Far Away And Long Ago A History Of My Early Life By W. H. Hudson


In summer we had no fear of this creature, as it buries itself in the
soil and aestivates during the - Page 190
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In Summer We Had No Fear Of This Creature, As It Buries Itself In The Soil And Aestivates During The Hot, Dry Season, And Comes Forth In Wet Weather.

I never knew any spot where these creatures were more abundant than in that winter lake of ours, and at night in the flooded time we used to lie awake listening to their concerts.

The _Ceratophrys_ croaks when angry, and as it is the most truculent of all batrachians it works itself into a rage if you go near it. Its first efforts at chanting or singing sounds like the deep, harsh, anger-croak prolonged, but as the time goes on they gradually acquire, night by night, a less raucous and a louder, more sustained and far- reaching sound. There was always very great variety in the tones; and while some continued deep and harsh - the harshest sound in nature - others were clearer and not unmusical; and in a large number there were always a few in the scattered choir that out-soared all the others in high, long-drawn notes, almost organ-like in quality.

Listening to their varied performance one night as we lay in bed, my sporting brother proposed that on the following morning we should drag one of the cattle-troughs to the lake to launch it and go on a voyage in quest of these dangerous, hateful creatures and slay them with our javelins. It was not an impossible scheme, since the creatures were to be seen at this season swimming or floating on the surface, and in our boat or canoe we should also detect them as they moved about over the green sward at the bottom.

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