Page:Audubon and His Journals.djvu/406

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
354
AUDUBON

not seen. Uria troile[1] and U.grylle[2] were breeding in the rocks, and John saw several Ardea herodias[3] flying in pairs, also a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers that had glutted themselves with fish so that they were obliged to disgorge before they could fly off. Amongst the plants the wild gooseberry, nearly the size of a green pea, was plentiful, and the black currant, I think of a different species from the one found in Maine. The wind rose and we returned on board. John and the sailors almost killed a Seal with their oars.

June 12. At four this morning we were in sight of the Magdalene Islands, or, as they are called on the chart, Amherst Islands; they appeared to be distant about twenty miles. The weather was dull and quite calm, and I thought the prospect of reaching these isles this day very doubtful, and returned to my berth sadly disappointed. After breakfast a thick fog covered the horizon on our bow, the islands disappeared from sight, and the wind rose sluggishly, and dead ahead. Several brigs and ships loaded with lumber out from Miramichi came near us, beating their way towards the Atlantic. We are still in a great degree landlocked by Cape Breton Island, the highlands of which look dreary and forbidding; it is now nine A. M., and we are at anchor in four fathoms of water, and within a quarter of a mile of an island, one of the general group; for our pilot, who has been here for ten successive years, informs us that all these islands are connected by dry sand-bars, without any other ship channel between them than the one which we have taken, and which is called Entrée Bay, formed by Entrée Island and a long, sandy, projecting reef connected with the main island. This latter measures forty-eight miles in length, by an average of about three in breadth; Entrée Island contains about fifteen hundred acres of land, such as it is, of a red, rough, sandy formation, the northwest side constantly falling into the sea, and ex-

  1. Foolish Guillemot.
  2. Black Guillemot.
  3. Great Blue Heron.