Page images
PDF
EPUB

investigation of the living forms. The foraminifers growth increases until disrupture of the parent shell should be captured alive, and put into and bred in is effected; but it is on such points that actual obserhousehold vivaria. I see no difficulty in any one vation is so much required. The young forms in a doing this who has leisure sufficient. The tanks, if free state are also found commingled in the same constructed something on the plan of Mr. Ward's samples of sand and mud with the adults of the ingenious fern-cases, with the addition of a heating same species, and we think it may be pretty safely or refrigerating chamber for the regulation of the asserted that the second youngest stage of all the temperature of the water and air, might be made compound forms is that of one lobe joined on to the suitable for the condition of any species, tropical or primary animal, and which condition would not arctic; and indeed as some particular forms are occur if the foraminifer were perfected in its mere known to exist in great abundance in many of the sarcodous growth, and segmented before the formaestuaries of our own coast, it would seem that such tion of its shell. species must be sufficiently hardy to withstand any Of the special habitats of the various species, of the ordinary conditions of indoor reservoirs, and much knowledge has been obtained, and although certainly any one residing on the borders of such there are some seeming discrepancies in the conestuarine districts could have ample means for the flicting statements of naturalists, the reconciliation observation of such foraminifers under their proper of many of them is assured. For example, Dr. natural conditions. The most important points to Wallich views certain forms as inhabiting the depths be settled are: 1. Whether the shell of the fora' of the ocean, and says he has netted through seven minifer is formed piecemeal or lobe after lobe; or hundred fathoms of sea-depth from the surface whether the whole mass of sarcode exists in an without the capture of a single individual ; whilst unprotected condition, and exhibits segmentation Major Owen, coming over the same sea, bags in before the formation of the enveloping shell. 2. abundance by net-sweeping the surface. It apWhether spontaneous fission does or does not take pears, however, when the subject is closely looked place. 3. How generation is effected, and whether into, that the same species abound in the same by one or more than one means. 4. What are the regions, and that the kinds found living at the characters of the germs or ova, and what the dif top of tbe sea are also found living at the bottom. ferences in the young stages between the fry of Moreover, the Doctor swept in the daytime, and various species?

the Major at night. This much is certain, that The little that is known, added to what we have some forms of foraminifers are not free, but are reason to believe, amounts to this conviction, that firmly attached to foreign bodies, and such parasitic the sarcode exudes freely as it increases in mass by forms adherent to otolithes and stones having been nourishment from every pore and orifice of the dredged up from the greatest depths, are decisive foraminifer's enveloping case, the whole shell proof of the residence and vitality of those organisms being covered with a film of sarcodous flesh; at a | under those abyssmal bathymetrical conditions. suitable period the exuded sarcode gathers itself

As other forms have essentially creeping habits, up into an additional fleshy lobe, and assumes being found travelling over the stems and leaves a characteristic and definite shape. On the obten of seaweeds-along the tidal and laminarian zones, tion of permanency of form, shell-secretion goes we may fairly infer that in accordance with their rapidly on, and the new animal is encased in a state of development, their attained size, the contiguous lobe to the previous shell. This view thickness or thinness of their shells, and the acquires confirmation from the fact that the older relative energy of their particular vitality, individuals lobes have more layers of shell-matter than the

of even the same species may be met with exempli. more recent ones. For example, the primary lobe

fying all the intermediate conditions between absoof a four-lobed shell will have four layers, the

lute fixity, crawling, and free swimming. second three, the third two, and the last one layer

Here we must leave this most interesting subject, of shell-matter shown in its transverse section. with the hope that these few pages will have Moreover, as a general rule old shells are thicker

encouraged higher motives than a desire for the than merely adult ones, and largeness of individual mere possession of so many slides of these exquisite dimensions and conditions of ample food-supply,

pelagic life-grains, and that future pages of and their reverses, induce such modifications of the

SCIENCE-GOSSIP may show the fruits of good work stoutness of the shell-structure as are in further

done.

S. J. MACKIE, F.G.S. harmony with this view.

That some foraminifera are viviparous we also SUSPENDED JUDGMENT.— A truly wise man is so know, because the larger chambers of some indi. fully sensible how little he knows, and what things viduals have been seen full of the shelled young he once was ignorant of which he is now acquainted in considerable stages of advance. But how these with, that he is far enough from supposing his own young are liberated has never been witnessed, so judgment a standard of the reality of things.far as I know, by human eyes. Most probably their' Baker"On the Polype.

MONMOUTH DEPOSIT.

above-named in its conspicuous coste, but differs

in the apices being slightly narrower, and the centre M HE Editor of this journal having received from i not inflated.

the Rev. E. C. Bolles, President of the Portland | Beside these, may be found Pianularia stauroeniInstitute, a quantity of a rich diatomaceous deposit

formis of Smith (figs. 141 and 142), Pinnularia from Monmouth, Maine, U.S., for distribution under divergens of Smith (fig. 143), and Pinnularia acrothe conditions named in the exchange list, I have | Sphæria of Smith (fig. 141). acceded to his request to furnish an account of the forms which this deposit contains.

It resembles the majority of the American fossil fresh-water deposits, namely, those of New York ; Wellington, Connecticut; New Hampshire; Blue Hills, Maine ; Cornwallis, Nova Scotia, &c., in being very rich in the genus Pinnularia. It also resembles the Bergmehl found in Lapland, in containing many species of Eunotia.

This deposit is perhaps the most purely diatomaceous of all that I have been fortunate enough to obtain. No action takes place on the addition of acids, showing the absence of any calcareous matter, thus indicating that the water in which the diatoms lived was free from lime. The diatoms are un

Fig. 142.

Fig. 113. usually perfect, and the striæ upon the more delicate species are as easily resolved as these upon recent forms.

Fig. 144.

[merged small][ocr errors]

Fig. 140.
Fig. 141.
Fig. 145.

Fig. 146. The following are some of those which I have found in this material. Pinnularia gigas of Ehren | Navicula Trochus of Ehrenberg was first observed burgh, and Pinnularia major of Kutzing, the latter in a fossil deposit from Sweden, and has since been figured in SCIENCE-Gossip for 1866, and repeated detected in several of the American deposits, and by here (fig. 140). These species, together with Pinnu. G. Norman, Esq., of Hull, in a recent gathering from laria nobilis and Pinnularia mesogongyla, might Norway, and by myself in the washings of some moss with propriety be made one species, 'as their specific gathered in Heigham, Norfolk. This, although a differences are not sufficient to warrant their separa- small form (the largest specimen I have seen did tion. Ehrenberg gave a figure of Pinnularia gigas not exceed 1400 of an inch in length), is readily in the Mikrogeologie (plate 2, 3, fig. 1).

detected by its peculiar form. It has a strongly Pinnularia dactylus of Ehrenberg resembles the inflated centre, with rostrate and obtuse apices.

Fig. 118.

The next most conspicuous genus is that of Eunotia, including Eunotia triodon (fig. 145),

ZOOLOGY. tetraodon, diadema, octodon, and ennaodon. The

Curious SEA ANEMONE.-In the winter of 1865, crenate Eunotiæ with coarse markings might, as I found on the sands of Weymouth Bay several suggested by Mr. Ralfs, be advantageously united

Anemones, Anthea Cereus (the lead and vivid green into one species, which he proposes to call Eunotia

varieties), and Sagartia parasitica on Whelk Shells, robusta.

cast up by the heavy sea. On taking them home, and putting them into sea water, I found one of the Sagartia parasitica to have two perfect discs. It was a very large specimen. The tentacula were white. When raw beef was offered to one set of tentaculæ, the other set showed no sign of closing, or sensation from the presence of meat. Having had much experience in keeping sea monsters of various kinds upwards of nine years, and yet never having met with such a curiosity before, I should esteem it a favour if any gentleman would intimate, through the pages of the Journal, of having met with a similar case in any variety.-- Alfred Hawes, Bath.

AMPUTATED ANEMONE. I have often noticed, in books on Aquaria, the assertion that a healthy Actinia mesembryanthemum, if cut vertically in two, will form two perfect Anemones; but the following fact will, I think, interest all aquarians.

Last year I received a consignment of Anemones Fig. 147.

from Tenby. A Sagartia nivea having been roughly

detached from the rock, was suffering from a rupture To the foregoing may be added the names of the

on one side; it was very bad, and was coated with following, which also occur in the Monmouth deposit:

mucus and white threads. In a day or two the side Eunotia Camelus of Ehrenberg, Eunotia octonaria

began to decay, and quite tainted the water of the of Ehrenberg, Eunotia hemicyclus of Ehrenberg

temporary shallow pan in which I had placed it; (fig. 146), Stauroneis Baileyi of Ehrenberg, Stau

during this, the other side of the Anemone was roneis phænicenteron of Ehrenberg, which, although

quite healthy, and the tentacles expanded. I thought figured before in this journal, is repeated here

it was a pity to lose this Anemone, and debated (fig. 147), and Stauroneis gracilis of Ehrenberg

in my mind what amputation would effect; so (fig. 148).

determining to try the experiment, I took a In a future communication I hope to add a

sharp knife, and cut the anemone in two, cutting off description of the rarer forms which I have detected. |

all decayed matter, and put the remainder on a rock By that time, I doubt not, many of the readers of

in the shady part of a well-established tank. In a this journal will have become possessed of a portion

day or so, the Anemone assumed the shape of a of the deposit about to be distributed, and thus be

crescent, and the severed sides, in the course of ten enabled to follow with more interest any observa

days, joined, forming a circular Anemone, quite tions which I may make.

perfect, without the slightest trace of a seam. This Norwich.

F. Kitton. curiosity fed, throve, lived in my tank for months

after. - Alfred Hawes, Bath. COFFEE is said to have been first brought to England by Mr. Nathaniel Conopius, a Cretan, who

A FLEA ENCAMPMENT.-In moving a bed some made it his common beverage at Balliol College, at

time ago we came upon an encampment of the Oxford, in the year 1641 ; but it must evidently enemy. The flea wigwams were scattered over the have been a few years prior to this date, as Evelyn

white surface of a long piece of dimity placed says in his Diary, 1637, “There came in my tyme

between the bed and the partition of the room. I to the Coll. one Nathaniel Conopios out of Greece,

had often asked what became of fieas in cold from Cyrill the Patriarch of Constantinople, who,

weather; and here, in this hamlet of minute huts, returning many years after, was made (as I under the mystery was explained: we saw them in winter stand) Bishop of Smyrna; he was the first I ever quarters; each habitation was a little ov saw drink coffee, which custom came not into Eng.

eighth of an inch long, and the exact shape of a land till 30 years after.”Phillips' Fruits of Great

cocoon, attached to the white field of the dimity, Britain.

apparently after the manner of a chrysalis. While

curiously looking at them, the ensconced fleas | the tap from him a quarter of a circle, the mouth of proved they were on the alert, for first one and then the spout being turned away from the fence. We another of these single tenements opened like a have all seen the elephant at the Zoological Gardens mussel-shell, and away went the startled occupants fill his pail at the driver's bidding, but I conceive in quick succession, the whole making their escape this is rather a new branch of industry for horses. in magical celerity. The piece of dimity looked as | No doubt they make progress in the useful arts as if it was nibbled. How do the fleas work up these well as their masters. But though my Welsh pony snuggeries-the little abodes with only room for used to open gates for me, by lifting the wooden one, and a close fit too? And does each occupier latch with his nose and then thrusting with his know his own house? I once saw thousands of shoulder, I could never get him to turn round and these insects, bound on some expedition, crossing a close the gate for me. Nor in this experiment did road closely adjacent to a beach, skipping, jumping, the horse turn off the tap when he had drank and scrambling, in such close order that the space | enough. I believe his masters sometimes exhibit a of road, about a yard in diameter, was darkened by like forgetfulness at the neighbouring tavern, so their migration, their direction being inland.-W.B. both horses and men have something to learn. As

an instance of observation, reflection, and experiA CANARY'S ANTIPATHY.-It may interest some ment, followed by deduction, I think the action of of your readers to note the extraordinary antipathy

our four-footed philosopher worth notice.-J. W. for certain colours of a pet canary-bird of ours. Any Salter. shade of violet or blue appears to drive him nearly

LEPIDOPTERA WANTED.-For many years I have mad. He not only futters, but beats himself against

paid a sort of desultory attention to subjects conthe cage wires or the bottom of the cage, and I

nected with those branches of natural history, the really believe would kill himself if the objection

study of which it is the special business of your able colour was not removed. The least bit of

excellent little work to promote, and the attention either of these colours is detected by him in a

has been only desultory because my every-day avocamoment. One day, while my wife was feeding her

cations have rendered a close study impossible. I pets, the cook came to speak to her, and had some

should, however, much like to exchange specimens ribbon of a violet shade to her cap. Poor little

with any one who would like to open a corresponDickey was off in a moment, violently beating and

dence with me for that purpose, premising that I fluttering till the cap-strings disappeared. We

am more likely to possess spare specimens of the have tried him with almost every other colour, and

Lepidoptera than those of other orders. If it be he takes no notice. I may add that he was brought

not too late, I should be obliged to any one who up by hand, and is so tame that he is constantly

would send me a few eggs of any new silk moth, parhopping about us as we get up in the morning ; any

ticularly those of the Ailanthus (Bombyx Cynthia). stranger can take him on their finger. In a moment,

We have here, somewhat common, a moth which however, at sight of a dress or ribbon of the colours

seems very closely allied to the above, judging from named he immediately commences trying to knock

drawings I have seen of the Ailanthus, and which his brains out, or to do himself some other “grievous

feeds on the apple and pear trees, but I should like bodily harm.” Can any one account for the strange

to rear a few of the Ailanthus for the purpose of fear of these particular colours ?-J. N.W.

making a comparison. I hope the person favouring A “New RIVER” HORSE.-At the brickfields

me with any eggs will accompany them with such close to the Finchley-road, where the Midland

instructions as may be necessary to the proper Extension Railway crosses, are some very simple

treatment of the caterpillar. Please make such siphons for supplying the works with water. They

use of this note as may most efficiently conduce to are merely bent pipes, with a lever tap inserted below

bringing about the object to be attained.-W.V. the bend. One of these is close to a field fence.

Andrews, Post Office, Box 2905, New York City, My daughter, who pays considerable attention to

U.S. animals, saw a common cart-horse walk up to the CHEATING A SPIDER.-Professor Rennie writes : spot, put his head over the fence, and, with his “We have tried numerous experiments by moving teeth, turn the lever tap full on. He then craned and vibrating the lines of many species, so as to his neck further over, so as to get his mouth below imitate as nearly as possible the entrapment of a fly; the stream, and caught the water as it fell. A but in no case have we succeeded in bringing the gentleman standing near saw the ingenious creature spider to the spot, because, as we inferred, her eyes refreshing himself, and to try whether it were always detected our attempted deception.” We accident or design, drove him away and turned off once were so clever as to cheat a spider. Gently the tap. On his retreating, the horse renewed the shaking a very small hook, called the midge-fly, in experiment, and obtained a fresh supply. And it the lowest line of her web, our barometrical friend is worth note that to do this the animal had to push —whose pre-sensation gave warning of wet-was fairly taken in: rushing on the hook, and grasping it, great was her astonishment. Finding that she

BOTANY. should not believe her eyes, she precipitately fled;

May MUSHROOMS.-Will Professor Buckman and no subsequent temptation,' though renewed

allow me to correct a slight inaccuracy in his article weeks afterwards, enabled us again to boast that

on“ May Mushrooms," in last number of SCIENCEwe excelled Professor Rennic in angling for spiders.

| GOSSIP? The agaric to which he refers is not -Contributions to Natural History by a Rural D.D.

A. prunulus, which is an autumn species, but Catching A Diver.-On the 8th of April last, A. gambosus, which belongs to the sub-genus "Tria Speckled Diver (I believe it to be a young choloma," and is one of the white-spored Agarics. Colymbus septentrionalis) was caught in Bridlington A. prunulus is one of the “Hyporhodii," or those Bay, on a line shot for cod and haddock, at a depth | Agarics in which the spores are pale-rose, or salmonof four or five fathoms. It had not swallowed the coloured, and belongs to the sub-genus "Clitopilus." hook, but was caught by a bight (or a twist) of the No doubt Professor Buckman's mistake arises from snood. I forward this note to show at what distance a perusal of Dr. Badbam's “Esculent Fungi of these birds dive in search of food, in case it may Great Britain," in which A. gambosus is called interest any of your ornithological readers.-H. II. | A. prunulus, and the latter species is described Knocker.

'under the name of A, Orcella. The true A. Orcella HOUSE-DOGS.-Several articles on rural natural

has not, as far as I am aware, been found in this history having appeared lately, it may perhaps more

country; but .1. prunulus is not uncommon in grassy amuse than instruct some of your juvenile readers

woods, in the months of August and September, to be informed that within a month or two a lady

and is also a very good fungus for the table. Its friend residing in Corfu asked a countryman to

gills are at first quite white, but afterwards become procure a small dog for the children. This be did,

decidedly rose-coloured.–Archd, Jerdon. but the animal's ears were cropped close off, and on

1 TIAN-IMO.-Your correspondent "W. T. H.being asked why, he replied that it was to make

(whom I regret to say I cannot bring to my recollecit a good house-dog. The lady, astonished, wished

tion by the slender aid of initials), has referred to me to be informed in what manner such effect was

(SCIENCE-Gossip, November, 1866) as a likely person produced, when the peasant said, “It is a known

to give you information on the subject of our native fact that if a puppy's cars are cut off, then cut up

anthelmintic, the fungus called by the Burmese and mixed with oil, and made to eat it, that it makes

Than-gya-hmo or I'a-hmo, i.e., Worm-passing-fungus, them the best house-dogs." I leave your readers

or Bamboo-fungus. I am sorry to say I have nothing to judge of the merits of the case, and mention it

to adıl to what appears to be already known of this simply to show superstition in the nineteenth

plant. In the Gardeners' Chronicle for August 11, century.-H. H. Knocker.

1966, it is described by the Rev. M. J. Berkeley, STRIPED Hawk Moru.- I see by “the books” | our highest authority in mycology, under the name that the Striped Hawk Moth (Deilephila Lirornica) i of Polyporus anthelminticus, and some account of it is so great a rarity that is has been a question

is also given. Its virtue as a vermifuge appears to whether it is really a native of these islands. On ! be thought great by the Burmese. But (as the the 8th of May I was fortunate enough to article in the Gardeners' Chronicle says) since we capture an undoubtedly genuine and beautiful possess so excellent a remedy in Santonine (which

en of this moth in a garden in Ennis. It has found its way out here, and is eagerly sought was resting on a piece of lily of the valley when I after by the natives as soon as they become acfound it, in the middle of the day. Thinking it quainted with it), there is no advantage in introlikely there might be more "where it came from," ducing what in all likelihood is, at least, an inferior I have searched diligently all round, and burned

| remedy. I believe it is tolerably abundant in the decoy-lamps at night ; but have failed to find any

rainy season, though, I am told, only on one kind of more.-S. Leslie Brakey, Ennis.

bamboo. The Burmese have a superstition that

if one who has taken this medicine touch iron, its A BASELESS SEA ANEMONE.-In cleaning out

cffect will be neutralized. —- C. S. P. Parish, one of my tanks, I accidentally tore in two a fine

Moulmein. specimen of Sagartia sphyrodeta, leaving the base on the slate of the tank; the Anemone was rather THE PRIMROSE.-In answer to “B.'s ” inquiry as out of sorts, having no base, and his inside tumbling to the varieties of Primula in wbich the calyx is so out. I put it in a spare tank, and in a few weeks strangely altered, I do not remember to have seen the rupture healed, with a puckered appearance. any other than the three kinds mentioned by him, The Anemone has no sticking base, and keeps its but I think I have seen the one in which the calyx mooring by attaching the warts of its body to large is partly green and partly red, varying to green pebbles. - Alfred Hawes.

and white. This particular variety (with the red

« EelmineJätka »