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Wáhs and Benturongs on the other. I pretend not to account for, I only report, the frugivorous habits, gentle disposition, ursine arm, feline paw, profoundly cross-hinged yet grinding jaws, and purely triturant and almost ruminant molars, of Ailurus; and to these I now proceed to add, however they may square or not with systems which Cuvier himself was forward to deprecate the premature march of, the details of the soft anatomy of Ailurus, merely adding in this place with reference to the socks of Ailurus, that we have examples of this peculiarity not only among the plantigrade Bears (Ursus Maritimus) but also among the digitigrade and purely carnivorous Weasels (Lutra latrix.)
Soft anatomy. The anus, peroneum, and prepuce, are entirely free from glands and pores. There is no trace of the Cacodean anal glands and pores of the Mustelidæ, or of the Euodean preputial ones of the Viverridæ, so that in this remarkable respect Ailurus is affined to the Feline or Ursine, and sundered alike from the Musteline and from the Viverrine groups. Anus large, nude, void of all trace of gland or pore. All the proximate parts covered with hair. Perineum simple. Scrotum wanting. Testes long, narrow, concealed in the groin. Penis. directed forwards, dog-like, and furnished with a small simple bone. Vulva simple. Uterus bicornute with large horns. Teats eight, and ventral, or rather disposed in fours, whereof the upper 4 are sub-pectoral, and the lower 4, sub-inguinal. Intestinal canal five lengths of the animal, nine feet long, of great equal diameter, void of cœcum and about one inch in width. Stomach large, simple, membranous, thick coated and glandular towards the lower orifice, hemispheroidal, with terminal orifices, of which the lower one for about 3 inches presents the character of a subsidiary stomach or glandulous neck to the ordinary stomach. Great diameter of the stomach 11 to 12 inches. Small, 4 to 5 inches, exclusive of the glandulous neck. Spleen tongueshaped, purple red, 54 inches by 14. Lungs 6 lobed. Liver 6 lobed and a lobulus. Gall bladder very large, ovoid, occupying the whole centre of the largest lobe of the liver and passing through from side to side of it. Tongue smooth, simple, not unusually extensile. Pupil of the eye round ordinarily, and but slightly. Third eyelid capable of being brought over the whole organ nearly.
The above details of the soft anatomy, like those of the hard, offer
nothing very decisive as to the affinities of Ailurus with reference to the grand divisional types. Looking to the chylopoetic viscera, for example, the proportionate length of the intestinal canal is much nearer to that of the Cats than to that of the Bears, whilst the absence of cœcum is more Ursine than Feline. In the Bears (Helarctos) the intestines are 12 or 13 lengths of the animal; in the Cats but 3 to 4; in the Weasels, Viverrines and Paradoxures, 4 to 6; the greater lengths belonging to the latter two, which nearly agree in this respect with the Wáhs, but differ from them by the presence of the cœcum, which again the Weasels with but 4 lengths of intestine want, like the Ailuri with 5 lengths. Upon the whole, though the foregone details of the structure and of the habits of Ailurus cannot fail to be highly interesting to all real students of Zoology, yet the structural particulars want completeness fully to meet a case of so much difficulty, although if a similar amount of information were forthcoming relative to all the several animals composing that group, with which I suppose Ailurus to be more immediately connected, the question of proximate affinities at least would be placed in a tolerably clear light. The genera to which I allude are Hemigalea, Nandinia, Ambliodon vel Paguma, Cynogale, Cryptoprocta, with a Viverrine dental formula-and Galidia, Galidictis, (Galictis of Geoff), Bassaris, Arctictis* and Cercoleptes, whose dental formula appears to be, at least as to number and general character of teeth, identical with that of Ailurus, due allowance being made for the disturbing influence of deciduousness in the pre-molars.
The fortunate circumstance of our being enabled in regard to the last named genus, or Cercoleptes, to refer to the investigations of a Cuvier,† an Owen,‡ and a Humboldt, § exercised upon living and perfect samples (not mere skins or bones) corroborates as far as it goes, the correctness of the above conjectures, which are further confirmed by Mr. Cantor's scanter but valuable notices of Arctictis.
There are some valuable particulars relative to Arctictis by Mr. Cantor in No. 171 of the Journal. The preputial gland and linear vertical pupil of the eye, and presence of a cœcum are notable coincidences with Paradoxurus and deviations from Ailurus.
+ F. Cuvier apud Menagerie Royale, quoted by Griffith, Regne II. 266-9.
Zool. Jourl. Aug. 25, 1835.
Travels as quoted by Griffith. loc. cit.
Asiatic Journal, Bengal, No. 171, pp. 192-4.
It is thus demonstrated that the Potos of the new world represent with considerable accuracy the Pandas or Wáhs of the old world; that the two have much conformity of structure and of habits; and that both exhibit that leaning towards the Lemurs whereby the perfectly vegetalivorous diet, quasi ruminant teeth and scull, extreme gentleness of aspect and of nature, slow movements, and somnolent propensities of the Wáhs are perhaps best explained. Those who would trace to full advantage the identities of organization and of economy that exist between the Potos and Wáhs, must compare at first hand the statements of Messrs. Owen and Cuvier as referred to below, with the details of this paper.
The differences are as follows. Cercoleptes differs from Ailurus by the more confined palmation of the digits (to 2nd phalanx only) by the nakedness of the soles, by the large eye, with higher contractility of pupil, by the lesser development of the external ear, by the prehensile tail, suctorial tongue, limited number of teats (two), absence of moustaches, and possibly by some diversities of dentition, though so far as may be judged by description (Regne II. 267) the discrepancies must be inconsiderable; and lastly, by the non-terminal position of the upper orifice of the stomach. The identities consisting in the proportion and form of the chylopoietic viscera, in the long horned uterus, in the large bony tentorium, in the wanting clavicle, the simple anus and prepuce, and in the smoothness of the tongue, are among those best worthy of note in regard to structure, whilst in reference to manners and habits, so far as these are reported, the only differences would seem to consist in the nocturnal, not crepuscular activity of the Potos, in their honey-sucking or suctorial propensities, like to those of the Ratel and Labiate Bear, and lastly, in the greater addiction to tree haunting and to clambering there by the help of the prehensile tail. Again, the suggested Lemurine resemblances of Cercoleptes hold wonderfully true of Ailurus, and hardly less so (though this makes against the Cat-toed grouping) the Procyonine and Nasuan resemblances, as any one may satisfy himself who will compare the foregone account of Ailurus with what he will find in the Regne relative to the Lemurs* and to the Racoons and Coatis.† With respect to these Lemurine affinities, now demonstrated by science, but first suggested by unlettered † And II. 248-262.
* Regne I. 322-332.
experience, we have in the story of Bosman's Negroes as in that of Mr. Gardner's Máli, a strong proof how "practice will creep where theory can hardly soar;" for the Negroes decided before Cuvier or Geoffroy that the Potos were Lemur allies, just as the Máli multiplied his tea plants by grafting on the Camelia (Kisi) at a time when eminent Botanists held the notion to be absurd!*
That the second series of animals I have grouped together above are more nearly related among themselves than to the first series seems probable; but that the first series also blend with them in some remarkable points any one may satisfy himself by comparing Dr. Cantor's details of Arctictis (Journal, No. 171) and mine of Paradoxurus (Trans. Vol. 19), with those above given and referred to, when he will perceive that the Benturong, notwithstanding its Ailurine affinities, is linked to the Screwtails and not to the Wáhs, by its large linear-pupiled eyes, nocturnal habits, sub-carnivorous regimen, cœcum and euodean preputial apparatus, and to the Potos by the two first marks; whilst the peculiarities of the tails of the three animals, though not quite identical, yet constitute a common and antiailurine feature. I must not enlarge further however at present on the subject of these real and supposed affinities.
Ere long I trust to be able to complete my report of the Ailurine osteology, and in the meanwhile I shall terminate this account of the Wáh with a full statement of the dimensions of a mature male and female.
* A fact which occurred in 1823-4, at Cathmandu, where fine Chinese tea plants have long existed, brought from China in 1790, by Cashmiris, from which Dr. Abel was abun dantly and speedily supplied to his surprise, by the Máli's practical science, who when questioned by Dr. A.'s desire, why he had thought of grafting a Thea on a Camelia replied with greater surprise, because the two were evidently of the same genus (Ját)! The Kisi is indigenous and abundant in Nepál. The teas flower and fruit abundantly, almost perpetually, but the seeds seldom vegetate. The Kisi is as abundant at Dorjiling as at Cathmandu, and the Chinese tea plant flourishes as well here as there, so that if more plantations are needed, here is a fine site for some.
And now, the extent to which the above paper has insensibly run, warns me to postpone my proposed remarks on the Paradoxures to a future occasion, merely referring the reader who may desire in the meanwhile to compare the organization and habits of those animals and of the Wáhs as above given, to the 19th Vol. Asiatic Society's Transactions, where he will find ample details relative to the hard and soft anatomy, and to the manners of the sub-Himalayan Screwtails, of which there are four species; one, Nepalensis, which is the Grayii of Bennett, but priorly named by me; two, Hirsutus, the Bondar of Gray, of which Pennantii is not a Synonyme; three, Laniger, an entirely new and nivicolan species clad in wool, of an uniform isabelline brown colour, and four, quadriscriptus noster (new?) which is probably the Penantii of Gray, Bondar verus being unstriped, and this striped.