Edwards, George, 1694-1773. / A natural history of birds. Most of which have not been figur'd or describ'd, and others very little known from obscure or too brief descriptions without figures, or from figures very ill design'd.
The spur-winged water hen, pp. 48-[Plate] 48 ff.
( 48 ) The SPUR-WINGED WATER HE N. T H H IS Bird is of the [Viter Hen-kind; [iTZughby has defcrib'd Something like T it as to Shape, but of other Colours; the Print ihews the Bird of its natural Bignefs; the Bill is near an Inch and a half long, of a yellow Colour, the Nofirils fituate on each Side about the middle of the Bill; it hath at the Bafis of the upper Mandible a bald Skin, as in other MVater Hens, but different, in that it is a loofe Flap, fcollop'd with three Scollops on the Top, join'd to the Head at the Bottom, of a yellowilh Colour; I fuppofe it was Red when the Bird was living, fince that Part is delcrib'd to be fo in the Birds Margrave faw in Brafi; the Crown of the Head is Brown, intermixed with fome dusky Spots; from the Corners of the Mouth, through the Eyes, to the hind Part of the Neck on each Side, is drawn a black Line, above the Eyes are white Lines; the under Side of the Head, Neck, Breaft, Belly, Thighs, and under Coverts of the Tail are White, on the Sides of the Belly and Thighs, are fprinkled a few red Marks; the hinder Part of the Neck is Black, which by degrees becomes Brown in the beginning of the Back, the lower Part of the Back, Rump, and upper Side of the Tail, are of a purplilh inclining to a red Rofe-colour; the Feathers about the Shoulders, or fetting on of the Wings, are of a light Brown, the Quills of the Wings are of a fine Green-colour tip'd with Black, except, a few of the fmaller next the Back, which are Brown; the firfi Coverts above the Quills are Black, next above is a Row of Brown, the refi of the Coverts are of a Rofe or purplifh Colour; the Covert-feathers within-fide the Wings, are of a redifh Brown; what is moft extraor- dinary in this Bird, is a Pair of firong, thick, fhort, yellow Spurs on the Joints of the Wings turning inward, fo that they point toward each other; the Legs are very long, and bare of Feathers above the Knees; the middle Toe for Length, equals the Leg, the fide Toes a little Shorter, the back Toe is pretty long, having a Claw or Nail fziaight like a Needle, and longer than the Toe, which together equal the Length of the L.eg, the back Toe is only one Joint, the inner two, the middle three, and the ( Stcr Toe fbur. I have been the more particular in defcrihing the Joints of the Toes in this Blird, becatue this Kind is -aid in the Defcriptions I find in Jf ill/hl; y to have four Joints in each Toe ; the three forward Toes have long fiender Claws, pretty ftraight both Legs, Feet and Claws of a Lead or bluifh Ath-colour. This Bird had been pre~Irv'd a good while in Spirits by Sir [Jies Sloane, who lent it me that I might make a Drawing of it I was told it was brought from C(irt /agemna i Soltb _'A?1eica. , w r.Pv
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