Page:The new British province of South Australia.djvu/69

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absence of every enemy, these large quadrupeds have multiplied very considerably in this Island; they associate there in large herds. In some spots which they are in the habit of frequenting regularly, the earth is so trodden that not a blade of herbage remains. Large pathways, opening into the heart of the woods, abut upon the sea-shore from every part of the interior:

these paths, which cross in every direction, are throughout firmly beaten; one might be led to suppose, at first sight, that the vicinity must be inhabited by a numerous and active population.

"This abundance of kangaroos rendering the chase as easy as productive, we were enabled to procure twenty-seven, which we carried on board our ship alive, independent of those which were killed and eaten by the crew. This valuable acquisition cost us neither ammunition nor labour; one single dog was our purveyor: trained by the English fishermen to this description of chase, he pursued the kangaroos, and having overtaken them, he immediately killed them by tearing the carotid arteries."

Page 139.—"Towards the bottom of the bay is a kind of marsh covered with sea-weed, in which live, buried in the mud and sand, millions of pinnæ marinæ, or mussels. These shells furnish a silk, equal, in all respects, to that obtained from similar animals along the coasts of Calabria and Sicily; but the European mussels dwell at a depth of 30 or 40 feet, and the fishery is attended with great difficulty, whilst those of Kangaroo Island are covered with scarcely 25 to 30 inches of water, and thousands might with ease be collected in a few hours[1]."

Captain Flinders gives an account of his adventures on Kangaroo Island much more in accordance with

  1. In Italy, the silk of the pinnæ marinæ is of great value. It is convertible into a fine and durable stuff, and being scarce, fetches a high price.