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we found the ascent very laborious, the slope being so steep as often to necessitate hand-climbing. Besides a bushy vegetation, the ground was covered knee-deep with mosses on a foundation of decaying leaves and rugged rock, and it was a hard hour's climb to the small ledge just below the summit, where an overhanging rock forms a convenient shelter, and a little basin collects the trickling water. Here we put down our loads, and in a few minutes more stood on the summit of Mount Ophir, 4000 feet above the sea. The top is a small rocky platform covered with rhododendrons and other shrubs. The afternoon was clear, and the view fine in its way-ranges of hill and valley everywhere covered with interminable forest, with glistening rivers winding among them. In a distant view a forest country is very monotonous, and no mountain I have ever ascended in the tropics presents a panorama equal to that from Snowdon, while the views in Switzerland are immeasurably superior. When boiling our coffee I took observations with a good boiling-point thermometer, as well as with the sympiesometer, and we then enjoyed our evening meal and the noble prospect that lay before us. The night was calm and very mild, and having made a bed of twigs and branches over which we laid our blankets, we passed a very comfortable night. Our porters had followed us after a rest, bringing only their rice to cook, and luckily we did not require the baggage they left behind them. In the morning I caught a few butterflies and beetles, and my friend got a few land-shells; and we then descended, bringing with us some specimens of the ferns and pitcherplants of Padang-batu.

The place where we had first encamped at the foot of the mountain being very gloomy, we chose another in a kind of swamp near a stream overgrown with zinziberaceous plants, in which a clearing was easily made. Here our men built two little huts without sides that would just shelter us from the rain; and we lived in them for a week, shooting and insect-hunting, and roaming about the forests at the foot of the mountain. This was the country of the great Argus pheasant, and we continually heard its cry. On asking the old Malay to try and shoot one for me, he told me that although he had been for twenty years shooting birds in these

THE ARGUS PHEASANT-LOST PAPERS. 45

forests he had never yet shot one, and had never even seen one except after it had been caught. The bird is so exceedingly shy and wary, and runs along the ground in the densest parts of the forest so quickly, that it is impossible to get near it; and its sober colors and rich eye-like spots, which are so ornamental when seen in a museum, must harmonize well with the dead leaves among which it dwells, and render it very inconspicuous. All the specimens sold in Malacca are caught in snares, and my informant, though he had shot none, had snared plenty.

The tiger and rhinoceros are still found here, and a few years ago elephants abounded, but they have lately all disappeared. We found some heaps of dung, which seemed to be that of elephants, and some tracks of the rhinoceros, but saw none of the animals. We, however, kept a fire up all night in case any of these creatures should visit us, and two of our men declared that they did one day see a rhinoceros. When our rice was finished, and our boxes full of specimens, we returned to Ayer-panas, and a few days afterward went on to Malacca, and thence to Singapore. Mount Ophir has quite a reputation for fever, and all our friends were astonished at our recklessness in staying so long at its foot; but we none of us suffered in the least, and I shall ever look back with pleasure to my trip, as being my first introduction to mountain scenery in the Eastern tropics.

The meagreness and brevity of the sketch I have here given of my visit to Singapore and the Malay Peninsula is due to my having trusted chiefly to some private letters and a note-book, which were lost, and to a paper on Malacca and Mount Ophir which was sent to the Royal Geographical Society, but which was neither read nor printed, owing to press of matter at the end of a session, and the MSS. of which can not now be found. I the less regret this, however, as so many works have been written on these parts; and I always intended to pass lightly over my travels in the western and better known portions of the Archipelago, in order to devote more space to the remoter districts, about which hardly any thing has been written in the English language.

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CHAPTER IV.

BORNEO-THE ORANG-UTAN.

I ARRIVED at Sarawak on November 1, 1854, and left it on January 25, 1856. In the interval I resided at many different localities, and saw a good deal of the Dyak tribes as well as of the Bornean Malays. I was hospitably entertained by Sir James Brooke, and lived in his house whenever I was at the town of Sarawak in the intervals of my journeys. But so many books have been written about this part of Borneo since I was there, that I shall avoid going into details of what I saw and heard and thought of Sarawak and its ruler, confining myself chiefly to my experiences as a naturalist in search of shells, insects, birds, and the orang-utan, and to an account of a journey through a part of the interior seldom visited by Europeans.

The first four months of my visit were spent in various parts of the Sarawak River, from Santubong at its mouth up to the picturesque limestone mountains and Chinese goldfields of Bow and Bedé. This part of the country has been so frequently described that I shall pass it over, especially as, owing to its being the height of the wet season, my collections were comparatively poor and insignificant.

In March, 1865, I determined to go to the coal-works which were being opened near the Simunjon River, a small branch of the Sádong, a river east of Sarawak, and between it and the Batang-lupar. The Simunjon enters the Sádong River about twenty miles up. It is very narrow and very winding, and much overshadowed by the lofty forest, which sometimes almost meets over it. The whole country between it and the sea is a perfectly level, forest-covered swamp, out of which rise a few isolated hills, at the foot of one of which the works are situated. From the landing-place to the hill a Dyak road had been formed, which consisted solely of treetrunks laid end to end. Along these the bare-footed natives

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walk, and carry heavy burdens with the greatest ease, but to a booted European it is very slippery work; and when one's attention is constantly attracted by the various objects of interest around, a few tumbles into the bog are almost inevitable. During my first walk along this road I saw few insects or birds, but noticed some very handsome orchids in flower, of the genus Caelogyne, a group which I afterward found to be very abundant, and characteristic of the district. On the slope of the hill near its foot a patch of forest had been cleared away, and several rude houses erected, in which were residing Mr. Coulson, the engineer, and a number of Chinese workmen. I was at first kindly accommodated in Mr. Coulson's house, but finding the spot very suitable for me and offering great facilities for collecting, I had a small house of two rooms and a veranda built for myself. Here I remained nearly nine months, and made an immense collection of insects, to which class of animals I devoted my chief attention, owing to the circumstances being especially favorable.

INSECTS.

In the tropics a large proportion of the insects of all orders, and especially of the large and favorite group of beetles, are more or less dependent on vegetation, and particularly on timber, bark, and leaves in various stages of decay. In the untouched virgin forest, the insects which frequent such situations are scattered over an immense extent of country at spots where trees have fallen through decay and old age, or have succumbed to the fury of the tempest; and twenty square miles of country may not contain so many fallen and decayed trees as are to be found in any small clearing. The quantity and the variety of beetles and of many other insects that can be collected at a given time in any tropical locality will depend, first upon the immediate vicinity of a great extent of virgin forest, and secondly upon the quantity of trees that for some months past have been, and which are still being cut down, and left to dry and decay upon the ground. Now, during my whole twelve years' collecting in the western and eastern tropics, I never enjoyed such advantages in this respect as at the Simunjon coal-works. For several months from twenty to fifty Chinamen and Dyaks were employed almost exclusively in clearing a large space in the forest, and in making a wide opening for a railroad to the Sádong River,

two miles distant. Besides this, sawpits were established at various points in the jungle, and large trees were felled, to be cut up into beams and planks. For hundreds of miles in every direction a magnificent forest extended over plain and mountain, rock and morass, and I arrived at the spot just as the rains began to diminish and the daily sunshine to increase; a time which I have always found the most favorable season for collecting. The number of openings and sunny places and of pathways were also an attraction to wasps and butterflies; and by paying a cent each for all insects that were brought me, I obtained from the Dyaks and the Chinamen many fine locusts and Phasmida, as well as numbers of handsome beetles.

When I arrived at the mines, on the 14th of March, I had collected in the four preceding months 320 different kinds of beetles. In less than a fortnight I had doubled this number, an average of about 24 new species every day. On one day I collected 76 different kinds, of which 34 were new to me. By the end of April I had more than a thousand species, and they then went on increasing at a slower rate; so that I obtained altogether in Borneo about two thousand distinct kinds, of which all but about a hundred were collected at this place, and on scarcely more than a square mile of ground. The most numerous and most interesting groups of beetles were the longicorns and Rhynchophora, both pre-eminently wood-feeders. The former, characterized by their graceful forms and long antennæ, were especially numerous, amounting to nearly three hundred species, nine-tenths of which were entirely new, and many of them remarkable for their large size, strange forms, and beautiful coloring. The latter correspond to our weevils and allied groups, and in the tropics are exceedingly numerous and varied, often swarming upon dead timber, so that I sometimes obtained fifty or sixty different kinds in a day. My Bornean collections of this group exceeded five hundred species.

My collection of butterflies was not large; but I obtained some rare and very handsome insects, the most remarkable being the Ornithoptera Brookeana, one of the most elegant species known. This beautiful creature has very long and pointed wings, almost resembling a sphinx moth in shape.

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