a fawn) Iidem. 

Took-too. Esquimaux (took-took, dual; took-toot, plural.) 

Tukta. Greenlanders. (Pangnek, raa^e ; kollowak, /ema^g ; norak, young. — Fabricius.) 

This variety of rein-deer is of small stature, and weighs so little, that I have 
seen a Canadian voyager throw a full-grown doe on his shoulders, and carry it as 
an English butcher would a sheep. The bucks are of larger size, and weigh, 
exclusive of the offal, when in good condition, from 90 to 130 lbs. The old males 
have in general the largest and most palmated horns, while the young ones and 
the females have them less branched and more cylindrical and pointed ; but this 
is not uniformly the case, and the variety of forms assumed by the horns of the 
Caribou is indeed so great, that it is difficult to comprehend them all in a general 
description. Some have the branches and extremities broadly palmated, and set 
round with finger-like points ; others have them cylindrical, and even tapering, 
without any palmated portion whatever. The majority of adult males have a 
brow antler, in form of a broad vertical plate running down betwixt the eyes and 
hanging over the nose. In some, this plate springs from the right horn, in 
others from the left ; in many there is a plate from each side, and in a considerable 
number it is altogether wanting : the plate is in general widest at its extremity, 
and is set with four or five points which are sometimes recurved. The main stem 
of the horns also exhibits an endless variety in its thickness, altitude, and curva- 
ture. During the growth of the horns they are covered with a hairy skin, which 
is soft and velvety to the touch, and in an early stage their interior consists of a 
substance which has the flavour of marrow, and resembles it much in appearance, 
but has a finer consistence, and is furnished with more conspicuous blood-vessels. 
The horns become indurated as they increase in size, and when they have attained 
their full growth, their velvety covering shrivels and peels off in ragged filaments. 
This takes place in the males in September, previous to the commencement of the 
rutting season, and by the end of November most of the old bucks have shed 
their horns. The young males retain theirs much lopger, and the females do not 

2 I 


lose their horns until they are about to drop their young in the month of May. 
Hearne observes, that the Barren-Ground Caribou bears horns twice the size of 
those of the woodland variety, notwithstanding that the latter is a much larger 

In the month of July the Caribou sheds its winter covering, and acquires a 
short, smooth coat of hair, of a colour composed of clove-brown, mingled with 
deep reddish and yellowish browns ; the under surface of the neck, the belly, and 
the inner sides of the extremities, remaining white in all seasons. The hair at 
first is fine and flexible, but as it lengthens it increases gradually in diameter at 
its roots, becoming at the same time white, soft, compressible, and brittle, like the 
hair of the moose-deer. In the course of the winter the thickness of the hairs at 
their roots becomes so great that they are exceedingly close, and no longer lie 
down smoothly, but stand erect, and they are then so soft and tender below, that 
the flexible, coloured points are easily rubbed off", and the fur appears white^ 
especially on the flanks. This occurs in a smaller degree on the back ; and on the 
under parts the hair, although it acquires length, remains more flexible and 
slender at its roots, and is, consequently, not so subject to break. Towards the 
spring, when the deer are tormented by the larvae of the gad-fly making their way 
through the skin, they rub themselves against stones and rocks, until all the 
coloured tops of the hair are worn off, and their fur appears to be entirely of a 
soiled white colour. 

The closeness of the hair of the Caribou, and the lightness of its skin^ when 
properly dressed, renders it the most appropriate article for winter clothing in the 
high latitudes. The skins of the young deer make the best dresses, and they 
should be killed for that purpose in the months of August or September, as after 
the latter date the hair becomes too long and brittle. The prime parts of 
eight or ten deer-skins make a complete suit of clothing for a grown person^ 
which is so impervious to the cold, that, with the addition of a blanket of 
the same material, any one, so clothed, may bivouack on the snow with safety^ 
and even M'ith comfort, in the most intense cold of an Arctic winter's night. 
The hoofs of this variety of rein-deer are very large, and spread greatly ; and 
the posterior or accessory ones make a loud clattering noise when the animal 
runs. The forms of the latter are almost always visible in its foot-marks, unless 
the ground be so hard that even the principal hoofs make little impression. 

The Barren-Ground Caribou, which resort to the coast of the Arctic Sea, in 
summer, retire in winter to the woods lying between the sixty-third and the sixty- 
sixth degree of latitude, where they feed on the imiecE, akdorm, and other lichens. 


which hang from the trees, and on the long- grass of the swamps. About the end 
of Aprils when the partial melting of the snow has softened the cetrarice, cornicularice, 
and cenomyces^ which clothe the barren-grounds like a carpet, they make short 
excursions from the woods, but return to them when the weather is frosty. In 
May the females proceed towards the sea-coast, and towards the end of June the 
males are in full march in the same direction. At that period the power of the 
sun has dried up the lichens on the barren-grounds, and the Caribou frequent the 
moist pastures which cover the bottoms of the narrow vallies on the coasts and 
islands of the Arctic Sea, where they graze on the sprouting carices, and on the 
withered grass or hay of the preceding year, which is at that period still standing, 
and retaining part of its sap. Their spring journey is performed partly on the 
snow, and partly, after the snow has disappeared, on the ice covering the rivers 
and lakes, which have, in general, a northerly direction. Soon after their arrival 
on the coast the females drop their young ; they commence their return to the 
south in September, and reach the vicinity of the woods towards the end of October, 
where they are joined by the males. This journey takes place after the snow has 
fallen, and they scrape it away with their feet to procure the lichens, which are 
then tender and pulpy, being preserved moist and unfrozen by the heat still 
remaining in the earth. Except in the rutting season, the bulk of the males and 
females live separately : the former retire deeper into the woods in the winter, 
whilst herds of the pregnant does stay on the skirts of the Barren Grounds, and 
proceed to the coast very early in spring. Captain Parry saw deer on Melville 
Peninsula as late as the 23d of September, and the females, with their fawns, 
made their first appearance on the 22d of April. The males in general do not go 
so far north as the females. On the coast of Hudson's Bay the Barren-Ground 
Caribou migrate further south than those on the Coppermine or Mackenzie Rivers ; 
but none of them go to the southward of Churchill. 

The lichens, on which the Caribou principally feed whilst on the Barren-Grounds, 
are the cornicularia tristis, divergem, and oc/irileiica, the cetraria nwalls, cucidlata, 
and islandica, and the cenomycc rangiferina. When in condition, there is a layer 
of fat deposited on the back and rump of the males to the depth of two or three 
inches or more, immediately under the skin, which is termed depouille by the 
Canadian voyagers ; and as an article of Indian trade, it is often of more value 
than all the remainder of the carcass. The depoiiille is thickest at the commence- 
ment of the rutting season ; it then becomes of a red colour, and acquires a high 
flavour, and soon afterwards disappears. The females at that period are lean ; 
but in the course of the winter they acquire a small depoiiille, which is exhausted 

2 12 


soon after they drop their young-. The flesh of the caribou is very tender^ and its 
flavour when in season is^ in my opinion, superior to that of the finest English 
venison ; but when the animal is lean it is very insipid^ the difference being- greater 
between well-fed and lean caribou than any one can conceive who has not had an 
opportunity of judging-. The lean meat fills the stomach but never satisfies the 
appetite, and scarcely serves to recruit the strength when exhausted by labour. 
The flesh of the moose-deer and buffalo, on the other hand, is tough when lean, 
but is never so utterly tasteless and devoid of nourishment as that of a caribou in 
poor condition. The Chepewyans, the Copper Indians, the Dog-ribs and Hare 
Indians of Great Bear Lake, would be totally unable to inhabit their barren lands 
v^^ere it not for the immense herds of this deer that exist there. Of the caribou 
horns they form their fish-spears and hooks ; and previous to the introduction of 
European iron, ice-chisels and various other utensils were likewise made of them. 
The hide dressed with the fur is, as has been already mentioned, excellent for 
winter clothing, and supplies the place of both blanket and feather-bed to the 
inhabitants of the Arctic wilds. When subjected to the process described in the 
article on the moose-deer, it forms a soft and pliable leather, adapted for mocassins 
and summer clothing, or when sixty or seventy skins are sewed together, they 
make a tent sufficient for the residence of a large family. The shin-bone of the 
deer, split so as to present a sharp edge, is the knife that is used to remove the 
hair in the process of making the leather. The undressed hide, after the hair is 
taken off", is cut into thongs of various thickness, which are twisted into deer- 
snares, bow-strings, net-lines, and in fact supply all the purposes of rope. The 
finer thongs are used in the manufacture of fishing nets or in working snow- 
shoes ; while the tendons of the dorsal muscles are split into fine and excellent 
sewing thread. 

Besides these and many other uses to which the Indians appropriate different 
parts of the caribou in their domestic economy, the animal is no less useful in the 
way of food. The hunter breaks the leg bones of a recently-slaughtered deer, and 
while the marrow is still warm devours it with much relish. The kidneys and 
part of the intestines, particularly the thin folds of the third stomach or many-plies, 
are likewise occasionally eaten when raw% and the summits of the antlers, as long 
as they are soft, are also delicacies in a raw state. The colon or large gut is 
inverted, so as to preserve its fatty appendages, and is, when either roasted or 
boiled, one of the richest and most savoury morsels the country affords, either to 
the native or white resident. The remainder of the intestines, after being cleaned, 
are hung in the smoke for a few days and then broiled. The stomach and its 


contents^ termed by the Esquimaux nerrooks, and by the Greenlanders ncrrolcah or 
nerriookak, are also eaten, and it would appear that the lichens and other 
vegetable matters on which the caribou feeds are more easily digested by the 
human stomach when they have are mixed with the salivary and gastric juices 
of a ruminating animal. Many of the Indians and Canadian voyagers prefer 
this savoury mixture after it has undergone a degree of fermentation,, or lain 
to season, as they term it, for a few days. The blood, if mixed in proper 
proportion with a strong decoction of fat meat, forms, after some nicety in 
the cooking, a rich soup, which is very palatable and highly nutritious, but 
very difficult of digestion. When all the soft parts of the animal are consumed, 
the bones are pounded small, and a large quantity of marrow is extracted 
from them by boiling. This is used in making the better kinds of the mixture of 
dried meat and fat, which is named pemmican, and it is also preserved by the 
young men and females for anointing the hair and greasing the face on dress 
occasions. The tongue roasted, when fresh or when half dried, is a delicious 
morsel. Wlien it is necessary to preserve the caribou meat for use at a future 
period, it is cut into thin slices and dried over the smoke of a slow fire, and then 
pounded betwixt two stones. This pounded meat is very dry and husky if 
eaten alone, but when a quantity of the back fat or depouille of the deer is added 
to it, is one of the greatest treats that can be offered to a resident in the fur 
countries. Pemmican is formed by pouring one-third part of melted fat over the 
pounded meat and incorporating them well together. If kept dry it may be pre- 
served sound for three or four years, and from the quantity of nourishment it 
contains in small bulk, it is perhaps the best kind of food for those who travel 
through desert lands. Thueehawgan is a mixture of pounded deer's meat and 
dried fish or fish-roe, which is eaten raw, or when made into soup, by tlnowing a 
handful of it into boiling water. 

The caribou travel in herds, varying in number from eight or ten to two or three 
hundred, and their daily excursions are generally towards the quarter from whence 
the wind blows. The Indians kill them with the bow and arrow or gun, take them 
in snares, or spear them in crossing rivers or lakes. The Esquimaux also take 
them in traps ingeniously formed of ice or snow. Of all the deer of North 
America, they are the most easy of approach, and are slaughtered in the greatest 
numbers. A single family of Indians will sometimes destroy two or three hundred 
in a few weeks, and in many cases they are killed for the sake of their tongues alone. 

The following extract from Captain Lyon's interesting Journal, details some 
of the Esquimaux methods of killing them. *' The rein-deer^" says he*, 

* Private Journal, p, 336. 


" visits the polar regions at the latter end of May or the early part of June^ and 
remains until late in September. On his first arrival, he is thin_, and his flesh is 
tasteless^ but the short summer is sufficient to fatten him to two or three inches on 
the haunches. When feeding on the level ground^ an Esquimaux makes no 
attempt to approach him, but should a few rocks be near^ the wary hunter feels 
secure of his prey. Behind one of these he cautiously creeps, and having laid 
himself very close, with his bow and arrow before him, imitates the bellow of the 
deer when calling to each other. Sometimes, for more complete deception^ the 
hunter wears his deer-skin coat and hood so drawn over his head, as to resemble, 
in a great measure, the unsuspecting animals he is enticing. Though the bellow 
proves a considerable attraction, yet if a man has great patience he may do 
without it, and may be equally certain that his prey will ultimately come to 
examine him ; the rein-deer being an inquisitive animal, and at the same time so 
silly, that if he sees any suspicious object which is not actually chasing him, he 
will gradually, and after many caperings, and forming repeated circles, approach 
nearer and nearer to it. The Esquimaux rarely shoot until the creature is within 
twelve paces, and I have frequently been told of their being killed at a much 
shorter distance. It is to be observed that the hunters never appear openly, but 
employ stratagem for their purpose ; thus, by patience and ingenuity, rendering 
their rudely-formed bows, and still worse arrows, as effective as the rifles of 
Europeans. When two men hunt in company, they sometimes purposely shew 
themselves to the deer, and when his attention is fully engaged, walk slowly 
away from him, one before the other. The deer follows, and when the hunters 
arrive near a stone, the foremost drops behind it and prepares his bow, while his 
companion continues walking steadily forward. This latter, the deer still follows 
unsuspectingly, and thus passes near the concealed man, who takes a deliberate 
aim and kills the animal. When the deer assemble in herds, there are particular 
passes which they invariably take, and on being driven to them are killed by 
arrows by the men, while the women, with shouts, drive them to the water. 
Here they swim with the ease and activity of water-dogs, the people in kayaks 
chasing and easily spearing them ; the carcasses float, and the hunter then 
presses forward and kills as many as he finds in his track. No springs or traps 
are used in the capture of these animals, as is practised to the southward, in 
consequence of the total absence of standing wood." The caribou entirely quit 
the districts which Captain Lyon visited, in the winter ; but the Esquimaux who 
inhabit the coast of the Welcome, to the southward of Chesterfield inlet, have 
an opportunity, by the animals continuing in their country, of shewing their 
ingenuity in the construction of deer-traps, of their convenient and elegant 



building material, compact snow. The sides of the trap are built of slabs of 
that substance, cut as if for a snow-house ; an inclined plane of snow leads to 
the entrance of the pit, which is about five feet deep, and of sufficient dimen- 
sions to contain two or three large deer. The pit is covered with a large, 
thin slab of snow, which the animal is enticed to tread upon by a quantity 
of the lichens on which it feeds being placed conspicuously on an eminence 
beyond the opening. The exterior of the trap is banked up with snow so as to 
resemble a natural hillock, and care is taken to render it so steep on all sides but 
one, that the deer must pass over the mouth of the trap before it can reach the 
bait. The slab is sufficiently strong to bear the weight of a deer until it has 
passed its middle, when it revolves on two short axles of wood, precipitates the 
deer into the trap, and returns to its place again in consequence of the lower end 
being heavier than the other. Throughout the whole line of coast frequented by 
the Esquimaux, it is customary to see long lines of stones set on an end, or of turfs 
piled up at intervals of about twenty yards, for the purpose of leading the caribou 
to stations where they can be more easily approached. The natives find by 
experience that the animals, in feeding, imperceptibly take the line of direction 
of the objects thus placed before them, and the hunter can approach a herd 
that he sees from a distance, by gradually crawling from stone to stone, and 
remaining motionless when he sees any of the animals looking towards him. The 
whole of the Barren-Grounds are intersected by caribou paths, like sheep tracks, 
which are of service to travellers at times in leading them to convenient crossing 
places of lakes or rivers. 

Hearne gives the following account of the deer pound in use amongst the 
Chepewyans : — 

'' When the Indians design to impound deer, they look out for one of the 
paths in which a number of them have trod, and which is observed to be still 
frequented by them. When these paths cross a lake, a wide river, or a barren 
plain, they are found to be much the best for the purpose ; and if the path run 
through a cluster of woods, capable of affording materials for building the pound, 
it adds considerably to the commodiousness of the situation. The pound is built 
by making a strong fence with brushy trees, without observing any degree of 
regularity, and the work is continued to any extent, according to the pleasure of 
the builders. 1 have seen some that were not less than a mile round, and am 
informed that there are others still more extensive. The door or entrance of the 
pound is not larger than a common gate, and the inside is so crowded with small 
counter-hedges as very much to resemble a maze, in every opening of which 


they set a snare, made with thongs of parchment deer-skins well twisted together, 
which are amazingly strong. One end of the snare is usually made fast to a 
growing pole ; but if no one of a sufficient size can be found near the place where 
the snare is set, a loose pole is substituted in its room, which is always of such 
size and length that a deer cannot drag it far before it gets entangled among the 
other woods, which are all left standing, except what is found necessary for 
making the fence, hedges, &c. The pound being thus prepared, a row of small 
brush-wood is stuck up in the snow on each side of the door or entrance, and these 
hedge rows are continued along the open part of the lake, river, or plain, where 
neither stick nor stump besides is to be seen, which makes them the more dis- 
tinctly observed. These poles or brush-wood are generally placed at the distance 
of fifteen or twenty yards from each other, and ranged in such a manner as to form 
two sides of a long" acute angle, growing gradually wider in proportion to the 
distance they extend from the pound, which sometimes is not less than two or 
three miles, while the deer's path is exactly along the middle, between the two 
rows of brush- wood. 

" Indians employed on this service always pitch their tents on or near to an 
eminence that affords a commanding prospect of the path leading to the pound ; 
and when they see any deer going that way, men, women, and children walk along 
the lake or river side under cover of the woods, till they get behind them, then 
step forth to open view, and proceed towards the pound in form of a crescent. 
The poor timorous deer finding themselves pursued, and at the same time taking 
the two rows of brushy poles to be two ranks of people stationed to prevent their 
passing on either side, run straight forward in the path till they get into the pound. 
The Indians then close in, and block up the entrance with some brushy trees that 
■have been cut down and lie at hand for that purpose. The deer being thus 
enclosed, the women and children walk round the pound to prevent them from 
jumping over or breaking- through the fence, while the men are employed spearing 
such as are entangled in the snares, and shooting with bows and arrows those which 
remain loose in the pound. This method of hunting, if it deserve the name, is 
sometimes so successful, that many families subsist by it without having occasion 
to move their tents above once or twice during the course of a whole winter ; and 
when the spring- advances, both the deer and Indians draw out to the eastward, 
on the ground which is entirely barren, or at least what is called so in these parts, 
as it neither produces trees nor shrubs of any kind, so that moss and some little 
grass is all the herbage which is to be found on it." 

Captain Franklin observes that " the rein-deer has a quick eye, but the hunter 


by keeping- to leeward of them, and using a little caution, may approach very 
near ; their apprehensions being- much more easily roused by the smell than the 
sight of any unusual object. Indeed their curiosity often causes them to come 
close up to and wheel round the hunter, thus affording him a good opportunity of 
singling out the fattest of the herd, and upon these occasions they become so 
confused by the shouts and gestures of their enemy, that they run backwards and 
forwards with great rapidity, but without the power of making their escape. The 
Copper Indians find by experience that a white dress attracts them most readily, 
and they often succeed in bringing them within shot, by kneeling and vibrating 
the gun from side to side, in imitation of the motion of a deer's horns wlien he is 
in the act of rubbing his head against a stone. The Dog-rib Indians have a mode 
of killing these animals, which, though simple, is very successful. It was thus 
described by Mr. Wentzel, who resided long amongst that people. The hunters 
go in pairs, the foremost man carrying in one hand the horns and part of the skin 
of the head of a deer, and in the other a small bundle of twigs, against which he, 
from time to time, rubs the horns, imitating the gestures peculiar to the animal. 
His comrade follows treading exactly in his footsteps, and holding the guns of 
both in a horizontal position, so that the muzzles project under the arms of him 
who carries the head. Both hunters have a fillet of white skin round their fore- 
heads, and the foremost has a strip of the same round his wrists. They approach 
the herd by degrees, raising their legs very slowly but setting them down some- 
what suddenly, after the manner of a deer, and always taking care to lift their 
right or left feet simultaneously. If any of the herd leave off feeding to gaze 
upon this extraordinary phenomenon, it instantly stops, and the head begins to 
play its part by licking its shoulders and performing other necessary movements. 
In this way the hunters attain the very centre of the herd without exciting sus- 
picion, and have leisure to single out the fattest. The hindmost man then pushes 
forward his comrade's gun, the head is dropt, and they both fire nearly at the 
same instant. The deer scamper off, the hunters trot after them ; in a short 
time the poor animals halt to ascertain the cause of their teiror, their foes stop at 
the same moment, and having loaded as they ran, greet the gazers with a second 
fatal discharge. The consternation of the deer increases, they run to and fro in 
the utmost confusion, and sometimes a great part of the herd is destroyed within 
the space of a few hundred yards." 



Cervus tarandus, var. (B, sylvestris. Woodland Caribou. 

Caribou. Theodat, La Hontan, Chahlevoix, &c. 

Rein-deer. Drage, Dobbs, &c. 

Attehk. Cree Indians. Tantseeah. Copper Indians. 

Of the form of this variety I know little, having seen few of them alive or in an 
entire state when killed. It is much larger than the Barren-Ground Caribou, has 
smaller horns, and even when in good condition is vastly inferior as an article of 
food. The proper country of this deer is a stripe of low primitive rocks, well 
clothed with wood, about one hundred miles wide, and extending at the distance of 
eighty or a hundred miles from the shores of Hudson's Bay, from Athapescow 
Lake to Lake Superior. Contrary to the practice of the Barren-Ground Caribou, 
the Woodland variety travels to the southward in the spring. They cross the 
Nelson and Severn Rivers in immense herds in the month of May, pass the sum- 
mer on the low, marshy shores of James' Bay, and return to the northward, and 
at the same time retire more inland in the month of September. From November 
to April it is rare to meet with one within ninety or a hundred miles of the 
coast. A few deer of this kind frequent the svramps near Cumberland- house 
in the winter, but it is extremely rare indeed for a stray individual to wander on 
that parallel so far to the westward as Carlton-house. Mr. Hutchins mentions 
that he has seen eighty carcasses of this kind of deer brought into York 
Factory in one day, and many others were refused, for want of salt to preserve 
them. These were killed when in the act of crossing Hayes- River, and the 
natives continued to destroy them, for the sake of the skins, long after they 
had stored up more meat than they required. I have been informed by several 
of the residents at York Factory that the herds are sometimes so large as ta 
require several hours to cross the river in a crowded phalanx. The rut takes 
place in the beginning of October, and the doe drops her young in June. Mr. 
Hutchins said that several of the fawns have been brought up at the factories, 
and have become as tame as a pet lamb, but that they all died in the chops of 
the Channel when attempts were made to carry them to England. The same 
gentleman mentions that the buck has a peculiar bag or cist in the lower part of 
the neck about the bigness of a crown-piece, and filled with fine flaxen hair 
neatly coiled round to the thickness of an inch. There is an opening through 


iSae skiiij near t"he head, leading to the cist^ but Mr. Hutchins does not offer a con- 
jecture as to its uses in the economy of the animal. Camper found a membranous 
cist in the rein-deer above the thyroid cartilage and opening into the larynx, but 
I have met with no account of a cist with a duct opening externally like that 
described by Mr. Hutchins, and, unfortunately, 1 was not aware of his remarks 
tmtil the means of ascertaining whether such a sac exists in the Barren-Ground 
caribou were beyond my reach. Both the Barren-Ground and Woodland caribous 
are infested by the gadfly. 

[75.] 3. Cervus strongyloceros. (Schreber.) The Wapiti. 

Stag. Pennant, Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 27. 

Wewaskiss. Heakne, Journ., p. 300. 

Waskeesews, or Red-deer. Hutchins, MSS. 

Red-deer. Umfuevii-le, Hudson's Bay^ p. 1C3. An. 1790. 

The Elk. Lewis and Clark, Voy., vol. ii. p. 107. An. 1810. 

American Elk. Bewick, Quadr., p. 112. 

Wapiti. " Barton, Med. and Phys. Jotirii., vol. iii. p. 30." Warden, United States, vol. i. p. 241. 

Le "Wapiti. F. Cuvier, Hist. Nat. des Mamni-, Livr. 20 and 28. An. 1820. 

The Wapiti (C. Strongyloceros). Smith, Griffith's An. Kingd., vol. iv. p. 90. 

Red-deer. Hudson's Bay Traders. La Biche. Canadian Voyagers. 

Wawaskeeshoo ; also, awaskees and moostoosh. Crees. 

This animal does not extend its range further to the north than the 56th or o7th 
parallel of latitude, nor is it found to the eastward of a line drawn from the south 
end of Lake Winipeg to the Saskatchewan, in the 103d degree of longitude, and 
from thence till it strikes the Elk River in the 111th degree. To the South of 
Lake Winipeg it may perhaps exist further to the eastward. They are pretty 
numerous amongst the clumps of wood that skirt the plains of the Saskatchewan, 
where they live in small families of six or seven individuals. They feed on grass, 
on the young shoots of willows and poplars, and are very fond of the hips of the 
rosa blcinda, which forms much of the underwood in the districts which they 
frequent. Hearne remarks that they are " the most stupid of all the deer kind, 
and frequently make a shrill whistling and quivering noise, not very unlike the 
braying of an ass." Mr. Drummond, who saw many of these deer in his journies 
through the plains of the Saskatchewan, informs me that the wawaskeesh does not 
iell like the English red-deer ; and M. F. Cuvier describes the cry of the male as 

2 K2 


being- prolonged and acute^ and consisting of the successive sounds of the vowels 
a, 0, u, (french,) uttered with so much strength as to offend the ear. The cry of 
the European stag, when compared to it, is dull and base, though not deficient iu 
strength. The velvety covering shrivels and is rubbed off the horns of the 
Wapiti in the month of October, at the commencement of the rutting seascn_, but 
the horns themselves do not fall until the months of March or April. Two male 
Wapitis were found near Edmonton -house, lying dead, with their horns locked 
into each other, and the moose and rein deer are reported to have occasionally 
died under similar circumstances. The flesh of the Wapiti is coarse, and is 
little prized by the natives, principally on account of its fat being hard liiie suet. 
It seemed to me to want the juiciness of venison, and to resemble dry but small 
grained beef. Its hide, when made into leather, after the Indian fashion, is said 
not to turn hard in drying after being wet, and in that respect to excel moose or 
rein-deer leather. 

The wawaskeesh of the Saskatchewan River was long considered by the 
Fur Traders as the same with the red-deer or stag of Europe, and its re- 
semblance to that animal is, indeed, so great, that, as M. F. Cuvier states, their 
specific differences become apparent only when an opportunity occurs of comparing 
them with each other, and of attentively studying their manners when they are 
placed under similar circumstances. Pennant, without having seen a specimen 
of the true ivawaskeesh, or, as he writes it, waskesse, applies that name to the 
moose, probably misled by the appellation of '^ grey moose," which was given 
to the ivupiti in contradistinction to the name of " black moose," which was appro- 
priated to the Cerviis alces. Its trivial name of ^^ wapiti" has been only recently 
adopted in scientific works, but is preferable to fhe appellations either of elk, 
grey-moose, or red-deer, which have already been the means of confounding it 
with other species. A number of live specimens were brought from the Missouri 
to Europe some years ago, and were by several authors described as a new 
species, and introduced into the catalogues under the name of Cerviis Wapiti. 
Several Hudson's-Bay Traders, however, well acquahited with the wawaskeesh, 
recognised it at once in the wapiti shewn in England ; and my recollections of two 
recent specimens of the wawaskeesh, which I had an opportunity of examining on 
the Saskatchewan, induce me to conform without hesitation to their opinion. It is 
also without doubt the Canada stag of various authors, but, as M. F. Cuvier has 
observed, the want of a pale mark on the rump in Perrault's figure is sufficient to 
excite a doubt of its being the CervJis Canadensis * of that author. Indeed, I do 

* Perrault, 3Iem. sur les An., vol, ii. p. 45. 


not think it at all improbable that his fig-ure is that of the Cerous macrotls, which 
may hereafter prove to be an inhabitant of Upper Canada *. 

Translated from the Hist. Naturelle des Mammifires. 

The height of the wapiti at the shoulders is 4i feet, whilst that of the European sta"' is 
more than a foot less. They agree with each other in the form and proportions of their 
heads and limbs, but they differ in their respective tints of colour, that of the common stag 
being an uniform blackish-brown, whilst the wapiti has all its superior parts and the lower 
jaw of a pretty lively yellowish-brown, and a black mark extends from the angle of the mouth 
along the side of the lower jaw. There is a whitish circle round the eye of the European 
animal, but in the American one this circle is brown. 

The common stag has generally the first antlers turned upwards at their points, whilst in 
the wapiti these antlers are depressed in the direction of the facial line, and this character 
appears to be constant. The neck in both species has a deeper tint of colour than the sides 
of the body; it is blackish- brown in the European stag, and mixed red and black in the 
American one, with coarse black hairs depending from it like a dewlap ; and this colour, 
which changes to a brown mixed with white from the shoulders to the hips in the former, 
becomes a clear French-gray in the same parts of the latter. In both, the limbs have a 
deeper brown colour anteriorly than posteriorly ; and both also have a very pale yellowish 
spot on the buttocks, bounded on the thighs by a black line, and the tail is likewise of this 
yellowish colour, but it is nearly seven inches long in the European stag, whilst it is 
scarcely two and a half in the Canadian one. The colours here mentioned are those which 
exist at the commencement of the autumn. 

The hair of the wapiti is of mean length on the shoulders, the back, the flanks, the thighs, 
and the under part of the head : the sides and the limbs are clothed with shorter hairs ; but 
they are very long on the sides of the head posteriorly and on the neck, particularly beneath, 
where they form, as has been mentioned above, a kind of dewlap ; and there is on the 
posterior and outer aspect of the hind-leg a brush of tawny hair which surrounds a narrow, 
long, horny substance. The ears are white interiorly, and clothed with tufted hairs ; ex- 
teriorly their colour is the same with that of the neighbouring parts. There is a naked 
triangular space round the lachrymal opening near the inner angle of the orbit. The hoofs of 
the wapiti are small. 

The wapiti, like the common stag, has very large lachrymal or suborbital openings f, a 
muzzle, upper canine teeth, a soft tongue, coarse brittle hair, with a short wool beneath it, &c. 

* The following passage occurs in the History of Canada by Theodat. " Les cerfs qu'lls appellant Sconoton, sont 
plus communs dans le pays des Neutres, qu'en toutes les autres contrees Huronnes, mais lis sont un peu plus petits 
que les nostres de deija, et tres legers de pied." The stag that he here speaks of as being smaller than the common 
one, cannot be the Wapiti. He mentions the Elk and Rein-deer, under their names of Eslan and Caribou, and he 
refers probably to the Cerviis Virginiamis^ by the appellation of Le Dain, which he says is an animal that he knew 
merely by report as an inhabitant of North America. The country of the Neutres seems to have been on the 
northern shores of Lake Huron near the River Nattawasaga. 

f The Crees probably on this account term the wapiti "stinking head." 


[76.] 4. Cervus macrotis. (Say.) The Black-tailed Deer. 

Jumping deer. Umfbeville, Hiidsoii's Bay, 'p. 1C4. 

Black-tailed or Mule deer. Gass, Jotirn., p. 55. 

Black-tailed deer. Mule-deer. Lewis and Clark, vol. i. pp. 91, 92, IOC, 152, 239, 264, 328 ; vol. ii. p. 152 ; vol. ii£. 

p. 27, 125. 
Mule-deer. ^Varden, United States, vol. i. -p. 2-io. 
Cervus auritus. Idem, (Ed. Gall.,) t. v. p. 640." 
Cerf mulet. Desjiarest, Mamm. in notis, p. 443. 
Le Dain fauve a queue noire. Idem, /oco citato. 
Black-tailed or Mule deer. James, Long's Exped., vol. ii. p. 276. 
Cervus macrotis. Say, Long's Expedit., vol. ii. p. 254. (American ed., vol. ii. p. 88.) Sabine, Franklin's Journ., 

p. 667- Harlax, Fauna, p. 243. 
Black-tail deer. Godman, A^a/. i/jrf., vol. ii. p. 305. 

Great-eared deer (Cervus macrotis). Griffith, An. Kingd., vol. iv. p. 133. 
Cerv-us macrotis. Idem, vol, v. No. 794. 

Plate xx. 

Lewis and Clark, in various parts of the narrative of tlieir interesting journey, 
speak of a black-tailed deer, and of a mule-deer^ which, on referring to Serjeant 
Gass' Journal, are found to be the same animal. Mr. Say thinks that his Cervus 
macrotis is also the same species, and this opinion is confirmed by the observations 
of Mr. David Douglas. I have seen no authenticated specimens of Cervus 
macrotis, but the skins of male and female deer killed in the vicinity of the 
Rocky Mountains, and presented to the Zoological Society, have all the 
characters ascribed by Mr. Say to his species. The plains of the Saskat- 
chewan are frequented by only four Cervi, two of which, the moose and wapiti, 
are well ascertained. The other two have long been termed indiscriminately 
by the Canadian voyagers " chevreuil,'' and by the Hudson's-Bay traders 
" jumping deer." The Cree Indians call them both in their language apeesee- 
mongsoos (little moose), but when they wish to be more precise they distinguish 
one as the atheeneefoo apeesee-mongsoos (real little moose), and the other as 
the kinwaithoo-ioai/oo apeesee-mongsoos (long-tailed little moose), or simply as 
kmwaithoos (long-tail). I used every endeavour whilst residing in that quarter 
to procure specimens of both kinds, and sent out Indian hunters for the purpose 
with the promise of a good reward if they succeeded ; but it happened to 
be a period of scarcity, and although some were killed, the appetites of the 
hunters proved superior to their love of gain, and they devoured them all even to 


the skins. I collected^ however, information respecting them, which induces me 
to refer one to the Cerviis macrotis of Say, and the other to the Cervtis leuciinis of 
Doug-las, which is the long-tailed common fallow deer of Lewis and Clark. They 
are both said to be of a grey colour, but differ in size, in the length of their tails, 
and in their gait. The larger one (C macrotis) when roused, makes off by 
uninterrupted bounds, raising all its feet from the ground at once, and vibrating 
its black-tipped tail from side to side ; while the small one trots a few steps, 
makes a great bound, and trots again, much like the Cerviis Virginiamis. 

If these indications be coiTect, the Cervus macrotis may be said to inhabit the 
whole extent of the plains of the Missouri, Saskatchewan, and Columbia ; and 
according to Lewis and Clark, it is the only species to be found on the Mountains 
in the vicinity of the first falls of the Columbia. They are numerous on the 
Quamash Flats, which border on the Kooskooskee *River. Their most northern 
range is the banks of the Saskatchewan, in about latitude 54°, and they do not 
come to the eastward of longitude 105° in that parallel. This deer being an 
inhabitant on the east side of the mountains of a district frequented by immense 
herds of buffalo, and also by the large moose deer and wapiti, is of small esteem 
amongst the Indians in that quarter, and has attracted but little attention from the 
traders : hence, with the exception of a brief notice by Umfreville, it was almost 
unknown to naturalists until Lewis and Clark's expedition gave some information 
respecting it. 


Of a male specimen, killed in January, 1827, noted as fvJl-grown, but not old, now in the Zoological Museum, 
Size. — Height about that of the Woodland-caribou ; weight, said to be about two hundred- 
weight. Horns, cyUndrical, twice forked, the first fork situated ten inches from the base, the 
second one six inches from the first. The stem has a direction upwards, outwards, and a 
little backwards, with a gentle curvature. It is two inches apart from its fellow at its union 
•with the scull, and its lower part is rough, and somewhat knobbed. One of the anterior 
knobs in this specimen seems to be the rudiment of a snag or branchlet. At the first bifur- 
cation one branch projects directly forwards, the other is nearly erect. Each fork subdivides 
into two tapering branchlets, nine or ten inches long ; one branchlet of each pair curves 
forwards, and has its point turned a little inwards, the other is rather taller, and more 
upright. The horns are compressed for a short space at the forks : their total height is 
twenty inches, their summits, or the most erect of the posterior pair of points, are fifteen 
inches apart ; and the superior points of the anterior pair are twenty inches apart. The 
horns want the small basal process which exists in Mr. Say's specimen. The lachrymal 
openings* are large, and situated close beneath the eye. The ears reach to the bifurcation of 

* Larmiers, French Authors. Cr!<»ie;j5 (th. cruwena, a bag.) Flemixg. 


the horns. Colour. — The nose and face are grayish-white, and a brown mark, originating 
between the nostrils, is continued behind their naked margins downwards to the lower jaw, to 
unite with a dark patch that is situated behind the chin ; the chin and throat are white ; the 
forehead is of a dull or soiled dark brown, mixed with umber. The neck, back, sides, and 
hips, are brownish-gray, the hairs clothing those parts being dark brown from their roots to 
near their tips, Avhere they exhibit a pale yellowish-brown ring, surmounted by a black tip. 
The black tips are more conspicuous on the spinous processes of the neck, and form there a 
dark line, which is continued, though less distinctly, down the middle of the back. The 
colour of the chest is blackish-brown, and a dark line is continued from it down the centre of 
the belly; the fur on the posterior part of the belly is long and hairy; the anterior part of 
the belly is fawn-coloured ; the posterior part is white, as are likewise the interior surfaces of 
the thighs. The tail, at its junction with the back, has a dark brown mark ; the greater part 
of it is, however, white, with a tinge of brown, and its tip is black. The legs are of a mixed 
yellowish-brown and black colour, anteriorly, and of a very pale brownish-white, posteriorly. 

Length from the tip of the nose to the brow 

between the horns . , 1 

„ from the brow to the tail . . 4 


Of a full-grown female, killed April, 1827. 

Has no antlers ; the colours of the fur are more distinct ; the upper parts are gray, with 
minute specklings ; colour of the chest, between the fore-legs, dark hair-brown ; between the 
hind-legs the fur is nearly white. The forehead is of a paler gray than the forehead of the 
male, and there is a large white patch surrounding the origin of the tail. 

Length of back, from the neck to the tail . 3 
,, neck ... 1 

„ head, from nose to between the 

ears . . . .1 



Length of the tail (vertebrae) 
„ „ with the hair 




Height at the fore-shoulder 







Length of head and body 

. 5 


„ tail, with the hair, about 


,, ears 




Height, about .... 




Cervus macrotis, var. /3. Columbiana. 

Black-tailed fallow deer. Lewis and Clark, vol. iii. pp. 26, 125. 
Long-tailed deer. Griffith, Anim. Kingd., vol. iv. p. 134. 
Cervus macrourus. Idem, vol. v. No. 795. 

Whether this be distinct or not from the Cermis macrotis, I am unable to say, 
having seen no specimens, and knowing it only from the short account by Lewis 
and Clark. Mr. Griffith, following Warden, has confounded this with the "long- 
tailed fallow deer " of these travellers, termed also by them " common red-deer 
with a long tail^" to which the name oi macrourus would have been appropriate, 
but which does not apply to this, which is said to have " a tail of the same length 
with that of the common deer." 

Lewis and Clark's account of the variety or species is as follows. '' The black- 
tailed fallow deer are peculiar to this coast (mouth of the Columbia), and are a 
distinct species, partaking equally of the qualities of the mule and the common 
deer. Their ears are longer than those of the common deer (C. virginianus 
or leucurus). The receptacle of the eye more conspicuous, their legs shorter, 
their bodies thicker and larger. The tail is of the same length with that of 
the common deer, the hair on the under side white, and on its sides and 
top of a deep jetty black ; the hams resembling in form and colour those of the 
mule deer, which it likewise resembles in its gait. The black-tailed deer never 
runs at full speed, but bounds with every foot from the ground at the same time, 
like the mule-deer. He sometimes inhabits the woodlands, but more often tlie 
prairies and open grounds. It may be generally said that he is of a size larger 
than the common deer, and less than the mule deer. The flesh is seldom fat, and 
in flavour is far inferior to any other of the species." 



[77.] 5. Cervus leucurus. (Douglas.) Long-tailed Deer. 

Hoe-buck. Dobbs, Hudson's Bay, p. 41. An. 1744. 

Fallow or Virginian deer. Cook, Third Voy., vol. ii. p. 292. An. 1778. 

Long-tailed jumping deer. Ujifreville, Hudson's Bay, p. 190. An. 1790. 

Deer, with small horns and a long tail. Gass, Jonm., p. 55. An. 1808. 

Long-tailed red deer. Lewis and Clark, vol. ii. p. 41. 

Small deer of the Pacific. Iideji, vol. ii. p. 342. 

Common red deer. Tide it, vol. iii. p. 20. 

Common fallow deer, with long tails. Iideji, vol. iii. p. 85. 

Apeesee-mongsoos. Cree Indians. Jumping deer. Hudson's Bay Traders. 

Chevreuil. Canadian Voyagers. Mowitch. Indians west of the Rocky Mountains. 

This animal_, from the general resemblance it has in size^ form^ and habits,, to 
the Cervus capreolus of Europe, has obtained the name of Chevreuil from the 
French Canadians, and of Roebuck from the Scottish highlanders employed by the 
Hudson's Bay Company. These names occur in the works of several authors 
who have written on the fur countries, and Umfreville gives a brief, but, as far as 
it goes, a correct description of it. Lewis and Clark allude to it, as far as I can 
judge from their short notices under the different appellations quoted above, aH 
of which indicate that they considered it to be a variety of the Cervus virginianuSj 
which is named red or fallow-deer in different parts of the United States. The 
specific name of Cervus macrourus seems to have been intended to designate this 
deer ; but the characters authors * have assigned to it appertain to var. ^ of the 
Cervus macrotis, having been compiled from Lewis and Clark's short account 
of their black-tailed fallow-deer. The black tip of the tail of the Cervus nmcrotis 
or mule-deer, renders it a more conspicuous object than that of the long-tailed 
deer, and the former is often termed kinwaithoos or long-tail by the Cree hunters, 
although the epithet is more appropriate to the latter. I could not, whilst 
residing on the banks of the Saskatchewan, procure a specimen of this animal, as 
has been mentioned in the preceding article, but have lately had an opportunity 
of examining the skin of a female one presented to the Zoological Museum by the 
Hudson's Bay Company. Mr. David Douglas has given an account of the 
habits of the species in the Zoological Journal, and I have adopted his specific 
name of leucurus, which is preferable to macrourus, because the original descrip- 
tions given under the latter name are not applicable to this species. 

• Warden, United Slates, vol. i. p. 245, Gbiffith's An. Kingd., vol. iv. p. 134. ; vol. v. p, 316. No. 25. 


This, like the preceding' species, does not, on the east side of the Rocky 
Mountains, range further north than latitude 54°, nor is it found in that parallel 
to the eastward of the 105th decree of longfitude. Mr. Doug-las informs us that 
ift is '' the most common deer of any in the districts adjoining- the river Columbia, 
more especially in the fertile prairies of the Cowalidske and Multnomah Rivers, 
vi'ithin one hundred miles of the Pacific Ocean. It is also occasionally met with 
near the base of the Rocky Mountains on the same side of that ridge. Its 
favourite haunts are the coppices, composed of Corijlus, Rubus, Rosa, and 
Amelanchier, on the declivities of the low hills or dry undulating grounds. Its 
gait is two ambling steps and a bound, exceeding double the distange of the steps, 
vrhich mode it does not depart from even when closely pursued. In running the 
tail is erect, wagging from side to side, and from its unusual length is the most 
remarkable feature about the animal. The voice of the male calling the female, 
is like the sound produced by blowing in the muzzle of a gun or in a hollow cane. 
The voice of the female calling the young is nice mce, pronounced shortly. 
This is well imitated by the native tribes, with a stem of Heracleiim lanatum, cut 
at a joint, leaving six inches of a tube. With this, aided by a head and horns of 
a full grown buck, which the hunter carries with him as a decoy, and which he 
moves backwards and forwards among the long grass, alternately feigning th& 
voice with the tube, the unsuspecting animal is attracted within a few yards in the 
hope of finding its partner, when instantly springing up the hunter plants an 
arrow in his object. The flesh is excellent when in good order, and remarkably 
tender and well flavoured." "^ They go in herds from November to April and 
May, when the female secretes herself to bring forth. The young are spotted 
with white until the middle of the first winter, when they change to the same 
colour as the most aged." 

Lewis and Clark say of it — " The common red deer inhabit the Rocky 
Mountains, in the neighbourhood of the Chopunnish, and about the Columbia, 
and down the river as low as where the tide-water commences. They do not 
differ essentially from those of the United States, being the same in shape, size, 
and appearance. The tail is, however, different, which is of unusual length, far 
exceeding that of the common deer. Captain Lewis measured one, and found it 
to be seventeen inches long." In another passage they remark, " the common 
fallow deer with long tails, though very poor, are better than the black-tailed 
fallow deer of the coast, from which they differ materially." As these intelligent 
travellers have remarked, this deer approaches very near to the Cervus virginianus 
in all its characters, and may eventually prove to be only a variety. 




Of a female specimen, killed Febniary, 1827, and presented by the Hudson's Bay Company to the Zoological 

Museum. — Noted as full-grown. 

Form, elegant ; limbs, very slender. Lachrymal opening apparently only a small fold 
in the skin close to the eye. Head and back fawn-colour, mixed with black ; sides 
and cheeks paler ; ears edged with dusky-brown ; chin and throat white ; the tail is 
fawn-coloured, inclining to rusty above, and pure white underneath and at the tip ; hoofS;^ 
small and neat. 

Length of back 
„ neck 
„ head 
„ „ and body 






Length of tail 

,, ,, with fur 



Height of the ears 

Feet. Inches. 


1 1 

This is the smallest deer known in the fur countries, its weight falling short of 
that of the Barren-ground caribou. 

Mr. Douglas brought home the horns of a full grown male. They have a close 
resemblance in form to the horns of the Cercus virginianus. The main stem 
rises at right angles to the facial line^ and gives out near its base an erect, thick^ 
conical snag ; above this the horn makes a regular curve, nearly in a horizontal 
direction forwards, outwards, and at the extreme tip, a little inwards towards its 
fellow ; two tapering erect antlers spring at right angles from the horizontal part 
of the main stem. The distance from the base of the horn to the tip of the snag 
or first antler is four inches ; from the same place to the tip of the second antler, 
which springs from where the horn takes a horizontal direction, is ten inches, 
being the whole height of the horns ; from the base to the tip of the third antler 
is also ten inches ; and from the same place to the extreme tip of the horn, the 
distance, owing to the curvature of the main beam, is only eight inches. The 
lengths of the second and third antlers are respectively four and three inches. 
The distance from the tip of the first antler to that of its fellow on the other horn, 
is five inches ; between the tips of the second antlers, thirteen inches ; between 
the tips of the third antlers, sixteen inches; and between the extreme tips of each 
horn, twelve inches. Mr. Douglas describes the colour of the upper parts of the 
animal in summer as reddish-brown, which changes to a light gray in winter. 

I received from Penetanguishene, on Lake Huron, the skin of a very young 
deer, which is of a dark yellowish-brown colour on the upper parts, interspersed 
with white round spots from the size of a pea to that of a small marble. On each 
side of the spine the spots are arranged in a pretty close even row, and on the 



neck there is a continuous wliite line prolonged from each row of dorsal spots. 
The spots on the sides of the animal are distributed without order. The belly is 
white, and between it and the middle of the back the hair is pale yellowish-brown^ 
and this is also the colour of the chest. I cannot ascertain whether it is the 
young- of the present species, or of the Cerms virgmianus, the tail being mutilated; 
nor have I been able to discover the true Cervus mrginianus within the district to 
which this work refers. It may probably exist, however, on the borders of Lakes 
Huron and Superior. 

[78.] 1. Antilope FURCiFER. (Smith.) Prong-horned J ntilope. 

Oenus. Antilope. Pallas. 

Teuthlalma<;ame. Hernandez, iVou. ITwp., p. 324, 325. Fig. 324 ? An. 1651. 

Le Squenoton. Hist, de V Amerique^ p. 175. An. 1723 ? 

Squinaton. Dobbs, Hudsoii's Bay, p. 24. An. 1744 ? 

Wild goats, or Matheh-tuckwuck. Hutchins, MSS. 

Apistochickoshish. Ujifreville, Hudson's Bay, p. 165. An. 1790. 

Antilope, cabre,or goat. GAis,Journ., &c., pp. 49, 111. 

Antilope. Lewis and Clark, Journ., &c., vol. i. pp. 75, 208, 369 ; vol. ii. p. 169. 

Antilope Americana. " Ord, Guthrie's Geogr. (Philad. ed.,) 1815." 

Cervus hamatns. Blainville, JVouv. Bull. Societ. Phil., 1816, p. 80. 

Antilocapra Americana. Ord, Journ, de Phys., 1818. 

Cervus bifurcatus. Rafinesque. 

Antilope furcifer. C. Hamilton Smith, Lin. Trans., vol. xiii. PI. 2. An. 1823. Desmarest, Mamm., p. 479. 

Sabine, Frankliji's First Journ., p. 667- Griffith, An. Kingd., vol. v. p. 323. 
Antilope palmata. Smith, Opere citato. Desmarest, il/amm., p. 478. 
The prong-horned antilope. Godman, iVa<. //is^, vol. ii. p. 321. Cum figura. S.iriTll, Griffith's An. Kingd., 

vol. iv. p. 170. Cum figura. 
Antilocapra Americana. Harlan, Fauna, p. 250. 

Apeestat-chcekoos, also, My-attehk (plur. My-attekwuck.) Cree Indians. 
Cabree. Canadian Voyagers. Goat. Fur Traders. 

Plate xxr. 
An animal described and figured by Hernandez under the appellation of 
Tcuthlalmaqame, has been referred by Major Smith to the same group of antilopes 
with the subject of this article ; and Messrs. Ord_, Harlan, and others, are even of 
opinion that the figure represents this very species. The figure, however, is so 
rude, and the description so imperfect*, that the matter must remain doubtful, 

* Hernandez's words, as reported by Recchus, are : — " Teuthtlalmagame, Temamagame ego potius computaverim 
inter Capreos." " Teuthtlalmafame, qaecaTprnmraTaeiiocThiin, paulove majori constant magnitudine. Pile teguntur 
cano, et qui facile avellatur, fulvoque sed lateribus, et ventre candentibus, unde Berendos indigeni Hispani vocare 
Solent. Cornua gestant juxta cxortum lata, ac in paucos, parvosque teretes ac praeacutos ramos divisa, et sub eis oculos 
quorum imaginem exhibemus." 


and the inquiry can be interesting only in as far as it regards the change which 
time may have produced in the geographical distribution of the species^ for there 
can be no great difficulty in ascertaining whether the animal is at present an 
inhabitant of California or not ; and if the credit of having first noticed it be 
conceded to Hernandez^ still it is to Lewis and Clark that naturalists owe their 
present knowledge of this animal. These intelligent travellers passed through 
the country where it chiefly abounds, and as it was often an object of chase with 
them^ they had an opportunity of observing its manners ; hence to the facts which 
they have recorded little of importance has been added by subsequent writers. It 
is a common animal on the plains lying betwixt the Saskatchewan and Missouri 
rivers ; yet, although the English Fur Traders established themselves above the 
forks of the former river_, in the year 1770^ and the French Canadians had been 
in the habit of collecting furs along both rivers many years previous to that date^ 
and must have been well acquainted with this animal^ from the circumstances 
probably of its skin being of no value in trade, and its flesh little prized as food, 
nothing beyond its name was known to the civilized world until the year 1790, 
when Umfreville gave a short account of it in his " Present State of Hudson's 
Bay." The anonymous author of the Histoire de VAmerique Septeiitrioiiale has a 
passage respecting an animal that he terms Squenoton, and which has been copied 
by Dobbs. His description of it is too short to be of any use in determining the 
species *, but from the habitat which he assigns to it, of the plains to the south 
west of Lake Winipeg, we know that he must allude either to the Antilopefurciferj 
or to the Cervus macrotis. The Cermis mexicanus, to which Pennant refers the 
Squenoton, does not inhabit those plains, and the author mentions the Cervus 
kucurus under the name of Chevreuil. The appellation of Squenoton has not 
descended to the present day, and this antilope has for a considerable time past 
been known among the Canadian voyagers by the name of Cahrie, which is 
probably a Basque corruption of the Spanish word Cahra (goat), as it resembles 
the common goat in colour, and in the erect position of the hair covering the 
spine of the neck, and forming a kind of mane. The English Fur Traders still 
call it " the goat." 

Lewis and Clark brought a specimen from the Missouri, which was deposited in 
Peale's Museum at Philadelphia, and described (according to Dr. Godman) by 
Mr. Ord, under the name of Antilope Americana, in an American edition of 

* His words are : — " Le Squenoton ressemble au Che^'reuil {Cervus virginianus or leucurus ;) il est plus haut, la 
jarabe plus fine, et la tete plus longue et plus pointue." The word squenoton is perhaps derived from the Huron 
language. Theodat uses a nearly similar term (sconoton) to designate the stags which frequent the borders of Lake 
Huron. — Vide p. 753. 


Guthrie's Geography^ published in 1815 ; and in 1818^ the same naturalist pub- 
lished in the Journal de Plvysique an account of a new genns founded upon it, 
which he termed Antilocapra. M, Blainville having inspected a pair of horns of 
this antilope in the Museum of the College of Surgeons, where they were attached 
to a board with their points in a wrong direction, published a notice of them in 

1816, wherein he named the animal to which they belonged Cervus hamatus ; and 
an account and figure of Lewis and Clark's specimen, taken by Major Smith in 

1817, appeared, in 1823, in the 13th volume of the Linnean Transactions. 
Major Smith considers the horns mentioned by M. Blainville to belong to a 
distinct species, whose name he has altered to Antilope palmata. From this 
detail it is evident that the specific name of Americana is the prior one ; but 
the termfurcifer having been generally adopted by naturalists, I have retained it 
here, including under it also the Antilope palmata, as I conceive the greater 
breadth of the horns to be merely the effect of age. The terra Americana is 
objectionable as a specific name, where more than one species of the same genus 
exists in that country, and in reference to the present instance, the animal which 
will be afterwards described and figured as the Capra Americana, is by several 
eminent naturalists considered to be an antilope ; and if it is to be permanently 
placed in that genus, a change of name either of it or of the species at present 
under consideration would be indispensably necessary. The Antilope furcifer 
differs from the true antilopes, in having a snag or branch on its horns, and 
wanting the crumens or lachrymal openings, and also in being destitute of the 
posterior or accessory hoofs, there being only two on each foot. 

The most northerly range of the prong-horned antilope is latitude 53°, on the 
banks of the north branch of the Saskatchewan. Some of them remain the whole 
year on the south branch of that river, but they are merely summer visitors to the 
north branch. They come every year to the neighbourhood of Carlton-house, 
when the snow has mostly gone ; soon after their arrival the females drop their 
young, and they retire to the southwards again in the autumn as soon as the 
snow begins to fall. Almost every year a small herd linger on a piece of rising 
ground not far from Carlton-house, until the snow has become too deep on the 
plains to permit them to travel over them. Few or none of that herd, however, 
survive until the spring, as they are persecuted by the wolves during the whole 
winter. They are found in the summer season in the fifty-third parallel of latitude, 
from longitude 106° to the foot of the Rooky Mountains. According to Lewis 
and Clark, they also abound on the plains of the Columbia to the west of the 


mountains^ where they form the chief game of the Shoshonees. They frequent open 
prairies and low hills, interspersed with clumps of wood, but are not met with in 
the continuously-wooded country. Major Smith has fallen into an unaccountable 
mistake in supposing- that the palmated antilope inhabits *' the bleak regions 
near the frozen ocean/' and that specimens have been brought from Baffin's Bay. 
No specimens whatever of this antilope were obtained on any of the expeditions 
to Baffin's Bay^ nor is there any mention made of the animal either in the 
narrative or Zoological appendices of Captain Ross's or of any of Captain Parry's 
voyages. If an imaginary line be drawn from the mouth of the Mackenzie, in 
longitude 135° to the intersection of the 100th degree of longitude, with the 53d 
parallel of latitude, it cuts off to the eastward a very large portion of the continent, 
which I am certain is not inhabited by either goat^ sheep, or antilope. The only 
ruminating animals of that rocky but well-watered tract, which, to the south of 
latitude GO^", is in general woody, and to the north barren, are the moose, caribou, 
and musk-ox. The last is confined to the northern parts, the moose to the 
woody districts, and the caribou migrates from one to the other according to the 
season. The bison is found on the confines of the above-mentioned line, but 
I believe does not wander far to the eastward of the Slave and Churchill or 
Missinippi rivers. 

The head and horns of a young male, and the entire skin of a very young fawn 
of this antilope were obtained at Carlton on Captain Franklin's first expedition, 
and deposited, the former at the College of Surgeons, and the latter at the British 
Museum. On his last expedition, heads of the adult male and female, together 
with the entire skin of a male two years old, were brought from the same place. 
The latter is now in the Zoological Museum, and the accompanying etching by 
Landseer was made from it, but the horns were added from the adult male head. 
Very lately the institution just mentioned has received several good specimens 
from the Hudson's Bay Company. 

The prong-horned antilope appears on the banks of the Saskatchewan some- 
times a solitary animal, sometimes assembled in herds often or twelve. Its sight 
and sense of smell are acute, and its speed is greater than that of any other 
inhabitant of the plains, although I have been informed by Mr. Prudens, who has 
resided forty years in that quarter, that when there is a little snow on the ground 
it may, with some little management, be run down by a high bred horse. The In- 
dian hunters have no difficulty in bringing an antilope within gun-shot, by various 
stratagems, such as lying down on their backs and kicking their heels in the air. 


holding- up a white rag, or clothing themselves in a white shirt, and shewing 
themselves only at intervals*. By these and similar manoeuvres, the curiosity 
of a herd of antilopes is so much roused that they wheel round the object of their 
attention^ and at length approach near enough to enable the hunter to make sure 
of his mark. From this disposition of the prong-horned antilopes, they are more 
easily killed than any of the deer of the district which they inhabit. They are,, 
however, objects of little interest to the Indians, who eat their flesh only when the 
bison, moose or wapiti are not to be procured, and their skins are of no value as 
an article of trade. The Mandans on the Missouri are said to capture them in 
pounds. The antilopes feed on the grass of the plains during the summer, and, 
according to Lewis and Clark, they migrate towards the mountains at the com- 
mencement of winter, and subsist there during that season on leaves and shrubs. 
They bring forth one, or more rarely two, young early in June. 


Of a male, killed at Carlton, in June 1327. — This individual must have attained a considerable age, as the sagittal and 
some other sutures of the scull were obliterated. 

Dental formula, incisors |, canines ^, grinders ^ = 32. 

Incisors white ; the two exterior incisors are much smaller than the others, and they are 
all disposed with their edges tiled slightly over each other, and their points inclining outwards 
in the segment of a circle, adapted to the reception of the callous pad, which terminates the 
upper jaw. The upper grinders gradually increase in size from the first to the fourth, which 
is considerably larger ; the fifth is of equal or, perhaps, greater size than the fourth ; and the 
sixth is somewhat smaller. The three posterior ones have each a deep furrow on their inner 
sides, corresponding to a fold or ridge of enamel on the outer side, so, at first sight, each 
appears like two teeth. The furrow is shallow in the third tooth, and does not exist in the 
two first. In the lower jaw, the posterior grinder is the largest, and is divided into three 
portions by two deep furrows on its exterior side. The fourth and fifth have, each, one deep 
furrow, and the third has two shallow furrows ; these three are nearly equal to each other 
in size, and are a little smaller than the sixth one. The first and second lower orinders are 
much smaller than the others. 

In the scull there is a considerable depression in the frontal bone, between the anterior 
parts of the orbits ; the orbits project considerably, and the solid osseous nucleus of the horn 
is sealed on the projecting plate. The supra-orbitar foramen is situated close to the inner 

* " This same curiosity enables the wolves to make thera a prey : for sometimes one of them will leave his compa- 
nions to go and look at the wolves, which, should the antelope be frightened, at first crouch down, repeating the 
manreuvre, sometimes relieving each other, until they succeed in decoying it within their power, when it is pulled down 
and devoured." — Godjian, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 323. 




side of this bony projection. The nasal bones are very shghtly arched, and there is no 
external suborbitar opening, but in the bone there is an oblong and somewhat irregular 
foramen, an inch and a quarter long, which, in the recent subject, is entirely closed by a 
tense membrane. The scull is smaller than that of the English domestic sheep ; the jaws 
more slender, and the cavity for containing the brain smaller in proportion. 

The horns are black, rise directly upwards and outwards, without any inclination either 
forwards or backwards, and curve sharply in towards each other at their tips. At the base 
the distance between them is 3^ inches ; within 2 inches of the tip, where they begin to 
curve inwards, the distance between them is 10^ inches, and the tips are 7 inches apart. 
The horns are much compressed, in a lateral direction, to about half their height, where they 
give out a thin, triangular, or bracket-shaped process, which projects directly forAvards for 
more than an inch. The surface of the lower half of the horns is striated, and is rough, with 
small warts and knobs, two or three of which project from a quarter to half an inch. The 
situation of these larger knobs varies in different specimens. The horns above the flat snag 
have a shining, striated surface, are nearly round, and taper considerably. 

No. 1 is a section of the right horn, at its base ; No. 2 a similar section at the 
commencement of the snag ; and No. 3 is a section of the horn and snag ; — 
natural size. 
This animal has a graceful form, a slender head, with large eyes, and long and delicate 
limbs. The nostrils turn obliquely upwards from the raphe of the upper lip, and are 
separated by a small, tumid, triangular, naked space. The naked margins of the lips are 
blackish, but the lips and chin are covered with white hair. The nose is nearly straight, or 

MAMMALIA. ' 267 

very slightly arched, narrow, and is clothed towards its tip with short hair of a liver-brown 
colour, which gradually mingles towards the forehead with yellowish-brown hair. The orbits 
have a narrow, blackish-brown margin, and the eye-lashes, composed of a row of stiff, erect 
hairs, are black. The cheeks are covered with short hair, mostly of a wooJ-brown colour, 
and the forehead is clothed with longer bushy hair, and presents two white marks, one 
extending from ear to ear, the other a little anterior to it ; the latter mark is slightly 
tinged with brown. The ears are upwards of six inches high, narrow, and have the inner side 
curving in for half their height ; from thence to their acute tips they are flat. They are 
covered posteriorly by a smooth coat of short hair, of a yellowish-brown colour, mixed with 
dark umber, the latter colour prevailing near the tip. They are lined interiorly with longer 
hair of a grayish-white colour. There is a dark blackish-brown spot at the angle of each 
jaw, which exhales a strong hircine odour, and between this spot and the ear the hair is pale, 
or nearly white. There are no external indications whatever of a crumen or lachrymal 
opening. The upper parts of the body are of a clear, yellowish-brown colour, deepening on 
the ridge of the back into blackish-gray. The hairs are much longer between the ears, and 
on the back of the neck, where they form an erect mane, of a blackish brown colour on its 
tips. The sides and thighs are paler than the back, and approach in colour to a clear wood- 
brown. The under jaw has a very pale yellowish-brown colour, fading to white. The hair is 
bushy about the angle of the lower jaw, and has a wood-brown colour. This colour forms 
three belts across the throat, which differ from each other in breadth, and are separated by 
two patches of pure white. The chest, belly, insides of the thighs, and legs, the tail, and a 
large patch round it, which includes the rump, and upper part of the buttocks, are pure white. 
There is a pale yellowish mark at the root of the tail. The tail is 4^ inches long. The legs 
are slender, with long shank-bones ; the fur, covering their anterior surfaces, is yellowish- 
brown. It has only two hoofs, there being no vestige of the posterior supplementary ones. 

The hair, which clothes the body, resembles that of a moose or rein-deer in its structure. 
It is long, round, tapering from the root to the point, waved, and of a soft and brittle texture, 
particularly towards the root, where it is easily compressed, and does not regain its round form 
again. Its interior is white and spongy, like the pith of rush. When the hair makes its 
first appearance in the summer, it forms a smooth coat, and has the ordinary flexibility and 
appearance of hair ; but as it lengthens it acquires the brittle, spongy texture, at its roots, 
and, increasing at the same time in diameter, it becomes erect, and forms a very close coat. 
As the spring approaches the fine and flexible points are rubbed off, particularly on the sides, 
where the hair appears as if it had been clipped. The mane on the hind-head and neck 
retains its darker points, even when the winter coat is dropping off. The nose, cheeks, part 
of the lower jaw, ears, and legs, are clothed at all times with short, flexible hairs, which 
lie smoothly. 


Feet. Inches. 

Length from the nose to the root of the tail 4 4 

Height at the fore-shoulder ..30 

„ „ haunches . .30 

Girth hehind the fore-legs . 

„ before the hind-legs 
Length of the tail, with the hair 
2 JM 2 








The females are stated, by some A-merican writers, to have horns like the males, although 
smaller; but in gravid, and, therefore, at least nearly full-grown individuals, which I have 
examined, there was merely a short, obtuse process, of the frontal bone, scarcely to be felt 
through the fur, and not covered with horn. 

The young, at birth, are covered on the upper parts with short hair, of a clove-brown 
colour, more or less hoary. The situation of the mane is marked by a dark line. The tail is 
yellowish-brown, and the buttocks are pure white. The dark mark on the nose, the one 
behind the angle of the jaw, and the bands across the throat, exist as in the adult. The legs 
are of a pure wood-brown colour. 

[79.] 1. Capra Americana. Rocky-Mountain Goat. 

Genus. Capra. LixN. 

Antilope Americana et Rupicapra Americana. Blainville, .Bm?/. 5'oc. PAi/. An. 1816, p. 80. 

Ovis montana. Ord, J^oj«-ra. P/ii/. y/carf., vol. i. pt. i. p. 8. An. 1817. 

" Mazama sericea. Rafinesque-Smaltz, Am. Month. Mag. An. 1817, p. 44." 

Rocky-Mountain sheep. Jameson, Wernerian Trans.., vol. iii. p. 306. An. 1821 (read An. 1819.) 

Antilope lanigera. S.mith, Linn. Trans., vol. xiii. p. 38. t. 4. An. 1822. 


The Rocky Mountain Goat has been supposed to be an inhabitant of California, 
where it is said to have been discovered by Fathers Piccolo and De Salvatierra, 
as will be noticed in the article on the Rocky Mountain sheep. Vancouver 
brought home a mutilated skin which he obtained on the North-west coast of 
America ; and Lieutenant-General Davies presented a specimen to the Linnean 
Society, of which an account was published by M. de Blainville_, in 1816. Mr. 
Ord, in 1817_, described a skin brought home by Lewis and Clark under a new 
specific name, and a detailed description by Major C. H. Smithy drawn up in 
the same year from General Davies' specimen, was published in the Linnean 
Transactions for 1821^ under a third name *. The animal has been known to the 
members of the North-west and Hudson's Bay Companies from the first establish- 
ment of their trading posts on the banks of the Columbia River, and in New 
Caledonia_, and they have sent several specimens to Europe. One of these being 

• Griffith's An. Kingd., vol. iv. p. 206. 


presented to the Wernerian Society of Edinburgh, was submitted to a competent 
judg-e, who reported that " the wool, which forms the chief covering- of the skin, 
is fully an inch and a half long, and is of the very finest quality. It is unlike the 
fleece of the common sheep, which contains a variety of different kinds of wool 
suitable to the fabrication of articles very dissimilar in their nature, and requires 
much care to distribute them in their proper order. The fleece under considera- 
tion is wholly fine. That on the forepart of the skin has all the apparent qualities 
of wool : on the back part it very much resembles cotton. The whole fleece is 
much mixed with hairs, and on those parts where the hairs are long and pendant, 
there is almost no wool." In consequence of this report, a suggestion was made 
to the Highland Society of the advantage likely to accrue from the introduction 
into Scotland of an animal bearing so valuable a fleece. The Hudson's Bay 
Company alone possess the power of effecting this patriotic design. Very lately 
that Company presented a perfect specimen of the goat to the Zoological Society, 
from which the accompanying etching was executed by Landseer. From the 
circumstance of this animal bearing wool, it has been occasionally termed a sheep 
by the voyagers and even by naturalists ; and as it has often gone by the same 
name with the Rocky Mountain sheep of the following article, some little confusion 
has crept into the accounts of their habits which have been published from the 
reports of the traders. 

The Rocky Mountain goat inhabits the most lofty peaks of the range, from 
whence it derives its English appellation, seldom descending so near the lov\r 
country as the Rocky Mountain sheep does. Mr. Drummond saw no goats on 
the eastern declivity of the mountains near the sources of the Elk River, where the 
sheep are numerous, but he learnt from the Indians that they frequent the steepest 
precipices, and are much more difficult to procure than the sheep. Their 
manners are said to resemble greatly those of the domestic goat. The exact 
limits of the range of this animal have not been ascertained, but it probably 
extends from the 40th to the 64th or 65th degree of latitude. It is common 
on the elevated part of the Rocky Mountain range that gives origin to four great 
tributaries to as many different seas, viz. the Mackenzie, the Columbia, the 
Nelson, and the Missouri Rivers. 

The fine wool which the animal produces grows principally on the back and 
hips, and is intermixed with long coarse hair. Its flesh is hard and dry, and is 
little esteemed*. The Indians make caps and saddles of its skin. I have 
followed Dr. Harlan in ranking this quadruped in the genus Capra, and have 

• Mr. Donald M'Kenzie says, its flesh has a musky flavour.— Harlan, Fauna, p. 258. 


adopted M. de Blainville's specific name, though somewhat objectionable, because 
it is due to the first describer of an animal to retain if possible the appellation he 
bestows on it^ in preference even to a better though later name*. 

Of the specimen in the Zoological Museum. 

Sixe of the domestic sheep, and a resemblance exists to the merino breed, in the mode in 
which the fleece hangs down on the sides. The form of the body and neck is robust, like 
that of the common goat. Nose nearly straight. Ears pointed ; lined with long hair. The 
horns are awl shaped, sharp pointed, and nearly erect, having but a slight curvature, and 
inclination backwards. They are marked at the base with rings, which disappear above 
half way up, and towards the tips they are remarkably even, smooth, and polished ; their 
surface throughout is black and shining. 

Colour. — The animal is totally white except the horns, hoofs, lips, and margins of the 

Fleece. — The body is covered with long straight hair, considerably coarser than the wool 
of sheep, but softer than that of the common goat. This long hair is abundant on the 
shoulders, neck, back, and thighs ; a considerable tuft of it attached to the chin forms a 
beard, and there is likewise much of it on the chest and lower part of the throat. The tail 
is short, and though clothed with long hair is almost concealed by that which covers the 
rump. Under the hair of the body there is a close coat of fine white wool. The hair on the 
face and legs is short without wool. The legs are thick and short ; the fetlocks are short, 
and with the hoofs are perpendicular. The latter are of a black colour, and are deeply 
grooved on the soles. They resemble those of the common goat. The small posterior 
hoofs do not touch the ground. 

* Blr. Oi-d's specific name of montana^ if hereafter adopted, may be inconvenient should this animal be arranged 
\ifith the antelopes, because an antelope discovered on the banks of the White Nile by M. RUppeU, has been figured 
under the name of Antelope monlana. 




[80.] 1. Ovis MONTANA. (DesHiarest.) Rocky -Mountain Sheep» 

Argali. Cook, Third Voy. An. 1778. 

White buffalo. Mackenzie, Voy., p. 76. An. 1789. (The horn is mentioned page 208.) 

Mountain goat. Umfreville, Hudson's Bay, p. 164. 

Mountain ram. M'Gillivray, New York Med. Reposit., vol. vi. p. 238, with a figure. An. 1803. 

Big-horn. Lewis and Clark, vol. i. p. 144. 

Belier sauvage d'Amerique. Geoffroy, Ann. du Museum, t. ii, pi. lx. 

Ovis montana. '■'■ Encyclop., fl. , suppl. 14. Fig. 4. Schreber, pi. ccxiv D." RicuAKOSoiJ, Werner. Trans 

vol. iv. Part 1. p. 22. 
Rocky-Mountain sheep. Warden, United St., vol. i. p. 217. 
Mouflon d'Amerique. Desmarest, Mamm., p. 487. 
Ovis Ammon. Harlan, Fauna, p. 259. 
The Argali. Godman, Nat. Hist., vol. ii. p. 329. 

Ovis Ammon, var. ? Pygargus. Griffith, An. King., vol. iv. p. 318, with a figure ; and vol. v. p. 359. No. 873, 
Cul-blanc et grosse corne. Canadian Voyagers. 
My-attehk. Cree Indians. 

Ema-kee-kawnow. Pegans, Blood Indians, and Black-feet. 
Afasahta. Mandans. 

Plate xxiii. 

When Fathers Piccolo and de Salvatierra, in the year 1697, established the 
first mission in California nearly two centuries after the first discovery of that 
country, they found, says the former, " two sorts of deer that we know nothing of: 
we call them sheep, because they somewhat resemble ours in make. The first 
sort is as large as a calf of one or two years old ; its head is much like that of a 
stag, and its horns, which are very large, are like those of a ram ; its tail and 
hair are speckled, and shorter than a stag's, but its hoof is large, round, and cleft 
as an ox's. I have eaten of these beasts ; their flesh is very tender and delicious. 
The other sort of sheep, some of which are white and others black, differ less 
from ours. They are larger, and have a great deal more wool, which is very 
good, and easy to be spun and wrought*." Hernandez, Clavighiero, and other 
writers on California, likewise mention these animals, and Vanegas has given a 
figure of the first-mentioned one, which has, though evidently on insufficient 
grounds, been considered to be the same with the Siberian Argali, and with the 
subject of this article ; while the one noticed in the latter part of the quotation 
has been referred to the species already described under the name of Rocky 
Mountain goat. The speckled hair does not agree with any descriptions I have 
met with of the Rocky Mountain sheep, nor have I heard that black individuals 

• Philos. Trans. No. 318. p. 232 ; and Jones's Abridg., vol. v. p. 194. 


are ever met with in tlie herds of the Rocky Mountain goat ; it is therefore 
probable that the Californian animals are different from the allied ones, which 
inhabit the more northern part of the Rocky Mountain ridge. Mr. David Douglas 
describes Piccolo's sheep under the name of Ovis Calif ornica *. Pennant^ who 
considers the Asiatic argali (0. cmimon) and the Corsican mufro (0. musimon) to be 
varieties of the same species^ says, in Arctic Zoology, that " the argali is suspected 
to be found in California_, but not on the best authorities." 

On Cook's third voyage he obtained the spoils of an animal on the North-west 
coast of America, which the editor of the journal takes for granted were those of 
the argali. They were, doubtless, skins of the Rocky Mountain sheep. Sir 
Alexander Mackenzie, in his voyage down the great river which bears his name, 
received an account of the mountain sheep, called by the natives of that district 
" white buffaloes," and in his subsequent journey across the Rocky Mountains at 
the sources of the Elk River, he saw some utensils made of their horns, which he 
not unaptly compares with the horns of the musk-ox. When, in consequence of 
the important discoveries of that adventurous and intelligent traveller, the English 
North-west Fur Company were led in the spirit of commercial enterprise to cross 
the Rocky Mountains twice every year, they became well acquainted with the 
mountain sheep, and sent several skins of it to Europe, which do not however 
appear to have fallen into scientific hands, as no account of them was published. 
The attention of naturalists was drawn to the animal in 1803, by a paper pub- 
lished in the Medical Repository of New York, by Mr. M'Gillivray, who also 
presented to the New York Museum a specimen procured by him three years 
previously on the mountains from whence the Elk River takes its origin. This 
specimen being afterwards sent to M. Geoffroy, he published a description of it 
with a figure in the Annales (hi Museum. Some years afterwards Lewis and 
Clark brought male and female specimens to Philadelphia^ which have lately been 
figured by Griffith and Godman. Mr. Drummond shot many in the same district 
in which Mr. M'Gillivray procured his one ; and two specimens obtained on the 
mountains which skirt the south branch of the Mackenzie, were presented to 
me by Mr. Macpherson, and are now in the Museum of the Zoological Society. 
They are male and female, and are the subjects from which the accompanying 
spirited and very accurate etchings were made by Landseer. 

The Rocky Mountain sheep inhabit the lofty chain of mountains from whence 
they derive their name from its northern termination in latitude 68° to about 
latitude 40°, and most likely still further south. They also frequent the elevated 

• ZooL Journ. April, 1829. 


and cragg-y ridges with which the country between the great mountain range and 
the Pacific is intersected ; but they do not appear to have advanced further to the 
eastward than the declivity of the Rocky Mountains, nor are they found in any of 
the hilly tracts nearer to Hudson's Bay. They collect in flocks consisting- of 
from three to thirty, the young rams and the females herding together during the 
winter and spring, while the old rams form separate flocks, except during the 
month of December^ which is their rutting season. The ewes bring forth in June 
or July_, and then retire with their lambs to the most inaccessible heights. Mr. 
Drummond informs me that in the retired parts of the mountains, where the 
hunters had seldom penetrated, he found no difficulty in approaching the Rocky 
Mountain sheep, which there exhibited the simplicity of character so remarkable 
in the domestic species ; but that where they had been often fired at, they were 
exceedingly wild, alarmed their companions on the approach of danger by a 
hissing noise, and scaled the rocks with a speed and agility that baffled pursuit. 
He lost several that he had mortally wounded, by their retiring to die amongst the 
secluded precipices. Their favourite feeding places are grassy knolls, skirted 
by craggy rocks, to which they can retreat when pursued by dogs or wolves. 
They are accustomed to pay daily visits to certain caves in the mountains, that 
are encrusted with a saline efflorescence, of which they are fond. These caves are 
situated in slaty rocks, and it was in them alone that Mr. Drummond found the 
Weissia macrocarpa growing. The same gentleman mentions that the horns of 
the old rams attain a size so enormous, and curve so much forwards and down- 
wards, that they effectually prevent the animal from feeding on level ground. 
The flesh of the Rocky Mountain sheep is stated by Mr. Drummond and others, 
who have fed on it, to be quite delicious when it is in season, far superior to that 
of any of the deer species which frequent the same quarter, and even exceeding in 
flavour the finest English mutton. The Kamschatdales, in like manner, esteem the 
flesh of the argali as food fit for the gods. 

The missionaries who first discovered the Rocky Mountain sheep, or the nearly 
allied species of California, described it correctly as possessing the hair of the stag 
and the horns of the ram ; and M. Geoffi'oy has also briefly characterised it as 
having the head of a sheep with the body of a deer. Several naturalists of 
eminence have considered it as forming but one species with the argali ; and 
Baron Cuvier supposes that it may have crossed Behring's Straits on the ice. It 
resembles the argali, indeed, perfectly in its manners, in the form of its body, and 
in the nature and colours of its hairy coat ; but it seems to be a larger animal, and 
to present a constant difference in the form of curvature of its horns. Whether it 

2 N 


Miay eventually prove to be a distinct species^, or merely a permanent variety, no 
inconvenience can result from describing- it^ for the present^ under a name already 
appropriated to it. In the Museum of the Linnean Society there is a good 
specimen of a sheep from the mountains of Nepaul, which does not appear to 
differ from the Siberian argali, but seems very distinct from the American one. 


Size, much greater than the largest-sized varieties of the domestic sheep. It is bigger than 
the argali. 

The horns of the male are very large, arise a short way above the eyes, and occupy almost 
the whole space between the ears, but do not touch each other at their bases. They curve 
first backwards, then downwards, forwards and upwards, until they form a complete turn, 
during the whole course of which they recede from the side of the head in a spiral manner.. 
They diminish in size rapidly towards their points, which are turned upwards. At their bases,, 
and for a considerable portion of their length, they are three-sided, the anterior or upper side 
being, as it were, thickened, and projecting obtusely at its union with the two others. This 
side is marked by transverse furrows, which are less deep the further they are from the scull j 
and towards the tips the horns are rounded, and but obscurely wrinkled. The furrows extend 
to the other two sides of the horn, but are there less distinct. The intervals of the furrows 
swell out, or are rounded. 

The horns of the female are much smaller, and nearly erect, having but a slight curvature^ 
and an inclination backwards and outwards. 

The ears are of a moderate size ; the facial line straight, and the general form of the 
animal rather elegant, being intermediate betwixt that of the sheep and the stag. Tail very 
short. The hair is like that of the rein-deer, being, on its first growth in the autumn, short,, 
fine, and flexible ; but, as the winter advances, becoming much coarser, dry, and brittle, though 
at the same time it feels soft to the touch. In the latter season the hair is so close at its 
roots, that it is necessarily erect. The legs are covered with shorter hairs. 

The head, buttocks, and posterior part of the belly, are white ; the rest of the body and the 
neck are of a pale umber or dusky wood-brown colour. A deeper and more shining brown 
prevails on the anterior aspect of the legs. The tail is dark-brown, and a narrow brown line, 
extending from its base, runs up betwixt the white buttocks, to unite with the brown colour of 
the back. The colours reside in the ends of the hair, and as these are rubbed ofi" during the 
progress of the winter, the tints become paler. The old rams are almost totally white in the 
spring. This is the case with the male specimen in our plate. The female, in the back 
ground, presented the colours mentioned aboA^e. 

Of an Old Rocky- Jlountain Ram, killed on the south branch of the Mackenzie, and now in the Zoological Museum. 

Feet. Inches. Feet. Inches.- 

liength of head and body . . . G 

Height at fore shoulder ..35 

Length of tail . . . , o 2 

„ one hoiT., measured along its 

curvature , . . 2 10 

Circumference of a horn at its base . I 

Distance from the tip of one horn to the tip 
of the other . . . .2 


[81.] 1. OviBOs MOscHxVTus. (BlaiiiviUe.) Musk-Ox. 

Genus. Ovibos. Blainville. 

Le bceuf musque. M. Jeremie, Nord, t. iii. p. 31-1. Charlevoix, Nouv. France^ t. v. p^l94. 

Musk-Ox. Drage, Fo^., vol. ii. p. 2G0. Dobbs, Hurfio/i'i jSay, pp. 19, 25. Ellis, Foy., p. 232. Pennant, 
Quad):, vol. i. p. 31. Arctic Zool., vol. i. p. 9. Hearne, Journey, p. 137- Paury, First Voy., p. 257, 
with a plate. jJecorarf Foy., pp. 497, 503, 512. British Museubi. Specimen on the stair. 

Bos moscliatus. Gmelin, Syst. Sabine (Capt.), Parry's First Voy., Suppl., p. clxx.\ix. Sabine (Mb.), Franks 
tin's Journ., p. 668. Richardson, Parry''s Second Voy., Appendix; p. 331 . 

Matheh-moostoos (ugly bison.) Cree Indians. 

Adgiddah-yawseh (little bison.) Chepewyans and Copper Indians. 

Oomingmak. Esquimaux. 

We are indebted for the first notice of this animal to M. Jeremie, who brought 
some of its wool to France, and had some stockings made of it, which were said 
to have been more beautiful than silk. The earlier English voyagers also give us 
some information respecting it, but Pennant has the merit of being the first who 
systematically arranged and described it, from the skin of a specimen sent home 
by Hearne, the celebrated traveller. From its want of a naked muzzle and some 
other peculiarities, M. Blainville has placed it in a genus, intermediate, as its 
name denotes, between the sheep and the ox ; but it is remarkable amongst the 
American animals for never having had more than one specific appellation, whilst 
other animals, of much less interest, have been honoured with a long list of 

The musk-ox inhabits the Barren-lands of America lying to the northward of 
the sixtieth parallel of latitude*. Hearne mentions that he once saw tracks of one 
within a few miles of Fort Churchill, in latitude 59' ; and in his first journey to the 
north, he saw many in about latitude 61°. I have been informed that they do not 
now come so far to the southward even on the Hudson's Bay shore ; and further 
to the westward they are rarely seen in any numbers lower than latitude 67°, 
although from portions of their sculls and horns, which are occasionally found 
near the northern borders of Great Slave Lake, it is probable that they ranged 
at no very distant period over the whole country lying betwixt that great sheet of 
water and the Polar sea. I have not heard of their having been seen on the 
banks of Mackenzie's River to the southward of Great Bear Lake, nor do they 

* Pennant says, that they are found in the lands of the Cris or Crist'inaux, and Assinibouls ; this is, however, a 
mistake. The lands he alludes to, are the plains which extend from the Red River of Lake AVinipeg to the Saskat- 
chewan, and are inhabited by the Crees or Natheh-wye-withinyoo, and the Asseeneepools or Asseeneepoytuck ; but it 
is the bison that frequents that district, and not the musk-ox. He is correct, however, in saying that they are hunted 
by the Attimospiquay, who are the Dog-ribs of Great Bear Lake. 

2 N 2 


come to the southwestern end of that lake^ although they exist in numbers on its 
north-eastern arm. Tliey range over the islands which lie to the north of the 
American continent as far as Melville island, in latitude 75°, but they do not_, like 
the rein-deer, extend to Greenland, Spitzbergen, or Lapland. From Indian 
information, we learn that to the westward of the Rocky Mountains, which skirt 
the Mackenzie, there is an extensive tract of barren country, which is also 
inhabited by the musk-ox and rein-deer. It is to the Russian traders that we 
must look for information on this head ; but it is probable that, owing to the 
greater mildness of the climate to the westward of the Rocky Mountains, the 
musk-ox, which affects a cold barren district, where grass is replaced by lichens, 
does not range so far to the southward on the Pacific coast as it does on the 
shores of Hudson's Bay. It is not known in New Caledonia, nor on the banks of 
the Columbia, nor is it found on the Rocky Mountain ridge at the usual crossing- 
places near the sources of the Peace, Elk, and Saskatchewan rivers. It is, 
therefore, fair to conclude that the animal described by Fathers Marco de Ni^a 
and Gomara, as an inhabitant of New Mexico, and which Pennant refers to the 
musk-ox, is of a different species*. The musk-ox has not crossed over to the 
Asiatic shore, and does not exist in Siberia, although fossil sculls have been 
found there of a species nearly allied, which has been enumerated in the systematic 
works under the name of Ovibos Pallanlis. The appearance of musk-oxen on 
Melville Island, in the month of May, as ascertained on Captain Parry's first 
voyage, is interesting, not merely as a part of their natural history, but as giving 
us reason to infer that a chain of islands lies between Melville Island and Cape 
Lyon, or that Wollaston and Banks' Lands form one large island, over which 
the migrations of the animals must have been performed. 

The districts inhabited by the musk-ox are the proper lands of the Esquimauxf ; 
and neither the Northern Indians nor the Crees have an original name for it, both 
terming it bison, with an additional epithet. The country frequented by the 
musk-ox is mostly rocky and destitute of wood, except on the banks of the larger 
rivers, which are generally more or less thickly clothed with spruce trees. Their 
food is similar to that of the Caribou, grass at one season and lichens at another ; 
and the contents of its paunch are eaten by the natives with the same relish that 
they devour the " nerrooks " of the caribou. The dung of the musk-ox takes 
the form of round pellets, differing from those of the caribou only in their greater 

* The IMexican aiiinial is said to be a sheep, as large as a horse, with long hair, short tails, and enormous horns. 
The only horse which the musk-ox can be said to resemble in size, is a Shetland pony. 

t The northern Indian appellation for an Esquimaux, is " Inhabitant of the Barren Land," 


size. When this animal is fat, its flesh is well tasted, and resembles that of the 
caribou_, but has a coarser grain. The flesh of the bulls is high flavoured_, and 
both bulls and cows, when lean, smell. strongly of musk, their flesh at the same 
time being very dark and tough, and certainly far inferior to that of any other 
ruminating animal existing in North America. The carcase of a musk-ox weighs^ 
exclusive of the offal, about three hundred weight, or nearly three times as much 
as a Barren-ground caribou, and twice as much as one of the Woodland caribou. 
Notwithstanding the shortness of the legs of the musk-ox, it runs fast, and it 
climbs hills and rocks with great ease. One, pursued on the banks of the Copper- 
mine, scaled a lofty sand cliff, having so great a declivity that we were obliged to 
crawl on hands and knees to follow it. Its foot-marks are very similar to those of 
the caribou, but are rather longer and narrower. These oxen assemble in herds 
of from twenty to thirty, rut about the end of August and beginning of September, 
and bring forth one calf about the latter end of May or beginning of June. 
Hearne, from the circumstance of few bulls being seen, supposes that they kill 
each other in their contests for the cows. If the hunters keep themselves con- 
cealed when they fire upon a herd of musk-oxen, the poor animals mistake the 
noise for thunder, and, forming themselves into a group, crowd nearer and nearer 
together as their companions fall around them ; but should they discover their 
enemies by sight or by their sense of smell, which is very acute, the whole herd 
seek for safety by instant flight. The bulls, however, are very irascible, and, 
particularly when wounded, will often attack the hunter and endanger his life, 
unless he possesses both activity and presence of mind. The Esquimaux, who 
are well accustomed to the pursuit of this animal, sometimes turn its irritable 
disposition to good account ; for an expert hunter having provoked a bull to 
attack him, wheels round it more quickly than it can turn, and by repeated 
stabs in the belly, puts an end to its life. The wool of the musk-ox resembles 
that of the bison, but is perhaps finer, and would no doubt be highly useful in 
the arts if it could be procured in suflicient quantity. 


In size, tlie full-grown musk-ox nearly equals the small breed of cattle peculiar to the 
highland districts of Scotland. The horns are very broad at their origin, covering the brow 
and whole crown of the head, and touching each other for their entire breadth from before 
backwards. As each horn rises from its flatly convex base, it becomes round and tapering, 
and curves directly downwards between the eye and the ear, until it reaches the angle of the 
mouth, when it turns upwards in the segment of a circle to above the level of the eye. The 


horn, for half its length, is dull white, and is rough, with small longitudinal splinters of 
unequal length ; beyond that, it is smooth and shining, and near the point it becomes black. 
The head is large and broad, and the nose is very obtuse. The nostrils are oblong openings 
that incline towards each other from above downwards. Their inner margins, for the breadth 
of three lines, are naked, and they are united for half an inch at their base. There is no other 
vestige of a muzzle; the rest of the end of the nose, the middle part of the upper lip, and 
the greater part of the lower lip and chin, are covered with a close coat of short, white hairs. 
There is no furrow on the upper lip. The remainder of the head, anterior to the horns, is 
covered with very dark umber-brown hair, which is long and bushy towards the root of the 
nose, giving an arched appearance to the facial line, which does not exist in the scull. There 
is also a quantity of long, straight hair, on the lateral margins of the mouth, and sides of the 
lower jaw. The ei/es are moderately large, and the hair immediately round them is shorter 
and paler than on the rest of the cheeks. The ears are short, and being similar in colour to 
the long hair on the hind head, are not very conspicuous. 

The general colour of the hair of the body is brown. On the neck and between the 
shoulders it is long, matted, and somewhat curled, and has more or less of a grizzled hue, 
being of a dull brown colour, fading on the tips into brownish-white. The bushy appearance 
of the hair on these parts causes the animal to seem humped. The hair on the back and 
hips is also long, but lies smoothly ; and on the shoulders, sides, and thighs, it is so long as 
to hang down below the middle of the leg. On the centre of the back it has a soiled brownish- 
white colour, forming a mark, which is aptly termed by Captain Parry the saddle ; the colour 
of the hips is a darker brown ; and on the thighs, sides, and belly, its surface is nearly 
blackish-brown. The hair on the throat and chest is very straight and long, and, together 
with the long hair on the lower jaw, hangs down Uke a beard and dewlap. The tail is so 
short, as to be concealed by the fur of the hips. There is a large quantity of fine brownish- 
ash-coloured wool or down among the hair covering the body. 

The legs are short and thick, and are clothed with short, dull, brownish-white hair, 
unmixed with wool. The hoofs are narrower, and not longer than those of the caribou, but 
are so similar in form, that it requires the experience of a practised hunter to knoAv the 
difference of the impressions they leave in the soil. 

The cow differs from the bull, in having smaller horns, whose bases, instead of touching, are 
separated by a hairy space, and in the hair on the throat and chest being shorter. It is also 
considerably smaller than the bull. 


[82.] 1. Bos Americanus. (Gmelin.) American Bison. 

Genus. Bos. 

Taurus Mexicanus. Hehwandez, iVfeo?., p. 587. Fig. (male.) An. 1651. 

Taureau sauvage. HENNEPiN,"iVoMy. Z)ecoMU., vol. i., p. 186. Fig. (male.) An. 1699. 

The buffalo. Lawson, Carol, p. 115. Fig. Catesby, Carol., Append, xxxvii. tab. 20. Harmon, Journey, p. 415. 

Fbanklin, First Journey, p. 113; with a plate of a buffalo-pound, p. 1 10. 
Bison. Ray, Synop. Quadr., p. 71- Pennant, Arctic Zool, vol. i. p. 1. Long, Exped., vol. iii. p. 68. 
Bos Americanus. Gmelin, Syst. Sabine, Franklin's Journey, p. 668. 
American wild ox, or bison. Warden, United States, vol. i. p. 248. 
Peecheek. Algonquins. (Nochena peecheek. Bison cow.) 
Moostoosh. Crees. Adgiddah. Chepewyans. 

Buffalo. Hudson's Bay Traders. Le boeuf. Canadian Voyagers. 
It is unknown to the Esquimaux of the Polar Sea. 

- At the period when Europeans began to form settlements in North America, 
this animal was occasionally met with on the Atlantic coast ; but even then 
it appears to have been rare to the eastward of the Apalachian mountains, 
for Lawson has thought it to be a fact worth recording, that two were killed in 
one season on Cape Fear River. As early as the first discovery of Canada, it was 
unknown in that country, and no mention of it whatever occurs in the Voyages du 
Sieur de Champlain Xaintongeois, nor in the Nova Francia of De Monts, who 
obtained the first monopoly of the fur trade. Theodat, whose history of Canada 
was published in 1636, merely says that he was informed that bulls existed in the 
remote western countries *. Warden mentions that at no very distant date herds 
of them existed in the western parts of Pennsylvania ; and that as bte as the 
year 1766, they were pretty numerous in Kentucky; but they have gradually 
retired before the white population, and are now, he says, rarely seen to the south 
of the Ohio, or on the east side of the Mississippi. They still exist, however, in 
vast numbers in Louisiana, roaming in countless herds over the prairies that 
are watered by the Arkansa, Platte, Missouri, and upper branches of the Saskat- 
chewan and Peace rivers. Great Slave Lake, in latitude 60^ was at one time 
the northern boundary of their range; but of late years, according to the testimony 
of the natives, they have taken possession of the flat limestone district of Slave 
Point, on the north side of that lake, and have wandered to the vicinity of Great 
Marten Lake, in latitude 63° or 64°. As far as I have been able to ascertain, the 

* His words are, — "On tient qu'il y a des dains en quelques contrees ; mais pour des huffles, le P. Joseph m'a asseure 
en avoir veu des peaux entieres entres les mains d'un sauvage de pays fort esloigne ; je n'en ay point veu, mais je croy ce 
bon Pere." — Sagard-Theodat, Histoiredu Canada,-^. 756. 


limestone and sandstone formations^ lying between the great Rocky Mountain 
ridge and the lower eastern chain of primitive rocks, are the only districts in 
the fur countries that are frequented by the bison. In these comparatively level 
tracts there is much prairie land^ on which they find good grass in the summer ; 
and also many marshes overgrown with bulrushes and carices^, which supply them 
with winter food. Salt springs and lakes also abound on the confines of the 
limestone, and there are several well known salt-licks where bison are sure to be 
found at all seasons of the year. They do not frequent any of the districts formed 
of primitive rocks, and the limits of their range to the eastward within the 
Hudson Bay Company's territories may be nearly correctly marked on the map by 
a line commencing in longitude 97° on the Red River which flows into the south-end 
of Lake Winipeg, crossing the Saskatchewan to the westward of Basquiau hill, 
and running from thence by the Athapescow to the east end of Great Slave Lake. 
Their migrations to the westward were formerly limited by the Rocky Mountain 
range^ and they are still unknown in New Caledonia and on the shores of the 
Pacific to the north of the Columbia river ; but of late years they have found out 
a passage across the mountains near the sources of the Saskatchewan, and their 
numbers to the westward are said to be annually increasing. In 1806, when 
Lewis and Clark crossed the mountains at the head of the Missouri, bison skins 
were an important article of traffic between the inhabitants on the east side and 
the natives to the westward. Further to the southward, in New Mexico and Cali- 
fornia, the bison appears to be numerous on both sides of the Rocky Mountain 
chain. One of the earliest accounts we have of the animal is by Hernandez ; and 
Recchus' edition of his observations, or rather commentary upon them, is illustrated 
by an engraving which seems to have been made from a rude sketch of the bison, 
altered by the European artist to a closer resemblance with the European ox. 
Hennepin, in the narrative of his discovery of Louisiana^ and his travels through 
that country between the years 1669 and 1682, gives a very good description of the 
bison, together with a figure, which is apparently a copy of that of Recchus. It 
does not appear to have excited much attention in Europe until lately, when several 
specimens, having been imported into England, were exhibited under the attractive 
title oiBonasus, which, though described by the ancients, was asserted to have been 
lost to the moderns until recognised in the American animal. The American 
bison has in fact much resemblance to the aurochs of the Germans {Bos tints, 
BoDDiERT) ideatified by Cuvier with the bonassus of Aristotle, the bison of 
Pausanias and Pliny, and the vrus of Caesar, and which, down to the reign of 


Charlemag-ne, was not rare in Germany^ but is now nearly confined to the 
hilly country lying between the Caspian and Black Sea. 

The bison wander constantly from place to place^ either from being disturbed 
by hunters or in quest of food. They are much attracted by the soft tender 
grass, which springs up after a fire has spread over the prairie. In winter 
they scrape away the snow with their feet to reach the grass. The bulls and 
cows live in separate herds for the greatest part of the year, but at all seasons 
one or two old bulls generally accompany a large herd of cows. In the rutting 
season, the males fight against each other with great fury, and at that period it is 
very dangerous to approach them. The bison is, however, in general, a shy 
animal, and takes to flight instantly on winding an enemy, which the acuteness 
of its sense of smell enables it to do from a great distance. They are less wary 
when they are assembled together in numbers, and will then often blindly follow 
their leaders, regardless of, or trampling down the hunters posted in their way. It 
is dangerous for the hunter to shew himself after having wounded one, for it 
will pursue him, and although its gait may appear heavy and awkward, it will 
have no great difficulty in overtaking the fleetest runner. While I resided at 
Carlton-house, an accident of this kind occurred. Mr. Finnan M'Donald, one of 
the Hudson's Bay Company's clerks, was descending the Saskatchewan in a boat, 
and one evening having pitched his tent for the night, he went out in the dusk to 
look for game. It had become nearly dark when he fired at a bison-bull, which 
was galloping over a small eminence, and as he was hastening forward to see if 
his shot had taken effect, the wounded beast made a rush at him. He had the 
presence of mind to seize the animal by the long hair on its forehead as it struck 
him on the side with its horn, and being a remarkably tall and powerful man, a 
struggle ensued, which continued until his wrist was severely sprained, and his 
arm was rendered powerless ; he then fell, and after receiving two or three blows 
became senseless. Shortly afterwards he was found by his companions lying 
bathed in blood, being gored in several places, and the bison was couched beside 
him, apparently waiting to renew the attack had he shewn any signs of life. 
Mr. M'Donald recovered from the immediate effects of the injuiies he received, 
but died a few months afterwards. Many other instances might be mentioned 
of the tenaciousness with which this animal pursues its revenge, and I have 
been told of a hunter having been detained for many hours in a tree by aa 
old bull which had taken its post below to watch him. When it contends with 
a dog, it strikes violently with its fore-feet, and in that way proves more than 

2 o 


a match for an English bull-dog. The favourite Indian method of killing the 
bison is by riding up to the fattest of the herd on horseback, and shooting it with 
an arrow. When a large party of hunters are engaged in this way on an 
extensive plain, the spectacle is very imposing, and the young men have many 
opportunities of displaying their skill and agility. The horses appear to enjoy 
the sport as much as their riders, and are very active in eluding the shock of 
the animal, should it turn on its pursuer. The most generally-practised plan, 
however, of shooting the bison, is by crawling towards them from to leeward, and 
in favourable places great numbers are taken in pounds. When the bison runs, 
it leans very much to, first, one side for a short space of time, and then to the 
other, and so on alternately. 

The flesh of a bison in good condition is very juicy and well flavoured, much 
resembling that of well-fed beef. The tongue is reckoned a delicacy, and may be 
cured so as to surpass in flavour the tongue of an English cow. The hump 
of flesh covering the long spinous processes of the first dorsal vertebrse is 
much esteemed. It is named bos by the Canadian voyagers, and wig by the 
Orkney men in the service of the Hudson's Bay Company. The wig has a fine 
grain, and when salted and cut transversely it is almost as rich and tender as the 
tongue. The fine wool which clothes the bison renders its skin when properly 
dressed an excellent blanket ; and they are valued so highly, that a good one sells 
for three or four pounds in Canada, where they are used as wrappers by those 
who travel over the snow in carioles. The wool has been manufactured in 
England into a remarkably fine and beautiful cloth, and in the colony of 
Osnaboyna, on the Red River, a warm and durable coarse cloth is formed of it. 
Much of the pemmican used by the voyagers attached to the fur companies is 
made of bison meat procured at their posts on the Red River and Saskatchewan. 
One bison cow in good condition furnishes dried meat and fat enough to make 
a bag of pemmican weighing 90 lbs. The bison which frequent the woody parts 
of the country form smaller herds than those which roam over the plains, but are 
said to be individually of a greater size. 


The most remarkable features of the male bison are the enormous size of its head, which is 
Carried low ; the great conical hump between the shoulders, small piercing eyes, short black 
horns, and the great profusion of shaggy hair on the fore-parts, which all contribute to give to 
the animal a wild and malicious aspect. The hind quarters, being clothed with shorter wool, 


appear disproportionably weak. The forehead is broad, the cheeks rather lank, and the face, 
which tapers from the eye towards the nose, has a form approaching to triangular. The horns 
are small, tapering, and acute, set far apart, and nearly erect, being only slightly curved at the 
base and tips, which point outwards. The bulk of the hump consists, exclusive of a deposit 
of fat, which varies much in quantity, of the muscles that are attached to the unusually long 
spinous processes of the posterior cervical and anterior dorsal vertebrae, and are destined for 
the support of the head. The hair on the forehead, hump, fore-quarters, under-jaw, and 
throat, is very long and shaggy, and is mixed with much wool. The back, hind-quarters, belly, 
and legs, are clothed with shorter, and in many parts curly hair. The general colour of the 
hair, when the animal has acquired its new coat at the close of the summer, is between dark 
umber and liver-brown, and it has then a considerable lustre. As the hair lengthens during 
the winter, its tips become paler, and before it is shed in the summer much of it is of a pale, 
dull, yellowish-brown colour. The tail is covered with short fur for the greatest part of its 
length, but is terminated by a tuft of long, straight, coarse hair, of a blackish-brown colour. 
The legs are strong. 

The bison, when full grown, is said to attain at times a weight of two thousand pounds ; but 
12 or 14 cwt. is generally considered a full size in the fur countries. Its length, exclusive of 
the tail, is about eight feet and a half; its height, at the fore-quarters, upwards of six feet, and 
the length of its tail is twenty inches. 

The cow has a smaller head, and shorter hair on the fore-parts, than the bull. 

There is a variety of the buffalo which is nearly white. 

2 2 



[83.] 2. CoNDYLURA MACROURA.. (Harlan.) Thick-Tailed 


Condylura macroura. Harlan, Fauna, p. 39. 

Plate xxiv. 

Since the greater part of the preceding sheets were printed off, Mr. David 
Douglas has presented me with a specimen of tliis remarkable animal^ procured 
by him on the banks of the Columbia. Dr. Harlan has described an individual 
which is preserved in the Philadelphia Museum, but its native locality is not 
mentioned. Mr. Douglas's specimen possesses all the characters ascribed by 
Dr. Harlan to his; and I have^ therefore^ considered it to belong to the same 
species. I received no information respecting its habits. 


The head is remarkably large ; the body is thick and short, and beconaes narrower towards- 
the tail, and the hind legs are consequently nearer to each other than the fore-ones. The nose 
is rather thick, and projects beyond the mouth ; it is naked towards its end, is marked with a 
furrow above, and terminates in aflat surface, which is surrounded by seventeen cartilaginous 
processes, with two more anterior ones situated above the nostrils, and a pair of forked ones 
immediately beloAV the nostrils. The surfaces of these processes are minutely granulated. 
Some white whiskers spring from the side of the nose, and reach about half the length of the 
head. There are othere not so long on the upper and under lips. 

The/«r on the body is very soft and fine, and has considerable lustre. It is longer than 
the fur of the other two known species. Its colour on the dorsal aspect is dark umber-brown, 
approaching to blackish-brown. On the belly it is pale liver-brown. When the fur is blown 
aside, it exhibits a shining blackish-gray colour towards its roots. It is longer on the hind- 
head and neck than on the belly. 

The tail is narrow at its origin, but it suddenly swells to an inch and a half in circum- 
ference ; it then tapers gradually until it ends in a fine point, formed by a pencil of hairs about 
half an inch long. It is round, or very slightly compressed, and is covered with scales about as 
large as those on the feet, and with short, tapering, acute hairs, which do not conceal the 
scales. The hairs covering the upper surface of the tail are nearly black ; those beneath are 
of a browner hue. 

The extremities are shaped almost precisely like those of the condylura longicaudafa. Only 
the palms and toes o^ the fore-feet project beyond the body. The palms are nearly circular, and 

"' ¥•- 



are protected by a granulated skin, like shagreen. The sides of the feet are furnished with 
long, white hairs, which curve in over the palms. The (5) toes are very short, equal to each 
other in length, and, together with the back of the hands, are covered with hexagonal scales. 
The /ore-cZatt>s are white, nearly straight, broadly linear, and acute, convex above, and flat 
underneath. The palms turn obliquely outwards, which causes the fourth claw to project 
rather furthest ; but the third one measures as much, the second is shorter, and the first and 
fifth are equal to each other, and a little shorter than the rest. 

The hind-feet are also turned obliquely outwards, and are scaly, with a few interspersed 
hairs above, and granulated underneath. The sides are narrow, and present a conspicuous 
callous tubercle, posterior to the origin of the inner toe. The hind legs are very short, and 
are clothed with soft brown hair, a tuft of which curves over the heel. There are no hairs on 
the sides of the hind-feet, like those which form a margin to the fore-ones. The hind-toes are 
longer than the fore-ones, and are armed with more slender claws, which are white, awl- 
shaped, curved, and acute. They have a narrow groove towards their points underneath. 






Length of the head and body 

. 4 


Length of the longest fore-claw , 


„ head . 



,, hind leg 


„ tail 



„ „ from the heel to the 

„ ,, inchiding the pencil of 

roots of the toes 


hair at its extremity 



„ longest hind-toe and claw 


„ naked part of the nose, 


„ „ „ claw alone . 


elusive of the awl-shaped processes 



„ fur on the back , 


Breadth of the palm 



The condi/lnra longicaudafa, described at page 13_, has the scales on the feet^ 
particularly the fore ones, more conspicuous, and with fewer interspersed hairs. 

There is a third specimen in the Zoological Museum which was procured at 
Mr. Brookes's sale, which I suppose to be the conclylura cristata of Desmarest, or 
the radiated mole of Pennant. 

Its colour is between umber and chestnut browns, and its tail is somewhat four- 
sided, slender, and tapering gradually from the root to the tip, which is terminated 
by a small pencil of hairs. The tail is obscurely scaly, and is covered with strong, 
short, tapering hairs. It is similar to the other two species in other respects, and 
has the same number of processes to its nose with the condylura macroura. 

Length of head and body 
,, the tail . 


Inches. Lines. Inches. 

. 5 3 I Lengtii of the hind-foot, from the heel to 

2 6 the end of the middle-claw . . 1 

The native place of the specimen is not recorded. 


The Latin specific names are in 

SMALL CAriTALS, and the Synonyms and Native names in Italics. 



Ahsahta .... 

. 271 


. 261 

AmaroJc .... 


Antilope Americana 

261, 268 

American badger 

. 37 

Antilope furcifer 

. 261 

„ beaver , 


Antilope lanigera 


„ black-bear . 

. 14 

„ palmata 

. 261 

i, , cross-fox 


Antilope, palmated 


American elk 

. 251 

Antilope^ prong-horned 

. 261 

American field-raonse 



254, 258 

American field-rat 



. 261 

American fox . 

. 91 



American hare 


Aplodontia, genus 

. 210 

„ marsh-shrew 


Aplodontia leporina . 


American otter , 



. 142 

American souslik . . . 

. 162 



„ wolf . . . 


Arctic fox 

. 83 

Amefoo . . . . . 

. 80 

Archithenew fox 


Ammisk .... 


Arctomys alpina . 

. 158 

Anarisqua , . . . 

, 101 

Arctomys bobac 


Animous .... 


Arctomys brachyura 

. 151 

Anisonyx brachyura . 

. 151 

Arctomys braciiyurus 


Anisonyx? rufa 


Arctomys brachyurus 

. 157 


. 187 

„ citillus . 


Antilocapra Americana 


Arctomys empetra 

. 147 



Ardomys empetra 
,, FrankUnii 



. 168 

. 177 

. 154 
154, 157 

. 180 

Arctomys fulvus 
Ardomys Hood'd , 

„ Hudsonius 

„ latrans 

„ Ludovidanus 
Ahctomys leptodactylus 

„ marmotta , . . 179 

„ MONAX .... 153 

„ MUGOSARICUS . . 180 

Ardomys Parryi .... 158 

Arctomys Pakryi erythroglutaeius 161 

„ ,, phseognathus . 161 

„ PRUINOSUS . . . 150 

Ardomys 2^ mil los'us . . . 157 

„ Rldiardsonii . . 164 
„ riifa . , . ,211 

Arctomys (Spermophilus) Beecheyi 170 

„ „ citillus . 180 

„ '- ,, concolor . 180 

,, ,, douglasii . 172 

,, ■ ,, Franklinii 168 

,, ' ,, GTJTTATUS 162, 179 

,, . „ HooDii . 177 

,, ,, LATERALIS 174 

,, ,, LunoviciANus 154 

,, ,, Parry[ . 158 

„ ,, RiCHARDSONII 164 

,, ,, UNDULATUS . 180 

Ardomijs trcdecim Uneatus . . 177 

Arguli 271 

Aroussen . . . . . 187 

Arvicola eorealis . . . 127 

Arvicola (Georychus) GpffiNaANDicus 134 

„ ,, nELVOLus . 128 


Arvicola(Georychus) Hudsonius 132 

,, ,, trimucroxatus 130 

Arvicola Grcenlandicus 


„ Hudsonia . 

. 132 

„ (lemmiis) helvolus 


Arvicola Noaoboracensis 

. 126 

„ Pennsylvanicus . 


Arvicola Pennsylvanica 

. 124 

Arvicola riparius 



. 122 

Ascomys, genus 


Asne sauvage 

. 238 




. . 254 

Attehk .... 

238, 250 

Attim .... 

. 80 

Awaskees .... 


Awawteekceoo . 

. 37 

/Iwinnak .... 


Back's lemming 

130, 136 

Badgei-, American 

. 37 

Badger, common . 


,, mountain 

. 150 

,, thick-ivood 


„ var. /3. American 

. 37 

Bahama coney 


Banded lynx 

. 104 

Bank Meadow-mouse 


Barking squirrel 

. 154 

„ red 


Barren-ground bear . 

. 21 

,, caribou . 


Bat, hoary 


,, Say's . . . . 


Bat subulate . . , 






Bay lynx , . , 

. 103 

Black bear 

. 14 

Bear ..... 


Black bear, American . 


Bear, barren-ground 

. 21 

Black beaver 

. 113 

, „ black, American . 


Black fox 


Bear, brown-gray . . 


Black fot 

. 52 

„ brown, var. S 

. 21 

Black musquash . 


,, cinnamon 

. 15 

Black rat ... 

. 140 

„ gray .... 


Black or silver fox 


Bear, grisly 

. 24 

Black squirrel . 

. 191 

Bear, grisly .... 


Black-tailed deer 


„ grizzle 

. 24 

Black wolf 

. 70 

„ grizzly 

. 21,24 



Bear, polar 

. 30 

„ d'Ame'rique : 

. 37 

Bear, raccoon ... 


Blue fox 


Bear, sea . . . . 

. 30 

Br air .... 

. 37 

Bear, variegated . 


Brown bears 

: . 21 

„ ivhite 

. 24 

Brown-gray bear 

. 24 

„ yellow of Carolina 


Brown mole 


Bears, brown 


Brown rat ... 

. 141 

Beaver .... 

. 105 

Buffalo, white 


Beaver, American 


Burrowing dog 

. 73 

„ black . . . . 

. 113 



Beaver, Castor 


„ squirrel 

151, 154 

„ musk . . . 

. 115 

„ sea , 


Cabre .... 

. 261 

Beaver, spotted 

. 114 



,, white 


Camas rat ... 

. 206 


. 241 

Campagnol, marsh 




Canada lynx 

. 101 

Beechey's marmot 

. 170 

„ otter 


Bdier sauvage d'Am^rique 

. 271 

,, porcupine 

. 214 



,, pouched rat 



. 261 

Canada rat 

. 203 

Big-horn .... 


Canis argentatus 


Black American bear 

. 14 

„ cinereo-argentatus 

96, 98 

Black American wolf 


Canis familiaris 








. 75 

Carrier-Indian dog 

. 82 

„ • }> ' Canadensis 


Cased wolves = .» . 


„ . J, Nov^ Caledonia 


Castor albus 


' „ ■ „ ■ LAGOPUS . . 

. 78 

Castor Amerioanus - 


Canis fulvus 


Castor beaver 


Cants fulvus argentatus 

. 94 

„ blanc .... 

. 114 



,, fiber- 


„ Virginianus 

. 96 

Castor fiber, albus 

. 114 

Cams fuliginosus 

. 89 

„ „ Ameriganus> 


Canis lagopi, varietas 


„ „ NIGER 

. 113 

„ lagopus 

. 83 

Castor fiber, var.B. 


Canis latrans 

. 73 

„ „ var. D. . . 

, 114 

Canis lupus .... 


Castor fiber varius . 


Canis lupus, aleus 

. 68 

Castor fort noir 

. 113 

„ „ ATBR ..... 


„ ordinaire ■ . ■ . 


„ ,, griseus 

. 66 

,, zibethicus . ' . 

. 115 

„ ,, nubilus 


Cat lynx . . . ' 



. 60 

„ tiger 

. 104 

„ „ Sticte ... 


„ wild 


Canis lycaon . 

. 70 

Cavia Hudsonis 

. 214 

„ nubilus ■ . ' . 


Cawquaw . . . . 


,, velox ■.-... 

. 98 

Cerf mulet 

. 254 

„ Virginianus 


Cervus alces 


Canis vulpes ? ... 

. 97 

Cervus auritus 

. 254 

Canis. (vulpes) cinereo-argentatus 


„ bifurcatus . * 


,, ,, FULVUS 

. 91 

,, capreolus ... 

. 258 



,, hamatus 


5, ;, ■ „ ■ FULIGINOSUS 


Cervus macrotis 

. 254 

CapuGca . ... . . . 

. 57 





„ tarandus . 

. 238 


. 238 

„ •„ arcticus 


Caribou^ ^ . . . 



. 250 

Caribou, barren-ground 

. 241 

Cervus Virginianus • . . 


„ woodland • 


Chevreuil ■...-. 

254, 258 



Chienbrun .... 


Garr^-bosuf .... 


Chickaree . . . 

. 187 






Deer, fallow with long. tails 


Cinnamon bear 

. 15 

„ fallow, ox Virginian, . 

. 258 

Columbia pine-squirrel 


,, great eared , . , . 

. 254 

Columbia sand-rat 

. 200 

Deer, moose 


Common badger » . 

. 37 

Deer, jumping . . 

. 254 

, , deer ' 

238, 241 

„ long-tailed jumping . . 


„ fallow deer, with long 

tails . 258 

,, mule . 


Common gray wolf - 


„ red . . . . . . 

. 251 

Common marmot . - . 

. 147 

" red, long- tailed . . 


Common mouse .- . ^ 


Deer, rein . 

. 238 

Common otter 

. 57 

Deer, rein =, . ^ . 


„ red-deer ■ 


,, with small horns, 8fc. 

. 258 

„ squirrel ■ . 

. 187 

„ small,.of the Pacific 





. 206 



Denyai . . 




Dog, burrowing 




Dog, carrier-Indian 


Condylure a longue queue 

. 13 

„ domestic 

• 75 

Coquallin .... 


„ Esquimaux .. 



. 41 

Dog, Greenland 

. 83 

CoztiocotequalUn . 


Dog, Hare-Indian 


Cricetus? taipoides 

. 204 

„ North American 


Cross-fox . . . 


Dog, prairie 


Cross-fox, American 

. 93 

„ sooty . ^ . 

. 89 

Cul-blanc .... 


Domestic dog 


Cuskeeteh-musquaw . 

. 14 

Dormouse, striped 

. 181 



Douglas's marmot . 


„ socialis . 


Dusky wolf . . . . 

. 69 

Daim fauve- a queue noire . 

. 254 

Ecureuil de la baie d' Hudson . 


Daman de la baie d^Hudson . 

. 230 


. 237 

Deer, black-tailed 


Elk ...... .. 

232, 251 

Deer, black-tailed, fallow - . 

. . . 257 

Elk, Jfmeriean . . .• . 

. 251 

„ common 


Elian H «■ « i . 


f, red . 

. 258 

Emakeekanow , . 

. 271 

,j long-tailed ■ . » . 


Enhydra, sub-genus . . 


2 P 2 



Enhydra, marina 
Equus caballus . 
Erethizon dorsatum , 
Ermine or Stoat . . . 
Escurieil commun . , 
Escurieux Suisses 
EsTcimaux dog . . 
Eslan ..... 
Esquimaux dog 
Etthin .... 
European fox 
European fox, var. a. . 

Fallow deer, common, ivith long fails 
Fallow or Virginian deer 
Felis Canadensis 
„ fasciata 

J, RUFA .... 

Fiber zibethicus 

33 „ ALB us 

,3 33 MACULOSUS . 

33 „ NIGER 

Field-mouse, American 
Field-rat) American 
Fisher ..... 
Fisher-iveasel . . 

Flying-squirrel, greater 
Flying-squirrel, Rocky Mountain 

33 3, Severn River 
Forster's Shrew mouse 

„ American .... 
Fox, Archithinew . 
Fox, arctic .... 

,, black or silver 



. 59 

Fox, American cross . 

. 93 


Foxes pied 


. 214 

Fox, European, var. a. 

. 94 


„ European, var, ^. 


. 187 

Fox, gray . ... 

. 96 


Fox, grizzle , , 


. 75 

Fox, kit . . . • . 

. 98 


Fox, large .... 


. 75 

„ red . . . 

. 91 

. 238 

Fox, silver . ... 



Fox, small hurr owing 

. 98 


Fox, sooty .... 


. 93 

Fox, swift .... 

. 98 

Four-banded pouched squirrel 


h . 258 

Four-handed squirrel , 

. 184 

. 258 

Four-lined squirrel 




. 48 

. 104 

Franklin's marmot 



. 115 

Gauffres ..... 

. 206 


Geomys, genus 


. 119 

Geomys? bursarius 

. 203 


Geomys cinereus 


. 142 

Geomys Douglasii 

. 200 




. 52 


. 202 


Georychus, sub-genus 



Gerbillus Hudsonius 

. 144 

. 195 

„ Labradorius . 



Glis Canadensis 

. 147 


Glouion, Wolverine 



Glutton ..... 

. 41 

. 91 

Goat ..... 



Goat, Mountain 

. 271 

. 83 

Goat, Rocky-Mountain 



Goats, wild . » . ♦ 

. 261 



Gopher " . ... 



Hohhost .... 



Gray hear .... 



Hood's marmot 

. 177 

Gray fox .... 





„ wolf, Commoa 



Hudson's bay lemming 

132, 136 

Gray squirrel, lesser . 

Great eared deer . . . 



Hudson's rat .... 
Hudson's bay skunk 

. 132 

Greater flying-squirrel 
Greenland dog 




Hudson's bay squirrel 
Hudther .... 

. 187 

Greenland lemming . 



Hungarian marmot . 

. 180 

Grisly bear .... 



Hyrax Hudsonius 


Grizzle bear 



Hystrix dorsata 

. 214 

„ fox . 



„ Hudsonis. 


Grizzly bear ... 

. 21,24 

Hystrix pilosus 

. 214 

Grosse corne . . 



Hystrix pilosus, Americanus . 


Ground hog 

„ squirrel 
Ground-squirrel leopard 

„ ,f Rocky mountain 
Gido arcticus, var. A. . 




Isatis ..... 

Jackash .... 

Jevrascka .... 

„ long-tailed 

. 83 


. 180 

254, 258 

. 258 

Hackee . . 


Jumping-mouse, Labrador 

. 1.44 

Hahyuha .... 





Hamster du Canada 


Kalan . . . . • 

. 59 

Hare ..... 


Kath-hillcB-kooay . 


Hare, American 



. 144 

Hare-Indian dog 


Kawchoh .... 


Hare, Little- Chief 


Kernektak .... 

. 89 

„ polar .... 




„ prairie 
Hare-tailed mouse 



Kinwaithoo-wayoo apeesee-mongsoos 
Kit-fox . . 

. 254 

„ „ rat . 


KoUowak .... 

. 241 

Hare, varying .... 

Hedge coney 





Labrador jumping-mouse 
Lagomys, sub-genus . 


. 227 

Hoary bat .... 
Hoary marmot .... 


Land otter .... 
Lapin .. . • • 

. 217 


Lapland lemming .., 
Large fox ... 

Large red fox of the .plains 
Leadbeater's Sand-rat 
Lemming, Back's 
Lemming, Back's 
Lemming, Greenland 
Lemming, Greenland . 

Lemming, Hudson's Bay 
Lemming, Hudson's Bay 

„ Lapland . . 

,, Norway „ . 
Lemming, tawny . . . 
Lemming^ tawny 

„ ringed 
Lemmus Hudsonius 

„ Novoboracensis 

, , torquatus 
Leopard ground-squirrel 
Leopard marmot 
Lepus Americanus 
Lepus (Lagomys) princeps 
Lepus Gii^AciALis 
Lepus Htidsonius 

„ timidus 
Lepus Virginianus 
Lesser gray squirrel 


Little-Chief hare 
Little moose, real 
Long-tailed mole . 
Long-tailed red deer 
Long-tailed Star-nose 
Loup Cervier 
Louji-noir de Canada 
Loutre'de Canada^ , 




Lupus alhus . . 

. 68 

„ ater 


„ griseus , . 

. 66 

Lupus nuhilus , . « . 


„ Sticte . . . - , 

. 68 

Lutra Brasiliensis ... 


LuTRA Canadensis 

. 57 

LuTRA (Enhydra) marina 


Lutra marina .- .,. . 

. 59 



Lynx, banded . , . 

. 104 

„ bay - . ... 


„ Canada 

. 101 

Lynx, cat . , . , . 


Lynx fasciatus . , . 

. 104 

Maconsh ..... 



. 66 



Marmot, Beechey's 

. 170 

Marmot, common 


Marmot, Douglas's . 

. 172 

,, Franklin's 


Marmot, hoary 

. 150 

„ Hood's 


Marmot, Hungarian 

. 180 

„ leopard 


Marmot, Maryland 

. 153 

Marmot, Parry's . 


„ PoUsh . 


„ of the Alps 

. 179 

„ American Soulik 


„ of the Wolga 

. 179 

Marmot, prairie 

. 154 

Marmot, Quebec . 

147, 158 

„ Say's 


„ short-tailed . 

. 151 




Marmot, Siberiaa . . • . , 


M00S&, reahlittle • 

Marmot, tail-less • . . . 


Moosooa . 

Marmot, tawny • . . 


Moostoosh . . . 

Marmot, tawny American 


Mouflon d'Am^rique . 

Marsh, campagnol 


Mountain badger , . 

Marsh-shrew, American 


„ goat 

Matheh-tuck wuok ... 


„ ram 

Martin, Pennant's ••••.. 



Martin, Pine 


Mouse, common 

Maryland marmot ... 


„ American field- 

Mazama sericea . * . . 


Mouse, hare-tailed 

Meadoiv-mouse • . • . • 120 


,, jumping , . 

Meadow-mouse, bank . • . 


,, meadow . . 

„• northern , 


Mouse, bank-meadow . 

• „ sharp-^iosed 


Mouse, No. 15, Forster 

„■ yellow-cheeked 


„ short-tailed- 

■ „ • Wilson's 



Meesheh musquaw i . . 



Meesteh-chaggoneesh . ■ . 



Meles Labradoria 


Mus agrarius 

Mephitis Americana . . . . 


,, bursar ius 

Mephitis Americana, Hudsonica 


„ citillus guttatus . 

Meriones Labradorius . . 


Mus decumanus 

Mink . . , 


Mus empetra 



„ Groenlandicus 

Minx-otter . . 


„ Hudsonius 

Missouri wolf . •. : . 


,, Labradorius 

Mistonusk .... 









„ brown 


Mus sylvaticus 

„ long-tailed .• .- . 


,, Zibethkus 

Mole-shaped Sand-rat- 



„ shrew • . i « , 



Monax . .■ . .• . ; 



Monax Missouriensis < 


MusTELA Canadensis 



Mustela erminea 


132, 136 
120, 124 
. 120 





Mustela lutreocephaJa 

. 48 

Ookalik . . 

. 221 

„ lutreola 

. 48 


' . 14 

„ nivalis 


Ootaw chce-gceshees 

. 204 

Mustela martes 

. 51 

Orignac . , . . 


Mustela Pennanti 


Orignal .... 

. 232 

Mustela (Putorius) erminea 

. 45 

Orignat . . . . 


,, ,, VISON 


Otay .... 

. 48 

„ „ vulgaris 

. 45 



Mustela vulgaris 


OtcJiitamon . . . . 


Musquash .... 

. 115 

Otter, Canada . 


„ black 


Otter, land . . . . 


„ pied 

. 119 

Otter, sea . . . . 


„ white 


Ours blanc 


Musquaw . . . . 

. 14 

Ours gulaire 



261, 271 

0ms ammon 

. 271 



„ » pygargus . 


Mynomes, genus 

. 121 

„ Callfornica 

. 272 

Myoxus Drummondii 


„ monfana 


Ovis Montana 


Naghaieh . . . . • 

. 41 

Owinyak .... 

. 134 



Nannook . . . . • 

. 30 

Palmated antelope 




Pangnek .... 

. 241 

Neekeek ..... 

. 57 

Parry's marmot 


Nennook , . . . 


Peeshoo .... 

. 101 

Neotoma Drummondii 

. 137 



Neotoma, Rocky-Mountain 


Pekan, or Fisher 

. 52 

Norak . . . . ■ 

. 241 

Pekan, white 


North-American dog 


Pennant's martin 

. 52 

Northern Meadow-mouse . 

. 127 

Petit chien . . . . 


Norway lemming . . 


Peszi .... 

. 83 

Ohihoin . . . . . 

. 181 

Pied-foxes . . . . 




Pied Musquash 

. 119 


. 41 

„ wolf . . . . 


Ommeethatsees , » 


Pine martin 

. 51 

Ondathra . . . . • 

. 115 

Pine squirrel 


Ondatra . . . - 


Pine squirrel, Columbia 

. 190 





Polar bear 


Rat, black ..... 


Polar hare .... 

. 221 

„ brown .... 

. 141 

Polish marmot 


„ camas , . . . . 


Porcupine .... 

. 214 

Rat, field, American . 

. 142 

Porcupine, Canada 


,, hare-tailed .... 


Porcupine from Hudson s Bay . 

. 214 

„ Hudson's 

. 132 

Pouched-rat, Canada 


„ musque .... 


Pouched-squirrel, four-banded . 

. 184 

Rat, pouched .... 

. 203 

„ „ hackee . 


Rat, Rocky Mountain 


Prairie dog .... 


Raton ..... 

. 36 

Prairie hare .... 

. 224 

Real little-moose . . ^ . 


Prairie marmot 


Red barking-squirrel . 

. 187 

Prairie wolf . . . 

. 73 

Red- deer 


Prarow .... 


„ common 

. 258 

Procyon lotor 


„ long-tailed 


Prong-horned antilope . 




Pseudostoma, genus . 

. 197 

„ squirrel . . . . . 


Pteromys Sabrinos 


Rein-deer . ... 

. 238 


. 195 

Rein-deer . . . . . 


Putorius, sub-genus 



. 221 

Putorius vulgaris 


Renard argente ■ . . . 


Quebec marmot ... 
Quebec marmot .... 

Quikehatch .... 
Quickhatch .... 
Quiquihatch .... 
Quisquissu .... 


. 170 


. 158 


. 41 



Renard barre .... 
Renard de Virginie 
Renard noir . . 

„ tricolor . . . 
Ringed lemming 
Rocky Mountain flying-squirrel 

„ „ goat 
Rocky Mountain ground-squirrel 



. 94 

. 136 

. 268 




Rocky Mountain Neotoma 
„ „ sheep . 

. 137 

Rabbit ..... 

. 217 

Rocky Mountain sheep 

. 268 

Raccoon .... 


Roebuck ..... 


Raccoon bear .... 


Rupicapra Americana 

. 268 

Rain- deer . . . 


Ram, Mountain 

. 271 

Saccomys, genus 

. 197 





Sand-ratj . . 197 

„ Columbia . . . .200 

„ Leadbeater's . . . 202 

„ Mole-shaped . . .204 

Saricovienne .... 57 

Sarigoviou ..... 57 

Sass 14 

Say's bat ...... 3 

Say's marmot . . . 174 

Scacah ...... 82 

Scalope de Canada ... 9 

ScALOPS Canadensis ... 9 

Sciuropterus, genus . . . 193 

SciURUS HUDSONIUS . . . 187 

„ „ vat: /3. . . 190 

Sciurus Hudsonius .... 193 

Sciurus lateralis .... 174 

„ Lysteri .... 181 

Sciurus nicer .... 191 

Sciurus quadrivittatus . . ■ 184 

„ Sabrinus .... 193 

„ striatus . . . .181 

„ tridecim Uneatus . . 177 

Sciurus (Tamias) Lysteri . . 181 

,, „ quadrivittatus 184 

Sea-bear ...... 30 

Sea-beaver ..... 59 

Sea-otter ^ ..... 59 

Seecawk ..... 55 

Seegoos ...... 46 

Seek-seek . . ■ 158 

Severn-river flying-squirrel . . 193 

Sewellel 212 

Shaccooshew ..... 46 

Shackw(Bshew .... 48 

Sharp-nosed Meadow-mouse . . 126 

Sheep, Rocky Mountain 
Sheep, Rocky Mountain 
Shong . 

Short-tailed marmot . 
Short-tailed mouse 
Shrew-mouse, Forster's 

„ „ small . 

Siberian marmot 

Skunk, Hudson's Bay 
Skunk iveasel 
Small brown squirrel 

„ burroiving fox 

,, deer of the Pacific 

„ gray squirrel 
Small shrew-mouse 
Small wolves 
Sooiy dog 
Sooty fox . 
Sorex aquaticus 
Sorex Forsteri 

„ palustris 


Sorex talpceformis . 
Souffieur . 

„ American 
Spermophile ray^ 
Spermophilus, sub-genus 
Spermophilus guttatus 
Spotted beaver . 
Spotted ground squirrel 


. 268 


. 151 






37, 147 



. 55 


. 190 


. 258 




. 232 


. 89 






. 150 


. 162 


. 154 


. 114 




Squenoton . 
Squirrel, barking 
Squirrel, black 
Squirrel, burrowing 

„ common 

„ flying . 

„ four-banded 

„ four-lined . 

„ ground . 
Squirrel, ground 
Squirrel, Hudson^s Bay 

„ lesser gray . 

„ pine 

„ red 

„ Severn river 

„ small brown 

„ small gray 
Stag .... 
Stagg . 
Star-nose, long-tailed 

„ thick-tailed 


Stoat weasel 
Stone fox 
Striped dormouse 

„ ground squirrel 
Subulate bat 
Swift fox 

Tail-less marmot 
Talpa longicaudata 
Tamias, sub-genus . 



. 261 

Tampek .... 



Tarbogan .... 

. 147 

154, 187 

Tawny American raarmot 



Tawny marmot 

. 164 

151, 154 

Tawny lemming 

. 128 


Tawny lemming 


. 195 

Taxus Labradoricus . 

. 37 


Techallotl . • . . 


. 184 

Temamaqame . 

. 261 

174, 181 

Terienniak .... 


.. 158 


. 83 


Terreeya .... 


. 191 


. 261 


Thcsthiay .... 


. 187 

Tilling .... 



Thick-wood badger 


. 190 

Tiger cat .... 

. 104 


Tlalcoyotl .... 


. 251 

Tooktoo .... 

238, 241 




. 13 

Tschernoburi . . . . 

. 94 

. 285 




Tsoutaye . . . . . 

. 105 

. 46 

Tukta ..... 

238, 241 


. 181 

Urson ..... 



Ursus Americanus . 

. 14 


Ursus arctos .... 



Ursus arctos ? Americanus . 

. 21 

. 180 

Ursus candescens . 



,, cinereus . . . . 

. 24 

Ursus ferox 


. 230 

Ursus horribilis 

. 24 


„ Freti Hudsonis 


. 181 

,, Labradoricus . 

. 37 


Ursus lotor 

„ luscus 

„ marinus 
Ursus maritimus 
Ursus niger Eurojxsus 

Variegated bear 
Varying hare 


Virginian fox . 

Vison .... 

VuLPEs, sub-genus 
Vulpes vulgaris 


Wapiti .... 

Wappeeskeeshew makkeeshew 




Watts .... 







Weasel, common . 











Whistler .... 

. 150 

. 41 

TV/lite bear .... 



White beaver 

. IM 

. 30 

White buffalo 

. 271 


White musquash 


„ pekan 

. 54 


„ wolf 


221, 224 

Wildcat .... 

. 101 


„ goats 



„ horse .... 

. 231 

. 96 

Wilson's Meadow-mouse 




. 154 

. 48 

Wolf .... 



Wolf, American 


. 97 

„ black American 


Wolf, black . . . . 

. 70 


„ cased 


. 251 

Wolf, common gray 

. 66 

. 83 

„ pied 



„ prairie 

. 73 

. 252 

„ white 



Wolves, small 

. 73 

. 80 

Wolverin .... 


. 251 

Wolverine . . . . 

. 41 

. 251 




Woodland caribou 

. 250 

. 51 




. 30 

Yellow bear of Carolina 

. 15 


Yellow- cheeked meadow-mouse 


. 147 


. 41 


. 251 



London: Printed by W. Clowes, Stamford-slieet. 


Gay R. Brown 


2030 South 1 8th St. 

Pltisbuigh 3. Pa.