Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 10.djvu/124
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.
ly over the skull and terminating at the posterior end of the bill, as usually depicted in the text-books, were both carried to the right of the median line of the skull, and extended along the right side of the upper mandible, nearly or quite to its tip. Subsequent examination of numerous specimens showed this to be an accidental variation, but characteristic of the genus. A few of the black and pied species were examined, showing the same lack of symmetry, and differing only in the horns or muscles terminating at the base of the bill. Dr. Lindahl offered no explanation of these peculiarities, but called attention to the fact that the food of the green species varied considerably from that of the others, being sought deeper in the trees, and hoped that ornithologists and entomologists would consider the points of sufficient interest to seek their explanation. In the brief discussion which followed, the asymmetry of position and the extension of the muscles to the end of the mandible were spoken of as of interest, and as being new to ornithologists. While it is always important that errors in our text-books should be pointed out and corrected, the assumption that the facts are wholly new would seem to be somewhat hasty.
In this connection it may be sufficient to point out that Huxley ("Anatomy of Vertebrated Animals") says: "The free ends (of the posterior cornua) are inserted between the ascending and maxillary processes of the right pre-maxilla." In the "American Cyclopædia," the point of attachment is stated to be "usually near the opening of the right nostril; "while Wilson, writing early in the century, describes them as follows:" The os hyoides is divided into two branches that pass, one on each side of the neck, to the hind-head, where they unite, and run up along the skull in a groove; descend into the upper mandible by the right side of the right nostril, and reach to within half an inch of the point of the bill, to which they are attached by another extremely elastic membrane. In some species these cartilaginous substances reach only to the top of the cranium; in others they reach to the nostril; and in one species they are wound around the bone of the right eye, which projects considerably more than the left for their accommodation."
Bartlett's Ozone-Generator.—An apparatus for the generation of ozone was exhibited to the Association by the inventor, Dr. F. W. Bartlett, of Buffalo.
The machine is divided into three parts, each having a share in the process. The base, or generator, is a glass vessel eight inches high, with a projecting rim at either end; the interior space, four and a half inches in diameter, being divided into eight compartments by projections from the inner wall, extending one and a quarter inch toward the centre. This unoccupied centre has a movable cylinder which, when in position, completes the walls of the separate cavities. In each of these a tablet of phosphorus, one by two inches, and one-eighth of an inch thick, is suspended in water by a fusible wire—the fusible wire being used so that in cases of ignition, which sometimes occurs, the phosphorus may be completely submerged and the flame extinguished. Resting upon the base is a conical cylinder, eight inches high, and with a diameter at the top of five inches, composed of double walls of wire-cloth, between which lies some porous material saturated with a strong alkaline solution. This presents an effectual bar to the passage of phosphoric acids, while it permits the free transit of the ozone. Above this eliminating-chamber is a second glass cylinder about eight inches in height, with an aperture at the top through which passes a glass rod carrying a plunger for displacing the water in the base, and by means of which the tablets of phosphorus may be raised or lowered. The space thus provided above the phosphorus is about eighteen inches, and is considered by the inventor indispensable to the full utilization of the phosphoric vapor in the production of ozone.
In its present form the machine is employed chiefly for disinfecting purposes, and performs such work not only thoroughly but very cheaply. For ozonizing the atmosphere of a house, the slow oxidation of 100 to 150 grains of phosphorus daily will suffice. It is entirely manageable and without any disagreeable odor.