category:Flight shooting


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    It is rarely that the Lion of the Cape district ventures to attack a man, unless provoked, or impelled by urgent hunger. The colonists, however, who are very great sufferers (especially in their horses, for whose flesh he seems to have a peculiar taste) by his frequent visits, are his most determined and deadly foes, and omit no opportunity of wreaking their vengeance upon him for the injuries which he has inflicted upon their property. The frontier boors in particular, who are more exposed to his ravages, and who, being well trained to hunting, are most of them excellent marksmen, appear to take a peculiar pleasure in attacking the Lion, even when they[22] meet him almost singly. They, however, more frequently make up parties for the chase, which is unquestionably attended with no little danger, even when the huntsmen are numerous and experienced; for although the Lion on such occasions almost always takes to his heels, and endeavours to make his escape without confronting his pursuers; yet, when he finds that flight is in vain, he turns upon them with a fierceness and determination that nothing could withstand, were it not for the well proved superiority possessed by them in the formidable rifle, which, on such an emergency, they know how to direct with a steady and almost unerring aim.
    Like both the cats and the dogs, the Hy?nas are[72] completely digitigrade; that is to say, they walk only on the extremities of their toes: but these toes are only four in number on each of their feet, and are armed with short, thick, strong, and truncated claws, which are not in the least retractile, and are evidently formed for digging in the earth, a practice to which they are impelled by a horrid and hateful propensity, which we shall have further occasion to notice in describing their habits and mode of life. Their body, in shape much resembling that of the wolf, to which they also approach very nearly in size, is considerably more elevated in front than behind, owing partly to their constant custom of keeping the posterior legs bent in a crouching and half recumbent posture. Beneath the tail, which is short and dependent, they are furnished with a pouch, in the interior of which is secreted a peculiar matter of a very strong and disagreeable smell. Their head is large and broad, flattened in front, and terminating in a short, thick, and obtuse muzzle. Like most carnivorous animals, they are armed in each jaw with six cutting teeth, and two canine, the latter of which are of considerable size and strength. The outermost pair of incisors in the upper jaw are much larger and stronger than the rest, and closely resemble the canine in form. The number of the molar or cheek teeth is five on each side in the upper jaw, and four in the lower; and all of them are remarkable for their extreme thickness and strength in comparison with those of the dogs and cats. Their tongue is similar to that of the latter animals in the roughness which it derives from the sharp and elevated papill? with which it is covered.


    2.The Bearded Griffin is the largest European bird of prey, and builds its aiery among the loftiest precipices of nearly all the alpine chains of the Old Continent. Here it displays the tyranny, but not the courage, of the Eagle, attacking such living animals only as are likely to fall an easy prey, and gorging in troops with all the rapacity of Vultures upon the most corrupted carrion.
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