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Title: Game Birds and Game Fishes of the Pacific Coast
Author: Payne, Harry Thom
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                 GAME BIRDS

                    AND

                 GAME FISHES

                   OF THE

                PACIFIC COAST


                    _BY_

                 H. T. PAYNE


             [Illustration: shell]


  Illustrated with Half-tones from Photographs of
          Live and Carefully Mounted
               Birds and Fishes.

     With Ready Reference Diagrams of Each Family,
       Giving the Scientific and Common Names
          of Each Genus and Species, Their
           Relationship, Breeding Grounds
                and General Range.

           NEWS PUBLISHING CO., Los Angeles.



        Copyrighted 1913, Under Act of Congress,
                      By H. T. Payne



INTRODUCTION


Laws recently enacted by most of the states for the better protection
of the game, imposing a nominal license for the privilege of hunting
it, have enabled us to take a census, as it were, of that vast number
of the American people who enjoy the health-giving sports of the
field. This census reveals the fact, that, of the whole population of
the Pacific Coast, nearly twenty per cent of all those over fifteen
years of age are licensed sportsmen. Add to these the large number of
anglers, not counted in this enumeration, and the rapidly increasing
number of young ladies who are learning to enjoy the exhilarating
sports of the field and stream, and this percentage will be
appreciably increased. It is, therefore, obvious that a study of the
game birds and game fishes must be one of interest to a very large
portion of our people, and especially to the younger generation whose
knowledge of the game they bring to bag is still in the formative
state.

Unlike all other works treating of the birds and fishes, this one is
written from the standpoint of the practical sportsman and angler,
rather than for the student of ornithology or ichthyology. I have,
therefore avoided the use of technical names as much as possible, and
employed in the description of the various species the plainest
language consistent with a clear understanding of their distinguishing
features. I have, however, for the benefit of those who wish to learn
their scientific names and genetic relationship, added after the
description of the members of each family, a tabulated form, giving
the Order, Family, Subfamily and Genus to which the several species
belong; together with their common names, general range and breeding
grounds. A new and convenient feature of ready reference.

The numerous illustrations, which are from photographs of the actual
birds, is a new feature of great importance to the student, as they
give the perfect markings of every feather, and the true gradation of
color as appearing in nature.

That, by placing within the reach of the younger generation of
sportsmen, such knowledge of the game birds and game fishes as I have
gained through more than half a century spent in their pursuit, may,
in a measure, liquidate the deep debt I owe for the many happy hours
and excellent health drawn from the exhilarating sports of the field
and stream, is the earnest wish of

                                                  THE AUTHOR.



  [Illustration: Taxonomy of Birds]



THE GAME BIRDS OF THE PACIFIC COAST


In describing the game birds of the Pacific Coast, I have included all
those found in any considerable numbers from the British Columbia
line, south to and including the state of Arizona, the Mexican states
of Sonora and Chihuahua and the peninsula of Lower California, for in
some of these less frequented places, game birds are found in great
numbers and great variety. This is especially true in these southern
sections with the quail, for here its voice is heard in all the notes
of the gamut, from the soft, turkey-like call of the mountain species,
the soul-stirring whistle of the bobwhite, or the sharp, decisive
"can't see me" of the valley quail, through all the varied changes of
the blue quail family, to the low plaintive note of the massena quail
of Mexico.

While it is not the purpose of this work to give a scientific
classification of the game birds of which it treats, a brief statement
of the manner in which they are grouped and classified by the
ornithologist will materially assist the reader in the study of those
species herein mentioned.

The ornithologist groups all the birds of North America into seventeen
"Orders"; each of these including all birds of a similar nature. Some
of these orders are divided into two or more suborders, where, while
clearly belonging to the order, there is yet a sufficient difference
in certain groups of families to justify this further separation. The
next division is the "family," which is again divided into "genera,"
and each "genus" into "species."

Of the seventeen orders of American birds, the scope of this work
includes only six; for all of the birds, commonly called game birds,
belong to one or the other of the following orders:

The =Gallinæ=--All gallinaceous, or chicken-like birds. Of this order
we only have to consider two families: The =Tetraonidæ=, composed of
the quail and grouse, and the =Phasianidæ=, composed of the turkeys
and pheasants.

The =Anseres=--Lamellirostral, or soft-billed swimmers, such as the
ducks, geese, swans and mergansers, comprising the one family,
=Anatidæ=, which is divided into five subfamilies, with four of which
we are concerned, viz.: The =Anatinæ=, the fresh-water ducks; the
=Fuligulinæ=, the salt-water ducks; the =Anserinæ=, the geese and
brant; and the =Cygninæ=, the swans.

The =Columbæ=--This order has but one family, the =Columbidæ=,
composed of the pigeons and doves.

The =Limicolæ=--This order has seven families, only three of which I
have mentioned as being of sufficient interest to the sportsmen of the
Pacific Coast to justify a description of them. These are the
=Recurvirostridæ=, composed of the stilts and avocets; the
=Scolopacidæ=, the snipes, curlews, yellow-legs, willits, marlins,
sandpipers, etc.; and the =Charadridæ=, the plovers.

The other two orders, the =Herodiones= and the =Paludicolæ=, the first
composed largely of the herons, storks, ibises, and egrets, and the
latter of the cranes, rails gallinules and coots, afford more pleasure
to the sportsman through their stately appearance on his hunting
grounds than as game birds. The coots, however, are not considered
game by our sportsmen.

It is well to state here also, that ornithologists do not always agree
in the classification and nomenclature of birds. One claiming that a
certain species or genus should be separated, while others insist that
there is no reason for such separation. With the one exception of the
California valley quail, I have followed the plan of the American
Ornithologists' Union. In this exception I have followed such good
authorities as Bonapart, Elliott, Ridgeway and Gambel, and given the
California valley quail the generic name of =Lophortyx=, instead of
classing them with the Callipepla, to which belong the scaled quail, a
species with no distinction between the sexes.


THE QUAIL

While the eastern half of the continent has but one genus of quail,
the Pacific Coast, including Mexico, is well supplied with five genera
and eighteen species, to which may be added four subspecies. Nine
species of the genus, =Colinus=, however, and two of the genus,
=Callipepla=, do not come into the United States.

Properly speaking we have no quail in America, all of our so-called
quail being partridges, but the use of the word "quail" has become so
common that these birds will, in all probability, be known as quail
for all time. But whatever the name, they are resourceful beyond
comparison, and gamy to the fullest degree; affording with dog and
gun the most enjoyable of all out-door sport.


  [Illustration: MOUNTAIN QUAIL      PLUMED QUAIL
                 (Oreortyx pictus)   (Oreortyx pictus plumiferus)]


THE MOUNTAIN QUAIL

(Oreortyx pictus)

The mountain quails are the largest and most beautiful of all the
American quails, though the least hunted and the least gamy. There is
but one genus, with one species and two subspecies. Two of these
inhabit the mountains of California and Oregon, and the third, the
high ranges of the peninsula of Lower California. While most of the
sportsmen of the Pacific Coast are conversant with the general
character and coloration of the mountain quail, I believe but few of
them have ever seen the more beautiful species that inhabit the San
Pedro Martir mountains of Lower California.

The present species, given the English name of mountain partridge, by
the ornithologists, and which he has taken for his type, is a small
race found only on the Coast Range from the Bay of San Francisco north
into Oregon, and, therefore, never reaches the high altitudes reached
by its near relatives, the =Oreortyx pictus plumiferus=, to which the
English name, plumed partridge, has been given. In fact, both of these
varieties are plumed, though that of the latter is a trifle the
longer. The fact that the plumed quail ascends the mountains each
spring to heights of from five to eight thousand feet for nesting
purposes, gives it a better claim to the name, mountain, than has the
other variety.

The present species, the mountain quail, is generally found in the
canyons and on the damp hill-sides where ferns are abundant. They have
very little of the migratory habits of the other species, except when
driven down in the winter by the snows. Their habits and general plan
of coloration are so much like those of the other two species that I
shall describe them all together, with the proper mention of wherein
they differ.


THE PLUMED QUAIL

(Oreortyx pictus plumiferus)

The range of the plumed partridge is throughout the entire length of the
Sierra Nevadas and of the coast range south of San Francisco bay into
Lower California, where it intergrades with the San Pedro partridge,
but it does not cross the Colorado river and enter Arizona or the
mainland of Mexico. This species begins its migrations early in the
spring, keeping close to the snow line until they reach altitudes as
high as 7000 to 8000 feet, where they nest and rear their young. In the
fall, just before the winter rains begin, they commence their migrations
down again to the foothills, where they remain until the following
spring. Unless driven by unusually heavy snows, they rarely descend
lower than 2000 to 3000 feet above sea level.


SAN PEDRO MARTIR MOUNTAIN QUAIL

(Oreortyx pictus confinis)

The San Pedro partridge, so named by the ornithologist, is a resident
of the San Pedro Martir mountains of Lower California, and ascends to
a height of ten thousand feet, and is rarely seen lower than five
thousand feet above the sea.

I want to say here that no work on ornithology that I have seen,
describes the San Pedro partridge properly. Most likely this is the
result of an examination of the intergrades only, for they do
intergrade with the California species to the northward. The two
species first mentioned have the plume from one and a half to two and
a half inches long and nearly round in form. The plume of the San
Pedro partridge is flat, about three-sixteenths of an inch wide and
from three and a half to four and a half inches long. The plume of the
other varieties is erectile, but that of the San Pedro denizen is soft
and falls down the side. In all species both sexes are alike, with the
exception that the plume of the female is generally a trifle the
shorter; but this can not always be relied upon to distinguish the
sex.

Generally speaking there is not much sport in hunting the mountain
quail, but I have at times had a bevy scattered in ferns, and in such
cases had very good sport with them with a dog, and found them to lie
very well. They are about a half larger than the valley quail, and as
a table bird much more succulent.

=Color=--Top of head, back of neck and breast, an ashy blue, darker on
the back of the neck than the breast; back and wings, inclining to
olive brown, in the Coast species with a slight reddish tinge; abdomen
and flanks, rich chestnut barred with black and white; under tail
feathers, black; entire throat, reaching well down onto the breast,
rich chestnut, bordered with white; chin, white; bill, black. The two
California species have two round, black plumes falling gracefully
over the back of the neck, but erectile when excited. These plumes
will vary from one and a half to two and a half inches in length. The
Lower California species have two flat, black plumes about
three-sixteenths of an inch in width and from three and a half to five
inches long. Both sexes are alike in all species.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest, like that of all gallinaceous birds, is a
depression on the ground, hidden among a bunch of bushes or under a
log, surrounded by a few dry leaves. The number of eggs will average
about a dozen, rather oval in shape and of a light ochreous color.

=Measurements=--Length (see diagram), will average about 10 inches;
wing 5-1/2, bill about 5/8 of an inch.


  [Illustration: CALIFORNIA VALLEY QUAIL
                 (Lophortyx californicus vallicola)]


THE CALIFORNIA VALLEY QUAIL

(Lophortyx californicus vallicola)

There are two varieties of the California valley quail. They are
distinguished not so much by the slight difference in color as in the
very marked difference in their habits.

As with the mountain quail the ornithologist has taken the wrong bird
for the type, making the larger race the subspecies. To the species
(=Lophortyx californicus=) inhabiting the foothills of the Coast range
north of the bay of San Francisco and into western Oregon, the
ornithologist has given the English name California partridge. This
species is a lover of damp places and rank growths of underbrush and
ferns. The subspecies (=Lophortyx californicus vallicola=), to which
has been given the name valley partridge, ranges from central Oregon
throughout the great valleys of California, the foothills of the
western slope of the Sierras, both sides of the Coast range south from
San Francisco bay and throughout the peninsula of Lower California.
Like the mountain quail it does not cross the Colorado desert into
Arizona or the mainland of Mexico. Nevertheless it has a wider range
than any other one species of game bird.

Of all the game birds of America the California valley quail is the
most resourceful and characterized by the greatest cunning. Having
hunted these birds for upward of fifty years and practically
throughout their entire range, I freely give them credit for knowing
more tricks and being able to concoct more schemes of deception than
all the rest of the =tetraonidæ= combined, and this resourcefulness
has led to most of the false statements regarding their behavior and
gameness. It has been said by writers, who should know better, that a
dog is no use in hunting them because of their disposition to run. Any
bird with more game than a fool-hen will either flush or run where
there is no undercover in which to hide, and the valley quail being so
often found in dry, open places or chaparral devoid of undercover,
will either flush or run until it finds suitable hiding grounds.

But give the valley quail cover in which to hide and it can and will
out-hide any game bird except the Montezuma quail of Mexico. In fact it
is this remarkable faculty of hugging the ground until it is almost
stepped upon that has led, more than anything else, to its false
reputation as a runner. The man who hunts the valley quail without a
dog--and most of its detractors do--can walk through a patch of good
cover with a hundred birds scattered in it for an hour or more and not
get up a half dozen. Unlike the bobwhite or the Montezuma quail of
Mexico, the valley quail bunches in the fall. These bunches will
contain anywhere from two or three broods to two or three hundred
individuals, and sometimes even thousands, and they seem to understand
that the larger the bunch the greater the necessity for avoiding
pursuit. They are fond of the open places and the bare hill-tops and
when driven from these, being a brush bird, they very naturally seek
the brush. If there is no grass or suitable undercover in which to
hide they will continue to work their way through it or double back on
their pursuers until hiding places are found, when they will hug the
ground so closely that even a good dog must pass reasonably near to
them before he will detect their scent. The man who hunts without a
dog generally passes through the cover into which his bevy has
settled, continues his walk for a mile or more, then sits down,
filling the air with a sulphurous streak of strong sounding words as
he curses the game little birds for running, while the resourceful
little fellows, closely hid, laugh over the security a false
reputation has given them.

There has been a great deal written about the ability of quail to
withhold their scent, and many theories have been advanced. That all
game birds do lose their scent temporarily while passing rapidly
through the air I believe to be true, and the valley quail has this
faculty strongly added to its other resources. This too often deceives
the inexperienced man even when hunting with a dog. Where birds have
been flushed into good cover and can not be raised, sit down and take
a smoke, if you like, for twenty minutes or half an hour, then cast in
your dog and you will be rewarded with point after point, where before
your dog failed to detect the slightest scent. After years of
experience with all of the upland birds of the United States and half
of Mexico, I do not hesitate to pronounce the California quail the
chief of them all in gameness, in resourcefulness, and in its general
adaptability to furnish the highest form of upland shooting. But
California quail can not be hunted successfully without a good dog.

The food of the adult California quail, according to an investigation
made by the United States Agricultural Department, through the
examination of the stomachs of 619 birds, taken during every month of
the year, except May, consists of 97 per cent vegetable and 3 per cent
animal matter, the vegetable varying according to the seasons. During
the rainy season, when green vegetation is abundant, grasses and
foliage of various kinds form fully 80 per cent of the entire food,
while in the dry season it forms barely one per cent. In the dry
season weed seeds form as high as 85 per cent of the food; one stomach
examined containing 2144 seeds of various kinds. During the harvesting
season when there is a good deal of grain on the ground, and during
the sowing season, grains form about 6 per cent of the diet. During
the season when wild blackberries, elder and other wild berries are
ripe, these, with a few grapes and a little of some other fruits, form
23 per cent of the food.

During the first week of the life of the young birds, insects of
various kinds make up 75 per cent of their food, but by the time they
are a month old their animal food is no greater than that of the old
birds.

=Color=--Male--Forehead, gray; top and back of head, sooty black,
bordered with white running around from one eye to the other, and this
again has a faint edging of black; throat, black, margined with white;
plume, narrow at the base and wide at the top, consisting of six
black, V-shaped feathers, each folded within the other and curved
forward; back and sides of the neck to the shoulders, deep ashy blue
with the feathers margined with black. Back and wings, bluish brown;
primaries, or longest wing feathers, dark brown; breast, deep ashy
blue, shading into a dirty buff at the lower part of the abdomen;
flanks, dirty brown with white markings.

The northern coast species are darker with more of an olive tinge.
But all the markings are the same.

Female--The female resembles the male in general color, but without
the black head and throat. The plume is dirty brown, about half the
length of the male's and nearly straight.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest consists of a depression in the ground
carefully hid away in some bunch of grass or brush, and usually
contains from fifteen to twenty very light buff or white eggs, often
faintly speckled.

=Measurements=--Length, eight to nine inches; wing, 4-1/2; tail, 4;
bill, 1/2.


  [Illustration: GAMBEL QUAIL OR ARIZONA QUAIL (Lophortyx gambeli)]


THE GAMBEL QUAIL

(Lophortyx gambeli)

The gambel partridge occupies a unique position in its common
nomenclature. In California it is known as the Arizona quail, while
the sportsmen of Arizona refer to it as the California quail. In this,
too, they both have good reasons for the names used, for these birds
are found on both sides of the Colorado river, that is in both Arizona
and California. Commencing in the Mexican state of Sonora, where they
are found from the western slope of the Sierra Madre mountains to the
Gulf of California, the range of the species extends northward and
eastward through western Arizona, and, crossing the Colorado river
onto the desert of the same name, passes through southeastern
California into southern and central Nevada and Utah. The gambel quail
belongs to the same genus as the two species of the California valley
quail and in general appearance resembles them.

The gambel quail is emphatically a desert bird, able to live through
the long, dry seasons without water. If there are any trees in its
neighborhood it will seek them for roosting purposes, but it is found
distributed over vast sections where even the smallest brush is very
scattering and under cover nearly quite if not entirely absent, yet in
such places this member of the resourceful blue quail family protects
itself from hawks and predatory animals with an astonishing success.
The gambel quail is a true runner and can develop an astonishing speed
for so small a bird. A very large part of the unwarranted reputation
of the California valley quail as a runner is derived from confounding
it with the gambel and the habit of the Arizona sportsmen of calling
the gambel the California quail, but even as great runners as the
gambel quail are, I have found them to lie well to the dog in the
heavy bunch-grass sections of southeastern California and southern
Nevada. I have also had fine sport with them along the bottoms of the
Colorado river, where they are to be found in abundance.

The food is practically the same as the California valley quail.

=Color=--The general color of the upper parts and the breast is
lighter and more of an ashy blue than the valley quail, but in its
markings the gambel is the more conspicuous and more brilliant. The
black throat, bordered with white, the gray forehead and the forward
turned plume are common to both, but the top of the head of the gambel
is a bright cinnamon red, while that of the valley quail is a sooty
brown. The flanks of the gambel are conspicuously marked with bright
chestnut brown with each feather with a narrow central stripe of
white.

=Nest and Eggs=--Are the same in this species as in the valley quail.

=Measurements=--Same as the valley quail.


  [Illustration: SCALED QUAIL (Callipepla squamata)]


THE SCALED QUAIL

(Callipepla squamata)

Next in geographical order is the scaled quail of Arizona and northern
Mexico generally. This, too, is a desert bird which I have seen in
great numbers at least twenty-five miles from the nearest water. It is
the only member of the quail family where there is no difference in
the markings of the sexes, except the mountain quail. In the open
country it, too, is a runner, though it can not begin to develop the
speed of the gambel nor will it continue to run for such long
distances.

During a residence of a year in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico, where
I was developing some mining property, I found the scaled quail in
great numbers all around me. Very few of the Mexican people are wing
shots and few hunt except for the resulting meat. Little attention,
therefore, is paid to the quail, and in the section where I was
located I do not believe that even the "oldest inhabitant" of the
quail settlement had ever heard the report of a shotgun. I had with me
a brace of English setters, and these birds, though found among chino
grama grass and low maguey plant, which offered splendid opportunities
for hiding, not only tried my patience to the limit, but that of my
dogs as well, by deliberately walking about twenty-five to thirty
paces in front of me without the least thought of either hiding or
taking to wing. By firing a couple of shots over them each morning I
soon educated them to flush at the sight of me. In a couple of weeks
they behaved very well and furnished me with good sport, hiding
readily and lying good for the dogs.

Most of the game birds need more or less educating before they fully
meet the requirements of the sportsmen. Most, too, of the complaints
that sportsmen make regarding the bad behavior of certain species of
game or birds of certain sections should be charged to the lack on the
part of the hunter of a knowledge of their habits rather than to the
ill manners of the birds. One will often hear it said that certain men
are lucky hunters and can not help staggering onto their game. Such
men are lucky because they make a close study of the ways of the birds
of each separate character of country. Knowing the places in which
they will most likely be found feeding, they approach them from such
directions as will have a tendency to drive them into the desired
cover. A great deal of the annoyance of running birds, I have found,
can be avoided by a careful study of their habits and proper
management in handling them, and this is especially true of the scaled
quail.

=Color=--The back, the wings and tail coverts are a
light, ashy blue, but the feathers of the shoulders, breast and
abdomen are margined with dark brown, with a yellowish arrow-shaped
central spot which gives them the appearance of scales. Its throat is
a very faint buff, and instead of the plume of the genus Lophortyx it
has a broad erectile crest with the feathers tipped with white. Both
sexes are alike.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nesting habits are the same as those of the other
species of the blue quail family, but the eggs are more of a buff and
generally more speckled with brown.

=Measurements=--About the same as the valley quail.


THE CHESTNUT-BELLIED SCALE QUAIL

(Callipepla squamata castaneigastra)

The chestnut-bellied scaled quail is a subspecies of the scaled quail
just described. They are not numerous and hardly enter the territory
covered by this work. Intergrades of the two species are occasionally
found in northern Mexico and possibly in southeastern Arizona. In
general appearance they resemble the former species, being, however, a
little darker and with a strong chestnut blotch on the belly.


  [Illustration: ELEGANT QUAIL (Callipepla elegans)]


THE ELEGANT QUAIL

(Callipepla elegans)

Along the western slope of the Sierra Madre range in the state of
Sonora, Mexico, is to be found another member of the blue quail family
whose habits appeal strongly to the sportsman. This species, known as
the elegant quail, is one of the most handsomely marked of the group.
From the blending of the white throat of the bobwhite with the black
one of the gambel, and the brown of the back of the one with the blue
of the other, together with a marked resemblance in its call to that
of the bobwhite, suggests the possibility of its origin having
resulted from a cross of the two genera. I may add that both the
gambel and a species of the =Collinus=, bobwhite, are found in this
same section.

The elegant quail is generally found in and around the cultivated
fields which they seem to prefer to the open country. While the
elegant quail will walk leisurely in front of their pursuer until too
closely approached, they can in no sense be termed runners. When
flushed they take to cover and lie closely. Like all the quail of
Mexico they have been hunted but little and need to be well scared
before they become properly educated to the gun. After a few days'
hunting I found them a very satisfactory game bird. Being found around
the fields, the grounds and cover were all that could be desired for
excellent sport.

=Color=--Male--Plume straight, upright feathers about an inch and a
quarter to an inch and a half in length, varying in color--possibly on
account of age--from a light lemon to a dark reddish orange. The
throat is finely mottled with small black and white dots, giving it a
dark gray appearance. The general color of the back and the wing and
tail coverts is a dark blue with about half of the exposed portion of
each feather tipped with a bright, rich brown. The breast and abdomen
is a light, ashy blue, profusely flecked with large, circular white
spots.

Female--The plume is about two-thirds the length of that of the male,
brown in color and barred with black. The breast and abdomen are
spotted like the male but the back is much the color of the English
snipe.

=Nest and Eggs=--The same as the other species of the blue quail.

=Measurements=--Same as the valley quail.


  [Illustration: MASSENA QUAIL (Cyrtonyx montezuma)]


THE MASSENA OR MONTEZUMA QUAIL

(Cyrtonyx Montezuma)

The Massena, or Montezuma quail, is a distinct genus from the blue
quail family. In many respects it resembles the bobwhite in color,
though far more fancifully marked. It is also nearly one-half larger,
though in some parts of Arizona and in New Mexico there is a smaller
species of the same genus known as fool quail. The Mexican bird is far
from a fool, and although it roosts on the ground like the bobwhite,
it is resourceful enough to take care of itself in a country where
vermin of all kinds are very plentiful. Its range is from near the
northern boundary south through the larger portion of Mexico.

The Montezuma quail is emphatically a grass bird and inhabits the
grassy foothills and the cultivated fields, where it affords fine
sport with a dog. It is very cosmopolitan as to climate, for it is
found at altitudes of from five to six thousand feet, where
considerable snow falls, as well as in the foothills of the hot,
tropical valleys of the lowlands, and thrives equally well in all
sections. It is a bird of peculiar habits. When startled by the
approach of an enemy the bevy at once huddles together, where the
birds remain motionless until they are approached to within from one
to four feet, according to the cover they are in. If they think that
they have not been seen or that the object of their alarm is going to
pass by, there is not the slightest motion made by any one of them,
but when they decide to take wing for safety every bird in perfect
unison springs into the air to a height of about six feet and darts
rapidly away. They are quick on the wing and seem able to carry away a
good deal of shot. The flight generally is not more than one hundred
yards, and when they alight they scatter well and will then out-hide
any bird that lives. I have both ridden and walked, without a dog, for
hours through a country where they were plentiful without seeing a
bird, except where I chanced to nearly step upon them, yet with a dog
I have found on the same grounds probably an average of fifteen bevies
to the square mile. For work with a dog I prefer them to any bird I
have ever hunted. They give out a strong scent, for points on bevies
of from six to fifteen birds, made thirty to forty yards away are no
uncommon occurrence. Then when you walk in front of your dog they
never flush until you have almost stepped upon them. A scattered bevy
will lie securely hid until each individual is flushed. Unlike the
blue quail they never gather in large flocks, but always remain in
single broods until broken up in the spring for nesting purposes.

=Color=--Male--The head of these birds have a very bizarre appearance
whose strange black and white markings seem to have no more purpose or
design than the black and white chalk marks on a clown's face. The
head of the male is crested with semi-erectile feathers in the shape
of a broad hood of dark yellowish brown color, falling about half way
down the neck; groundwork of the back and of the wing and tail coverts
is a dark ocher barred with a deep rich brown; breast and flanks are
nearly black, dotted with large white spots, and from the throat to
the vent is a stripe about five-eighths of an inch wide of a dark rich
chestnut.

=Female=--The female, with the exception of the white dots on the
breast and flanks is much the color of the female bobwhite.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is like that of the quail generally, simply
a depression in the ground, carefully hidden away in some thick matted
grass or bunch of brush, and generally higher up the hill-sides than
they are found at other times. Eggs, white, and of a china appearance,
and from ten to fifteen in number.

=Measurements=--While these birds are fully one-half larger than the
blue quail, the very short tail makes their total length not over 8 to
9 inches; wing, 5 inches, and bill, 5/8.


  [Illustration: BOBWHITE (Colinus virginianus)]


THE BOBWHITE

(Colinus virginianus)

I have said that the voice of the bobwhite is heard in the land. This
is true, for the clear notes of his little throat awaken the morning
echoes from eastern Oregon to the islands of Puget Sound. This great
little game bird, whose praise has been recounted in volumes of prose
and sung in the rhythmic measures of countless lines of verse, is not
a native of the coast, but he knew a good thing when he saw it. When
he was turned loose in the Pacific Northwest he cast his bright little
eyes about him and remarked to himself:

    "This looks good to me. Bobwhite, get busy at once in raising big
    families and settle up your new domain."

And he has done it, for now the sportsmen of the Pacific Northwest
have better bobwhite shooting than is to be found in any part of the
eastern states.

The bobwhite roosts on the ground and always remains in single broods.
When startled they huddle together and flush in a bunch. They are good
hiders and lie well to the dog. They are seldom found far from water
and rarely in heavy brush. They are fond of stubble or corn fields and
the grassy nooks along the fences. Many efforts have been made to
acclimatize this species farther south in California but they have all
proved failures on account of the dryer climate and the lack of
insects during the rearing season of their young. They must have a
damp climate where the vegetation remains green, thus furnishing an
abundance of insects during the early summer on which to feed their
young. For until a bobwhite is nearly grown it lives almost entirely
upon insects.

=Color=--Male--General color of the upper parts, light buff, marked
with triangular blotches of brown; head and back of the neck, dark
chestnut; forehead, gray; light stripe from above the eye passing down
the side of the neck; throat, white or very light buff, faintly
bordered with dark brown or black; breast, light buff with the
feathers tipped with brown; flanks chestnut mixed with black and
white.

Female--Generally lighter, and without the white throat and light
breast.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are rude depressions on the ground beneath
a fence rail or fallen limb, or in a bunch of thick grass or brush.
The eggs number anywhere from fifteen to twenty and of a pure white
color.

=Measurements=--Total length about nine inches; wing, 4-1/2 inches;
bill, 5/8.


THE MASKED BOBWHITE

(Colinus ridgewayi)

A smaller species of the bobwhite, known as the masked bobwhite, were
reasonably plentiful along the border of southern Arizona and south
through the state of Sonora, Mexico. Like the typical bobwhite they
were strictly a field and grass bird. But through the heavy pasturing
of that section, together with a series of dry seasons denuding the
whole country of such cover as would be necessary for their protection
from hawks and vermin, they have become nearly if not quite extinct.
They differed from the eastern bobwhite in that the male had a black
throat instead of a white one and a bright cinnamon breast. The
female differed also in having a light buff throat, and generally of a
lighter color.



  Order, GALLINAE

  Family, TETRAONIDAE

  Subfamily, PERDICINAE


  Genus        Species           Common Names       Range
  ---------- ------------------ ----------------- ---------------------
                                                  {Coast Range of
             {pictus             Mountain quail   {California from
             {                                    {Monterey Bay north
             {                                    {into Western Oregon.
             {
             {                                    {Both sides of the
  Oreortyx   {pictus plumiferus  Mountain quail   {Sierra Nevadas from
             {                                    {Central Oregon south.
             {                                    {Coast range of
             {                                    {California from
             {                                    {Monterey Bay south.
             {
             {                                    {Peninsula of Lower
             {                                    {California,
             {pictus confinis   {Lower California {inter-grading in the
                                {mountain quail   {northern part with the
                                                  {pictus plumiferus.

                                                  {Coast Range valleys
             {californicus       Valley quail     {of California from
             {                                    {San Francisco Bay
             {                                    {north into Oregon.
             {
             {                                    {Both sides of the
             {                                    {Sierra Nevadas from
  Lophortyx  {californicus       Valley quail     {Central Oregon south.
             {vallicola                           {Coast range valleys
             {                                    {south from San
             {                                    {Francisco Bay into
             {                                    {Lower California.
             {
             {                  {Gambel quail     {Southern Nevada,
             {gambeli           {                 {Southeastern
                                {                 {California, Western
                                {Arizona quail    {Arizona and Northern
                                                  {Mexico.

             {squamata           Scaled quail     {Southern Arizona
             {                                    {and Northern Mexico.
  Callipepla {
             {elegans            Elegant quail    {Southern Sonora,
                                                  {Mexico.

                                {Montezuma quail  {Southwestern Arizona
  Cyrtonyx   {montezuma         {                 {and south into
                                {Messena quail    {Mexico.

             {ridgewayi          Masked Bobwhite  {Northwestern Sonora,
             {                                    {Mexico.
             {
  Colinus    {                                    {Introduced and
             {                                    {acclimated in
             {virginianus        Bobwhite         {Washington and Oregon
                                                  {and the islands
                                                  {of Puget Sound.



THE WILD TURKEY


If there is any member of the feathered tribe entitled
to the designation of royal game bird, it is the wild turkey. This
magnificent bird, whose size and cunning challenges at once the
admiration and the skill of the sportsman, is a native of North and
Central America, and found in its wild state in no other part of the
globe. The ocellated turkey, the Central American species, is even
more gaudy in plumage than the peacock, but as it is not found within
the territorial scope of these articles, I shall leave its resplendent
colors to scintillate in its own tropic sun, undescribed.

Of the North American turkeys the scientist recognizes four varieties.
The =Meleagris sylvestris= of the eastern states, except Florida, the
=Meleagris sylvestris osceola= of Florida, the =Meleagris sylvestris
elliotti= of the Rio Grande district of southern Texas and
northeastern Mexico, and the =Meleagris gallopavo= of Arizona, New
Mexico, part of Colorado, and west and south through the larger
portion of old Mexico. It is of this last species that I shall write.


  [Illustration: WILD TURKEY (Meleagris gallopavo)]


THE MEXICAN WILD TURKEY

(Meleagris gallopavo)

Outside of the progenitors of our common barnyard fowl, there is no
wild bird that mankind has domesticated whose distribution in its
domestic state has become so wide as that of the wild turkey, and none
have been so highly prized as an article of food. It is from the
Mexican wild turkey, =Meleagris gallopavo=, that all of our domestic
turkeys have descended. First captured in Mexico by the early settlers
of that country, they were taken to the West Indies and there
domesticated as early as 1527, for Oviedo, in his "Natural History of
the Indias," speaks of the wild turkey having been taken from Mexico
to the islands and there being bred in a domestic state. From the West
Indies they were taken to Spain, France and England, and again brought
back to America as domestic fowls. In 1541 they must have been scarce
yet in England, for in an edict promulgated by Cranmer in that year,
the "turkey cocke" was named as one of "the greater fowles," and which
"an ecclesiastic was to have but one in a dishe." By 1573, however,
they must have become quite plentiful, for in that year Tusser
mentions them as the most approved "Christmas husbandlie fare."

Inasmuch as there were no settlements of either English, French or
Spanish in America north of Mexico until 1584, or in that section of
the country inhabited by the eastern species of wild turkey until
sixty years after the turkey is known to have been introduced into
England, the common belief that the eastern species (=Meleagris
sylvestris=) was the foundation of the domestic turkey is clearly an
error; but the ornithologist does not find it necessary to consult
history to determine the origin of the domestic turkey. That
distinguishing feature of the Mexican wild turkey (=Meleagris
gallopavo=), the broad, light sub-terminal of the rump feathers, is so
strong that even after three and a half centuries of domestication,
changes in color through selection in breeding, and possibly crossing
to some extent with the eastern and Florida species, those markings,
peculiar to it alone, are unmistakably present even in the
lightest-colored varieties.

As a game bird the turkey has but few equals. Like most of game birds
they are comparatively tame and unsuspicious until after they have
been hunted, and learned that of all animals man is their greatest foe
and most to be dreaded, for whenever he is within sight he is within
the range of his instruments of destruction. I have seen the Mexican
wild turkey constantly running or flushing in front of us from morning
till night as we traveled through their country for days. They showed
but little fear, for while we killed all we could eat, we were
constantly traveling, so that those that had been introduced to the
white man's methods of destroying were left behind us, and those in
front of us had yet the lesson to learn; but when the wild turkey has
been hunted a little it becomes about as wary, cunning and resourceful
as any bird that flies.

The Mexican wild turkey is the largest of the race, and has been, and is
yet, the most plentiful. They are strictly mountain dwellers, not often
found in altitudes of less than twenty-five hundred to three thousand
feet, and more frequently from four to six thousand, and even up to
eight thousand feet or more. They are strictly timber dwellers, usually,
if not always, living in the pine forests, for I can not call to mind a
single instance where I have found them except where pines of some
variety were the principal trees. In size, individuals vary a good deal.
So, also, will the general average be found to vary as much as ten
pounds in different localities. Generally the higher their habitat the
larger the birds, some of the old gobblers reaching forty pounds if not
more. I remember killing one in the Sierra Madres of northern Mexico
that I carried about three miles into camp over a very rough country. By
the time I got him there I was willing to bet my last "silver 'dobe"
that he weighed a ton. I have also killed some very large ones in the
San Francisco mountains of Arizona.

The wild turkey, like the mountain quail, has an up and down mountain
migration. In the early spring the hens begin to work up the mountains
and seek the densest jungles, and of course the gobblers follow them.
The gobblers are polygamous, and have but little respect for their
families. They will not only destroy the nests, but even the young
birds. For this reason the hens are very secretive in nesting, taking
as much care in hiding them away from the gobblers as from their other
enemies. As soon as the hens begin setting the gobblers gather in
flocks and remain by themselves until joined in the early fall by the
hens and their half-grown broods. After this the flocks soon begin
their migration to the lower hills and mountain openings, and
congregate into immense roosts. Places were once to be seen where they
had filled the trees for acres in such numbers as to break the limbs
in many instances. In those times and localities they were too tame
and too plentiful to afford much amusement to the man who hunted them
for sport, but with the exception of some places in Mexico that day
has passed, and the sportsman who hunts these grand game birds now
will find a quarry worthy of his skill and affording him sufficient
exertion to whet his appetite for the delicious feast they furnish
him.

Both the habits and the habitat of the wild turkey make the sport of
hunting them especially enjoyable. As soon as the gobblers are
deserted by the hens they become more wary, and the crack of a twig or
the sight of a man, be he ever so far away, and they at once seek
cover. Then the keen eye and the noiseless tread of the still hunter
is called upon for his best and most careful efforts, for the eyes of
these gobblers are quick to catch the slightest move and their ears
acute to the faintest sound. The curiosity of a deer often makes him
hesitate long enough for the opportunity of a shot, but the gobbler,
after the hens have left him, is no longer lured by curiosity. His
business is to keep out of sight, and he can do it, after he has once
learned the destructiveness of man, just a little more successfully
than any other bird or animal that I have ever hunted.

There are no wild turkeys west of the Colorado river, nor on the
peninsula of Lower California; but there can be no reason to doubt
that, had the mountains of Arizona connected with the pines of the
Coast range in San Bernardino county or with the Sierras of Inyo or
Kern, the mountains of California would have been as well supplied
with turkey as are its valleys with quail.

=Color=--The color of the wild turkey varies very much except in those
that are found in the higher mountains and far away from civilization.
Domestication of over three hundred and fifty years has not yet robbed
the turkey of its love for the wild and they are often seen long
distances away from the farms feeding contentedly. In countries where
the wild turkey still existed these tame varieties of various colors
have mixed with them, often to such an extent as to change the color
very materially. I have seen flocks in Mexico ranging close to ranch
houses with turkeys among them so light-colored that they were no
doubt tame birds that had wandered away with their wild progenitors.

The wild turkey of Mexico, Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado is a dark
bronze bird with a light-colored rump, caused by the upper tail
coverts being tipped with a broad subterminal band of white, narrowly
tipped with black. The tail feathers are dark brown, spotted with
black and tipped with white.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest of the wild turkey is generally in a
depression in the ground, high up on the mountains, and carefully
hidden away in some dense thicket. I cannot call to mind ever seeing
but two nests. One of these had but seven eggs while the other had
seventeen. The markings are the same as those of the tame turkey.

=Measurements=--The total length varies from three to four and a half
feet; wing 18 to 24 inches.


  [Illustration: MONGOLIAN PHEASANT (Phasianus torquatus)]


THE MONGOLIAN PHEASANT

(Phasianus torquatus)

While the wild turkey is the only representative of the =Phasianidæ=
found native to the American continent, the Mongolian pheasant has
been so successfully acclimatized in Oregon and Washington that it
must now be recognized as an established resident species.

After it became an established fact that these pheasants were proving
a success in Oregon, there became a demand for their introduction into
California, and thousands of dollars were spent for a number of years
in an unsuccessful effort to acclimatize them. The pheasant, like the
grouse, is a cold country bird, and the mild and dry climate of
California does not appeal to their peculiar tastes or the
requirements of their physical being. Oregon, however, possesses the
climatic, floral and entomic conditions for which nature has fitted
them. Green vegetation lasts during the whole season in which they
rear their young, thus furnishing them with that abundance of insects
necessary to the health and nourishment of the young chicks. They are
endowed with certain physical attributes for which the cold of winter
is necessary to preserve a continued healthful condition, and this,
too, they find in Oregon. In fact this constitutional demand for the
cold of winter has been by nature so strongly implanted within them
that the rearing of thirty generations in the comparatively mild
climate of Oregon has not effaced it, and obeying this primal instinct
they have migrated through Washington and into the better-loved and
colder winters of British Columbia.

Therefore, while California undoubtedly may have an abundance of wild
turkeys, quail in unlimited numbers and of two or three more species
than we have at present, the timber and the plain tinamus of South
America, and possibly the sand grouse of southern Europe, she will
never have pheasants unless they be of the extreme southern varieties,
and never have more than a limited supply of grouse.

North of the mountains of southern Oregon and through Washington into
British Columbia pheasants are plentiful and furnish the principal
sport of the lovers of upland shooting of that section of the Pacific
Coast. The Mongolian pheasant as a game bird has his merits and
demerits. As a large, beautiful plumaged bird to grace the game bag
the pheasant stands without a rival. As a table bird the pheasant is
only surpassed in delicacy of flavor by the wild turkey. As an
aggravating runner from the dog the pheasant is in a class by itself,
and as an evader of all pursuit when wounded, "the Chinaman," as they
are generally called in Oregon, can give odds to the gambel quail.
Though the pheasant is a large bird and able to carry off a good deal
of shot, it starts so slow to one accustomed to the rapid flight of
the California quail that a reasonably fair shot will find no
difficulty in getting the limit with a sixteen gauge.

They are slow starters, caused by their habit of rising at an angle of
forty-five to fifty degrees until they reach a height of about ten
feet before their rapid flight begins, but when once on the wing they
are quite swift flyers.

While I have said that the pheasants are aggravating runners, this is
principally so in the latter part of the season. In the earlier parts
they are commonly found in the stubble fields, potato and other
vegetable patches, and usually in single broods. At such times I have
found them to lie quite well to the dog, not flushing until closely
approached, and running but little except when winged. They are then
easy shooting, but the fine size of the bird and the beautiful plumage
of the cocks give a zest to the sport and a pleasant distinctiveness
which every sportsman will be pleased to add to the list of upland
shooting he has engaged in.

To those who wish to spend a season on these handsome birds, Oregon,
especially, offers an attraction which goes far beyond its good supply
of pheasants. During the open pheasant season the climate of Oregon is
as near perfect as one can ask. That season of the eastern states that
has been idealized in verse, and is known as Indian summer, finds its
superlative in the early fall of Oregon. The sun shines brightly, but
with its rays softened by its sub-equinoctial position; the air is
mild, clear and invigorating, and the golden hues of the stubble
field, the yet bright green of the grassy pastures, the rich tints of
the dying autumn leaves, all framed in the blue-green fringe of the
near-by pines and firs, produce a picture strikingly beautiful and
always enjoyed. It is in this delightful season with such a picture on
every side, heightened by an occasional glimpse of some towering
mountain peak with its crown of eternal snows, that the sportsman of
Oregon lays aside the cares of life and lives in an elysium during his
pheasant-shooting days. The setting of the stage is as much to the
play as the acting. So with our days after game. The invigorating air
we breathe, the beauty of the landscape, the stateliness of the
forest, the rugged grandeur of the mountains, the soul-inspiring
picture of our dogs on point and back, lends more to the real
enjoyment of the day than does the size of the bag we carry home.

=Color=--Male--The male of the Mongolian pheasant can not be
confounded with any other game bird in America. Its very long tail
feathers--from fifteen to twenty inches--will always prove a
distinguishing mark. Its rich metallic colors of black, cinnamon,
chestnut and ocher give it a combination of hues surpassing that of
any other of our game birds.

Female--Nor should the female ever be mistaken for any other bird. It
partakes much of the general colors of the male, but much subdued and
more of a general ochreous hue, the plumage being buff mottled with
brown. The tail, however, is not more than one-fourth the length of
that of the male.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is generally a depression on the ground, but
often in the hollow of some log. The eggs number from 12 to 18 and are
of a dark ochre in color.

=Measurements=--The measurements of a Mongolian pheasant are
practically useless on account of the larger portion of it being the
tail, which greatly varies in length.



THE PIGEONS AND DOVES


The family =Columbidæ= is represented on the Pacific Coast by three
genera which are considered, to more or less extent, legitimate game,
though they can not be termed game birds in the generally accepted use
of the term. Still as they are hunted to a very considerable extent by
the sportsmen of the Coast, they rightfully belong in a work of this
kind. I shall, therefore, give them a place, and briefly treat each
species that is pursued as game within the territory under
consideration.


  [Illustration:
    MOURNING DOVE         BANDED PIGEON      WHITE-WINGED DOVE
    (Zenaidura macroura)  (Columba faciata)  (Melopelia leucoptera)]


THE WILD PIGEON

(Columba faciata)

The wild, or banded pigeon, is a mountain dweller, found principally
in the southern half of the territory covered by this work. They visit
the valleys in the fall and winter months to feed on the oak mast, and
at such times they are seen in large flocks in the Sacramento, San
Joaquin and coast valleys of California. They are found in good
numbers in parts of Arizona, and are common along both sides of the
Sierra Madres of Mexico. When visiting the valleys they afford good
sport, as they are swift flyers and capable of carrying off a good
deal of shot. They have no migrations like the passenger pigeon once
so plentiful in the eastern states, nor do they congregate in such
immense flocks.

=Color=--About the same as the darker colored tame pigeon; the tail is
a trifle longer than the tame bird and a little lighter than the rest
of the plumage with a dark band across the middle of it; a small patch
of white feathers at the back of the head. Both sexes are alike.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is built in the trees of small twigs and
grass. Two eggs are layed at a time, and a pair of young birds are
produced about every six weeks from April to August.

=Measurements=--A trifle more than the tame pigeon.


THE MOURNING DOVE

(Zenaidura macroura)

The mourning dove is a cosmopolitan species found in greater or less
numbers in all sections. They have a slight migratory movement from
the higher to the lower altitudes, but they cannot be called a
migratory bird. A large number of these birds begin their nesting
season in the mountains at altitudes of from 2000 to 4000 feet,
raising one brood at that height, then moving down and nesting again,
and moving again until they reach the lower valleys, where they remain
all winter, congregating in certain places in flocks of hundreds.
Many, however, remain in the valleys all the year and nest around the
fields and along the streams.

The mourning dove is so well known in every country that a description
of it is unnecessary.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is generally built in the small trees and
lined with any soft article that they can find. The eggs number two
and a pair of the young birds are hatched about every six weeks from
May to September.


THE WHITE-WINGED DOVE

(Melopelia leucoptera)

The white-winged dove is nearly one-half larger than the common
mourning dove. They range from Mexico through southern Arizona to the
Colorado desert in southeastern California. In some parts of Arizona
and in Mexico they are found in large numbers, and afford good
shooting. Their habits are the same as the common dove, both as to
food and nesting, though in parts of Mexico it nests in the pitahaya
plants--a species of cactus--of whose fruit it is very fond.

This species can easily be distinguished from any other member of the
dove family by the broad patch of white on the wings.



  Order, GALLINAE

  Family, TETRAONIDAE

  Subfamily, TETRAONINAE. (Grouse)


    Genus      Species         Common Names    Range
  -------------------------------------------------------------------------

              {umbellus sabini Oregon ruffed {Western Oregon and Washington
              {                 grouse       {and Northwestern California.
              {
  Bonasa      {                              {Eastern sides of Cascade
              {umbellus togata Canada ruffed {Mountains in Oregon and
              {                 grouse       {Washington, thence East.

                                             {Northeastern California,
  Centrocercus urophasianus    Sage hen      {Nevada and the sage lands
                                             {of Oregon and Washington.

                                             {Western slope of the
              {franklini       Spruce grouse {Cascade Mountains.
              {
              {                              {Northeastern Arizona and
  Dendragapus {obscurus        Dusky grouse  {Eastern Nevada.
              {
              {                              {Coast Range and Sierras from
              {obscurus        Sooty grouse  {Southern California to
              { fuliginosus                  {British Columbia.

                                             {Eastern Oregon and Washington
  Pediocaetes  phasianellus    Sharp-tail    {and a few in Northeastern
                columbianus     grouse       {California.



THE GROUSE


Within the territorial scope of this work there are seven species of
the grouse family, though only four of these are in any way common. As
the wild turkey is confined to the southern extremity of the Pacific
Coast hunting grounds, so are the grouse principally found in the
northern sections. I have met with a few dusky grouse (=Dendragapus
obscurus=) in the mountains of Arizona, but they are by no means
plentiful. There were a few and possibly is yet an occasional sooty
grouse (=Dendragapus obscurus fuliginosus=) in the mountains of
southern California, but grouse in sufficient numbers to furnish any
kind of sport are not found much south of Yosemite valley in the
Sierras, or south of Humboldt county in the Coast range. An occasional
pair or small flock, however, may be met with considerable south of
the points named.

The grouse is a northern bird, extending into far colder regions than
any other subfamily of the gallinaceous group. The ptarmigan, of
course, are grouse.


  [Illustration: SOOTY GROUSE (Dendragapus obscurus fuliginosus)]


THE SOOTY GROUSE

(Dendragapus obscurus fuliginosus)

The sooty grouse, commonly called blue grouse by the sportsmen of
California, are reasonably plentiful in the Sierras from the Yosemite
north into Oregon, where they are quite plentiful, and from there
through Washington into Alaska. It is a mountain dweller, being found
at altitudes fully 9000 feet above the sea. In the winter it descends
to lower latitudes, but seldom below 3000 feet. It is naturally a
confiding bird where it has not been hunted much, and for this reason
has been given the name, "fool hen," in many localities. But like
most of the feathered tribe, it soon learns the destructiveness of
man, and after gaining this knowledge it is quite able to take care of
itself. When flushed it flies with a cackling sound, generally taking
refuge in the tall pines, where it is an expert hider. In the nesting
season it produces a drumming sound and struts like a turkey. This
drumming is produced by inflating an air sack on each side of the
neck. Later in the season these sacks dry up and nearly disappear.
It's only migrations are ascending and descending the mountains with
the seasons.

According to a published statement of the Section of Biological Survey
of the United States Department of Agriculture, the food of the sooty
grouse consists of buds, seeds, leaves and insects, of which 68 per cent
is leaves, buds and the tender ends of young twigs; 6.73 per cent
insects and the balance seeds, berries and the like. The flesh is
generally of a fine flavor, though at times it will be found to be
tainted a little strongly with the flavor of the pine.

=Color=--Male--Back of head, back of neck and all upper parts, a sooty
brown; light streak over the eye and a light throat; breast, a dead or
sooty black; the rest of the under parts a slaty gray; tail tipped
with gray.

Female--Generally lighter in color but otherwise resembling the male.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually nothing more than a depression in
the ground among dried leaves or grass, well concealed from view. The
eggs, which average about a dozen, are of a cream color, spotted with
brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, from 18 to 22 inches; wing, 9 to 9-1/2. The
weight will vary from 2-1/2 to 4 pounds.


  [Illustration: OREGON RUFFED GROUSE (Bonasa umbellus sabini)]


THE OREGON RUFFED GROUSE

(Bonasa umbellus sabini)

The Oregon ruffed grouse is the handsomest species of the ruffed
grouse genus, and is truly a beautiful bird with its deep, rich
browns, orange and black. The eastern species of this genus is wrongly
known in the north Atlantic states by the name of partridge, and as
wrongly called pheasant in Virginia and some other of the southern
states. The Pacific Coast species ranges from northern California
along the Coast range through Oregon, Washington and far into British
Columbia. It is a wary bird, full of cunning and gamy qualities. The
male of this genus is, I believe, the only member of the grouse family
that drums all the year; all others confining their drumming to the
nesting season. This drumming is made with the wings and not by the
inflation of an air sack as with other species. The sound, also, is
much different, having more of a rolling reverberation. In the spring
they will take their position on some rock or dead log and strut back
and forth with their heads thrown back and their tails spread out to
show the beautiful hues of the feathers and drum for hours to attract
the hens or challenge the other males to an almost life and death
combat, in which they fight in the same manner as the game cock. They
live among the pines, usually near some little opening where they are
fond of feeding. When startled they take at once to the timber and are
quickly lost to view. For this reason dogs are almost useless in
hunting them. They are never found in numbers greater than a single
brood, even though the brood may be decimated by the gun of the
sportsman or the cunning of the vermin to no more than two or three.

The flesh of the ruffed grouse is white and generally tender and of
fine flavor, although in the late fall or winter when its food
consists almost wholly of fir buds it tastes quite strong of
turpentine. Its food generally is about the same as the sooty grouse
and in about the same percentages.

=Color=--Head, light chestnut, the feathers on the top being long and
capable of erection when excited; a tuft of long, rich brown feathers
will be found on each side of the neck; back, reddish chestnut mottled
with black; rump and tail-coverts, more of a cinnamon color blotched
with dark brown; flanks, lighter and barred with black; tail, rusty
brown barred with deep brown and tipped with two bands of gray,
separated by a streak of black; under tail-coverts, orange, barred
with black and tipped with white; wing feathers, brown with a central
stripe of light yellow.

The female is marked the same but somewhat lighter in coloring.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest, like that of all the gallinaceous birds, is
made on the ground and hidden away in some thick cluster of brush or
beneath some log. The eggs are of a buff color spotted with dark
brown, and number from ten to fifteen.

=Measurements=--Total length from 16 to 19 inches; wing about 7 or 8
inches. Weight about 2 pounds.


THE CANADIAN RUFFED GROUSE

(Bonasa umbellus togata)

The Canadian ruffed grouse ranges through the eastern side of the
Cascade mountains of Oregon and Washington, but does not pass over to
the Pacific side. It resembles the Oregon ruffed grouse very closely
except that it is much lighter in color, and the female either lacks
the tufts of feathers on the neck entirely, or where present, they are
very small. Like the Oregon species it is a dweller in the heavy
timber, and follow the same habits in most all respects. It is of a
more confiding nature, however, often sitting unconcerned upon a tree
while several of its companions are being shot, making no effort to
get away or save itself from the same fate.

=Color=--The color of this species is more of a grayish brown than the
Oregon species, and lacking that rich chestnut that adds so much to
the beauty of the latter. The brown markings, however, are possibly a
little more conspicuous. The upper tail feathers are more of a blue,
mottled and barred with a blackish brown. A large tuft of feathers on
each side of the neck of a smoky brown, edged with metallic green.
Unlike the Oregon species these feathers are entirely absent or very
small on the female.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest and eggs are the same as the Oregon grouse.

=Measurements=--In size the two species do not vary to any
considerable extent.


THE SPRUCE GROUSE

(Dendragapus franklini)

The spruce or Franklin grouse of Oregon and Washington is a species of
the Canadian spruce grouse, and ranges diagonally through the
mountains of eastern Oregon and Washington, and thence to the coast of
British Columbia. It confines its habitat to the higher mountains,
being seldom found below an elevation of four to five thousand feet.
This is another of the grouse family that has been given the name of
"fool hen," on account of its naturally tame nature. When sitting on
the limb of a tree, but a few feet above the ground, it considers
itself safe from all harm and makes little effort to escape, and may
often be killed with a stick. There is little sport in shooting this
variety. The food of this species, like all other mountain dwelling
grouse, is buds, tender shoots and seeds, berries and insects when
obtainable.

=Color=--Male--Upper parts gray, the central back and the wings having
a brownish hue; the tail-coverts, which are tipped with broad
splashes of white is a distinguishing feature of this species;
feathers, on the flanks tipped broadly with white, throat, black,
imperfectly edged with white; tail, nearly square at the end and of a
brownish color.

Female--Considerably more of an ochreous cast. It has the same
characteristic broad white tips on the feathers of the flanks; tail,
dirty ochre, mottled with black and narrowly tipped with white.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is a depression in the ground in some
secluded place and lined with leaves or grass. The eggs, averaging
about a dozen, are of a reddish buff mottled with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length about 15 inches; wing about 7 inches.
Weight from one and a half to two pounds.


  [Illustration: SAGE COCK (Centrocercus europhasianus)]


THE SAGE HEN

(Centrocercus urophasianus)

The sage grouse, or sage hen is the largest of the grouse of America,
some of the males weighing as much as seven pounds. Its range, so far
as the geographical scope of this work is concerned, is northeastern
California, Nevada, and eastern Oregon and Washington, but it extends
much farther east. It is only found in the sage brush districts of the
high altitudes. They usually remain in single broods, though they are
sometimes found in much larger flocks. They often travel for
considerable distances, "following the leader" in single file. They
strut in the nesting season, but in a peculiar way, pushing their
breasts on the ground until the feathers are worn off and even the
skin abraded.

A peculiarity of the sage grouse is that it has no gizzard, but
instead it has a stomach more like that of an animal. The young birds
lie quite well to a dog and furnish very good sport, and until they
are about half grown the flesh is quite good, but the older birds are
very unsavory and in fact almost unpalatable. This is caused by their
feeding almost entirely upon the leaves of the sage.

=Color=--Male--Upper parts, gray, barred with brown; tail, very long,
the longer feathers being quite narrow and stiff and barred also with
brown; a dark line over the eye and a light one from the eye down the
side of the neck; throat and cheeks, nearly white, mottled with black;
a few long hairy like feathers grow from the side of the neck of the
male birds.

Female--The female is colored and marked like the male but
considerably darker, is much smaller, with shorter tail and without
the hairy feathers on the side of the neck.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is nothing more than a hollow in the midst
of some bunch of brush, possibly lined with a few leaves. The eggs are
from twelve to eighteen in number and of a greenish shade, mottled
with bright brown, but these spots are easily rubbed off.

=Measurements=--Male--Total length from 24 to 28 inches; wing,
12 to 14. Weight, from four to seven pounds.

Female--Total length, from 20 to 22 inches; wing, 10 to 12. Weight,
from three to five pounds.


  [Illustration: SHARP-TAIL GROUSE
                 (Pediocætes phasianellus columbianus)]


COLUMBIAN SHARP-TAILED GROUSE

(Pediocaetes phasianellus columbianus)

The Columbian sharp-tailed grouse is the "prairie chicken" of eastern
Washington. It is far different from the pinated grouse
(=Tympanuchus=) of the middle states, commonly called prairie chicken.
Its habitat is much the same, however, being the open plains and
untimbered foothills east of the Cascade mountains in Washington and
through eastern Oregon into northern Nevada, and the extreme
northeastern corner of California. The sharp-tail grouse has the same
habit of strutting in large groups like the prairie chicken at the
beginning of the nesting season. They do not drum, however, like the
eastern bird, but make a noise more like an attempt to crow. They also
take refuge in the timber for protection from the storms of winter.

During the hunting season they lie well to a dog and afford fine
shooting. The food of the sharp-tailed grouse consists of about ten
per cent insects, the balance being made up of seeds, grains and
berries, with a good percentage of "brouse" in the winter.

=Color=--Male--Side of head and throat, pale buff with mottlings of
brown on the cheeks; back and wings, gray, mottled with black;
breast, light buff. Under parts, white with lines of dark brown;
central tail feathers long and pointed; no long feathers on the neck.

Female--Resembles the male with the exception that the tail feathers
are not so long.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is a rude affair on the ground, lined with a
little dead grass and generally contains from ten to fifteen eggs of a
greenish buff speckled with fine dots of brown.

=Measurements=--Total length from 14 to 16 inches, with the wing about
eight; the central tail feathers are about five inches in length. The
average bird will weigh about two pounds.



  Order ANSERES

  Family, ANATIDAE


                                                         Range. (All
   Genus        Species            Common Names         breed far north.)
  ------------ ------------------ ------------------- -------------------

  Subfamily, ANSERENAE

               {hyperborea        {White goose       {From Southern
  Chen         {                  {(large)           {California north.
               {
               {rossi             {Ross' goose       {From Mexico
                                  {Small white goose {north.

  Anser         albifrons gambeli {White-fronted     {From Mexico
                                  {goose             {north.
                                  {Gray goose        {

                                  {Fulvous tree duck {From Central
  Dendrocygna   fulva             {Mexican tree duck {California south
                                  {Cavalier          {through Mexico.
                                                     {Breeds from Central
                                                     {California to
                                                     {Central Mexico.

               {canadensis        {Canada goose      {From central
               {                  {Honker            {Mexico north.
               {
               {canadensis         Hutchins' goose    From Southern
               {hutchinsii                            California north.
               {
               {canadensis         White-cheeked     {Inland plains from
  Branta       {occidentalis       goose             {Central California
               {                                     {north.
               {
               {canadensis        {Black brant       {From Southern
               {minima            {Cackling goose    {California north.
               {
               {nigricans          Black sea brant   {On certain bays
                                                     {from Magdalena,
                                                     {Lower California
                                                     {north.

  Philacte      canagica           Emperor goose     {A rare visitor
                                                     {south of Humboldt
                                                     {Bay, California

  Subfamily, CYGNINAE

               {columbianus        Whistling swan    {From Oregon north.
  Olor         {                                     {Rarely as far
               {                                     {south as Central
               {                                     {California.
               {
               {buccinator         Trumpeter swan     From Southern
               {                                      California north.



THE WATERFOWL


The great variety of the waterfowl of the Pacific Coast, the wonderful
numbers in which they are found and the excellent shooting they
afford, forms a subject, which, to do it justice, would require the
space of an ordinary volume.

With the exception of the Gulf tier of the Southern states, waterfowl
on the Atlantic Coast are but birds of passage, tarrying for a time on
their way to milder winter quarters; tourists loitering for a day or
two at attractive by-stations as they wing their way south in the fall
and again on their return north in the spring. They are leaving the
isolation of the far north or the mountain lakes and marshes where
they spent the summer rearing their young and they are seeking more
favorable feeding grounds in the milder climate of the South, where
animal and vegetable life is not in the state of hibernation which
prevents it from furnishing them with an abundance of food during
their southern sojourn.

Over the larger portion of our hunting grounds what is the beginning
of the calendar year is in fact the beginning of our spring. When the
frost king lays his hand upon all vegetable and insect life in the
East, spreading his white shroud over field and pasture and breaking
with his icy sleet from the vine and the brush their clinging leaves;
when from the trees have fallen the last vestige of their autumnal
crowns of gold and crimson; when the last flower has shed its petals;
when the last hum of insect is heard and the last song of bird has
died away on the southern horizon--'tis then the early rains of the
Coast start the new sown grain in the fields, give life again to the
grasses of the plains, carpet the foothills and the valleys with the
gold and purple and crimson of innumerable flowers, and our veritable
spring commences.

With us, therefore, waterfowl are not passing pilgrims, tarrying for a
few days only as they rest and feed on their way to the open waters
and green pastures in which they intend to pass those months marked
winter on the calendar of the year. They are not mere hurrying flocks
alighting now and again as they wing their way back to their breeding
grounds in the spring But ours is the Mecca to which they journey;
ours the feeding grounds on which they assemble from the lakes and
marshes of the Arctic; from the whole chain of the Aleutian Islands;
from the inland seas of British Columbia and from the mountain lakes
of our own Sierras from Washington to Mexico. Here on the bays,
estuaries and marshes of the coast and the lakes and ponds of the
valleys, throughout the whole length of these hunting grounds,
countless millions of these birds have found their winter feeding
grounds for unnumbered ages. No cold, no ice, no snow, no howling
blizzards to stop them in their search for food or disturb their
midday rest upon our quiet waters. In warmth they feed upon the tender
shoots of the young grasses that fringe their watery haunts or bask in
sunshine on the sandy shores.

It is the popular impression that all ducks breed in the far north and
migrate from there south. One has only to shoot on the lakes of Mexico
to learn how erroneous this impression is, for one will meet varieties
quite common there that rarely if ever reach the southern boundaries
of the United States.

The masked duck (=Nomonyx dominicus=) is a purely southern species
reaching Mexico only in its breeding season. The three species of the
Mexican tree duck, quite common in that country, come but little into
the United States. One of these, the black-bellied tree duck
(=Dendrocygna autumnalis=) migrates to some little extent into Texas
and to less extent into New Mexico and Arizona. The fulvous tree duck
(=Dendrocygna fulva=) extends its migrations still farther north,
breeding to considerable extent in Arizona and southern California,
but rarely seen as far north as the center of the state. The other
species of the genus (=Dendrocygna elegans=), for which I know no
English name, is even rare as far south as southern Jalisco. The
cinnamon teal is a southern duck, breeding in Arizona, Texas and
southern California but so rarely seen north of San Francisco that a
gentleman who had killed a straggler near Marysville, when showing it
to me, said that he couldn't find a man in the town who could tell him
what it was. Yet the cinnamon teal is very common in Mexico and
Arizona and quite plentiful in southern California in the spring,
before the flocks break up and the birds seek their nesting places.

Northern bred ducks and purely northern species visit us in great
numbers during the winter months, and to these must be added the vast
number of these birds that breed in the mountains throughout our
hunting grounds.

The ornithologist divides the ducks into two subfamilies; the
fresh-water ducks forming the subfamily, =Anatinæ=, and the salt-water
ducks the subfamily, =Fullgilinæ=. These two families can easily be
distinguished by their feet. If a salt-water duck, the hind toe will
be found to have a small web or flap on the under side, but if the
bird belongs to the fresh-water group, the toe will be as clean as any
land bird.


  [Illustration: MALLARD (Anas boschas)]


THE MALLARD

(Anas boschas)

The mallard is possibly the best known duck in America, it being found
in greater or less numbers everywhere from the Arctic to Central
America. It is a resident species throughout the Pacific Coast,
breeding on the mountain lakes and streams from Mexico to Alaska, and
even to a considerable extent on the lower marshes of California,
Oregon and Washington. On the fresh water ponds and overflows they
congregate in great numbers during the winter months and a bag limit
of twenty is no uncommon thing. Like all of the fresh-water ducks of
this Coast, they, too, are often found in considerable numbers on the
tide lands and salt marshes.

The mallard of the Pacific Coast can hardly be said to be a migratory
duck, for it breeds from Mexico north. Its migrations consisting more
of altitudinal movements than of longitudinal. While it breeds on the
mountain lakes of Mexico, it is rarely seen in the higher altitudes
during the winter months.

Hybrids between the mallard and the pin-tail and the mallard and the
widgeon have been occasionally met with on the marshes of the Coast.
This is most likely caused by the mating of cripples that had not the
strength to make the flight to their usual breeding grounds.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, dark green with a metallic luster;
white ring around the neck at the bottom of the green; back, gray;
breast, chestnut brown; under parts dirty white; tail, black with two
feathers curled upwards; speculum, (see diagram) purple, bordered with
black and white.

Female--Head, dark buff; breast, lighter buff with brown mottlings;
legs, orange colored; speculum same as the male; bill, yellow,
blotched with brown.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is placed on the ground and lined with
grass, feathers and down. The eggs number eight to a dozen and are of
a greenish tinge.

=Measurements=--Male--Total length, from 20 to 25 inches; wing, 10 to
12 inches; bill, 2-1/2 inches.

Female--Total length, from 18 to 20 inches; wing, 9 to 10 inches;
bill, 2 to 2-1/4 inches.


  [Illustration: GADWALL (Anas strepera)]


THE GADWALL

(Anas strepera)

The gadwall was at one time quite plentiful on the shooting grounds of
California, south of San Francisco; but, on account of our season
opening later and closing earlier than in years past, few are killed
now. The gadwall is really a southern duck, coming into the United
States to breed. When the California season opened on the first of
September and closed the first of April, there were plenty of gadwall
found on its ponds in the early fall and late in the spring. Now, but
few are killed except in the southern part of the state. Such as are
killed are generally found on the mountain lakes and ponds of the
higher valleys. On the waters of Mexico and Lower California, however,
they are met with in good numbers.

The gadwall, however, migrates as far north as British Columbia for
breeding purposes as well as breeding on the mountain lakes of all the
territory through which it ranges.

=Color=--Male--Head, light brown, finely mottled with dark brown and
black; neck and breast, finely streaked with wavy black and white;
under parts, grayish white; rump and tail, black; speculum, black and
white, with the lesser wing-coverts chestnut; feet, orange, and bill
nearly white.

Female--Closely resembling the male but with very little chestnut on
the wings.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest which is usually made a little way back
from the water is lined with dead grass, and contains from ten to
twelve eggs of a light buff color.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 19 inches; wing, 10, and bill,
1.60.


[Illustration: WIDGEON (Anas americana)]


THE WIDGEON

(Anas Americana)

The widgeon is one of the most common ducks of the Coast, both north
and south. As well as being one of the most plentiful of the interior
lakes and ponds, they are found in great numbers on the salt marshes
and tide overflows, and even form great dark patches on the ocean as
they take their midday rest on its bosom a mile or so beyond the surf.
They breed on the mountain lakes and streams all along the Coast from
Mexico north.

The widgeon begins its migrations early in the fall and great numbers
find their way as far south as the Coast marshes and lower lakes of
Mexico. They feed largely on the plains and frequent the fields in
search of grain. In migrating or flying from pond to pond they usually
go in quite large flocks.

=Color=--Male--Head, pinkish white on top, with a greenish streak from
the eye back to the ociput; below this the head and neck are speckled
with black and white; back and wing-coverts, gray with fine markings
of black; breast, a light brick red with a purplish cast; speculum,
black and green. Axillars, white with dark shafts.

Female--The female resembles the male in all but the green on the head
and the reddish color of the breast.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is generally built in some tuft of grass or
thick weeds near some water's edge. The eggs average about a dozen and
are of very light brownish white.

=Measurements=--Total length, 18 inches; wing 9-1/2, and bill, 1-1/2.


  [Illustration: GREEN-WINGED TEAL (Anas carolinensis)]


GREEN-WINGED TEAL

(Anas carolinensis)

The green-winged teal is another variety that is very plentiful on the
Coast, breeding in great numbers on our mountain lakes and along the
streams from Mexico to Alaska, and even to considerable extent on the
lower marshes, especially from central California north. While many of
these are killed on the salt marshes and tide lands, they are more
generally frequenters of the inland ponds and overflows. Nesting late
and maturing early, they are both a late and early duck on our
shooting grounds, and remain constantly with us during the whole
winter. Shooting on a pass over which the teal are flying from one
pond to another furnishes about the finest sport of the duck shooter's
life. In such cases they come in small flocks, and single birds must
be selected; being a small mark and very rapid flyers they require a
good lead and quick work. In fact, a brace of green-winged teal with a
pressing engagement at the next pond makes about as pretty a target as
the sportsman often fires at.

The green-winged teal, like the widgeon, feeds a great deal on the
plains and in the fields.

=Color=--Male--Top of head and neck, brown of a chestnut tinge, the
feathers forming almost a crest; a broad stripe of green runs back
from the eye to the neck; back and sides, mottled gray; breast, buff,
shaded to white on the abdomen and spotted with black; speculum,
green.

Female--The top of the head of the female is a rusty brown, and with a
very faint stripe on the sides; upper parts, gray, spotted with black;
speculum, green.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest of the green-winged teal is generally a
little more carefully made than most of the ground nesting ducks. The
eggs average about ten and are of a light brownish buff.

=Measurements=--The green-winged teal is the smallest of the
fresh-water ducks. Total length, about 14 inches; wing, 7-1/4; bill,
1-1/4 inches.


  [Illustration: CINNAMON TEAL (Anas cyanoptera)]


THE CINNAMON TEAL

(Anas cyanoptera)

The cinnamon teal, very commonly called the blue-winged teal by the
sportsmen of the Coast, is only a late fall and early spring bird on
our shooting grounds north of Lower California and Mexico. While the
cinnamon teal has a blue wing there is no resemblance between the
male cinnamon and the male blue-winged. The females of the two
species, however, have a marked resemblance in color but a wide
difference in shape of body. The female cinnamon teal is much darker
on the throat than the blue-winged female, and generally shows a
considerable of the cinnamon color of the male. The male of the
blue-winged teal partakes more of the grayish color of the
green-winged variety and has a white crescent in front of the eye. The
northern limit of the cinnamon teal is about the latitude of San
Francisco so far as their appearance on our shooting grounds is
concerned. A few, however, go farther north for breeding purposes.
They are quite common in the southern part of California, where they
come to breed. They winter in Mexico, Lower California and Arizona in
great numbers. They nest on the mountain lakes and along the mountain
streams of California and even as far north as Oregon. In southern
California they nest along the salt-water marshes, especially those of
Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego counties.

=Color=--Male--The male bird cannot well be mistaken for that of any
other species. The general color being a dark cinnamon, or in fact
much nearer a chestnut in color; the head being somewhat darker than
the rest of the bird; the upper wing-coverts being blue, form a large
patch of blue at the shoulders when the wing is at rest; the speculum,
like that of all the teal is green.

Female--The female resembles the female of the blue-winged teal, but
is a little larger with a longer and slimmer body; the chin is dusky
and the throat is speckled; the breast also has a slight tinge of the
cinnamon color of the male.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are built generally in long grass patches
of the low grounds bordering the streams and lakes and even the salt
marshes. The eggs which average about a dozen are of a peculiar light
creamy color with a faint bluish tinge.

=Measurements=--Total length, 16 inches; wing, 7-1/2; bill, 1-3/4.


  [Illustration: BLUE-WINGED TEAL (Anas discors)]


THE BLUE-WINGED TEAL

(Anas discors)

The blue-winged teal is only a straggler north of Lower California,
Arizona and Mexico. In Mexico and Lower California I know them to be
quite common, and reasonably plentiful in some parts of Arizona.

The blue-winged teal is a plumper bird than either of the other
species, and not near so handsomely marked. It is a rapid flyer and
affords good shooting in those sections where it is plentiful.

=Color=--Male--Head, a glossy purplish gray, darker on top; between
the eye and the bill is a white crescent-shaped mark about one-fourth
wider in its center than the eye; the wing-coverts are blue like those
of the cinnamon teal; back, dark gray; under parts, gray, spotted with
black; speculum, rich green; bill, black, and legs and feet, yellow.

Female--The female resembles the female of the cinnamon teal; but
unlike the cinnamon it has no dark markings under the chin, or any of
the cinnamon color faintly seen on the cinnamon female. The bill also
is much shorter, and the legs are of a yellowish tinge.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are much the same as the other members of
the teal family. The eggs about a dozen in number are pale buff.

=Measurements=--Total length, 15 inches; wing, about 7, and bill,
1-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: SHOVELLER OR SPOON-BILL
                 (Spatula clypeata)]


THE SPOON-BILL OR SHOVELLER

(Spatula clypeata)

The shoveler, or spoonbill, as they are commonly called, is also an
early duck upon our ponds; they, too, breed throughout the mountains
of our hunting grounds. When they first arrive on our ponds they are
very fat and finely flavored, but they soon become poor of flesh and
lose the flavor brought with them from their mountain homes. And then
they are generally let pass undisturbed by the discriminating
sportsman.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, green; breast, white, shading into rusty
chestnut toward the abdomen; lesser wing-coverts, blue; speculum,
green, with white border; legs, orange red.

Female--The female is much smaller than the male and lacks all its
high coloring. The general color is buff, mottled with brown;
wing-coverts and speculum, same as the male.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest, which is a rude affair, generally contains
from seven to ten eggs of a light buff color.

=Measurements=--Total length of the male, about 20 and the female, 18
inches; wing, 9 to 9-1/2; bill, about 2-1/2 to 2-3/4 inches, and very
broad at the end.


  [Illustration: PIN-TAIL OR SPRIG (Spatula acuta)]


THE PIN-TAIL

(Dafila acuta)

The pin-tail, or sprig is another very common duck of the Coast. Great
numbers of this species breed on our mountain lakes and, maturing
early, they are about the first to appear upon our shooting grounds,
great flocks reaching as far south as San Diego county, the mouth of
the Colorado river and the lakes and marshes of Lower California,
Arizona and northern Mexico as early as the middle of August or the
first of September. They come from the mountains plump and fat, and as
soon as the shooting season is open prove quite acceptable to the
epicure.

The pin-tail ranges throughout the territory covered by this work and
far to the north of it, and the fact that they breed around the
mountain lakes for the whole distance accounts for their early
appearance on the shooting grounds of the Coast.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, rich brown, with a white stripe running
from the ociput down the sides of the neck to the breast; bill, lead
color, with a black stripe along the top; back, gray; breast, white;
central tail feathers, very long and pointed; speculum, light smoky
brown, edged with white.

Female--The female is much more of an ocher brown than the male, and
without the stripe on the neck or the lead color of the bill. The top
of the head and the sides of the neck are streaked with brown; breast,
spotted with dark brown; under parts, white. While it somewhat
resembles the female mallard, the much narrower bill and difference of
the speculum should prevent any error in identification. Besides the
tail is pointed and the axillars are white, barred with dark brown.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually back a little distance from the
water's edge and contains from eight to twelve bluish-white eggs.

=Measurements=--Total length, male, 28 and female, 22 inches;
wing, 9-1/2; bill, 2 inches.


  [Illustration: WOOD DUCK (Aix sponsa)]


THE WOOD DUCK

(Aix sponsa)

The wood duck, the handsomest of all the American ducks, is not
plentiful anywhere, and seems to be growing fewer in numbers.
Ornithologists class them as resident ducks, breeding throughout their
range. From my personal experience I believe that they are migratory,
at least to a considerable extent, for while many flocks of from half
a dozen to twenty birds can be seen along the timbered portions of the
Sacramento river during the summer months and the early fall, as well
as along other wooded streams of the Coast, few are to be seen during
the shooting season. From this fact I can draw but one conclusion;
they migrate south in the winter. A few are killed each winter but
they can only be considered a rare duck whose beauty lends an
occasional charm to the game bag.

=Color=--Male--The male has a long crest falling down the back of the
neck and showing a green and purple luster; the bill is red with a
dark stripe on top; a broad stripe of white commences under the bill
and passes down the neck, meeting another stripe of white that nearly
encompasses the neck; sides and front of lower neck, brownish purple,
dotted with white; back, a bronze green; speculum, bluish purple,
bordered with black and white.

Female--The general plan of the markings of the female is the same as
that of the male, but the colors are not so bright, nor the crest so
long. The crest is more of a brown, and the breast a pale brown,
mottled with dark spots.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is built in the hollow of a tree or stump,
and occasionally a considerable distance above the ground. The eggs,
which average about eight, are of a pale brownish white. The young are
taken from the nest in the bill of the mother, and are often seen
perched on her back while she is swimming around in search of food.

=Measurements=--Total length of the male, about 18 inches, with the
female about an inch less; wing, 9-1/4 to 9-1/2; bill 1 3/8 inches.


THE FULVOUS TREE DUCK

(Dendrocygna fulva)

The fulvous tree-duck, commonly called the Mexican tree-duck, and
cavalier, as well as the black-bellied tree-duck (=Dendrocygna
autumnalis=), according to the classification of the ornithologist,
belong to the subfamily, =Anserinæ=, the same family as the geese. The
fact that they have a bill more like that of the goose than any other
duck, a goose neck also, and that there is no difference in the sexes
will show the reason for such classification. Their generic name,
however, signifies tree-swan. The fulvous tree-duck ranges on our
hunting grounds as far north as Sacramento, where occasionally one is
killed. They come here only to breed and, therefore, late in the
season. Quite a few are killed in southern California, and from
Arizona and Lower California south they are very plentiful. The
black-bellied tree-duck is only met with as a straggler north of
Chihuahua, Mexico. Another species of the same genus (=Dendrocygna
elegans=) is a still more southern bird, seldom seen north of the
state of Guerrero.

=Color=--Sides of head and neck and lower parts, buff; top of head,
back of neck and back, dark brown; wings, dark brown; neck, long and
slim; bill, resembles that of a goose very much. Both sexes alike.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are generally built in a hollow tree or
stump. The eggs number from ten to fifteen and are of an ochreous
white.

=Measurements=--Wing, about 9-1/2; bill, 1-3/4 inches.



  Order, ANSERES

  Family, ANATIDAE Subfamily, ANATINAE

  (Fresh water ducks)

  Genus      Species       Common Names      Breeding Grounds and Range.
  --------- ------------- ----------------- ------------------------------

            {boschas       Mallard           {Throughout the scope of
            {                                {this work. Breeds wherever
            {                                {found.
            {
            {strepera      Gadwall           {From Central California
            {                                {south. Breeds wherever
            {                                {found.
            {
            {                                {From British America south.
            {                                {Breeds on the mountain
            {americana     Widgeon Baldpate  {lakes from California
  Anas      {                                {south.
            {
            {                                {From British America south.
            {carolinensis  Green-winged teal {Breeds throughout its range.
            {
            {                                {From Central California
            {cyanoptera    Cinnamon teal     {south. Breeds from Central
            {                                {California to Central Mexico.
            {
            {
            {discors       Blue-winged teal  {From Arizona south into
            {                                {Mexico. Breeds throughout
            {                                {its range.

  Spatula    clypeata     {Shoveller or      {From British America south.
                          {Spoon-bill        {Breeds on the mountain
                                             {lakes from Mexico north.

  Dafila     acuta        {Pin-tail or       {From British America south.
                          {Sprig             {Breeds from Central
                                             {California north.

                                             {Along the wooded streams
                                             {from Central California
  Aix        sponsa        Wood duck         {north. Breeds wherever
                                             {found.



THE BAY and SEA DUCKS


As I have already stated the ducks are divided into two subfamilies,
the one the =Anatinæ=, commonly called fresh-water ducks, the other
the =Fuligulinæ=, commonly known as the salt-water ducks. A
distinguishing feature of the salt-water ducks is the little flap or
web on the hind toe, which is not seen in the fresh-water varieties.

On our shooting grounds, however, whether the blind is on the
salt-water marsh or the fresh-water pond, both kinds are sure to fall
to the gun in almost equal numbers. Of the more common of the
fresh-water varieties the gadwall and the mallard are seen the least
on the salt marshes and the tide overflows, yet even these are quite
often met with in these places. So it is with the salt-water species.
All except the scoters are frequenters of the mountain lakes,
fresh-water ponds and overflows. The red-head, both species of the
scaups, the canvasback and the ruddy are commonly found on the
fresh-waters. The ring-neck, and, in fact, the red-head are much more
common on these waters than on the salt or brackish marshes.

With the exception, therefore, that certain species always predominate
at a given place at certain times of the season, the sportsman's aim
brings down a well-assorted bag, let him shoot where he may, on marsh,
pond or overflow, from Washington to Mexico.


  [Illustration: CANVASBACK (Aythya vallisnaria)]


THE CANVASBACK

(Aythya vallisneria)

The canvasback, the duck par excellence of the Eastern states, is very
plentiful in the more northern portions of the territorial scope of
these articles, though I have seen them in good numbers on the lakes
of Mexico. It is the general supposition that the canvasback breeds in
the far north, but from the fact that they are found on the lakes of
Mexico as early as October, they must also breed on the higher lakes
of our mountains. On our lower marshes they are a late duck, but they
appear on our mountain lakes quite early in the season. Canvasback
shooting on our waters affords the finest of sport, as it does not
partake so much of flock shooting as it does on the Chesapeake and the
Delaware rivers. While I certainly prefer our shooting, by no means do
I prefer our ducks. When killed on the mountain lakes, our canvasback
possesses nearly if not quite as fine flavor as do those of the
Eastern states, but when killed on the bays and salt marshes of
California they are fishy and barely palatable. This is caused by the
absence of the so-called wild celery, properly tape grass
(=Vallisneria spiralis=), the common food of the Eastern canvasback.
Our birds have the habit of feeding largely on the shallow waters of
the tide lands and marshes and of consuming large quantities of
crustaceans, such as clams, crabs, mussels and the like, and it takes
but a few days' diet of this kind to make the canvasback about the
poorest of ducks. I have killed these ducks on the high lakes and
ponds of Mexico, when, on account of something they fed upon, they
were really unfit to eat.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, nearly black; back, light gray; bill,
black, and forming nearly a straight line from the tip to the crown of
the head; belly and flanks, nearly white.

Female--Head and neck, cinnamon brown, paler on the throat; back, dark
gray.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest of the canvasback is generally found on some
little knoll in the marsh, and is lined with dead grass and feathers,
and often with considerable down. The eggs, which are about ten in
number, are of a dark creamy white.

=Measurements=--Total length, from 18 to 22 inches; the more northern
birds within the territory here covered will always be found
considerably larger than those of the more southern latitudes. Wing, 8
to 9-1/2 inches, and bill about 2-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: RED-HEAD (Aythya americana)]


THE RED-HEAD

(Aythya americana)

The red-head is quite a common duck in the southern sections of the
Coast hunting grounds. Though purely a bay or salt-water duck, that
is, belonging to the subfamily =Fuligulinæ=, it is not found to any
great extent on the salt-water marshes, preferring the higher lakes,
ponds and reservoirs of the mountain valleys and foothills. I found
them one season in great numbers on the San Rafael marshes, high up in
the mountains of Lower California, and all the shooting two friends
and myself wished to do had no effect in driving them away, although
the ponds of the marsh were few and small.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, reddish chestnut; lower neck and upper
breast, sooty brown, a mixture of finely penciled lines of gray and
brown; speculum, gray; back, gray; feathers on the top of the head
almost form a crest; bill, lead color.

Female--Head and neck, light cinnamon brown, very pale on the sides of
the head near the bill, and throat nearly white; breast and shoulders,
dirty light brown, and back a darker dirty brown.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest, like that of the canvasback, is generally
built in the marsh or on the low banks of a lake, usually lined with
down and contains about ten eggs of a brownish buff color.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 20 inches; wing, 8-1/4 to 8-1/2; bill
barely 2-1/4 inches.


  [Illustration: AMERICAN SCAUP DUCK OR BLUE-BILL
                 (Aythya marila neartica)]


THE AMERICAN SCAUP, OR BLUE-BILL

(Aythya marila neartica)

The American scaup, or blue-bill, the lesser scaup (=Aythya affinis=)
and the ring-neck (=Aythya collaris=) are very plentiful from
Washington to Mexico. These three species are generally grouped
together by the sportsmen of the Coast under the name of black jacks,
black ducks, black-heads or blue-bills; all three species being
considered as belonging to the one variety, and the lesser scaup
(=Aythya affinis=) as the younger birds. With the males, at least,
there should be no excuse for this error, for they can be easily
distinguished by the color of the speculum, or bright band on the
wings, and by the color of the metallic sheen of the head and neck.
The speculum of the American scaup, or larger blue-bill, is white, the
head and neck showing a greenish sheen, quite pronounced in the
sunlight. The lesser scaup, or little blue-bill (=Aythya affinis=) has
a white speculum also, but the sheen of the head and neck is purple.
The ring-neck (=Aythya collaris=), has a gray speculum, which, though
quite light in color, can easily be distinguished from the pure white
of the other two. The metallic sheen of the head of the ring-neck is a
dark indigo blue. The bill of the ring-neck is quite different from
that of the scaups, being much darker in color and more of a sooty
tinge and with a faint bluish band across it about half an inch from
the end. The females of all three species resemble each other very
closely, but the difference in size will generally determine to which
species they belong. The two blue-bills can be told from the female
ring-neck by their white speculums. The female ring-neck has the gray
of the male, but this does not distinguish it from the female
red-head. The smaller size of the ring-neck and darker appearance of
the head and neck will always indicate to which species the female
belongs. The bill of the female red-head meets the skull in quite an
abrupt manner, while hat of the ring-neck has more of the sloping
character of the canvasback.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, black, showing a green luster in the
sun; back, gray, finely lined with black; under parts, white;
speculum, white.

Female--Head, dead brown, with a light gray patch at the base of the
bill blending into the brown of the head; breast and back, dirty
brown; under parts, white; speculum, white; bill, bluish.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is a crude affair near the water's edge,
containing about ten pale olive-buff eggs.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 18 inches; wing, 8-1/2, and
bill, 1 7/8 inches. The females are but a trifle smaller.


THE LESSER SCAUP, OR LITTLE BLUE-BILL

(Aythya affinis)

The little blue-bill, or lesser scaup, like its larger relative, is a
cosmopolitan species, and commonly met with in flocks of the other,
which has led to the common error of classing the two together, the
one as the elder and the other as the younger birds.

While in general color and markings they are very similar, there is
so much difference in their size that they should be easily
distinguished. With the males this is very easy for the head of the
larger species has a green sheen, the head of the lesser has a purple
sheen as shown in the sun. The bill of this species is more of a blue
and much smaller, being not over 1-1/2 inches in length.

=Color=--The color and markings are the same as the American scaup,
with the exception that the metallic sheen of the head, as already
mentioned, is purple.

=Nest and Eggs=--The same as the American scaup.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 16-1/2 inches; wing, 7-1/2,
and bill 1-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: RING-NECK (Aythya collaris)]


THE RING-NECK

(Aythya collaris)

In the breeding season the ring-neck male has a dirty orange ring
around the neck which disappears wholly, or nearly so, before the
beginning of the hunting season. The ring-neck is generally more
plentiful on the fresh waters. I have seen great numbers of them at
the mouth of the Colorado river. In fact, both the ring-neck and the
lesser scaup range much farther south than do the larger species, for
while few of the larger scaup are seen in Mexico, great quantities of
the little blue-bills are found throughout the republic, especially on
the salt marshes of the two coasts. All of these three species breed
along the mountain lakes from California north.

=Color=--Male--Head and neck, black, with an indigo sheen when turned
in the sun. This will always distinguish it from the larger blue-bill
whose sheen is green and the lesser blue-bill whose sheen is purple.
The speculum is gray; bill, bluish with a pale blue band across it
about a half inch from the end.

Female--The female of this species resembles the female of the
red-head very closely. It is considerable darker, however, and the
bill joins the head without the marked indentation seen in the
red-head.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest and eggs are the same as the scaups.

=Measurements=--Total length, 17-1/2 inches; wing, 8, and bill, 2 inches.


  [Illustration: RUDDY DUCK (Erismatura rubida)]


THE RUDDY DUCK, OR WIRE-TAIL

(Erismatura rubida)

The ruddy duck is a very common duck on our shooting grounds, from one
end to the other, though as a rule it is not much sought after by our
sportsmen. When feeding on the salt marshes they are not very
palatable, it is true, but when killed on fresh waters they are one of
our finest flavored ducks, if properly cooked. After refusing many
shots at these little ducks and even many times failing to carry home
those I did kill, it remained for Mr. Babcock, then of the Coronado
Hotel, of San Diego, California, to demonstrate to me the real value
of the ruddy duck. I was one of the party shooting with him on his
preserve at Otay dam. When we came into the house after our morning's
shoot, a most enjoyable one, he asked each member of the party what
kind of duck he wished for his dinner. Mallards, canvasbacks, sprigs
and widgeons had been named, so when he came to me I answered that any
kind would do me. To this he replied: "Then you shall have one of my
favorites." When dinner was ready, before each plate was a beautifully
roasted duck of the species chosen by the member of the party for whom
that plate was laid, but the plates in front of Mr. Babcock and myself
each contained two plump little birds that I did not recognize in
their undress uniform. After I had tasted of one, Mr. Babcock asked:
"How do you like my selection?" "Very much," I answered, "but what are
they? I never ate anything better." "The much despised ruddy," was his
reply, "the superior of the canvasback when properly handled." The
best evidence that I fully endorsed all that he claimed for the ruddy
duck is the fact that there was nothing left of my two birds but
well-picked bones. The ruddy duck may well be called a resident
species over the whole of the Pacific Coast shooting grounds, for they
breed not only on the lakes and streams, but on the lower marshes as
well, throughout the whole territory.

The ruddy duck is known by a number of names such as "wire tail,"
"dipper," "bullet-head," "buffle-head," etc.

=Color=--Male--Top of head, dark brown; sides of head below the eye,
dirty white; upper parts, brown; no speculum on the wing; axillars,
very light gray with light brown shafts; tail, broad and stiff with
the feathers pointed; under parts, dirty white.

Female--Much the color of the male, but more of a dirty brown. Side of
the head and throat, dirty gray.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are usually built on little hillocks in the
marshes, and contain from six to eight dirty white eggs.

=Measurements=--The ruddy is a small duck with a very rounded body.
Total length, about 15 inches; wing, 6, and bill, 1-1/2 inches, strongly
depressed in the center.


  [Illustration: AMERICAN GOLDEN-EYE (Glaucionetta clangula americana)]


THE AMERICAN GOLDEN-EYE

(Glaucionetta clangula americana)

The American golden-eye is a visitor from the far north to the
northern portions of the territory covered by this work. An occasional
straggler is killed as far south as San Francisco, but they are a cold
country bird. They are more common in the interior of Washington and
Oregon than along the coast.

=Color=--Male--Head and upper half of neck, dark green with a metallic
sheen; a nearly round patch of white between the eye and the base of
the bill; lower part of neck, most of the back and the under parts,
white; upper part of the back, rump and tail, black; wings, mostly
white.

Female--Head and upper neck, brown; gray spot at the base of the bill;
breast and under parts, gray; back and most of the wings, brownish
black.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually built in a hollow tree or stump
and contains about ten eggs of a bluish white color.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 19 inches; wing, 9, and
bill, 1 7/8. Female about one-tenth smaller.


  [Illustration: BARROW'S GOLDEN-EYE (Glaucionetta ilandica)]


BARROW'S GOLDEN-EYE

(Glaucionetta ilandica)

Barrow's golden-eye is another duck that is seen, but little within
the Pacific Coast hunting grounds, and only then near the coast
sections of the northern part. They are found more plentiful on the
islands along the north Pacific coast.

=Color=--The male resembles the American golden-eye very closely,
except that the head of the Barrow's is more of a purple, or greenish
purple. The white at the base of the bill is also different, it being
a crescent shape instead of round.

The female differs in the head being more of a cinnamon brown, and the
back more of a gray and slightly mottled with brown.

=Nest, Eggs and Measurements=--The same as the American golden-eye.


  [Illustration: BUTTER-BALL (Charitonetta albeola)]


THE BUTTER-BALL

(Charitonetta albeola)

The butter-ball, or buffle-head, is another common duck all over the
country. But where we have so many larger and better ducks they are
little sought for, and are generally considered poor shooting. Yet I
recall one occasion when with a friend I was shooting on a couple of
foothill ponds where many of these little ducks had congregated, they
furnished us with fine sport. The larger ducks were soon scared away,
but the little butter-balls would not leave. One of us was stationed
at each pond and we soon had them all in the air.

=Color=--Male--Head, greenish purple, with a strong metallic luster;
white patch running from the eye to the back of the head; feathers of
the head long, forming a crest; back, black; under parts white and a
broad white patch on the wing.

Female--The female is a very modestly colored bird to have so gaudy a
mate. Head and upper parts, a dark, dead brown; under parts, white;
speculum, white; a small, elongated white spot on the side of the
head.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually built on some elevation such as a
stump or log; some times in a tree. The eggs, numbering eight to ten,
are of a pale buff color.

=Measurements=--Total length, 11 to 12-1/2 inches; wing, about 6, and
bill, 1 inch.


THE OLD SQUAW, OR LONG-TAILED DUCK

(Clangula hyemalis)

The old squaw, or long-tailed duck, comes but little into California,
though a few are killed each year in Washington and Oregon. I killed
one several years ago as far south as Los Angeles county, California,
the only one I have ever known to get that far away from his northern
home.

=Color=--Male--As the winter plumage is the only garb that one of this
species will be seen in on these hunting grounds, I will only mention
it. Head, white, with a patch of brownish black on the side of the
head and side of the neck; breast, black, continuing over the back;
belly, white; wings, white; a band of yellow across the bill; central
tail feathers, black and very long.

Female--Head, white, with a dark patch on the top and on the side;
breast and back, smoky black; under parts, white; no long feathers in
the tail.


  [Illustration: HARLEQUIN DUCK (Histrionicus histrionicus)]


THE HARLEQUIN DUCK

(Histrionicus histrionicus)

The harlequin duck is a northern bird that comes but little into the
United States on either coast. A few stragglers are met with in Oregon
and Washington, and an occasional one is killed in California. These
and the old squaw add a pleasing variety to our mounted collections,
but nothing to our sport.

=Color=--The accompanying illustration is the best description of this
duck that can be given, as the colors are white and a brownish black.
It is about the size of the widgeon.


  [Illustration: WHITE-WINGED SCOTER (Oidemia deglandi)]


THE SCOTERS

(Oidemia deglandi--Oidemia americana)

The scoters, or coots, as they are called on the Atlantic coast, are
all found on this coast southward to Mexico. Of these the white-winged
scoter (=Oidemia deglandi=) is the most common, being found in large
numbers on all the bays and inlets of the coast as far south as the
Magdalena bay, Lower California.



  Order, ANSERES

  Family, ANATIDAE Subfamily, FULIGULINAE.

  (Bay and sea ducks)

  Genus        Species      Common Names     Range and Breeding Grounds
  ------------ ------------ ---------------- ----------------------------

                                            {From Northern Mexico north.
               {vallisneria Canvasback      {Breeds on the higher lakes
               {                            {from Eastern Oregon to the
               {                            {Arctic.
               {
               {                            {From Central Mexico north.
               {americana   Red-head        {Breeds on the interior lakes
               {                            {from Eastern Oregon north.
               {
               {           {American scaup  {From Central California
               {neartica   {Blue-bill       {north. Breeds on the
  Aythya       {           {Black-jack      {interior lakes from
               {                            {Washington north.
               {
               {           {Lesser scaup    {From northern Mexico north.
               {affinis    {Blue-bill       {Breeds on the interior lakes
               {           {Black-jack      {from Washington north to the
               {                            {Arctic.
               {
               {                            {From Central California north.
               {collaris   {Ring-neck       {More common on fresh waters.
               {           {Black-jack      {Breeds on the interior lakes
               {                            {from Oregon to the Arctic.

               {americana   American        {Rare south of Oregon. Breeds
               {            golden-eye      {from northern Washington
               {                            {north.
               {
  Glaucionetta {                            {Very rare south of Puget
               {islandica   Barrows         {Sound. Found only along the
                            golden-eye      {coast. Breed on the
                                            {Aleutian Islands and Alaska
                                            {coast.

                                            {From Central Mexican coast
  Charitonetta albeola     {Buffle-head     {north. Breeds along the
                           {Butter-ball     {coast from Washington north.

                                            {From Central Mexico north.
  Erismatura rubida        {Ruddy duck      {Breeds on the mountain lakes
                           {Wire-tail       {throughout its range.

                                            {From the Lower California
               {americana  {Americas scoter {coast north. Breeds on the
               {           {Black coot      {Aleutian Islands and the
               {                             {Alaska coast.
  Oidemia      {
               {deglandi   {White-winged    {From the Lower California
                           {scoter          {coast north. Breeds on the
                           {White-winged    {Aleutian Islands and the
                           {coot            {Alaska coast.



THE GEESE OF THE PACIFIC COAST


The hunting grounds of the Pacific Coast have a greater variety of
geese than any other section of America. Here are to be found every
species known to the Eastern states, except the barnacle brant of the
Atlantic. But in return for the absence of this species of sea brant
we have the black sea brant, the white-cheeked goose, the ross goose,
the emperor goose (none of which are found east of the Rocky
Mountains) and the hutchins goose, the lesser snow goose, the
white-fronted goose and the little brown brant, which are only
stragglers east of the Mississippi valley, and only sparingly seen
that far east. Thus it will be seen that within the Pacific Coast
hunting grounds there are four genera and nine species of the goose
family. All of these are found in the northern parts of these hunting
grounds, but only about one-half of them visit the southern parts.
Increased areas of cultivation, the drainage of vast sections of
marshy lands and the absence of laws for their protection have greatly
reduced the once wonderful supply.

Acres of geese sounds fabulous, yet miles of geese is the only
expression which conveys an adequate idea of the wonderful numbers in
which these birds were seen on the Coast half a century ago. The great
majority of the geese of the Coast at that time were of the white
varieties, and it is a veritable fact that in California, and
especially in the Sacramento, San Joaquin and Los Angeles valleys,
these geese congregated during the winter months in such numbers as to
whiten the plains for miles. Many flocks of honkers were mixed with
them, as well as some of the other darker varieties. These darker
species of the family, however, were far more plentiful in the
northern parts of the State than in the southern. That part of the
Sacramento valley known as the Maine Prairies has always been a
favorite feeding place for the Canada goose and its subspecies.


  [Illustration: CANADA GOOSE             BROWN BRANT
                 (Branta canadensis)      (Branta minima)]


THE CANADA GOOSE, OR HONKER

(Branta canadensis)

The Canada goose, or honker as it is commonly called, was and is quite
common on the Coast. This goose, the largest of the Americans, has a
wide distribution, ranging from the Atlantic to the Pacific and from
the Arctic to Central America. They breed as far south as southern ern
Oregon, at any rate, and possibly on the higher mountain lakes as far
south as Mexico, for they seem to make their appearance on the Coast
shooting grounds of Mexico nearly, if not quite, as early as they do
here.

The flesh of the Canada goose is the equal if not the superior of the
tame goose. Its flight, except when migrating long distances, is
generally low, and in such cases it can be called by the hunter to
within shooting distance.

=Color=--Head and neck, black, with a white stripe running from the
chin back of the eye to near the top of the head; upper parts, dark
brownish gray; breast, dull, light gray, grading into white at the
abdomen; tail and wings, black. Both sexes alike.

=Eggs and Nest=--The nest is generally built of sticks and grass,
lined with feathers, and either in the marshes or on the banks of a
stream, and rarely if ever contain more than six or seven, and often
not more than four, eggs of a very light brownish white.

=Measurements=--Wing, about 19 inches; bill, about 1-3/4 inches.


  [Illustration: WHITE-CHEEKED GOOSE (Branta canadensis occidentalis)]


THE WHITE-CHEEKED GOOSE

(Branta canadensis occidentalis)

The white-cheeked goose, known also as Mexican goose, is found only on
the Pacific Coast and never east of the Cascades in Washington and
Oregon, or the Sierra Nevadas in California. In fact, they are
generally confined to localities not far from the ocean. While both
the honker and the Hutchins goose have a white cheek, the white of the
honker meets under the chin or blends into a gray, but the white of
the white-cheeked variety is separated either with a distinct black
stripe under the chin or a mottled black and white one. Also the black
of the neck of the white-cheeked goose and the brownish gray of the
breast is very generally separated by a white collar, though sometimes
this is so faint as to be almost indistinguishable.

The white-cheeked goose is rarely seen south of Monterey Bay,
California.

=Color=--Same as the Canada goose, except that the white on the cheeks
is either separated under the chin by a black stripe or by only a very
few white feathers in the black. Between the neck and the dull gray of
the breast is a narrow white stripe, or collar. This some times is
very faint, and, in fact, some times, though very rarely, absent. This
absence of the collar is quite likely caused by its inter-grading with
the Hutchins goose.

=Nest and Eggs=--The same as the Canada goose.

=Measurements=--Wing, never more than 16 inches; bill, not more
than 1-1/4 inches.


THE HUTCHINS GOOSE

(Branta canadensis hutchinsii)

We have on the Pacific Coast four varieties of the =Branta
canadensis=, or that species to which belongs the Canada goose, all
resembling each other closely except in size. Two of these species are
generally considered honkers by most of our sportsmen, while others
have two or three local names for them, among which are Mexican goose
and Lower California goose. The fact is that while the Canada goose is
quite common on the coasts of Mexico, neither the Hutchins goose nor
the white-cheeked goose migrate that far south.

The Hutchins goose so closely resembles the Canada goose, or honker as
it is popularly called, that it is principally distinguished by its
smaller size and a considerable difference in the call. The Hutchins
goose ranges as far east as the Mississippi valley, and on the Pacific
Coast south only to about Santa Barbara county, California. This is
one of the two varieties that is given the local names of Mexican and
Lower California goose.

=Color=--Same as the Canada goose, from which it is only distinguished
by its smaller size and a considerable difference in its call.

=Nest and Eggs=--Same as the Canada goose.

=Measurements=--Wing, not more than 17 inches; bill, 1-1/2 inches.


THE CACKLING GOOSE, OR BROWN BRANT

(Branta canadensis minima)

The cackling goose, known also as brown brant and gray brant, is the
most common of the four varieties and much the smallest. (See
illustration.) Its markings are the same as the Canada goose, but its
under parts are somewhat darker. While in total length it is fully
half that of the honker, in weight it is not more than one-third. The
cackling geese are commonly found in flocks of the white geese, both
in their feeding and their migrations. This species ranges east as far
as the Mississippi valley and south on the Coast as far as the mouth
of the Colorado river and to some extent into Lower California. It is
more numerous than any other of the dark colored geese of the Pacific
Coast.

=Color=--The same as the Canada goose, with the exception that it is a
little darker on the under parts.

=Nest and Eggs=--The same as the Canada goose, but the eggs number as
high as ten.

=Measurements=--Wing, 13 to 14-1/2 inches; bill, from one to one and
one-eighth.


  [Illustration: LESSER SNOW GOOSE     ROSS GOOSE
                 (Chen hyperborea)     (Chen rossi)]


THE SNOW GOOSE, OR WHITE GOOSE

(Chen hyperborea)

The lesser snow geese, commonly called white geese, are the larger of
the two species of white geese so numerous on the Coast. They not only
feed, but migrate in great flocks, and these migrations often take
place at night when their sharp cries will be heard high in the air.
The lesser snow goose is found as far east as the Mississippi valley
and south on the Pacific Coast to San Diego. Occasionally a few are
seen at Ensenada and the valley of the Palms in Lower California. The
meat is tough and poor in flavor and, therefore, they are hunted but
little except by the market hunters, who, somehow, succeed in selling
a good number of them to the uninitiated.

=Color=--Pure white, with black bill and legs; the primaries, or long
feathers of the wings, are black.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are made close to the water's edge and
contain about ten dirty white eggs.

=Measurements=--Wing, about 16 inches; bill, 2-1/4 inches.


THE ROSS GOOSE LITTLE WHITE GOOSE

(Chen rossii)

The Ross goose has been given the name of China goose by many who
wanted some distinguishing nomenclature for them, when in fact the
Ross goose is purely an American Pacific Coast bird. Like the snow
goose it is pure white with black primary plumes. Young birds of both
species are occasionally seen in the early part of the season more or
less mottled on the breast with yellowish gray feathers. The Ross
goose is only about half the size of the snow goose. Aside from this
it can always be known by the warty appearance of the upper half of
the bill. They are commonly seen, both in feeding and in their
migrations, mixed in the flocks of the snow geese. Occasionally they
are seen as far east as Utah and Montana, but only in small numbers.
The Ross goose migrates as far south as Central Mexico, great numbers
of them congregating on Lake Chapala, in the state of Jalisco.

=Color=--Same as the snow goose.

=Measurements=--Wing, about 14 inches; bill, 2-1/4, with warty
excresences on the upper part.


  [Illustration: WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, OR SPECKLE-BREAST
                (Anser albifrons gambeli)]


WHITE FRONTED GOOSE

(Anser albifrons gambeli)

The white-fronted goose, or speckle-breast as it is commonly called,
is quite common on the Coast south to Mexico, where great numbers
congregate on Lake Chapala, Jalisco. This is another western species,
though ranging to some extent as far east as the Mississippi valley
and an occasional flock wanders even to the Atlantic coast. The
breasts of the old birds are commonly profusely speckled with black
feathers. The white-fronted goose is a little more exclusive in its
habits than any of the others named, being generally found in flocks
by themselves. As a table bird the meat is quite palatable, and large
numbers are sold in the markets.

=Color=--Head, grayish brown, with a white spot at the junction of the
bill, but this is absent from the young birds; neck, lighter, shading
into white or dull white on the breast, mottled with black; back, ashy
gray, edged with brown; shafts of the quills, white; bill and legs,
light pink.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually well made and lined with feathers
and down. The eggs number about seven or eight, and are of a pale
greenish white.

=Measurements=--Wing, 16 inches; bill, 2 inches.


  [Illustration: EMPEROR GOOSE (Philacte canagica)]


THE EMPEROR GOOSE

(Philacte canagica)

The Emperor goose is a north Pacific species, breeding principally on
the islands of the Alaska coast. The great majority of these birds
winter well to the north of us, though a number venture southward into
California to Humboldt bay and even south of that. A small flock or
two is seen almost every winter on the marshes near San Francisco. A
close watch of the markets will reveal one or two offered for sale
almost every winter.

=Color=--Head and back of neck, white; throat, brownish gray, shading
into light gray on the breast and abdomen; back, a little darker; the
feathers being gray, tipped with lighter gray, with a subterminal band
of brownish gray; legs, flesh color.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are usually found on the small islands of
the salt marshes, and contain eight to ten eggs of a dull white color.

=Measurements=--Wing, about 15-1/2 inches; bill, 1-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: BLACK SEA BRANT (Branta nigricans)]


THE BLACK SEA BRANT

(Branta nigricans)

The black sea brant is another purely Pacific Coast species, found
nowhere else except as a straggler. They resemble the barnacle brant
of the Atlantic (=Branta barnicla=) except in the shape of the head
and bill. A differing characteristic, however, is that the white
speckling on the sides of the neck of the barnacle brant extends all
around the front of the neck in the case of the black sea brant. As
their name implies, these are purely seabirds, rarely flying over the
land even, and only found in such bays as produce the eel grass on
which they feed almost exclusively. I only know of the following
places within the Pacific Coast shooting grounds where the black sea
brant is found. These are: Puget sound, Washington; Coos bay, Oregon;
Humboldt, Tomales, Moro and San Diego bays, California, and Magdalena
bay, Lower California. In most of these places they ate plentiful
during the winter season. Of all birds that fall to the aim of the
sportsman, the black sea brant is the most difficult to get within
range of. This is only accomplished by great caution and a good deal
of strategy, but when they are brought to bag the reward is a full
compensation, for of all the waterfowl their flesh is the most
delicious. The sea brant is rarely found away from the haunts
mentioned, yet the bird from which the accompanying illustration was
made was killed from a small flock that had strayed into the lower end
of San Francisco bay, near Redwood City, and was mounted by that
accomplished sportsman and taxidermist, Chase Littlejohn, of that
place.

=Color=--General color, black; throat, with a white or speckled ring
all around the neck, except a small portion of the back; flanks,
mottled white and black; under tail feathers, white.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is only a depression on the ground, but
nicely lined with down. The eggs, numbering six to eight, are of a
dull white.

=Measurements=--Wing, 13 inches; bill, 1-1/2 inches.


THE SWANS

(Olor columbianus) and (Olor buccinator)

(Subfamily, CYGNINAE)

Both the whistling swan (=Olor columbianus=) and the trumpeter swan
(=Olor buccinator=) were once very plentiful on the Pacific Coast
hunting grounds, as far south as central California, and especially so
on the Columbia river and the lakes of Oregon and Washington. A few
were met with also as far south as San Diego county, California.

I shall never forget the first two swans I ever killed and my
experience with them. It was the first winter after I came to
California and I was living in Los Angeles, then a little Mexican
village, and three of us were doing our own housekeeping. Whatever the
reason--most likely from some hallucination of boyhood--I entertained
the belief that swans must be exceedingly fine eating. As I prided
myself then, just after crossing the plains, upon being a good cook,
great preparations were made for an extra fine feast on what I fancied
would be a delicious bird. We had a good stove and the first of the
two swans was carefully "stuffed" with the choicest dressing,
consisting of the combined suggestions of the three of us. It was
placed in the oven, the fire carefully tended and the magnificent bird
repeatedly "basted." When it was ready and placed on the table it fell
to my lot to do the carving. Having drawn my knife across the
hunger-producing carcass without making any perceptible impression, I
decided that it must be the fault of a dull knife. Among our table
furnishings we had no sharpening steel, a scythe stone doing service
in its stead. I hunted this up and began on the knife with the
"mower's challenge" stroke and soon had an edge that would have cut
through anything less than an eighty-pound rail. With no little effort
I amputated the legs and the wings, and cutting a generous piece from
one side of the breast passed it to one of my companions, who at once
began on it with his knife. A few attempts to sever it and he reached
for the scythe stone. Then when he began chewing on the segregated
piece he declared that it was not cooked enough. A dispute followed as
to whether it is over-cooking or under-cooking that makes a bird
tough. With this momentous question still unsettled we decided that
some of the many ingredients that we had put into the "stuffing" must
have given the meat its sole-leather consistency. We had a couple of
hounds, whose teeth had been well tested in many a coyote kill, and we
passed this first swan up to them.

The next day the other bird was worked into a fine stew and well
cooked. When served the stew was fine. The dumplings were light and
fairly melted in our mouths; the red peppers were hot; the aroma of
onions was just of that degree to suggest the ambrosia of the gods;
but the swan! Well, the hounds ate it through the compulsion of
hunger.

A half-grown swan, however, is very good eating.

There is very little difference in the two varieties. The whistling
swan being more of a northern bird, rarely migrating as far south as
central California. About the only noticeable difference is that the
whistling swan has a small yellow spot at the V-shaped point of the
bill where it meets the eye.



THE WADERS AND SHORE BIRDS


The Pacific Coast is especially rich in waders and shore birds, there
being upwards of forty species that are more or less common, with some
ten or more that are occasional visitors. Of these few can be
considered game birds, while others are so small that they are rarely
shot by our sportsmen. Many of both the waders and the shore birds are
constant residents. Others come from still farther south for breeding
purposes, while still others breed north of us and migrate throughout
the territorial scope of these articles to spend their winters.

The shore birds, while very common, are hunted but little by the
sportsmen of this region, and many of the smaller species that are
considered quite a delicacy by our eastern brethren are passed by
entirely by our lovers of the gun. The reasons for this will be
obvious to all who have read the preceding pages and noted the
abundance and great variety of larger and better game. By better game
I mean birds that furnish better sport by requiring more skill in
approaching them and better marksmanship in bringing them to bag. The
little mountain plover, of the southern part of the Coast, while not
surpassed even by the jack snipe as a table delicacy, are hunted but
little, even where they are very abundant, because there is little
sport to be had in shooting them. And the same is true, in a great
measure, of several other species. Sportsmen, therefore, are little
acquainted with these birds either as to their names, gastronomic
merits or means of identification.


  [Illustration: WHITE-FACED GLOSSY IBIS (Plegadis gaurauna)]


THE HERONS and IBISES

(Order, HERODIONES)


While none of the order =Herodiones=, which includes the storks,
herons, ibises and bitterns, can be considered game birds, they are so
common about our waters, and some of them add such a charm to the
scene by their beautiful plumage and graceful movement, that mention
of some of them here will not be out of place.

The great blue heron (=Ardea herodias=) is the most common of these
waders. With his long, gracefully curved neck and slender legs he
wades with stately mien along the shallow waters of the lakes,
marshes and streams, both summer and winter, for he is to the manner
born and has no desire to seek other lands or other climes. The herons
are said to be destructive to fish. This can be to a limited extent
only, for they subsist very largely on the enemies of the fish,
destroying hundreds of snakes, water lizards and other fish
destroyers.

The snowy heron, or white crane as it is commonly called (=Ardea
candidissima=), is another handsome wader that lends a charm to the
lakes, ponds and streams from Oregon south through Mexico. Built on
the same graceful lines as its blue relative, and with a plumage as
white as the purest snow, it never fails to attract attention.

Three representatives of the family =Ibididæ= are found here and
present a pleasing and interesting group.

The white-faced glossy ibis (=Plegadis guarauna=) ranges over the
larger portion of the Coast, but from Lower California north only for
breeding purposes. Its long curved bill, slim, gracefully bent neck,
shapely body, tall legs and irridescent reflections of its plumage in
the sunlight, place it among the most attractive of North American
birds. Unlike the herons they are gregarious and are, therefore, seen
in flocks of varying size. The glossy ibis is often called bronze
curlew, but this is a bad misnomer, as they are in no way related to
the curlew.

Another of the family is the white ibis (=Guara alba=). These are
quite common in Lower California and Mexico. They rarely migrate into
California, though they venture much to the north of us in a
northeastern direction, reaching the shores of the Great Salt Lake,
during the breeding season. The scarlet ibis (=Guara rubra=), the
other member of the family, is confined to Mexico, so far as these
articles are concerned.

The American egret (=Ardea egretta=) ranges from Oregon south to South
America. It was at one time quite plentiful in California, but its
handsome plumes attracted the eye of the milliner, which in turn
aroused the cupidity of the market hunter, and these beautiful birds
are now rare north of Lower California and Mexico, and are rapidly
decreasing even there. The reddish egret (=Ardea rufescens=) is an
inhabitant of Lower California and Mexico, not coming north of these
places. Though not as handsome as the white egret, it is also being
exterminated for the same purposes.

The birds that I have so far mentioned, while not game birds, are so
constantly before the eyes of the sportsmen who engage in waterfowl
shooting that they can not help but be interested in them. They add a
variety and a beauty to the scene, and many an hour's wait, that
otherwise would have been tedious, has passed away pleasantly in
watching the graceful movements of some one or more of these stately
waders.



THE CRANES, RAILS, GALLINULES


To the order, =Paludicolae=, belong the cranes, rails, gallinules and
coots, or mudhens, as they are commonly called. Of the members of this
order we are concerned only with the cranes, rails and coots. The
sandhill crane (=Grus canadensis) is a common visitor to all parts of
the Coast, but more plentiful in the interior valleys than near the
seashore. They are generally hard to approach and for that reason they
are but little hunted by our sportsmen. The whooping crane (=Grus
americana) once common throughout the middle states, is still met with
to considerable extent in Mexico, but it is by no means a common
visitor.

The California clapper rail, known also as the San Mateo rail (=Rallus
obsoletus=), is the largest as well as the most important of the rail
family in this section. At one time the clapper rail was very
plentiful in certain localities in California and furnished abundant
sport, though rather of a tame nature, to those who hunted them. Being
an easy bird to kill and unsuspicious, they have been rapidly reduced
in numbers until now they are in danger of extinction unless laws are
enacted giving them better protection. The clapper is only a straggler
south of San Francisco bay.

The Virginia rail (=Rallus virginianus=), a species not more than half
the size of the clapper rail, is found sparingly over the Coast, but
principally on the fresh water marshes.

The little yellow rail (=Porzana noveboracensis=) is found on the
fresh waters from central California south, but it is nowhere
abundant.

The black rail (=Porzana jamaicensis=) is another of the smaller rails
that are found on the fresh waters to a limited extent. Both this and
the last preceding one are so small that they are seldom shot, though
as an article of food they are very delicate.



THE SHORE BIRDS

(Order, LIMICOLAE)


The order =Limicolae=, which is composed of the shore birds proper,
is abundantly represented. They are seen wading in the shallow waters,
carefully watching for worms, insects and other species of food upon
which they live, boring in the soft mud, scurrying in flocks from
place to place, or running along the beach as the surf recedes,
picking up the jetsam of the sea, then taking wing or running back
like a playful child to the higher ground as the foaming crest of the
next breaker rushes up the sandy shingle. Or, as is the case of the
phalaropes and some others, they may be seen riding lightly upon the
restless billows far out at sea. Modest in coloring and plain in
plumage, the shore birds seem to belong to the plebeians of the
avafauna, for they are constant workers, always busy, always plying
their slender legs rapidly as they hurry from one spot to another,
never idle, never resting for a moment.

Of the shore birds there are six families and twenty genera
represented on the Coast. Most of them are quite abundant from
Washington to Mexico on their respective feeding grounds.


  [Illustration:
       WILSON SNIPE, OR JACK-SNIPE     DOWITCHER
       (Gallinago delicata)            (Macrorhamphus scolopaceus)]


THE WILSON, OR JACK SNIPE

(Gallinago delicata)

Of all the shore birds the jack snipe, English snipe or Wilson snipe
as it is variously called, is the most highly prized as a table
delicacy and furnishes the best sport with the dog and gun. Usually
lying well for the dog, erratic in its flight and quick on the wing,
the Wilson snipe is one of the most difficult birds to bring to bag.
It is not only erratic in its flight, but it is erratic in its nature
as well. One day it will be found on a given feeding ground in
abundance and on the next not one is to be seen, while possibly the
day following they are there again in great numbers. To this
uncertainty and the corkscrew flight, peculiar to it alone, is due
much of the charm that jack snipe shooting affords. While these birds
are commonly called jack snipe or English snipe, their proper name is
Wilson snipe, but like the rose, no matter what the name, they are
just as gamy and just as delicious. The Wilson snipe migrates here to
but little extent, and these migrations are altitudinal rather than
latitudinal. They breed commonly in all the mountain valleys and even
as low down as on the Sacramento marshes south of the city of the same
name. I found a pair breeding a few years ago in the low hills of San
Luis Obispo county not half a mile from the ocean beach.

=Color=--Head, black, with a central stripe of brown; back, a mixture
of dark brown, pale brown, yellow and dull white; greater
wing-coverts, dark brown, tipped with white; throat, dull white,
barred with brown; a dark stripe running from the base of the bill
across the eye to the occiput; under parts of the wings, dull white,
barred with black; tail feathers, dark brown, tipped with white, and
with a sub-terminal bar of black. No web between the toes.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is a very crude affair made on the ground
and with but little lining of any kind. It contains from three to four
grayish eggs, blotched with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 11 inches; wing, 5-1/2; bill, 3 inches.


THE DOWITCHER, OR RED-BREASTED SNIPE

(Macrorhampus scolopaceus)

Though not of the same genus, the closet relative to the Wilson snipe
is the dowitcher or red-breasted snipe. By many who are not accustomed
to the Wilson snipe and its many vagaries, the red-breasted snipe is
often mistaken for the former. The red-breasted snipe may easily be
distinguished by the small web between the outer and middle toes. This
species of the dowitcher is a western bird, breeding well to the north
and migrating south to Mexico.

=Color=--Head and back, more of a gray than the Wilson snipe, with the
feathers edged with a pale buff; light gray stripe running from the
base of the bill over the eye to the occiput; chin, dull white;
breast, gray, with a tinge of cinnamon red; tail, banded with dark
brown; a small web between the outer and middle toes, extending about
one-fourth down the outer toe.

=Eggs and Nest=--Nest made on the ground and containing from three to
four dull white eggs.

=Measurements=--Total length, 10-1/2 inches; wing, 5-3/4; bill, about 2-1/2
inches, and with a considerable swelling at the end.


  [Illustration: GREATER YELLOW-LEGS (Totanus melanoleucus)]


THE GREATER YELLOW-LEGS

(Totanus melanoleucus)

The greater yellow-legs migrates throughout the entire region, being
common on the beaches of Washington, Oregon and California during the
fall and early winter as it works its way to Lower California and
Mexico. It somewhat resembles the godwit in coloring, but it is more
of a grayish tinge. Its shorter bill--not over two and a half inches
in length--will always distinguish it from the godwit. So, also, will
its sharp whistling note. It is nearly as delicate a table bird as the
Wilson snipe.

=Color=--Top of head and neck, brown, with whitish streaks; back,
brown, with the feathers edged with white; chin, white; breast, white,
lined with narrow streaks of brown; bill, black, and legs, yellow.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are built close to the water's edge,
containing four light buff eggs, spotted with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 14 inches; wing, 7-3/4; bill, 2-1/4, to
2-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: MARLIN OR GODWIT (Limosa fedoa)]


THE MARLIN, OR MARBLED GODWIT

(Limosa fedoa)

The marbled godwit, or marlin as it is also called, is one of the
largest birds of the =Scolopacidæ= family. It ranges from Alaska to
Central America. This species is seen in large numbers in the early
fall along the sea beaches of California as they are working their way
south. They spend the winter in great quantities in Lower California
and Mexico. There should be no difficulty in distinguishing the godwit
from any of the other shore birds, its long upward curved bill and
brownish-barred back being features by which it may always be known.

=Color=--Top of head and back of neck, brown, streaked with paler
brown; feathers of the back, brown, with ochreous edges; throat and
forehead, pale buff, with faint markings of brown; bill slightly
turned upward.

=Nest and Eggs=--Nest a crude affair on the ground, containing four
eggs of an ash color, mottled with a dead brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 19 inches; wing, 8-3/4; bill, about 4
inches.


THE RED-BACKED SANDPIPER

(Tringa alpina pacifica)

The red-backed sandpiper, or American dunlin, is one of the larger
members of the genus and quite plentiful on the Coast marshes, but it
is seldom seen in the interior valleys except during its migrations.
In its winter plumage, in which our sportsmen see it, it is of a dull
light gray color. A diagnostic feature of this species is the slightly
downward curved bill.

=Color=--Head and upper parts, light gray, with a white stripe over
the eye; shafts of the feathers are dark brown, producing a streaky
appearance. In its summer plumage the head and back are reddish brown,
wings brownish and abdomen black.

=Nest and Eggs=--Nests on the ground without lining. Eggs, bluish
white, with brown spots.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 8-1/2 inches; wing, 4-3/4; bill, 1 5/8.


THE WILLET

(Symphemia Semipalmata inornata)

The willet, or stone curlew as it is sometimes called, is a resident
species, breeding from Washington to Mexico. It is a western bird,
ranging eastward to the Mississippi valley, where it is but a
straggler. In size it is nearly as large as the marlin. Its black
wings, with broad, white patches, and feet webbed for about half the
length of the toes, are distinguishing features, easily recognized. It
is generally found on the salt marshes.

=Color=--The general color of the plumage is ashy white or light gray,
usually with some light buff markings on the breast. When flying it
shows a broad, white patch on the wings, caused by the upper part of
the primaries and part of the secondaries being white. Its smoky black
axillars will always distinguish it.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is any place on the ground where it can
deposit three or four pale buff eggs, spotted with dark brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 15-1/2 inches; wing, 8-1/2; bill, 2-1/2
to 2-3/4 inches.



  Order, LIMICOLAE

  Family SCOLOPACIDAE.

   Genus         Species        Common Names        Range and Breeding
                                                     Grounds
   ------------- --------------- ----------------- -------------------

                                 {Wilson snipe     {Throughout the
                                 {                 {marshes of the coast.
   Gallinago       delicata      {Jack snipe       {Breeds in the
                                 {                 {mountain valleys.

                                 {Dowitcher        {Along the fresh waters
                                 {                 {of the interior
   Macrorhamphus   scolopaceus   {Red-breasted     {valleys. Breeds in
                                 { snipe           {British Columbia
                                 {                 {and Alaska.

                                 {                 {From the Central
                                 {Red-backed       {Mexican coast north.
   Tringa          pacifica      {sandpiper        {Breeds from
                                 {                 {Washington north.

                                 {Marble godwit    {Early and late
                                 {                 {migrant along the
   Limosa          fedoa         {Marlin           {coast from Mexico
                                                   {north. Breeds in
                                                   {the far north.

                                                   {Early and late
                                                   {migrant along the
                                                   {coast, passing the
   Totanus         melanoleucus   Yellow-legs      {winter in Southern
                                                   {California and Mexico.
                                                   {Breeds in the mountain
                                                   {valleys.

                  {semipalmata                     {From Mexico north.
   Symphemia      {inornata      {Western Willet   {Breeds throughout
                                                   {its range.

                                                   {Early and late migrant.
                  {longirostris  {Jack curlew      {Winters in Southern
                  {                                {California and Mexico.
                  {                                {Breeds throughout its
                  {                                {range.
                  {
   Numenius       {              {Long-billed      {Same habits as the
                  {              { curlew          {long-billed and
                  {              {                 {usually found with it.
                  {hudsonicus    {                 {But breeds farther
                                 {Hudsonian curlew {north.


  [Illustration: HUDSONIAN CURLEW         LONG-BILLED CURLEW
                 (Numenius hudsonicus)    (Numenius longirostris)]


THE LONG-BILLED CURLEW

(Numenius longirostris)

The long-billed curlew, or sickle bill as it is often called, is a
plentiful resident in all suitable localities. The young birds mature
early and find their way to the marshes during August, when the season
for their killing should begin. At this time and even during the month
of September they are quite palatable, but later they become strong in
flavor. In these months they feed largely upon the seeds and insects
to be found on the plains, but later they confine themselves
principally to the marshes. They breed near the mountain lakes and
streams and even to considerable extent on the lower grounds. A glance
at the accompanying illustration will be sufficient to enable the
uninitiated to always know a curlew.

=Color=--Head, back of neck and back, dark brown, mottled with buff;
throat and under parts, pale buff, the feathers on the breast being
streaked with brown; axillars, reddish brown.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually made on the ground in tall grass
and back some distance from the marsh. The eggs are about four and of
an olive gray, spotted with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, without the bill, which varies very
much, about 20 inches; wing, 9 to 11; bill, from four to eight inches,
and bent downwards, with nearly as much curve as a sickle; in most
specimens the bill will be about six inches in length.


THE HUDSONIAN CURLEW

(Numenius hudsonicus)

The Hudsonian curlew, or jack curlew, by which name it is also known,
is also a common visitor to our hunting grounds. It is often seen
mixed with flocks of the preceding species, which leads many to
suppose that they are the younger birds of that species. Unlike the
long-billed, the Hudsonian curlew is not a resident species, or, at
least, not to so great an extent, although it makes its appearance on
our marshes quite early in the season, even as far south as central
California. In markings the two species are almost identical, with the
exception that the Hudsonian is somewhat paler in shade. Any doubt
arising as to which species a specimen may belong can easily be
settled by an examination of the axillar plumes. If a long-bill, these
feathers will be a solid reddish-brown, but if a Hudsonian, they will
be of a pale buff color barred with a dull-brown, the buff and brown
being nearly of the same width. Both species become less common north
of southern California during the late winter months.

=Color=--Same as the long-billed curlew, except that it is a little
paler on the under parts, and the mottling shows more distinctly on
the back. The axillars are pale buff, distinctly barred with light
brown.

=Nest and Eggs=--The same as the long-billed curlew.

=Measurements=--Total length, including bill, which varies but little
in this species, about 17 inches; wing, 9, and bill about 3-1/2 inches.


  [Illustration: BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Charadrius squatarola)]


BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER

(Charadrous squaterola)

The largest of the family =Charadridæ= is the black-bellied plover. In
its plumage, both summer and winter, it closely resembles the golden
plover, as the black on the sides of the head, front of neck, breast
and abdomen disappear from both species in their winter plumage. But,
notwithstanding this, they can easily be distinguished by the small
rudimentary hind toe of the black-bellied species, the other having
but three toes. A few specimens of the golden plover have been taken
on the Coast, but it is of rare occurrence. The black-bellied plover
is reasonably common along the coast line, but it is not seen to any
great extent in the interior valleys.

=Color=--Upper plumage, dull brown, mottled with gray, the top of the
head being somewhat darker; under parts, nearly white and the sides
and breast streaked with brown. In the summer the throat and belly are
black.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is usually made on the uplands, where four
eggs are deposited of a pale olive, spotted with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 11 inches; wing, 7-1/2, and bill,
1-1/4 inches.


  [Illustration:
      SNOWY PLOVER       MOUNTAIN PLOVER      RING-NECK PLOVER
     (AEgialitis nivosa)  (AEgialitis montana)  (AEgialitis semipalmata)]


THE MOUNTAIN PLOVER

(AEgialitis montana)

The mountain plover is very plentiful on the plains of southern
California during the winter months. This little bird as a table
delicacy is not surpassed by any of the long list of shore birds. In
fact it is preferred by many to the far-famed jack snipe. It is an
upland bird, feeding largely on insects, and rarely found near the
marshes whether salt or fresh-water. In its winter plumage, as seen
here, its underparts are white with the breast and upper parts of a
brownish gray.

=Color=--Throat, breast and under parts, white; the rest of the
plumage, light buffish gray; sometimes the breast will show a slight
tinge of buff; axillars, white; bill, black. Three toes without web.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are placed on the uplands and contain three
grayish eggs, spotted with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 8-3/4 inches; wing, 6, and
bill, 9/10 of an inch.


THE SNOWY PLOVER

(AEgialitis nivosa)

The snowy plover is quite common from northern California to Mexico.
It is a small bird and, while it is hunted but little, its flesh is
quite delicate. In its winter plumage it is much lighter in color
than any of the others named.

=Color=--Top of head, back of neck and back, buffish gray; forehead
and under parts, white; a patch of dull brown just above the white of
the forehead, and another of the same color on each side of the
throat. Three toes without web.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nests are found throughout its range; they are
nothing more than a depression in the sand and contain four grayish
buff eggs, spotted with black.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 6-3/4 inches; wing, 4-1/4, and bill
5/8 of an inch.


THE RING-NECKED PLOVER

(AEgialitis semipalmata)

The ring-neck plover is a fairly common visitor during the winter
months. It is usually seen on the coast or on other sandy shores. It
may be known by its partially webbed feet.

=Color=--Forehead, chin and neck, white, with a faint streak of dull
brown from the bill under the eye to the back of the neck; a band of
dull, brownish gray on the breast; back and wings, ashy gray; under
parts, white; bill, black with a spot of orange at the base. Three
toes which are webbed for about half their length.

=Nest and Eggs=--Nests are made in the sand and contain from three to
four dirty white eggs, spotted with brown. =Measurements=--Total
length, 6-3/4 inches; wing, 4-3/4, and bill, 1/2 inch.


WILSON'S PLOVER

(AEgialitis wilsonia)

While the Wilson plover is found to some extent on the southern
Atlantic Coast, it may properly be said to be a Pacific species. Here
it is seen on the beaches in large numbers, just beyond the reach of
the surf, picking the insects and minute shellfish as they are washed
on the sand, or flying in flocks just above the breakers.

=Color=--Forehead and stripe over the eye, white; black stripe in
front of crown; top of head and stripe from the eye to the bill,
black; black band just below the throat; back, gray; under parts,
white; bill black, and legs and feet, light pink.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is a mere depression in the ground, with
three to four eggs of a pale olive, spotted with dark brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, 7 to 8 inches; wing, 4 to 5; bill, about
3/4 of an inch. Three toes with a small

[Note: Unfinished sentence in original printed version.]

There are a number of other plovers on the hunting grounds of the
Pacific Coast, but they are either too small or the flesh too poor to
interest the sportsman. Of these the killdeer plover is the most
common and the best known. A description of these would be of no
interest to the sportsman and therefore add nothing to the purposes of
this work.


  [Illustration: AMERICAN AVOCET (Recurvirostra americana)]


THE AVOCET

(Recurvirostra americana)

The family =Recurvirostridæ= has but two representatives on the Coast.
The American avocet breeds from Washington southward and spends its
winters from central California south. They are quite plentiful in
southern California during the winter months, increasing in numbers in
Lower California and Mexico. Its webbed feet and long upward turned
bill are features by which it may always be known. It is generally
found in flocks and frequents both fresh and salt-waters.

=Color=--Head and neck, ashy gray; back and under parts, white; the
primaries and upper half of the secondaries, black, making the wing
about half black; bill, very slender and curved upward; legs, very
long and of a lead color; feet, webbed.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest contains three to four eggs of a pale olive,
spotted with brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 19 inches; wing, 8, and bill,
3-1/2 inches.


THE BLACK-NECKED STILT

(Himantopus mexicanus)

The black-necked stilt is the other representative of the family. The
stilt breeds as far north as eastern Oregon, but is little seen north
of southern California in the winter. From there south it is
plentiful. It may be easily known by the back of its head and neck,
its back being black and the rest of the plumage nearly pure white.
Its legs are a dark pink.

=Color=--Wings, back, back of neck and top of head, black; balance of
the plumage, white; legs, dark pink and very long. Toes, three and
partly webbed.

=Nest and Eggs=--The nest is rarely anything but bare ground on which
is deposited three to four eggs of a pale brown, spotted with dark
brown.

=Measurements=--Total length, about 15-1/2 inches; wing, 9, and
bill 2-3/4 inches.



  Order, LIMICOLAE

  Family, CHARADRIDAE  -  Plovers

  Genus            Species       Common Names    Range and Breeding Grounds
  -------------- -------------- ---------------- --------------------------

                 {squatarola    Black-bellied   {From Mexico north.
                 {               plover         {Breeds from Oregon
                 {              .               {north to Alaska.
  Charadrius     {
                 {dominicus     Golden plover    Only an occasional
                                                 migrant.

                                                {From Alaska south to
                 {semipalmata   Ring-necked     {Lower California. Breeds
                 {              plover          {in its northern range.
                 {
                 {                              {From Central California
                 {nivosa        Snowy plover    {south to Lower California
  AEgialitis     {                              {and Mexico. Breeds
                 {                              {throughout its range.
                 {
                 {montana       Mountain plover {Interior plains of
                 {                              {California and Arizona.
                 {                              {Breeds in the mountain
                 {                              {valleys.
                 {
                 {wilsonia      Wilson's plover {From Oregon south to
                                                {Mexico. Breeds
                                                {throughout its range.


  Order, LIMICOLAE

  Family, RECURVIROSTRIDAE  -  Avocets and Stilts

  Genus            Species       Common Names    Range and Breeding Grounds
  -------------- -------------- ---------------- --------------------------

  Recurvirostra    americana     Avocet          { From Mexico north to
                                                 { California. Breeds from
                                                 { Eastern Oregon south.

  Himantopus       Mexicanus     Black-necked    { From Mexico to Southern
                                  stilt          { California. Breeds near
                                                 { the mountain lakes.



  [Illustration: Morphology of Fishes]



THE GAME FISHES OF THE PACIFIC COAST


Like in that portion of this work devoted to the game birds, this also
is written in popular language, avoiding, as far as possible, all
technical words and phrases, with the intention of furnishing a plain
description of the game fishes of the Coast which anyone, unlearned in
the science of ichthyology, may understand, and by which be able to
identify any of the fishes he may capture.

With fishes, like with birds, there are certain parts that must be
referred to in order to show wherein one species differs from
another. Wherever these parts have a common English name, that name
has been used. But as there are a few parts that can only be referred
to by their scientific names, a diagram has been added showing the
location of all parts referred to in the text.

In scope it treats only of such varieties as rise to the fly or are
caught by trolling with rod and reel, whether from the stream, lake,
bay or ocean, and furnish sport to the angler who fishes for the
exhilarating pleasure their capture affords.

The Pacific Coast is rich in game fishes, not only in the varieties
found in its lakes and streams, but as well in its bays and estuaries,
while the broad ocean furnishes varieties whose size and fighting
qualities are not surpassed, even if equaled, in any other part of the
world. To place in the hands of the young angler, and others who may
not have given the subject the necessary attention, a convenient
handbook by the aid of which even the novice may readily recognize the
species of fish he has landed, is the object of these pages.

     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

All of the salmon, the trout, the chars, the white-fish and the lake
herring have been classed by the naturalist in one family and given
the name, =Salmonidæ=; but it is only with three genera of the
subfamily, =Salmoninæ= that we are concerned. These are the Pacific
salmon (=Oncorhynchus=), the true trout (=Salmo=) and the Eastern
trout and the dolly varden trout (=Salvelinus=). The Atlantic salmon
belong to the genus Salmo, the same as the true trout, and have but
one species (=Salmo salar=), which partake more of the habits of the
trout than do their Pacific cousins.


THE PACIFIC SALMON

(Oncorhynchus)

Notwithstanding the fact that the salmon is one of the most valuable
of all the food fishes, but little is known of its habits after it
leaves the stream in which it is hatched until it returns to spawn,
supposed to be from three to four years afterward. Whether they remain
near the mouths of the streams, or whether they migrate to distant
feeding grounds are questions that have never been solved. All of the
five species are caught with seins in Puget Sound in greater or less
numbers all the year round. From the action of those that spawn in the
Sacramento river it would seem that they migrate southward and far out
to sea, for on their return to spawn they enter Monterey Bay only on
its southern side, and following around it at no great distance from
the shore, leave it at the northern headlands and skirt the shore
northward until they reach the entrance to San Francisco Bay on their
way up the Sacramento river. Where the young fish make their habitat
from the time they drift down the stream in which they were spawned
until they return again to spawn has never been determined. They spawn
but once and die soon afterward. As I know that this last statement
will be disputed by some, for reasons best known to themselves, I will
quote from that excellent work by Evermann and Jordan, "American Food
and Game Fishes." "We have carefully," say these gentlemen, "examined
the spawning habits of both forms of the red fish and chinook salmon
in the head waters of Salmon river, Idaho, during two entire seasons,
from the time the fish arrived in July until the end of September, by
which time all the fish had disappeared. A number of important
questions were settled by these investigations. In the first place it
was found that all of the fish arrived upon the spawning grounds in
perfect physical condition, so far as external appearances indicated;
no sores, bruises or other mutilations showing on any of more than
4000 fish examined. During the spawning, however, the majority became
more or less injured by rubbing against the gravel of the
spawning-beds, or by fighting with one another. Soon after done
spawning every one of them died, not only both forms of the red fish
but the chinook salmon as well. The dying is not due to the injuries
the fish received on the spawning-grounds; many were seen dying or
dead which showed no external or other injuries whatever. The dying of
the West Coast salmon is in no manner determined by distance from the
sea. Observations made by us and others elsewhere show that the
individuals of all species of the =Oncorhynchus= die after one
spawning, whether the spawning-beds are remote from the sea or only a
short distance from salt-water."

The angler's concern, however, is not so much with the procreative
habits of the salmon as it is with their behavior while feeding and
after being hooked.

Salmon are rarely caught by still fishing, but they will take the
spoon or a sardine or other small fish impaled upon the hook. They
take the bait generally with some hesitation, though at times they
strike it with all the impetuosity of the trout. Then the singing reel
calls for careful and immediate action on the part of the angler, for
the ten to forty pound fish on his light tackle is going to put up a
fight worthy of his skill. In his mad rush for liberty the gamy fish
gradually rises to the surface, and when at last checked by the skill
of the angler, he will often leap out of the water to a height of from
four to eight feet, his beautiful sides scintillating in the rays of
the sun, forming a picture to gladden the heart of the angler, for if
he be a true sportsman he will fish with such tackle only as will give
his adversary a fair chance in the fight and require the fullest
exercise of his own knowledge and skill to bring his fish to gaff. The
salmon is a strong fighter but his rushes do not last long for a fish
of its size. For this reason much of the sport of salmon fishing is
lost through the use of too heavy tackle. The writer landed one
without difficulty weighing 33-1/2 pounds on a nine thread, Cuttyhunk
line and a 5-1/2 foot steel rod weighing less than six ounces, and I
believe that a fifty pound fish can be landed with the same tackle.
Trolling with hand lines for salmon is practiced by some, but such is
not angling. Hauling in an impaled fish hand over hand with a small
cable is neither sport nor sportsmanlike.


  [Illustration: CHINOOK SALMON (Oncorhynchus tschawytscha)]


THE CHINOOK, OR KING SALMON

(Oncorhynchus tschawytscha)

This species has a multiplicity of names, being known in different
localities as chinook, quinnat, king, Sacramento river and Columbia
river salmon, besides half a dozen or more Indian names. Its
distribution is the widest of any of the Pacific salmon, ranging on
both sides of the ocean from the latitude of Monterey Bay to Behring
Straits. The run begins on the Columbia river as early as the latter
part of February, many of the fish going up its tributaries 1000 miles
or more to spawn. Farther south the run becomes gradually later.

The spawning season also varies with the locality, and ranges from the
latter part of July to the middle of November. The date of spawning
seems to be determined by the temperature of the water, for it is said
that the salmon will not spawn, even if on the spawning grounds, until
the water has fallen to a temperature of 54 degrees Fahrenheit.

The chinook salmon is the largest of the family, specimens having been
taken in Alaska waters that have weighed 100 pounds, while 50 to 60
pound fish are common. Those taken in the Columbia river are said to
average 22 pounds, while the average of the Sacramento river catch is
16.

Head, rather pointed; eye, small and situated a little in front of the
back of the mouth; body, rounded and full, the deepest part being
about midway of its length; pectoral fins, short and situated low and
just behind the gills; dorsal fin, nearly midway of the back; ventral
fins, a little behind the center of the dorsal; anal fin about half
way between the ventral and the tail; adipose fin, a little in front
of the rear of the ventrals; caudal fin, or tail, slightly forked.

The back, dorsal fin and tail are generally well covered with dark
brownish black spots. There are few spots as a rule on the head, and
those are of a slaty color.

There is always some variation in color, but usually the back is quite
dark, turning to bluish on the sides and light silver below. As the
spawning season approaches, the jaws of the males become lengthened
and badly distorted and the color changes to more of a pinkish hue and
blotched in appearance. The gills are never alike on both sides,
varying from 15 to 19 in number. (See plate giving names of all parts
mentioned.)


BLUEBACK, OR SOCK-EYE SALMON, REDFISH

(Oncorhynchus nerka)

This species is next in commercial value to the chinook. It has been
taken occasionally in the Sacramento river but it is not common south
of the Columbia river. The run of this species begins about the first
of April and the fish go as far as Salmon river, Idaho, fully 1000
miles from the sea to spawn. By a peculiar instinct this species only
run up such rivers as have lakes at their heads, and spawn in the
lakes or at the mouths of little streams emptying into them, in many
of the lakes of Oregon and Washington are found the young of the
blue-back salmon which are commonly called redfish. These fish never
leave these lakes and therefore never attain a size of more than five
to seven pounds.

Head, short and pointed and light olive in color; under jaw, white;
body, long, slim and rather flattened; back, blue; sides, silver;
belly, dull white; dorsal fin, dark; others flesh color; tail, rather
narrow and well forked; gills, 13 to 15. As the spawning season
approaches the whole fish takes on a decided reddish cast, which
sometimes becomes as dark as a brick-red. The jaw becomes very much
hooked, and a few spots appear.


THE SILVER SALMON

(Oncorhynchus kisutch)

In line of importance the silver salmon occupies the next place. It is
also known by a number of names, among which are koho, skowitz and
kisutch. It is a small fish, rarely exceeding 16 inches in length and
never reaching more than ten pounds in weight. Its range is from
Alaska south to Monterey Bay, where it has recently been planted and
seems to flourish. It spawns in the smaller coast streams, never going
far from the salt water. Its run begins about the first of September,
spawning in October and November.

Head, short with blunt snout; opercles or gill covers, very convex;
body, shaped very much like the chinook; back, bluish green; sides,
silver white. It has but few spots and these are confined pretty much
to the head, upper fins and tail. Gills, 13 or 14.


THE HUMP-BACK SALMON

(Oncorhynchus gorbuscha)

This is another small species, rarely exceeding six pounds in weight
but more commonly from three to four. Its range is from the Sacramento
river, where it appears in limited numbers, north to Alaska.

Body, slim, scales very small; back, blue and sides silvery white.
Profusely spotted on the after part of the back, with large oval spots
on the tail. Gills, 11 to 13.


THE DOG SALMON

(Oncorhynchus keta)

The dog salmon rarely exceeds ten pounds in weight. Its range is from
the Sacramento river north, and its spawning-grounds the small streams
up which it never extends any great distance from the salt water.

Head, quite pike-like in shape and therefore much longer and slimmer
than the chinook. Back, dirty brown, with the sides of much the same
color, but of a lighter tint; fins, very dark; very few distinct
spots, with those showing very small; gills, 13 or 14.

=Tackle and Lure=--The Pacific salmon are only caught by trolling.
They will take a spoon, or any live bait. The most successful lure,
however, is a sardine, or other small fish of six to eight inches in
length. Pass the hook through both eyes, take a half hitch around the
head, insert the point of the hook in the gill and by bending the fish
in the shape of the hook bring the point out about an inch and a half
or two inches from the tail. This allows the fish to remain curved,
and gives it a revolving motion while trolling, resembling a live,
though disabled fish.

A salmon rod should consist of a butt 14 to 16 inches in length, with
a hand piece in front of the reel; tip, 6 feet long and not to weigh
more than 7 ounces; line not to exceed standard 12-thread. With fishes
weighing from 40 pounds and upward, 300 feet of line can be used to
advantage.


  [Illustration: RAINBOW TROUT (Salmo irideus)]


THE RAINBOW TROUT

(Salmo irideus)

There are at least four distinct species of trout; that is, trout
proper and chars, now common to the coast. One of these, the Eastern
brook trout, is the result of artificial hatching and distribution.
These, as well as the rainbow, and to lesser extent the cutthroat,
have been so widely distributed by the state fish commission and
private hatcheries that to attempt to give the present habitat of the
several species would be sure to result in many errors which might be
confounding. The Eastern brook trout has taken kindly to our waters
and seem to be doing well in all suitable streams. Several other
foreign species of trout have been introduced into our waters as well
as these, among which are the Loch Leven, the German brown trout and
the Mackinaw, but the success of their acclimatization has yet to be
fully determined, though the Loch Leven and German brown seem to be
doing well in the higher streams.

The Eastern brook trout and the native species, known as dolly varden,
are chars and belong to the genus =Salvelinus=, but the rainbow and
the cutthroat are true trout belonging to the genus =Salmo=. The
rainbow and the cutthroat present a variety of forms in different
localities and these have been given separate specific names by the
naturalist. With many of these species(?) the only difference seems to
be too slight to entitle them to specific or even sub-specific
separation; the variation being no more than that found in the color
and markings of the same fishes in the same stream, caused by the
depth of the water, the food, or other local conditions.

The rainbow trout is now a resident, either through natural or
artificial distribution, of nearly all the streams of the Coast from
Washington to Lower California. They vary in size, color and number of
scales in different localities and have been given distinct specific
names in the various sections, those of the Coast streams of
California being used as the typical form. These several varieties,
even in their natural condition, showed very little, if any positive
line of demarkation, but since the establishment of the many
hatcheries on the Coast and the wide distribution of the fry hatched
from the spawn of the rainbow of the Sacramento and its tributaries,
of the steelhead of the Eel river, and of the typical form of the
Coast streams, there seems but one course now left, and that is to
group them all as one species under the original name of rainbow.

The rainbow is a very handsome trout, varying in size from adults of
but a few inches in the smaller Coast streams, to 25 and 30 inches
long in the larger rivers and lakes. Its dark spotted back and silvery
sides with the rich metallic colors of the rainbow streak gives it a
coloration that is at once brilliant and pleasing. As a game fish it
has no superior, if indeed an equal. It takes the fly with a rush,
often leaping out of the water to seize it as it is descending. Then
it fights with a determination, often breaking three or four feet into
the air, shaking its head to free the hook like a terrier shakes a
rat. It seldom sounds and never sulks. The rainbow trout goes to the
sea at varying ages, the same as all other trout that can get there
without passing through long stretches of warm and sluggish water. In
the salt water it attains a greater size, changes its color in
accordance with the length of time it has been there, but on returning
again to the stream it soon assumes its original plan of coloring.

Head, about one-fourth of the whole length from the snout to the base
of the caudal fin, varying much with age and size. Generally the
greatest depth is about one fourth of the length of the fish, but this
also varies very much with the character of the waters it inhabits. In
rapid running streams the fish are always slimmer than in more
sluggish ones. I have known them 20 inches or more in length, when
confined in large reservoirs, to become so heavy that they would weigh
one pound to every two inches in length. The lateral line, or rainbow
varies, in intensity of color, but always showing in varying shades of
red, pink, and sometimes blue of a metallic luster. The vertical black
blotches seen on the sides are the marks of immature fish.

The snout of the rainbow is considerably more rounding than that of
the salmon, and the head larger in proportion. The eye also is much
larger and fuller. The shape and position of the fins are almost
identical with those of the salmon, but a little larger in proportion
to the size of the fish. The tail, however, varies considerably, being
more rounded, and showing only a slight indentation in the center.


THE GOLDEN TROUT

(Salmo irideus agua bonita)

If there is any variety of the rainbow trout found on the Coast that
is entitled to a sub-specific name it is the golden trout of Mt.
Whitney. They were originally found in only a short portion of two
little streams fed by the snows of Mt. Whitney, and vary but little
from each other. In one stream they have been given the name of =Salmo
irideus agua bonita=, and in the other that of =Salmo irideus
rooseveltii=, after ex-president Roosevelt. They are of a beautiful
color with scarlet markings at the base of the fins and with a lateral
stripe of bright scarlet blending into a rich orange. One peculiarity
of these fish is that the par marks or vertical blotches on the sides
of other young fish still show on the adults of these. This form of
the rainbow has changed its color through the process of natural
selection, caused no doubt, by the color of the rocks in the shallow
streams it inhabits. Below on these same streams where the rocks are
of a darker color the fish assume the natural color of the rainbow.

The writer is possibly the first white man to ever catch one of the
golden trout. They were taken in 1865 with a small piece of the flank of
a deer skin slipped over the hook, with the hair clipped to about half
an inch in length. No sooner was this improvised fly cast upon the water
than it was eagerly seized by one of these beautiful fish. When it was
landed the color astonished me, and knowing that it was a trout, I
thought it must be a diseased one and threw it back. Making another cast
I secured another one as promptly as the first, and it being the same
objectionable color and of the same size--about eight inches--I
concluded that it was the same fish and this time threw it on the bank.
As fast as my deer skin fly would strike the water it would be eagerly
seized by one of these game little fellows and all of the same size and
color. I was puzzled and called to my companion, who was cooking our
supper but a few yards away, to "come and see what was the matter with
these fish." Professing some scientific knowledge, he cut one of them
open, examined the meat and the intestines and finally pronounced it in
a healthy condition, finishing with:

"The coffee is boiling and the bacon is fried; hurry up, and as soon
as you get a mess I'll fry them and take all chances."

I soon had a mess for supper and while he was frying them I caught
enough for breakfast, for the game little fellows would race for the
fly as fast as it struck the water. We ate them with a relish, for we
had had nothing but bacon, venison and frying-pan bread for a month.
As we found ourselves alive in the morning we increased the
prescription to a good alapathic dose for breakfast.

The golden trout are small, rarely reaching a length of more than
fifteen inches. The back is olive, sides and belly light orange or
golden yellow with a scarlet stripe along the center of the belly and
at the base of the pectoral, ventral and anal fins, which are of
themselves more or less of a golden color. Tail, olive, grading into
orange on the lower part. Few spots in front of the dorsal fin but
abundant behind it.

While the rainbow trout of the Coast have been given several
sub-specific names, such as =masoni= for the Coast streams of Oregon
and Washington, =shasta= and =stonei= for those of the upper
Sacramento basin, and =gilberti= for those of Kern river, there seems
to be so very little reason for this distinction beyond the usual
variations of color in all trout, spots and size with the changing
conditions of water and feed, that I shall make no mention of the very
slight variations upon which the ichthyologist has based the claim to
a sub-specific nomenclature.


THE STEELHEAD TROUT

(Salmo rivularis)

The history of the so-called steelhead trout and the efforts to class
these sea-run fishes as a species separate from the rainbow and the
cutthroat, is interesting, if not amusing. No one questioned that they
were other than the sea-run of the rainbow or the cutthroat, according
to the locality, until Dr. Richardson, mistaking a young blue-back
salmon for a so-called steelhead gave it the scientific name of =Salmo
gairdneri=, and the description of this young salmon was recognized as
that of the steelhead for years, and under this name it appears in
the statutes of California, with a separate season for its protection.
In other words the =Salmo gairdneri= of the laws of California is a
young blue-back salmon and not a sea-run trout of any kind. Recently
Dr. Ayers to correct the mistake, examined a fish taken from the
Sacramento river and said to be a steelhead, gave it the name of
=Salmo rivularis=, and this now stands as the scientific name of the
so-called steelhead. Dr. Jordan, in an article recently published in
the Pacific Monthly, says: "There has been much discussion as to
whether the steelhead is a species really distinct from the rainbow
trout, and on this subject the writer (Jordan) has at different times
held different opinions."

If one authority bases his reasons for a belief in a specific
difference between the rainbow and the steelhead on the fact that he
did find a difference between a blue-back salmon and a rainbow, and
another authority finds so little difference that he holds different
opinions at different times, can there be any wonder that the
practical angler, who catches these sea-run fish at the mouths of our
rivers in every stage of transition, or gradation, if you please, from
the typical rainbow to the Simon pure steelhead, refuses to believe
that there is a specific difference?

Then again, Messrs. Jordan and Evermann in bulletin 47 of the United
States National Museum, "The Fishes of North and Middle America," say:
"In the lower course of the Columbia they (the steelhead) are entirely
distinct from the cutthroat or clarki series, and no one would
question the validity of the two species. In the lower Snake river and
other waters east of the Cascade range, the two forms or species are
indistinguishable, being either undifferentiated or else inextricably
mixed."

From this it would seem clear that the steelhead of the Columbia,
where the cutthroat abounds, are cutthroats that have gone to the sea,
grown larger in the larger body of water--a natural condition of all
fishes--and changed in color and appearance. That while they are yet
in the lower Columbia and only recently from the salt water, they
still maintain a sufficient difference to be easily distinguished from
the cutthroat; but by the time that they have reached the "Snake river
and other waters east of the Cascade range," their long residence in
the fresh water has again restored them to their former appearance.
The same changes are found with the rainbow and the steelhead of
farther south. All trout are anadromous to greater or less extent,
unless actually landlocked or living in streams so distant from the
sea that they would be compelled to pass through long stretches of
warm and sluggish water to reach it. The small trout of the coast
streams are compelled to go to the ocean quite early in the season by
the falling of the water to such an extent that in many cases the
streams go dry before the beginning of the winter rains, and in the
larger body of water they rapidly increase in size. The steelhead of
the Columbia river always retains the cutthroat sing-manual, to
greater or less extent, while the steelhead of the lower coast has no
red on the jaw. The claim that the smaller head of the steelhead is a
distinguishing mark, fails in effect, for it is an undisputable fact
that the older and larger the trout the smaller becomes the relative
size of the head. The other claim that the larger scales of the
rainbow is a distinguishing feature from the steelhead is not founded
on facts. For while the scales of the rainbow counted along the
lateral line vary from as low as 120 in the coast streams, they run as
high as 150 in the same streams, as high as 160 in the McCloud and 185
in the Kern. The average being 135 in the smaller coast streams, 150
in the Sacramento basin, and 170 in the Kern. The steelhead's scales
run from 130 to 155. An average of 145; or exactly an average of those
of the coast streams and the Sacramento. Were it possible for the Kern
river trout to enter the ocean no doubt we would find steelhead
running as high as 185 to the section.

Whatever may be the origin of the large sea-running trout called
steelheads, the fact remains that it is a grand fish both in size and
fighting qualities. In the ocean it eagerly takes the spoon and fights
with a vigor not even surpassed by the rainbow of the streams. After a
short sojourn in the fresh waters it rises to a fly just as readily.

Since the above was written Dr. Jordan has made the statement
publicly, that he is thoroughly convinced that the rainbow trout and
the so-called steelhead are one and the same fish; the only difference
being that the latter has grown larger and changed its color during
its life in the salt water, this variation of color returning again
after a short sojourn in the fresh water streams, giving it all the
original appearance of the rainbow, or of the cutthroat, as the case
may be.


THE CUTTHROAT TROUT

(Salmo clarki)

The cutthroat trout very largely take the place of the rainbow in the
waters of northern California and in Washington and Oregon, and its
various forms are more common to the lakes. Like the rainbow they
have been artificially distributed to such an extent that they are
now found in many of the streams of California and nearly all of
Washington and Oregon. As a general rule they are not as keen fighters
as the rainbow, but in the cold streams of Oregon and Washington they
put up a fight worthy of the most gamy fish. In the lakes of
Washington and Oregon, and such as Tahoe, Donner and other large
bodies of water in California, they reach a large size; fishes of ten
and twelve pounds being not uncommon. When not landlocked they go to
the sea the same as the rainbow and return as the steelhead of the
Columbia and other northern streams. Like the rainbow the cutthroat
has been divided into several subspecies.

General appearance like that of the rainbow. The color on the back is
a lighter olive or dark steel color. The upper parts are generally
thickly covered with dark spots, varying in color and shape, and the
lower fins are also spotted with smaller spots. The inner edge of the
lower jaw is strongly marked with deep red and it is from this red
mark on the throat that the species takes its name. The sides are
generally of a marked pinkish hue or coppery brown. The red mark of
the throat will always prove a distinguishing feature.


SILVER TROUT

(Salmo tahoensis)

In Lake Tahoe there are two varieties of trout that have been given
separate specific names. They both belong to the cutthroat series, but
vary considerable from the typical form. The one commonly called silver
trout is a resident of the deep waters of the lake and grows to a large
size, specimens having been taken fully 30 inches long.

Back, dark green; side and sides of head, coppery; lower jaw, yellow.
The spots are so profuse that many of them run into each other and
form long blotches in many instances. All of the fins are spotted,
those on the dorsal and the tail being oblong in shape. The belly also
is covered with many small spots.


LAKE TAHOE TROUT

(Salmo henshawi)

The other variety of trout found in Lake Tahoe, and the most common
one, is a very handsome fish. Its native habitat is the lakes of
Tahoe, Donner, Independence, Webber, Pyramid and others of the high
mountains, and the Truckee, Carson and Humboldt rivers. Specimens of
this trout have been taken that weighed fully six pounds.

Back, green, varying in depth of color with the water; sides, light,
with a strong coppery tinge. The spots on this variety are generally
quite large above, but growing smaller below and reaching well onto
the belly. Its coppery sides and larger spots should prove a
distinguishing feature. Like all the cutthroats it has the red
markings below the jaws.


LAKE SOUTHERLAND TROUT

(Salmo jordani)

Another peculiar variety of the cutthroat trout is found in Lake
Southerland of Eastern Washington. Its distinguishing features are its
orange-red fins and intensely black spots which are very profuse. It
is a gamy fish and full of fight to the finish.

In several of the lakes of Washington there are varieties of trout
differing in coloration and location of their spots that have been
given specific names by the naturalist, such as crescent trout,
beardslee trout and bathaecetor trout, all residents of Crescent lake.
But as they all belong to the cutthroats and vary each from the other
but little, further mention is unnecessary.


RIO GRANDE TROUT

(Salmo spilurus)

The Rio Grande trout, which is also a cutthroat, has a very limited
distribution within the territorial scope of this work. It is found in
the streams of the eastern slope of the Sierra Madre Mountains of
Chihuahua, Mexico. Its head is shorter and more rounded than the other
species of the cutthroat, with a mouth also very large. The spots are
principally confined to the latter half of the body and most profuse on
the tail.


COLORADO RIVER TROUT

(Salmo pleuriticus)

The Colorado river trout, also a cutthroat, is the common trout of
Arizona, where it is found in nearly all the mountain streams of the
territory which flow to the Colorado river. It differs only from the
typical cutthroat by having its spots mostly on that part of the body
behind the dorsal fin; and the lower fins strongly marked with red.


DOLLY VARDEN TROUT

(Salvelinus parki)

The dolly varden is the only char native to the Pacific Coast, and
like the Eastern brook trout is not properly a trout. They both are
chars and belong to the genus =Salvelinus=--not to the =Salmo=. The
dolly varden often reaches a length of thirty to thirty-six inches,
and a weight of twelve pounds. It is a more slender fish than the
rainbow and not so rounded on the back. It is very largely a bottom
feeder and, therefore, rather of a sluggish nature. It rises but
little to the fly and makes a poor fight.

Back, olive green but without the marble markings of the Eastern brook
trout. Spots on the back and sides are red, not very close together
and about the size of three-fourths of the diameter of the eye. The
lower fins have a reddish tinge, of varying hue in different waters.
It is a native of the McCloud river and has been little distributed.


  [Illustration: EASTERN BROOK TROUT (Salvalinus fontinalis)]


EASTERN BROOK TROUT

(Salvelinus fontinalis)

The Eastern brook trout--properly a char--was introduced into the
coast waters several years ago and found our waters so congenial that
it must now be considered a resident species, for it is to be met with
in many of our streams, and thrives well in any of the higher
localities. The brook trout is a handsome fish with its brown and
olive marbled back, scarlet spots and salmon-colored sides. Its beauty
has challenged the cunning of the painter, and been immortalized by
the genius of the poet. Its gamy qualities stood for centuries as
beyond comparison until the bended rod and singing reel announced the
impalement of the native of the Golden West, with its mad rushes and
terrier-like fights; then the rosy beauty of the East had to yield the
palm to the rainbow-colored, fighting pirate of the Pacific.

The brook trout may easily be distinguished from any of the other
trout of the coast by its marbled back and red spotted sides. Besides
this the whole fish is more of a pinkish color. It varies in size like
the others of the family, according to the waters it inhabits,
attaining about the same size as the rainbow in the same waters.

=Tackle and Lure=--On account of over fishing the streams, and the
very bad habit of killing so many small fish, the majority of the
trout caught on the Pacific Coast are small. If there were more
sportsmen and less fishermen on our streams this condition would not
exist. For the sportsman will throw back all the little babies that
are not over six inches in length and allow them another year to grow.
And in this connection I want to say to the young boys and girls: be
true sportsmen and sportswomen and never fish for trout with anything
but artificial flies. You may not catch as many fish while you are
learning, but you will soon find that you are having ten times more
sport. As to the rod and line, you will never get it too light. The
longer you have been a flycaster, the lighter you will want them; and
the lighter they are the more sport you will have.



  THE SALMON AND TROUT

  Order, ISOSPONDYLI

  Family, SALMONIDAE  Subfamily, SALMONINAE

  Genus          Species       Common Names      Range and Breeding Grounds
  ------------- ------------- ----------------- ---------------------------
                              {Quinant
                {tschawytscha {Chinook          {From Monterey Bay north.
                {
                {             {Blue-back
  Oncorhynchus  {nerka        {Redfish          {Sacramento river north.
                {
                {kisutch      {Silver salmon     From Monterey Bay north.
                {keta         {Dog salmon        From Sacramento river
                {             {                  north.
                {gorbuscha    {Hump-back salmon  From Sacramento river
                {             {                  north.

                {irideus      {Rainbow trout     From Lower California
                {             {                  north.
                {
                {irideus auga  Golden trout      Western slope of
                {bonito                          Mt. Whitney.
                {
                {irideus       Golden trout      Western slope of
                {rooseveltii                     Mt. Whitney.
                {
                {rivularis     Steel-head trout  From Ventura river
                {                                north.
                {
  Salmo         {clarki        Cutthroat trout   Central California
                {                                north.
                {
                {tahoensis     Silver trout      Lake Tahoe.
                {
                {henshawi      Tahoe trout      {Lakes Tahoe, Donner,
                {                               {Independence, Webber;
                {                               {Truckee and Carson
                {                               {rivers.
                {
                {jordani       Lake Southerland  Lake Southerland,
                {                                Oregon.
                {
                {spilurus      Rio Grande trout  Tributaries of the
                {                                Rio Grande river.
                {
                {plueriticus   Colorado trout    Tributaries of the
                {                                Colorado river.

                {parki         Dolly Varden      McCloud river north.
  Salvelinus    {              trout
                {
                {fontinalis    Eastern brook    {Acclimatized in
                {              trout            {many streams of
                {                               {the coast.


  [Illustration: SMALL-MOUTHED BLACK BASS (Micropterus dolomieu)]


SMALL-MOUTHED BLACK BASS

(Micropterus dolomieu)

The black bass is not a native of the coast, but both species are now
so well established in our waters that they must now be classed as
permanent residents, for whether it is the crystal lake, the flowing
stream, the little pond, the artesian-fed reservoir or the brackish
slough, they thrive equally well and take any lure from the artificial
fly to the plebeian angleworm.

Black bass are prolific breeders and rapid growers. A case is on
record where eight males and seven females were planted in a pond in
May and during the November following over 37,000 young fish were
taken from the same pond, each from three to four inches long.

The black bass is a short, deep fish with a double dorsal fin; the
front half being stiff and spiney and the latter half soft and rayed.
The color is variable, but always dark and from a dirty green to a
blackish brown on the back, shading to a dirty white on the belly. The
gill covers are pointed at the back, with a darker spot on the point.
In the small-mouthed variety the end of the upper bone of the mouth
does not quite reach to the back edge of the eye, this with the scales
on the cheek numbering from 16 to 18, can always be relied upon as a
distinguishing diagnosis from the large-mouthed variety.


LARGE-MOUTHED BLACK BASS

(Micropterus salmoides)

There is but little difference in the habits of the large and
small-mouthed black bass, and but little difference in their
appearance, but the distinguishing features may easily be known. The
end of the upper bone of the mouth of the large-mouthed variety
extends behind the eye, and the rows of scales on the cheek number
only 10 or 12.

While both species seem to do well any place, the large-mouthed are
better adapted to muddy bottomed ponds and sloughs and brackish
waters. The average weight of the adults of either species is about
three pounds, though individuals are often taken weighing from six to
seven. It is reported that specimens have been taken in the state of
California that have weighed eight and three-quarters and nine pounds.

=Tackle and Lure=--The black bass will take any lure from the
artificial fly to the plebeian angleworm. In trolling, a medium sized,
Kewell spoon is to be preferred. I have always found, however, that
the best sport is to be had by casting with a large trout fly--the
color varying with the season--close to the edge of lily pads or
tules. The tackle for fly-fishing should be the same as for trout.
For trolling the rod should be shorter and stiffer.


SACRAMENTO PIKE

(Ptychocheilus oregonensis)

The Sacramento pike, known also by the names chappaul and squawfish,
and as lake trout in the San Joaquin Valley, while but little sought
after by the angler, can rightfully be classed as a game fish, for it
rises to the fly as readily as a trout and often gets cursed for doing
so. It is a very common fish in many of the lakes and streams from
Washington south to the San Joaquin Valley. Like nearly all fish its
size depends very much upon the waters in which it is found. In
Washington it has been known to reach a length of four feet, but it is
more commonly met with from eight to twenty inches. In shape it
resembles a trout, but with a slimmer and more pointed head. The
dorsal fin is large and located about midway between the snout and the
end of the tail; ventral fins, slightly in front of the dorsal and not
as large as the anal which is set about its length from the ventrals;
tail, strongly forked.


  [Illustration: STRIPED BASS (Roccus lineatus)]


STRIPED BASS

(Roccus lineatus)

The striped bass, like many people who have crossed the continent to
California, readily appreciated the many advantages of a life on the
Pacific Coast. From a couple of shipments brought from the East in
1879 and 1882 they have grown to be one of the most important food
fishes of the state, about 3,000,000 pounds being annually marketed.
They were at first liberated in the Bay of San Francisco, but later
some effort has been made to distribute them, with the result that
they are now found in small quantities along the coast from Los
Angeles to Humboldt.

From their fine size--three to forty pounds--they stand well with the
angler as a game fish and furnish good sport if the tackle is light
enough. Their rushes are not equal to those of the steelhead or the
salmon or the yellow-tail, nor do they fight with the same vigor or
with the same persistency.

The striped bass is unlike any other coast fish. Its back is light
olive; sides, nearly white with seven or eight longitudinal stripes
running the whole length of the body, the dorsal fin is double, but
not joined like that of the black bass. The first half is spiny with
the after division rayed and soft. It is a salt water fish, making its
habitat in and near the mouths of rivers, and often running up them
for 100 miles or more. Use the same rod and line as for salmon.



THE GAME FISH OF THE SEA


There certainly is no better sport to be had any place with the trout,
salmon and bass than that furnished by the rivers, lakes and bays of
the Pacific Coast. To this excellent sport must be added another of
the most exciting character, and one distinctly Californian, and that
is the capture with rod and reel of the large sea fishes found in the
waters of the Santa Barbara Channel, and more especially of Catalina
Island. The great variety, gamy qualities and massive size of these
fishes furnish a sport at once exciting and exhilarating, and
challenging the keenest exercise of the ability of the sportsman.

The world-wide fame of these waters, and the grand sport they furnish
have resulted in the establishment on Catalina Island of one of the
finest, if not the most perfect and best equipped angler's resort in
the world, from its launches and boatmen to its clubhouses and hotels,
and made it the Mecca of the expert anglers of the civilized nations
of the earth.


  [Illustration: LEAPING TUNA (Thunnus thynnus)]


THE TUNA

(Thunnus thynnus)

The leaping tuna is the largest of the great game fishes of the
Pacific. It ranges from Monterey Bay, where it is sparingly met with,
south to Mexico. About Catalina Island they are found in great numbers
and of great size. The excellent sport their capture with rod and reel
furnishes, has drawn to the island the expert anglers of the world,
and resulted in the formation of the now famous "Tuna Club of
Catalina," with its members residing in all parts of the world; and of
which no one can become a member until he has landed a tuna of 100
pounds or more with rod and reel and with a line not larger than a
24-thread Cuttyhunk.

Professor Charles F. Holder, an expert angler with a national
reputation, and who has angled for all fishes and in all waters, says,
"The most sensational fish of these waters is the leaping tuna. It is
the tiger of the California seas, a living meteor, which strikes like
a whirlwind, and played with a rod that is not a billiard cue or a
club in stiffness, will give the average man the contest of his life."

The record for the largest tuna caught with a rod and reel is held at
this writing by Col. C. P. Morehouse of Pasadena, who brought to gaff
a 251 pound tuna after a six-and-a-half-hours' fight, during which it
had towed his boat over ten miles. But even a greater fight than this
is recorded, but the fish was not landed. This fish fought for
seventeen hours and thirty minutes before its wonderful endurance and
splendid courage mastered the skill of the angler. Mr. C. B. Stockton
has to his credit a fight which not only shows the great endurance of
this angler but the remarkable vitality of these fish. This fight
lasted for sixteen hours and fifty-five minutes before the fish was
brought to gaff. It weighed 170 pounds and was taken on the regulation
tackle.

Body, round and sloping rapidly from the middle to the caudal fin, and
very small and round at the base of the tail; tail divided into two
long forks; two dorsal fins, the first beginning just behind the
gill-covers with the pectoral and ventral fins a trifle farther back;
second dorsal fin smaller than the first and located nearly half way
between it and the caudal; anal fin midway between the ventral and the
caudal; bony, saw-like projections from the second dorsal fin, and
from the anal fin to the tail; color, blue on the back and silvery
white on the sides.

=Tackle and Lure=--The flyingfish is about the only bait with which
the tuna can be caught. The hook, which must be attached to about 3-1/2
or 4 inches or light chain and with a wire snell, is passed into the
mouth and down the belly of the flyingfish, the barb projecting about
midway of the fish. A small string is passed through the nose and
under lip and tied through a link of the chain to keep the mouth shut.
The speed of the boat should be from two to four miles an hour. In the
middle of the day, when the tunas are feeding in schools, the sinker
should be removed, and the lure skipped along the surface of the
water. This effect can be helped by the motion of the rod.

The Catalina Tuna Club has adopted the following tackle
specifications:

    For Tuna and Swordfish--Rod to be of wood, consisting of a
    butt and tip, and to be not shorter than 6 feet, 9 inches
    over all. Tip not less than 5 feet in length, and to weigh
    not more than 16 ounces. Line not to exceed standard
    24-thread.


  [Illustration: ALBACORE (Germo alalunga)]


THE ALBACORE

(Germo alalunga)

The albacore is another genus of the same family, and reaches a weight
of 40 to 80 pounds; averaging 25 pounds. It is seldom seen as far
north as San Francisco, but is abundant from Santa Barbara south to
Central America. Like all of the family it is a gamy fish, and affords
good sport to the angler. In general shape and appearance it resembles
the tuna, but will always be distinguished by its long, sword-like
pectoral fins that start from near the gills, and a trifle lower than
the eye, and reach beyond the second dorsal fin.

=Tackle and Lure=--The albacore will take almost any lure from a
sardine to a white rag. The speed of the boat can also be varied very
much. I have known them to be caught on a hand line trolled behind a
coast steamer. About three miles an hour, however, will give the best
results. The following light tackle specifications of the Tuna Club
will be found quite satisfactory for the average albacore:

    Rod to be of wood, consisting of a butt and tip, and to be
    not shorter than 6 feet, over all. Butt to be not over 14
    inches in length. Tip not less than 5 feet in length, and to
    weigh not more than 6 ounces. Line not to exceed standard
    9-thread.


THE YELLOW-FIN ALBACORE

(Germo microptera)

Another of the =Scrombridæ= family, and very closely allied to the
albacore, is the yellow-fin albacore. This fish has erroneously been
called "yellow-fin tuna." It does not belong to the genus =Thunnus=
any more than does the albacore or the bonito. It is only a visitor to
the California waters, and often does not make its appearance for one
or two seasons at a time. They are common to the coasts of Japan and
the Hawaiian Islands, and are supposed to migrate with the Japanese
current. This species fights altogether on the surface, but lacks the
sterling gamy qualities of the tuna.

In shape it is built very much on the lines of the albacore, but with
its pectoral fins only extending back to about half way between the
anal and ventral, the other fins are placed the same as the albacore,
and all except the pectoral strongly tinged with bright lemon;
pectoral fin is more of a bright brown; eye, large and prominent.

A few have been taken weighing as much as 40 pounds and one even 65
pounds. The average, however, is about 30 pounds.


  [Illustration: BONITO (Sarda chilensis)]


THE BONITO, OR SKIPJACK

(Sarda chilensis)

To the angler who is not looking for the largest of game, the
bonito--known as skipjack to the Catalina anglers--is possibly the
most interesting of the ocean game fishes. Its beautiful metallic
colors, its rapid movements, and pleasing habit of always fighting on
the surface, and rarely, if ever sulking, makes it a most attractive
game to the discriminating angler.

The bonito also belongs to the =Scrombidæ= family, and ranges from
Point Conception to Mexico and south through the tropics.

Body, rounded, tapering rapidly to the tail, which is strongly forked,
but not so much as the albacore; pectoral fins, short and placed
opposite the eye; dorsal fin, double, with saw-like ridges from the
second dorsal and the anal fins to the tail, the same as in all of
this family. Color, dark blue on the back, with a metallic luster;
sides, silvery white, with dark longitudinal lines. Weight, from six
to twelve pounds.

=Tackle and Lure=--The light tackle specifications of the Tuna Club,
given for albacore cannot be improved upon for these fish.


  [Illustration: SPANISH MACKEREL (Scomberomorus concolor)]


SPANISH MACKEREL

(Scomberomorus concolor)

This is another of the =Scrombidæ= family. It ranges north to Monterey
Bay, where it makes its appearance in September, remaining until
November, when it goes south to the Santa Barbara channel; remaining
in these waters and about Catalina Island during most of the winter.
This fish is called bonito by many of the Catalina anglers, which is a
misnomer, as it is a much slimmer fish than the bonito.

The pectoral fins are small and located a little above the center of
the body and close to the gill covers; front dorsal starts just above
the base of the pectorals and extend along the back for a distance a
little more than the length of the head, and nearly meeting the second
dorsal, which is about the same width as its heighth; ventral fins, a
little in front of the pectorals and rather small; front of the anal
fin under the back of the second dorsal. Back, steel blue; sides,
silvery. Oblique lines, of the darker color of the back, running
forward and downward to a little below the lateral line.

Weight, usually from nine to twelve pounds, though they occasionally
attain a weight of eighteen pounds.

=Tackle and Lure=--The same as for the bonito.


  [Illustration: CHUB MACKEREL OR GREEN-BACK (Scomber japonicus)]


THE CHUB MACKEREL

(Scomber japonicus)

The chub mackerel, the smallest of the =Scombridæ= family, approaches
very closely the true mackerel of the East. It is hard to find a fish
of any variety more delicious than a chub mackerel, caught from the
yacht and placed on the broiler as soon as it quits flapping. They are
occasionally found as far north as Monterey bay, but their real range
is from the Santa Barbara channel south. With reasonably light trout
tackle they put up a gamy and interesting fight.

Back, bluish green, mottled with irregular darker streaks, some of
which pass below the lateral line; first dorsal fin quite high, and
about the distance of its height in front of the second dorsal; second
dorsal and anal about the same size and nearly opposite each other;
tail forked, but not so broadly as the bonito. Weight, from one-half
to three pounds.

=Tackle and Lure=--Trout tackle and spoon will furnish interesting
sport. But they will take any lure.


  [Illustration: YELLOW-TAIL (Seriola dorsalis)]


THE YELLOW-TAIL

(Seriola dorsalis)

The yellow-tail belongs to the family =Carangidæ=, the same to which
belong the pompanos, and is one of the gamiest of sea fishes. In fact,
it is generally said by experts who have fished for all varieties and
in all waters, both salt and fresh, that the yellow-tail of Catalina
is the gamiest fish, pound for pound, that swims. Whether this be true
or not, it is certainly one of the hardest and most persistent
fighters found anywhere and furnishes the angler with rod and reel
from an hour to two hours of lively sport before he can bring it to
gaff. One well-known writer on angling subjects says: "It never knows
when it is dead." While the average catch will run from ten to thirty
pounds, specimens have been taken weighing sixty-five pounds. It is
occasionally met with in Monterey bay, but its range is from the Santa
Barbara channel south, where it is caught the larger portion of the
year.

Grayish blue on the back; sides, a dull silver, with a yellowish buff
stripe along the lateral line; fins, green, with a strong yellowish
tinge; tail, yellowish buff. Scales small, with the head bare, except
a small patch on the cheeks. Pectoral fin on a level with the eye and
small; ventral under the center of the pectoral; caudal, slim and
forked. The dorsal fin is double, the front being very small with
spines and the second half more than twice as high; dorsal and anal
fins continue in a low membrane to very near the tail. Body,
elliptical and very small at the base of the caudal fin.

=Tackle and Lure=--Same as for salmon or albacore.



  Order, ACANTHROPTERI.

  Family, SCROMBIDAE

   Genus         Species       Common Names      Range
  ------------- ------------- ----------------- --------------------------

  Thunnus        thynnus       Leaping tuna     {From Coronado Islands
                                                {to Monterey Bay.

                {microptera    Yellow-fin       {Irregular visitors to the
                {               albacore        {waters of Catalina Island
  Germo         {                               {and adjacent mainland.
                {
                {alalunga      Albacore          From Point Conception
                                                 south.

  Sarda          chilensis     Bonito            From Santa Barbara south.

  Scomberomorus  concolor      Spanish mackerel  From Monterey Bay south.

  Scomber        japonicus     Chub mackerel     From Point Conception
                                                 south.


  [Illustration: CALIFORNIA SWORDFISH (Tetrapturus mitsukuri)]


THE CALIFORNIA SWORDFISH

(Tetrapturus mitsukuri)

By many anglers for large and exciting game, the California swordfish
is pronounced the king of all game fishes. Certainly they put up a
very determined and exciting fight. In size they average about 180
pounds, though one has been taken at Catalina by W. C. Boschen that
weighed 355 pounds. When a swordfish is hooked its rushes are
desperate, even reckless, and at times dangerous to the angler. In its
determined efforts to free itself from the impaling hook, it threshes
the waters into foam, repeatedly leaping into the air, where the
sunlight scintillating upon the purple of its back and silvery sides
adds the charm of color to the excitement of the contest. It is safe
to say that there is no fish, either in the salt or fresh waters, that
is so constantly on the surface and in the air during its struggles
for freedom as is the California swordfish. Thirty, forty and even
fifty clean leaps into the sunlight by the one fish have been recorded
in its desperate struggle to baffle the skill of the angler.

The snout of the swordfish is continued into a long, sharp bone, which
measured from the back of the mouth is about one-fourth of the length
of the fish from the mouth to the base of the tail. The under jaw is
also a sharp projecting bone about half the length of the sword. The
dorsal fin rises sharply from the top of the head to a height nearly
equaling the depth of the body, the latter part curving downward and
continuing along the back to nearly the center of the body; tail
divided into two long, slim forks; second dorsal and anal near the
tail and nearly opposite each other; ventral fin below the terminal of
the first dorsal; pectoral fins rather long and located close to the
gill-covers; two long, slender feelers projecting from the center of
the throat just below the base of the pectorals; eye very large and
bright dark blue.

Purplish green on the back, with blue perpendicular stripes fading
into the silvery sides; fins, dark purple.

=Tackle and Lure=--Same as for tuna.


THE BLACK SEA BASS, OR JEW-FISH

(Stereolepis gigas)

This monster of the ocean, commonly called jew-fish, seems to be in
all respects a gigantic black bass, closely resembling the
small-mouthed of the fresh waters, and no further description will be
necessary for anyone who may be fortunate enough to land one to know
to what species it belongs. In fact, he will know just what he has
hooked long before the monster shows himself on the top of the water.
This huge black sea bass seems to have a very restricted range, for it
is only known from the Coronado Islands to the Farallones. They are
very plentiful around Catalina Island, where they are usually taken
with hand lines. They can not be called a game fish, though they are
now being taken with rod and reel at Catalina and furnish a kind of
"heavy-weight" sport for those who like it. One weighing over 436
pounds has been taken on a tuna rod and twenty-one thread line. The
writer saw one several years ago that was taken on a hand line that
weighed 720 pounds and was over seven feet in length. They are fish of
great strength and will tow a boat with ease at a considerable speed.

=Tackle=--The same as for tuna, with fish bait.


THE BARACUDA

(Sphyraena argentea)

The baracuda is a common fish from San Francisco south to Mexico. In
the Santa Barbara channel and about Catalina and San Diego it is
largely taken by trolling with light tackle, when it affords really
good sport. It is a long, slim fish, reaching three and even three and
a half feet in length, the usual catch being from two to two and a
half feet in length.

Head long and slender; eye high up on the head and nearly half way
between the snout and the back of the gill covers. Pectoral fin just
below the lateral line; first dorsal spinous and nearly opposite the
ventral; second dorsal about midway between the first and the tail;
anal almost directly under the second dorsal.

Bluish brown on the back, grading into white on the belly.

=Tackle and Lure=--Same as for bonito.



WHITING and CROAKERS


There are three other species of fish which inhabit the surf of the
Pacific from Point Conception, south to Mexico, that, while they can
not be properly termed game fishes, furnish the angler fine sport
because of the gamy fight they make on light tackle. These are the
whiting (=Menticirrhus undulatus=), the spot-fin croaker (=Roncador
stearnsi=) and the yellow-fin croaker (=Umbrina roncador=). The first
of these is known locally by the names of corbina and surf-fish,
which are bad misnomers. The name, surf-fish, is given by the
ichthyologist to a species of perch, and the courbina belongs to the
genus =Pogonias= and is not found as far north as the California
coast. These names should be abandoned by the anglers and the proper
English name of whiting used. The word courbina is Italian and means
croaker, from the Latin, corvus, crow.


  [Illustration: WHITE SEA BASS (Cygonoscion nobilis)]


THE WHITE SEA BASS

(Cygonoscion nobilis)

The white sea bass is purely a California species, ranging from the
Coronado Islands to about the latitude of San Francisco. They are
caught trolling and make a gamy fight on rod and reel. Twenty to forty
pound fish are common and they have been caught weighing seventy-five
pounds.

Light bluish on the back and white on the sides, with many small
specks; dark spot at the base of the pectoral fins. Head, long, with
pointed snout, and with the scales of the head running nearly to its
end. Dorsal fin double, the first half having ten spines and the
latter twenty-one or twenty-two soft rays. Anal with two spines and
nine rays. Tail but little forked.

=Tackle=--The same as for salmon or yellow-tail.


  [Illustration: CALIFORNIA WHITING OR SAND SUCKER
                 (Menticirrhus undulatus)]


CALIFORNIA WHITING OR SAND-SUCKER

(Menticirrhus undulatus)

This species is common to the sand beaches of the Pacific, from Point
Conception south to Guaymas, Mexico. It feeds during the larger part
of the year in the surf, and is caught from the wharfs or by long
casts with heavy sinkers from the beach. The whiting appears on the
California coast in two varieties, the =undulatus= proper and a
subspecies which I think has never been classified. At any rate, the
difference seems sufficient to entitle it to a subspecifies
classification, for the mouth curves strongly downward, and,
therefore, does not extend so far back as the undulatus proper. The
tail also differs, in having both upper and lower lobes rounded,
instead of the upper being square as in the =undulatus=.

Head, about one-fifth of the entire length; snout, rather pointed, and
projecting beyond the mouth; mouth reaching to the center of the eye;
small barbel on the lower lip. Dorsal fin, double, the first with from
seven to nine spines, the second soft and reaching from the first to
within about the length of the head from the tail; pectoral fins near
the gills and about the width of the eye below the center of the body;
ventral fins, a little behind the pectoral; anal fin under the center
of the second dorsal; dorsal fins dark; pectoral, ventral and anal
fins, light with darker tips; tail of the =undulatus= proper, upper
lobe square and lower lobe rounded. Back, bluish brown, shading to
white on the belly; scales, small. Below the lateral line are a number
of small spots forming irregular lines running backward and upward.
Size, rarely exceeding eight pounds.

The illustration is of the variety that I have referred to as a
subspecies.

=Tackle and Lure=--The three-six tackle. Rod to be of wood, consisting
of a butt and tip, and to be not shorter than six feet over all;
weight of entire rod not to exceed six ounces; butt not to be over
twelve inches in length. Line not to exceed standard 6-thread. Lure,
sandflies, mussels or clams.


  [Illustration: YELLOW-FIN CROAKER (Umbrina roncador)]


YELLOW-FIN CROKER

(Umbrina roncador)

The yellow-fin croaker is found in the surf or near it along the sandy
beaches from some distance north of Point Conception south to
Manzanillo, Mexico, where it is known by the name "corvina con aletas
amarillas," or "croaker with yellow fins."

Head, about one-fifth the whole length; snout, very blunt, with a
small barbel on the lower lip. Dorsal fin double, the first half with
seven or eight spines, the longest about two-thirds the length of the
head; second half rayed and about two-thirds the height of the first,
and reaching to about half the length of the head from the tail;
pectoral fins short, and placed close to the gills and a little below
the center of the body; ventral fins just below the pectoral and a
trifle longer; anal fin, below the center of the second dorsal; tail,
nearly square. Back, greenish brown, with a metallic luster and giving
a pinkish tinge in some lights; sides, shading to white on the belly.
A few irregular spots on the sides forming faint lines.


SPOT-FIN CROAKER

(Roncador stearnsi)

The spot-fin croaker appears in and near the surf of the Pacific Coast
from Point Conception south to Mexico. =Roncador= is Spanish and
signifies snorer. This species resembles the yellow-fin very closely,
but is usually lighter in color and more metallic in appearance. It
can always be distinguished from the yellow-fin by the distinct black
spots at the base of the pectoral fins.

=Tackle and Lure=--Same as for whiting.



THE TUNA CLUB OF CATALINA ISLAND


I cannot close these articles on fish and fishing without a few words
of commendation of the Tuna Club of Catalina Island. From the very
inception of this organization it has striven to encourage the use of
light tackle by all anglers. To this end, it has adopted three classes
of tackle specifications for the taking of the several kinds of fish
found in the waters surrounding its island home, and provided a number
of cups and buttons to be awarded each year to anglers who land fishes
of certain weights, with such tackle as is prescribed therefore by its
rules. This campaign, which it has so energetically urged in behalf of
scientific angling, has worked wonders in its section of the Coast.
The old methods of landing fish, even of the gamiest quality, by the
employment of nothing more than brute force at the end of an
unbreakable cable, has almost disappeared in its section, and
scientific angling with the lightest possible tackle has taken its
place. But the good work of the Tuna Club has not been confined to the
boundaries of its own section. Anglers from other sections of the
country visiting Catalina, and seeing the additional pleasure derived
from the use of light tackle, have become enthusiastic advocates of
this more scientific means, and returning to their homes have spread
the propaganda there.

To the stiff pole and chalk-line fishermen of confirmed habits I have
nothing to say. But to the younger generation who have not yet grown
grey in the practice of bad habits, I wish to urge upon them the use
of the lightest tackle possible, as a means of developing greater
skill and deriving greater pleasure from their favorite sport. And
this is equally true whether it be a tuna or a trout.



  Order, ACANTHROPTERI

  Family, SCIAENIDAE

   Genus        Species    Common Names        Range
  ------------ ---------- ------------------- --------------------------
                          {California whiting {From Point Conception
  Menticirrhus  undulatus {or sand sucker     {south to Guaymas, Mexico.

                                              {From Point Conception
  Roncador      stearnsi   Spot-fin croaker   {south to Manzanillo,
                                              {Mexico.

                                              {From Point Conception
  Umbrina       roncador   Yellow-fin croaker {south to Manzanillo,
                                              {Mexico.

                                              {From San Francisco south
  Cygonoscion   nobilis    White sea bass     {to Coronado Islands.



ATTRACTIVE FISHING RESORTS


It is possible that the day may come when man will be so engrossed
with the pursuit of the dollar that the call of the wild will no
longer quicken the pulsations of his heart. But until that time does
come, the wild creatures of nature, whose pursuit affords the most
healthful and exhilarating pastime, will continue to lure him to their
haunts.

    "To sit on rocks and gaze o'er flood and fell;
      To slowly trace the forest's shady scene,
    Where things that own not man's dominion dwell,
      And mortal feet hath ne'er, or rarely, been,"

will long continue to present a charm to all who love the sublimity of
the mountains, the beauty of the flower-decked fields, or the
awe-inspiring grandeur of the ocean.

To draw a bead on the antlered buck; to stop the flight of the gamy
quail; to land the denizen of the mountain stream, or troll the
ocean's depth for the tuna, the salmon or the yellow-tail, furnishes a
pastime whose recollection draws one back again and again to sit on
nature's lap and listen to her teachings. The recollection of these
pleasures are locked in the treasure vaults of the memory, where the
wearings of time can never erase them; for when the once firm step
that carried him proudly up the mountain's side shall falter and
become a palsied wreck of time, and the eye, dimmed by the accumulated
mists of years, shall see clearly, only in retrospect, he will sit by
his fire-side in slippered feet, and, gazing down the long vistas of
the past, live over and over again in his reveries the pleasures
furnished by the forest, the field, the stream and the ocean.

Nothing would please me better than to describe herein the many places
where, during a residence on the Pacific Coast of more than half a
century, I have enjoyed these sports in the fullest degree. But even
the merest mention of the almost innumerable hunting grounds and
trout streams, and the hundreds of mountain and sea-side resorts, from
Washington to Mexico, would, of itself, make a volume of no mean size.
I am, therefore, restricted to the mention of only a few of the more
attractive places where good sea fishing can be found, coupled with
such accommodations and surroundings as appeal to the discriminating
pleasure seeker.


CATALINA ISLAND.

Almost due south of Los Angeles, and about twenty miles from the
mainland, is the far-famed island of Catalina.

It is still a debatable question whether it was the leaping tuna that
made Catalina famous, or whether it was its many attractions, its
facilities for sea fishing and its splendid accommodations, that gave
the sport of tuna fishing a world-wide reputation.

This beautiful island, with its diversified amusements; its grand
scenery; its wonderful drives; its surf less sea bathing; its marine
views; its perfect equipment for sea fighting, and its splendidly
appointed hotel, has made it the Mecca to which the enthusiastic
anglers of the world make their regular pilgrimages, for it seems to
be the favored habitat of all the game fishes of the ocean, except the
salmon and the striped bass.

Catalina is the home of the Tuna Club, the greatest fishing
organization of the world, with its international membership pledged
to the promotion of scientific angling. It is here where the world's
records are made, and the greatest feats in landing the fighting
monsters of the sea have been achieved.

In its variety of game fishes I know of no place to equal it. The
leaping tuna, the albacore, the Spanish mackerel, the bonito, the chub
mackerel, the white sea bass, the yellow-tail, and the California
swordfish, the sensational fighter of the ocean, are all here and
ready to give the light tackle angler the most exciting contest of his
life.

When the angler waits for the tides, he wants some other divertisement
to occupy his mind. At Catalina he finds a pastime suitable to every
hour, to every fancy, to every mood. He can bathe in its crystal
waters; he can stroll along its pebbly beaches or climb its hills in
search of wild goats; he can ride through its charming valleys, over
its lofty peaks and around the dizzy heights that overlook the ocean;
he can increase the elasticity of his step on its tennis courts, or
exercise his muscle on its golf links. He can view the ancient relics
of a departed people, study the strange and curious forms of ocean
life in the extensive aquariums, or comfortably seated in a
glass-bottomed boat, marvel at the extravagant splendor of the marine
gardens, hundreds of feet below the surface, where sirens sing and
mermaids are said to dwell. And, when he has gone the rounds, and
longs again for more exciting sport, well--then he can go fishing.


  [Illustration: HOTEL DEL MONTE]


DEL MONTE

Monterey Bay is pre-eminently the fishing ground for the Pacific
salmon. As these gamy fish seek their spawning grounds, after their
four-years' sojourn in unknown waters, they enter Monterey Bay at its
southern headland and follow around it at varying distances from the
shore. During this season the Hotel Del Monte, with its splendid
appointments and scenic beauty, is the favored Mecca of the salmon
anglers. Here boats with experienced boatmen, and a good supply of
tackle and bait are always to be had. The contour of the peninsula,
with its high mountain crest, forming the southern shore of the bay,
is such that the strong winds of the open ocean is cut off from the
Del Monte side, allowing the waters of this side of the bay to retain
that smoothness that makes either boating or fishing a delight. This,
too, may have something to do with the feeding habits of the salmon,
thereby accounting for the usually large catches made by the guests of
the hotel.

While the Pacific Coast furnishes fine sport for the angler, both in
its fresh and salt waters, with an infinite variety of gamy fishes,
salmon fishing must be classed as one of the most satisfying. An
angler likes to see his adversary and know with what he is contending.
The salmon is a surface fighter, leaping high into the air when he
finds himself impaled; and this sight of his beautiful sides,
scintillating in the sunlight, quickens the pulsations of the heart of
the angler and gives zest to the sport.

Each section of the coast has its fish and fishing peculiar to itself;
but I care not from what section the expert angler may come, he will
enjoy the salmon fishing of Monterey Bay. He will do more; for the
Hotel Del Monte is one of the delightful show places of the Pacific
Coast. Space will not admit of an enumeration of the many interesting
sights here to be seen. There are glimpses of California life a
hundred years ago by the side of picturesque golf links and tennis
courts. A modern hostelry hid away in the center of a primeval park. A
seventeen-mile drive through shady mountain dells and along weirdly
beautiful ocean coves and rocky crags. The marine gardens as seen at
the bottom of the ocean through glass-bottomed boats. These, and many
other interesting relics and inspiring scenes are the side attractions
for the salmon angler who visits Del Monte.


  [Illustration: FISHING PIER, DEL MAR]


DEL MAR.

Del Mar is one of the few beach resorts where the pleasure-seeker can
divide his time among the whole range of out-door amusements. The long
pleasure wharf and the miles of just that character of beach where the
whiting, the croaker, the chub mackerel and the young sea bass love to
feed, offer the finest of still fishing. If he is ambitious for a
contest with the big fighting fishes of the deeper waters, he can take
a boat and soon be floating over the haunts of the yellow-tail, the
albacore and the bonito. If he prefers the report of the gun to the
music of the reel, a short walk back from the hotel brings him into
the country of the game little quail.

Again, he can, by a short ride to the ponds and lagoons, change from
upland to waterfowl shooting.

But the gamut is not yet run; for within easy reach are several
mountain streams where he can cast his flies on their waters with good
returns. And, if he seeks to pit his cunning and his skill against the
watchful deer, a pleasant and interesting ride over a good motor road,
takes him into the wilds of the Cuyamaca mountains.

But the sportsman in his outings will always think of his comforts as
well as his sports, and for those Del Mar has planned with a lavish
hand.

It is not all of the enjoyment of a good meal to have a choice
selection of viands, admirably cooked by an experienced chef, and
served in the most approved manner. It is not all of a good night's
rest, after the fatigue of a day's sport, to have lain on a downy bed
in a richly appointed room. Agreeable service; the affability of the
management; the pervading air of welcome; the society of congenial
companions; the beauty of the situation; the inspiring views; the
charm of the many scenes that each day photographs upon the memory,
adds a relish to the menu which no chef can compound, and a
restfulness to one's slumber that the ingenuity of no upholsterer can
supply. For a part of these delightful adjuncts to one's enjoyment, I
am willing to give credit to the excellent taste of the founders of
Del Mar. But the beauty of its surroundings, the possibility of its
charming individuality, must be credited to those exclusive gifts
which nature first bestowed upon it.

Del Mar is twenty-two miles from San Diego and 111 from Los Angeles,
and can be reached from either of these cities by the Santa Fe
railroad, or by a good motor road, distinguished for its many
interesting views.


  [Illustration: AQUARIUM, VENICE]


VENICE

That there is but one Venice in America is the verdict of all who have
visited this charming sea-side resort. Its oriental architecture, and
its numerous canals, on whose surface floats in Italian ease, real
Venetian gondolas, give it an atmosphere suggestive of the
Mediterranean. But it is not of its Venetian aspect, nor its endless
chain of amusements, from its surf and plunge bathing to its
rollicking scenic railroad and hair-raising dash through its cavernous
rapids, or its hundred or more interesting pastimes for the pleasure
seeker, that the attention of the reader is herein directed.

It is to those forms of sea life that contribute to his pleasure that
his attention is called, for the waters of Venice furnish a wonderful
variety of these, as will be seen by a visit to the large aquarium
maintained on the pier by the University of Southern California. From
the wharfs he can angle for smelt, mackerel and perch, as well as for
halibut and other bottom fishes. From the beach, by bait-casting into
the surf, he is rewarded with croaker, whiting (erroneously called
corbina), and young sea bass, locally known as sea trout.

By taking a launch and going out into the open water, his ambition to
bring to gaff the larger species of the deeper sea can be gratified
with strikes from the tuna, the albacore, the bonito, the mackerel and
the yellow-tail that will give him a contest worthy of his metal.

These launch trips upon the bosom of the open ocean, are among the
chiefest pleasures of our beach resorts, for the angler not only finds
keen sport in the landing of these larger fishes, but an exhilarating
recreation, restful to the mind and healthful to the body.

Then, when his day's sport is over, whether his outing is only for a
day, or for the several weeks of his vacation, His comforts are to be
considered. In these Venice offers as wide a range as it does in its
amusements. At the splendidly appointed Hotel St. Marks he can find
the most luxurious accommodations; he can dine at one of its
deservedly popular cafes; or, if he wants to spend his vacation in
restful quietude with his family, he can take a furnished villa on the
bank of one of the canals, hidden away in a wealth of flowers and
forest trees, with the sea breeze tempered to a balmy zephyr. To this
sequestered home he can bring his fish, fresh from the sea, and
broiling them to his particular taste, enjoy the last delight of the
angler's day of sport.



  INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS


  DOVES--
    Mourning Dove,                                  40
    White-winged Dove,                              40

  DUCKS--
    American Golden-eye,                            84
    American Scaup,                                 78
    Barrow's Golden-eye,                            90
    Blue-bill,                                      78
    Butter-ball,                                    86
    Canvasback,                                     74
    Gadwall,                                        56
    Harlequin,                                      86
    Mallard,                                        54
    Pin-tail,                                       66
    Red-head,                                       76
    Ring-neck,                                      80
    Ruddy,                                          82
    Scoter, White-winged,                           91
    Shoveler,                                       68
    Spoon-bill,                                     68
    Sprig,                                          66
    Teal, Blue-winged,                              64
    Teal, Cinnamon,                                 62
    Teal, Green-winged,                             60
    Widgeon,                                        58
    Wire-tail,                                      82
    Wood Duck,                                      70

  FISHES--
    Albacore,                                      155
    Bass, Small-mouthed, Black,                    149
    Bass, Striped,                                 151
    Bass, White Sea,                               167
    Bonito,                                        157
    Croaker, Yellow-fin,                           171
    Mackerel, Chub,                                161
    Mackerel, Spanish,                             159
    Salmon, Chinook,                               130
    Sand-sucker,                                   169
    Skip-jack,                                     157
    Swordfish,                                     165
    Trout, Eastern Brook,                          145
    Trout, Rainbow,                                135
    Tuna, Leaping,                                 153
    Whiting, California,                           169
    Yellow-tail,                                   163

  GEESE--
    Black Brant,                                   104
    Brown Brant,                                    94
    Cackling Goose,                                 94
    Canada Goose,                                   94
    Emperor Goose,                                 102
    Honker,                                         94
    Little White Goose,                             98
    Ross Goose,                                     98
    Speckle-breast,                                100
    Snow Goose,                                     98
    White-cheeked Goose,                            96
    White-fronted Goose,                           100

  GROUSE--
    Oregon Ruffed,                                  46
    Sage Hen,                                       48
    Sharp-tail,                                     50
    Sooty,                                          42

  PHEASANT, Mongolian,                              36

  PIGEON, Band-tailed,                              40

  QUAIL--
    Arizona,                                        18
    Bobwhite, Virginia,                             28
    California Valley,                              14
    Elegant,                                        22
    Gambel,                                         18
    Massena,                                        26
    Montezuma,                                      26
    Mountain,                                       10
    Plumed,                                         10
    Scaled,                                         20

  SHORE BIRDS--
    Avocet,                                        124
    Curlew, Sickle-bill,                           117
    Curlew, Hudsonian,                             117
    Dowitcher,                                     111
    Godwit,                                        115
    Ibis, White-fronted, Glossy,                   107
    Marlin,                                        115
    Plover, Black-bellied,                         120
    Plover, Mountain,                              122
    Plover, Ring-neck,                             122
    Plover, Snowy,                                 122
    Snipe, Jack or Wilson,                         111
    Snipe, Red-Breasted,                           111
    Yellow-legs,                                   113

  TURKEY, Mexican Wild,                             32



  INDEX


  ANATIDAE, family,                                  9

  ANATINAE, subfamily,                              73

  ANSERENAE, subfamily,                             53

  ANSERES, order,                                    9


  BAY AND SEA DUCKS,                                75


  CHARADRIDAE, family,                              11

  COLUMBIDAE, family,                               11

  CYGNINAE, subfamily,                              11


  DOVES--
    Mourning Dove,                                  41
    White-winged Dove,                              41

  DUCKS--
    American Golden-eye,                            85
    American Scaup,                                 79
    Barrow's Golden-eye,                            87
    Blue-bill,                                      79
    Butter-ball,                                    87
    Canvasback,                                     75
    FulvOus Tree Duck,                              72
    Gadwall,                                        61
    Harlequin Duck,                                 89
    Lesser Scaup Duck,                              81
    Little Blue-bill,                               81
    Long-tailed Duck,                               59
    Mallard,                                        59
    Old Squaw,                                      89
    Pin-tail,                                       69
    Red-head,                                       77
    Ring-neck,                                      81
    Ruddy Duck,                                     83
    Scoters,                                        89
    Shoveler,                                       69
    Spoon-bill,                                     69
    Sprig,                                          69
    Subfamily, genus & species, fresh-water ducks,  73
    Subfamily, genus & species, salt-water ducks,   92
    Teal--
      Blue-wing,                                    67
      Cinnamon,                                     65
      Green-wing,                                   63
    Widgeon,                                        61
    Wire-tail,                                      83
    Wood Duck,                                      71

  FISHES--
    Albacore,                                      156
      Yellow-fin,                                  156
    Bass--
      Black, Large-mouth,                          148
      Black, Small-mouth,                          148
      Striped,                                     150
      White Sea,                                   168
    Baracuda,                                      166
    Bonito,                                        158
    Croaker--family, genus and species,            173
      Spot-fin,                                    172
      Yellow-fin,                                  170
    Jewfish,                                       166
    Mackerel--family, genus and species,           162
      Chub,                                        160
      Green-back,                                  160
      Spanish,                                     158
    Sacramento Pike,                               150
    Salmon,                                        131
    Salmon--family, genus and species,             162
      Blue-back,                                   133
      Chinook,                                     132
      Dog,                                         134
      Hump-back,                                   134
      King,                                        132
      Redfish,                                     133
      Silver,                                      134
      Sock-eye,                                    133
    Sand-sucker,                                   168
    Skip-jack,                                     158
    Swordfish,                                     164
    Trout--family, genus and species,              147
      Colorado River,                              144
      Cutthroat,                                   142
      Dolly Varden,                                144
      Eastern Brook,                               144
      Golden,                                      138
      Lake Tahoe,                                  143
      Lake Southerland,                            143
      Rainbow,                                     136
      Rio Grande,                                  143
      Silver,                                      142
      Steel-head,                                  140
    Tuna,                                          152
    Whiting, California,                           168
    Yellow-tail,                                   160

  FISHING RESORTS,                                 174
    Catalina Island,                               175
    Del Mar,                                       179
    Del Monte,                                     177
    Venice,                                        181


  GAME BIRDS OF THE PACIFIC COAST,                   9

  GAME FISHES OF THE PACIFIC COAST,                129

  GAME FISHES OF THE SEA,                          152

  GEESE OF THE PACIFIC COAST,                       93

  GEESE, FAMILY, GENUS AND SPECIES,                 53
    Black Sea Brant,                               103
    Brown Brant,                                    97
    Cackling Goose,                                 97
    Canada Goose,                                   93
    Emperor Goose,                                 101
    Honker,                                         93
    Hutchins Goose,                                 97
    Little White Goose,                             99
    Ross Goose,                                     99
    Speckle-breast,                                101
    Snow Goose,                                     99
    White Goose,                                    99
    White-cheeked Goose,                            95
    White-fronted Goose,                           101

  GROUSE--Family, genus and species,                43
    Canadian Ruffed,                                47
    Oregon Ruffed,                                  45
    Sage Hen,                                       51
    Sharp-tail,                                     52
    Sooty,                                          44
    Spruce,                                         49


  PHEASANT, Mongolian,                              35

  PIGEON, Wild,                                     39

  PIGEONS AND DOVES,                                39


  QUAIL--Family, genus and species,             11, 30
    Arizona,                                        19
    Bobwhite,                                       27
    Bobwhite, Masked,                               29
    California Valley,                              15
    Elegant,                                        24
    Gambel,                                         19
    Massena,                                        25
    Montezuma,                                      25
    Mountain,                                       12
      Lower California,                             13
      Plumed,                                       12
    San Pedro Mountain,                             13
    Scaled,                                         21
      Chestnut-bellied,                             23


  SHORE BIRDS--Family, genus and species,     110, 118
    Avocet,                                        125
    Cranes, Rails and Gallinules,                  109
    Curlew, Sickle-bill,                           119
      Hudsonian,                                   119
    Dowitcher,                                     112
    Godwit,                                        114
    Herons and Ibises,                             108
    Marlin,                                        114
    Plover, family, genus and species,             126
      Black-bellied,                               121
      Mountain,                                    121
      Ring-neck,                                   123
      Snowy,                                       123
      Wilson,                                      125
    Rails,                                         109
    Sandpiper, Red-backed,                         116
    Snipe, family, genus and species,              118
      Jacksnipe,                                   110
      Red-breasted,                                112
      Wilson,                                      110
    Stilt, Black-necked,                           127
    Willet,                                        116
    Yellow-legs,                                   114

  SWANS,                                           105


  TUNA CLUB,                                       172

  TURKEYS, Wild,                                    31
    Mexican, Wild,                                  31


  WATERFOWL,                                        55

  WADERS AND SHORE BIRDS,                          106



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   +------------------------------------------------------------+



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  Transcriber's Notes

  The text presented here is that contained in the original printed
  version. Other than the typographical corrections listed below and
  a number of minor corrections, the following changes were introduced:

  1) Paragraphs split by illustrations or tables were rejoined.

  2) The illustration captions were placed above the section describing
       the species illustrated.

  3) The following errata notes displayed on the bottom of pages 112,
       114 and 116 have been applied:

       "In the make-up of a few pages on the shore birds, the
       scientific names have become transposed. They should read:
         Page 112: Dowitcher (Macrohampus scolopaceus).
         Page 114: Yellow-legs (Totanus melanoleucus).
           "   " : Marlin (Limosa fedora).
         Page 116: Red-backed sandpiper (Tringa alpina pacifica).
           "   " : Willet (Symphemia Semipalmata inornata)."

  4) There appears to be text missing under the description of
       "WILSON'S PLOVER" in the "Measurements" section on page 125.
       A note was inserted to that effect

  5) The Æ ligature which was used in the caption of the image on
       page 122 has been changed to the letters "AE" for consistancy
       with the way those names are displayed elsewhere in the book.


  Typographical Corrections

  Page  Correction
  ====  ====================
    11  Banapart => Bonapart
    61  "Male" added for consistancy
    66  Spatula acuta => Dafila acuta
    77  Aythya amaricana => Aythya americana
    98  Chen rossi => Chen rossii
   108  Plegadis gaurauna => Plegadis guarauna
   108  Gaura alba => Guara alba
   109  Grus mericana => Grus canadensis
   109  GALLINUL => GALLINULES
   109  Grus mericana => Grus americana
   121  Charadrous squaterola => Charadrius squatarola
   125  AVOSET => AVOCET
   136  Loch Loven => Loch Leven
   167  Cygnocian nobilis => Cygonoscion nobilis
   172  SPOT-FIN CRAOKER => SPOT-FIN CROAKER


  Emphasis Notation

  _Text_  - Italics

  =Text=  - Bold





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