Page:Life and Adventures of William Buckley.djvu/98

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LIFE OF BUCKLEY.

we therefore pitched our huts on the other side. Many parts of that river are rocky, leaving but an inconsiderable depth of water, into which the eels get in great numbers; indeed so numerous were they, that we caught them in dozens. These eels appeared to be very sagacious, but not so much so as to avoid our fishing parties; for although they would shoot away into deep water at the falling of a star, or any extraordinary noise, yet they would come to our fishing torches and allow themselves to be taken very placidly.

When the flood in the river—which had been occasioned by very heavy and continuous rains—had subsided, we passed over, and hutted ourselves on the other side. Another tribe soon after joined us, amounting to about one hundred men, women, and children. I should here say, that the eels mentioned, seemed inexhaustible at this place, those of the smallest kind being the most numerous. They are light blue on the back, with white bellies; these the natives call the Mordong; and the larger kind, the Babbanien; the latter being brown on the back, with white bellies.

The tribe which arrived the last, only remained a few days, when another fight occurred, again about the women—one of whom was killed, and several severely wounded: they then left. We also shifted our quarters a short time after, and kept up the old fancy of wandering about; not exactly from "post to pillar," but from one hunting ground to another, seeking variety of food, from fish to flesh, from roots to anything available; for the natives are, in truth, a rambling lot, never