Image from page 66 of “Stories about birds of land and water” (1874)
Image from page 66 of “Stories about birds of land and water” (1874) by Internet Archive Book Images
Title: Stories about birds of land and water
Year: 1874 (1870s)
Authors: Kirby, Mary, 1817-1893 Kirby, Elizabeth, 1823-1873
Subjects: Birds — Juvenile literature
Publisher: Hartford [Conn.] : American Publishing Co.
Contributing Library: American Museum of Natural History Library
Digitizing Sponsor: Biodiversity Heritage Library
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Text Appearing Before Image:
r still day itwas easy to see, not only the reflection of the clouds as they went sailing overthe sky, but to catch sight of a shoal of fishes gliding merrily about justbeneath the surface. And in the hot drowsy noontide, when all was still, there would belieard distinctly the plash of the fish as it leaped up to catch a fly, or tobreathe the air. All these facts must have been well known to the kingfisher. The only difficulty was his extreme shyness and his dislike to be seen.Yet he had chosen the most public place he could find. The arbour was amere shed supported by wooden posts, and quite open on the side nearest tohis hole. The hole was not more than a yard or two off. People sat and-looked at it constantly. Not that anything could be seen, for the hole ran in THE KINGFISHER. 63 a slanting direction, and had a hollow place scooped out at the bottom, inwhich was the nest. But the loud chirping noise of the little kingfishers washeard very plainly indeed when the parents were away.
Text Appearing After Image:
THE KINGFISHER. The kingfisher had several fishing places. Sometimes he perched on thebranch of a willow that overhung the stream, where he would sit for manyminutes, lazily resting himself. He grasped the stem with his small red feet, his glossy back shining in 64 STORIES ABOUT BIRDS. the sun, and his ruby breast reflected in the water below. His long billwas pointed downwards, and his eye intent on watching the tiny fish thatsported beneath. Presently a fish came into the right position, and he opened his wings alittle way, and darted downwards with the rapidity of lightning, and, as itseemed, headlong into the water. There was a splash, and in another secondhe appeared with a fish in his mouth, struggling and twisting itself about. He struck it against the bough and killed it, then, tossing up his head,swallowed it, and was again on the watch as intently as ever. The poor kingfisher suffers very much in cold weather, but even in thedepth of the winter he is novv^ and then seen plyi
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