Visual display of the Aldo Leopold papers : 9/25/10-4 : Species and Subjects

				
OUTDOOR    AMERICA 
t    a Thsan  9900f The "Flushin Rin d" As a Npw Gamo- Manaaimn

 
VZ ~V I  W 
 
Puts 4 horsepower 
 
F   Air~ 20441- U5  0-0 4 
 
Gave Its Name to 
TAXICAB 
Taxicab is an abbreviation of tax/mgr. 
riolet-a vehicle carrying an instrument for 
automatically registering the fare.The name 
cabriolet is the diminutive of the French cab- 
riok, meaning "a leap" like that of a goat, 
and was applied to this type of carriage 
because of its light, bounding motion. 
Cabriole came from the Italian capriola 
meaning "a somersault," from Latin caper 
"a he-goat," capra "a she-goat." There are 
thousands of such stories about the origins 
of English words in 
WEBSTER'S NEW 
INTERNATIONAL 
DICTIONARY 
'7he Supreme Authority- 
Write for Free Booklet, which 
suggests how you may obtain a 
command of English through 
the. knowledge of word 
~)  origis. 
G. & C. MERRIAM 
COMPANY 
 
Ainmlan & Imported  Arms & Parts " 
Prpt Atf.,fie, To Y- orde 
=     tSteokinArnerica, FineNewRifles, All Mak 1htoi8. 
A A   nitinTrap& Field Guns, All Shooting A-eesses 
New Shot Gun Barrels, Expert Gunsrnithing, Restockig, 
*en Ropring*.Ai, Riles&Pistols^PapecTargets.5e 
Desribe  ad illustrated in our complete Arns Cataot 
-Send 25C In stamps for this 144 page catalog.-.n 
 
By A. J. 
Conservation Ware 
 
N the course of his studies on the Hun- 
garian partridge at the University of 
Michigan, Mr. R. E. Yeatter discovered 
that the largest single "leak" in the propa- 
gation of these birds was their destruction 
by agricultural implements during the nest- 
ing season. 
Mr. Yeatter's work showed that the cut- 
ting time for hay and alfalfa coincides al- 
most exactly with the hatching time of the 
Hungarian, and in the course of mowing 
many nests are lost. Sometimes the hen 
bird is killed when the knife runs over her 
while she is on the nest; sometimes the 
eggs are destroyed; in any event the re- 
moval of the cover causes desertion, and 
hence the complete loss of the nest. 
 
The flushing rod in 
In an effort to cooperate with Mr. Yeat- 
ter and supplement his findings, if possible, 
I conducted a survey of Hungarian part- 
ridges in Racine County, Wisconsin, dur- 
ing the month of June, 1931. I found that 
mowing time and hatching time coincided 
in this locality also, and starts the first 
week in June. About 95 per cent of the 
nests are located in hay or alfalfa fields. 
The Hungarian nest is built on the ground 
and consists of fine dried grass lined with 
feathers from the hen. It is cup-shaped 
and has a depth of about three inches and 
a diameter of six inches. The average 
nest located contained 15 eggs, but it is 
not uncommon to find one holding as many 
as 23. The egg is cream colored and 
shaped like a pheasant egg, but is only 
two-thirds as large. 
After watching the behavior of hens 
from several dozen nests which I located, 
I learned that if the hen is flushed during 
the first week of incubation, she will not 
return to her nest. Desertion always fol- 
lows such early disturbances. However, 
if she is flushed just before hatching time 
she will return. For locating the nests I 
used a device originated by Mr. Yeatter- 
two men drag the edge of the field with a 
40-foot rope. When the hen flushed the 
nest could be located and marked in some 
way so that it could be avoided with the 
mower. 
T HE rope-dragging device was effective, 
I found, but it had one serious flaw. 
It takes considerable time and trouble to 
 
Peterson 
den of Wisconsin 
locate nests this way, and at this time of 
the year farmers are so busy that even 
though they are interested in the Hun- 
garian partridge they are likely to feel 
that they cannot take the time necessary 
to find the nests before they mow. 
It occurred to me that what was needed 
was some automatic device for locating the 
nests, so that without too much trouble 
the mower could skip the nest a few feet 
and thereby save a large percentage of the 
annual increase of these birds. 
With this in mind I devised the "flush- 
ing rod" which is shown in the photo. 
This is simply a 12-foot rod of cold rolled 
steel Y of an inch in thickness, which is 
attached to the mower in front of the cut- 
 
action on the farm. 
 
ter in such a way that flushes the partridge 
before the cutter reaches her. One end of 
the rod is threaded and is attached to the 
outside end of the cutter. The other end 
is hooked to the britchen strap of the har- 
ness at the shoulder of the near horse. 
All makes of mowers have a place to 
which this can be attached. 
I made several tests of the rod, with the 
assistance of Mr. Radtke, the farmer 
shown in the photograph, and flushed sev- 
eral species of song birds and one partridge. 
From the trials we were assured that there 
was plenty of time after the bird was 
flushed for the farmer to stop the mower. 
If a nest was found, it could then be saved 
by leaving an island of uncut hay. 
The rod does not harm the hay or al- 
falfa in any way, nor does it bother the 
team. Other nice features of the rod are 
its cheapness and its simplicity; it costs 
only between 25c and 30c to make and it 
can be installed on the mower in three min- 
utes. 
The Wisconsin Department of Conser- 
vation has decided that it will make up 100 
or 200 of these flushing rods and place 
them with the farmers next spring, as a 
means of stopping at least a part of this 
nesting mortality.  The attitude of the 
farmers is shown by the fact that those 
with whom I have talked have already 
spoken for the entire prospective supply. 
Sportsmen and conservation departments 
in other states, I think, could enlist the 
cooperation of farmers in the same way 
that Wisconsin is doing. 
 
Spin-Aeld- Mass. 
 
F%      :                                              I