Page:Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London, Volume 1 (2nd edition).djvu/93

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older formation than the remainder of the island. From them u small rock juts out, and bears on its summit a most ridiculously striking likeness to a cock, which seemed, with Outspread wings? to hail the arrival of another ? Chanticleer.' The island is inhabited by penguins, from whose tookeries pro- ceeded a most deafening din, saluting the ears of the passenger in the most discordant notes. Our principal amusement, during the intervals of relaxation from labour, was to watch their motions, for their attitudes were excessively ludicrous, and their curiosity unbounded; and though so constantly before us, we always en- joyed a hearty laugh on visiting the rookeries for the purpose of ?rocuring some of them for food. They rem,ained still until hocked down with a stick, but then ' did battle most manfully with their beaks and flippers. I should suppose, that in the early part of December, two such vessels as the Chanticleer might have been easily loaded with their eggs; but at this time the young were nearly fledged, and the noise, dirt, and stench proceeding from their abodes were almost ingupportable. Besides the penguins, we found sea-leopards, Po?t Egmont hens, pintados, and various kinds of petrels, who bred in the rocks. There was nothing in the shape of vegetation except a small kind of lichen, whose efforts are almost ineffectual to main- tain its existence amongst the scanty soil afforded by the penguin' dung. Several sea-leopards were killed during our stay.; but they dif- fered from those described by Mr. Wadde!l, in having much shorter necks and hairy flippers. '['hey have also a vein of most . extraordinary dimensions in the stomach, which was supposed by our medical gentlemen to afford a receptacle for such a quantity of blood as would enable them to continne a very long time under water while in pursuit of their prey. We found tish in their sto- machs, but all attempts with the seine were unsuccessful. It was three days after our arrival before we could, place the ship in safety, from the violence of the gales, and from the ground being entirely composed of cinders, in which the anchors had no hold. She was at length secured in u small cove, and we lost no time in erecting the observatories--well knowing that our opera- tions were limited by the season. It was, however, cheerless work. The fogs were so frequent that, for the first ten days, we saw neither sun nor star; and it was withal so raw and cold, that I do not recollect having suffered more at any time in the arctic regions, even at the lowest range of the thermometer. When to these discomforts is added, that the short allowance, to which we had been reduced, barely formed sufficient for'a healthy man's breakfast, you may judge whether what we have accomplished has not been ? laforce. I assure you Dig,tiz?d by Google