Among those able to hold their own, with proper encouragement, are the following: two loons, two murres, the puffin, guillemot, razor-billed auk, dovekie and pomarine jæger; six gulls ivory, kittiwake, glaucous, great black-back, herring and Bonaparte; two terns arctic and common; the fulmar, two shearwaters, two cormorants, the red-breasted merganser and the gannet; seven ducks the black, golden-eye, old squaw and harlequin, with the American, king and Greenland eiders; three scoters; four geese snow, blue, brant and Canada; two phalaropes, several sandpipers, with the Hudsonian godwit and both yellowlegs; two snipes; five plovers; and the Eskimo and Hudsonian curlews.
Like the old poets, he does not dwell upon nature, except occasionally through the vistas opened up by the great sciences, as astronomy and geology, but upon life and movement and personality, and puts in a shred of natural history here and there, the "twittering redstart," the spotted hawk swooping by, the oscillating sea-gulls, the yellow-crowned heron, the razor-billed auk, the lone wood duck, the migrating geese, the sharp-hoofed moose, the mockingbird "the thrush, the hermit," etc., to help locate and define his position.
"In vain the speeding or shyness, In vain the plutonic rocks send their old heat against any approach, In vain the mastodon retreats beneath its own powdered bones, In vain objects stand leagues off, and assume manifold shapes, In vain the ocean settling in hollows, and the great monsters lying low, In vain the buzzard houses herself with the sky, In vain the snake slides through the creepers and logs, In vain the elk takes to the inner passes of the woods, In vain the razor-billed auk sails far north to Labrador, I follow quickly, I ascend to the nest in the fissure of the cliff.
"Why should I be?" he rasped; "I pay that young woman for my irritability; it's a bargain between us." "In your domestic affairs," I said, "there is nothing that interests me. I came to see those auks." "You probably believe them to be razor-billed auks," he said, contemptuously. "But they're not; they're great auks."