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rous diggers, dwelling in cavities of their own formation, whereas the wahs are vegetalivorous climbers, frequenting trees much, but breeding and feeding chiefly on the ground, and having their retreat in the natural resiliencies of rocks. They are monogamous, and live in pairs or small families, consisting of the parents and offspring, who all remain together till the next brood is about to appear, when the mother drives the grown young off. How long the female gestates I cannot learn, but she brings forth amid the recesses of the rocks in spring or early summer, almost always two at a birth, one of which is frequently much larger than the other, though the sexes at maturity hardly differ in size and not at all in aspect, nor the young from the parents in the latter respect. The Ailuri feed on fruits, tuberous roots, thick sprouts such as those of the Chinese bamboo, * acorns,
beech mast and eggs.
The last they are very fond of, and eating them is the nearest approach they make to animal food, unless we must also add to the list of their eatables the young of birds and of small mammals—which I doubt, though I am assured of the fact. In general the wáhs eschew flesh, fish, insects, reptiles, absolutely. But they love milk and ghee, and constantly make their way furtively into remote dairies and cowherds' cottages to possess themselves of those luxuries. Their ordinary feeding times are early morn and eve. They sleep a deal in the day and dislike strong lights, though not nocturnal in their habits of seeking food. Their manners are staid and tranquil: their movements slow and deliberate : their tempers placid and docile, so that they are easily tamed and may be suffered to go abroad soon after they are taken, even though mature, and still more if young. They are delicate animals and cannot endure heat at all, nor cold well, amply and entirely as they are clad in fur. They are not pugnacious nor noisy, but remarkably the contrary of both. As climbers no quadrupeds can surpass, and very few equal them, but on the ground they move awkwardly as well as slowly, yet without any special embarrassment. Their slow action is a perfectly plantigrade walk; their quick, a series of bounds with the wrists touching the ground, but not the tarse, nor of course the heel, and the back always, though more especially in quick movements, much arched, but the tail little raised even under excitement. Saving the last particular, such in action is the Marten of these Hills (Flavigula) and the
• Hence one of their names, viz. Nigálya-pónya.
Urva and Helictis, and, in a less degree the Badger, but not the BearBadger (Ursitax) nor the Bear, whose backs are uncurved, and their bounds more directly forward, and less digital quoad tle hind feet, when in quick movement. In its power and mode of climbing the Wah most resembles the Paradoxuri, but also much the Martens, and far surpasses the Bears which can climb only in youth, and in descending are obliged to let themselves slip or slide down, tail foremost, whereas the Wahs, like the Potos, throughout their lives climb steadily and firmly, upwards and downwards, without any necessity for “turning their backs on themselves,” or any dependance on slope or on spring, their high scansorial faculty being the joint result of their ursine powerful and highly articulated limbs and of their sharp feline talons, as in the case of the Paradoxuri, animals which the Ailuri intirely resemble in the substance, and I think* also in the details, of these most singular structural combinations, combinations to which we must also refer the mode of fighting peculiar to both genera, viz. by grappling and scratching with all four extremities at once. Neither the Paradoxures nor the Ailures are wont to use the erect attitude of the Bears on these occasions. On the contrary, they roll on the ground, whilst hugging and tearing each other : nor did I ever observe either employ the hands as the Racoons and Coatis and Bears do to facilitate the process of eating. The Wahs, as I have observed above, sleep much by day, though not strictly noctivagrant, and they repose frequently in an upright attitude resting on the large broad palma and planta with the head tucked between the fore-legs and under the chest, like Racoonst and Lemurs, I but more generally, like Dogs or Cats, that is, laid on the side and rolled into a ball, the head being concealed by the bushy tail which is carefully drawn round so as to cover the eyes and exclude the light. The Wahs have little of that eminent development of the senses which distinguishes most animals as opposed to man : their touch, sight, and hearing are dull; their smell not very acute, though the quickest sense they have; and hence they are easily taken, having moreover little speed, cunning, or ferocity to protect them.
I speak doubtfully, because I have not the entire skeleton of Ailurus now to refer to, nor copy of the paper above alluded to as sent to the Zool. Society in 1833, in which the hard anatomy was throughout detailed from several perfect specimens. + Regne Animal, II. p. 249.
Idem. I. p. 325.
I have had many brought to me and have kept several for a year or two in Nepal, feeding them on rice and milk or milk only, or eggs, all of which they like, but wholly refuse rats, fish, insects, snakes, and rarely and reluctantly taking flesh of any kind. I have often put a small live fowl into their cage, but seldom knew them kill and never eat it, though if it approached them too nearly they would rush at it and give it a severe and possibly fatal blow with the fore amenity of their ordinary disposition is finely pourtrayed in their gentle countenances, and, as they are free from all offensive odour, they would make nice pets for ladies, particularly when young. They drink by lapping with the tongue and moderately. They hiss and spit like cats when angered, and, if extremely so, utter a short deep grunt like that of a young Bear; but ordinarily they are quite silent. The flesh is never eaten : but from the prepared pelage caps are made, and that is the limit of their æconomic value.
Names and species.- To the Tibetans, Nepaulese, and Sikimites the Ailuri are known by the names Wáh, Oá, U'któnka, Saknam, Thóng. wáh and Thó-kyé. Also, Yé and Nigálya pónya. I never heard the
Panda,” nor did I ever see a specimen answering to the description, in point of colour, of the Panda.* Wherefore I think it probable that the Nipaulese and Sikim species may be different from the Panda, and that the latter is a species peculiar to Bhútán. Under this impression and in order to complete my account of the former, I shall add the description of its colour and subjoin a fresh trivial name, Panda or Fulvens of Cuvier is as yet the only recorded species.
General form and aspect.-Ailurus Ochraceus, Nepalese Ailurus. Above deep Ochreous red; below and the ears, entire limbs, and tip of tail jet black.t Head and tail paler than the body and fulvous : this paler hue displayed in frequent rings upon the tail, and in a vague diluting merely of the red tinge upon the head. Face, chin and lining
* Nat. Library, XIII. 217, and Pl, 17: Zool. Journal, ut supra.
+ Thus the Wáh is one of the infra nigrescent group, a group comprising Ursitax, Urva, Mellivora, Galictis (Bell), Meles, Taxidea, Eira, Arctonyx, Ailurus, and consequently this peculiarity would seem to be but a doubtful index of essential conformities, though perhaps we may thus be guided to the clue of that singular interlucing whereby the Ursine-taloned or digging, and the Feline-taloned or scratching Subplantigrades so remarkably cross and recross each other, as though it were possible to reconcile a Pangoline with a Tigrine nail !!
of ears, white. From eyes to gape a broad vertical line of ochreous red, blending with the dark inferior surface. Hairy pads albescent. Moustaches white Eyes deep brown. Nude muzzle black. Snout to vent 22 inches. Ilead 51 Tail 16. Height 9 to 9. Weight 7 to 8 lbs. Pelage very thick, loosely applied to the skin, of two sorts; the outer hair, rather harsh than fine, straight, of moderate equal length (1} inch) and covering every part of the animal save the extremity of its nose; the inner vest, shorter, sparer and woolly. Internally the pelage is dusky; externally, deep ochreous; and on the back the hairs are more or less tipt with fulvous, especially in old age. In their general appearance the Wahs are quite unique. They might be de. scribed like the Racoons as small Bears with long tails, did not their short sharp visage and eminently bland expression of countenance sunder them intirely from Ursine semblances, and approximate them to the Lemurs, particularly those typed by Galago Macaco : but to be apprehended they must be seen.* They have a short sharp conic face ending in a neat round mufle in which the dog-like nostrils are pierced antero laterally; a small unprominent eye situated nearer to the nose than to the ear, and having a round nearly unchangeable pupil ; rather small moustaches and minor tufts over the eyes, behind the gape, on the cheeks and on the chin; a broad rounded head; moderate sized, highly but remotely placed ears of a narrow conoid form tending to a point and almost hid by their ample confluent lining and tufts; helix void of fissure ; simple conch ; small basal tragus and antitragus; a longish yet thick neck and body ; short strong plantigrade limbs ending in large very mobile pentadactylous feet, armed with feline talons and enveloped in woolly socks with Leporine completeness; and, lastly, a long thick cylindrico-tapering tail which is trailed like a fox's brush and neither convolved with the Paradoxuri, nor prehensile with the Arctictes and Potos, close as undoubtedly is the relationship of these genera, and especially the last named, to Ailurus.
Osteology-Scull.—The scull of Ailurus possesses characters quite unique ; its extreme sphericity, its great height, the surprising curvature not only of the superior but of the inferior outline also, the ex
See the accompanying admirable sketches showing the animal in all its ordinary attitudes, and done from life.
treme bend of the rami of the lower jaw, the enormous size of the posteal and vertical portion of the lower jaw, the elevate position of its condyles, the small size and inward inclination of the occipital plane, the high position of the occiput with respect to the whole scull, lower jaw included, its low position with respect to the encephalon, or generally to the whole scull without the lower jaw, the great size of the ale or crura of the occiput, the extreme smallness of the auricular tympana and generally of the organs of sense, the very deep cylindric hinging of the jaws, yet so as to admit much lateral motion, the breadth of the upper jaw and teeth, the narrowness of the lower jaw and teeth, and the consequent high lateral action whereby alone their crowns can grind on each other, the perfectly triturant character of the molars, consisting not only in their breadth and flatness of crown, but in the admission into their composition of the soft dark substance of ruminant teeth-all these are characters of the scull which in their combination it would be in vain to look for in any other genus of the Carnivora, and many of which seem to approximate the Ailuri rather to the Ruminant than Ferine model. To the cat's scull there is not more resemblance than to the Bear's, for in Ailurus as compared with Felis the culmenal line is as much more bent down a parte post, as it is less so a parte ante ; and short and inclined as is the face in Ailurus, it is as much longer and straighter than that of Felis as it is shorter and less straight than that of Ursus. The general style and proportion of the nasals, frontals and parietals of Ailurus are much nearer to those of the same bones in the Screwtails, the Martens, the Badgers, the Bear-Badgers, the Helictes and the Urvas, than in the Cats or Bears; and in the form and size of the orbits and of the frontals there is an extreme similitude amounting almost to identity with the former-an utter contrast with the cats, with Ursus less contrariety. In Ailurus the nasals are short and a little retroussé; the frontals moderately broad and arched lengthwise and across; the temporal depressions moderate but distinct; the orbits small and very incomplete ; the zygomæ very ample and terminating posteally and inferiorly in large semi-cylindric processes that serve to hinge the jaws so completely as to render separation of them eren more difficult than in Meles or Taxidea ; the parietes ample in length, breadth and swell, though the cristæ, as well as the temporal fosses, be decided—as much so as in the Badgers and Screwtails, more so than