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the other two, one is disengaged in the air and the other in the act of alighting or rising. But the horse, the observer will say, gallops by strokes seemingly, using a renewal of efforts, his power is exerted in diag onal lines. Thus the action of the near fore and off hind leg moves in close sequence, off fore and near hind following. The sequence of action between each fore foot and its diagonal hind on the ground is so blended as to make the exertion one of continuous leverage. However we may regard his action, the horse's equilibrium is perfect. The two lateral limbs move in sequence, so that the fore is always carried forward before the hind has passed the center of gravity. I have hitherto observed the movements in diagonal and parallel lines; the fore limbs, in each direction, preceding the hind, with the exception of the first move in the gallop and canter, required as a preparatory and balancing move, not amounting to a full stride.
I cannot admit that either the horse in galloping or any other quadruped flies through the air by means of a succession of bounds. All jumpers are slow movers, and the horse loses time by every jump he takes. The faculty of leaping is reserved for a particular purpose, and not employed as a means of fast progression. A little serpent will go twice a broad road on its belly before a frog will get once over it by jumps.
If by any device a steam-ship could be so constructed that its paddles were made to strike the ocean waves as the horse's feet are implanted on the ground, with what speed, steadiness and safety would it advance? If we watch a race where the upper part of the horses and riders are alone in sight, because some obstacle such as a hedge or wall hides the movement of the horse's legs, we shall see directly that the horse does not jump or oscillate, but moves evenly as a bird flies, or rather as the masts of a steamship when the jerking movement of the machinery is in like manner out of sight. Moreover, the distance at which each foot is implanted from where it was taken up is no way dependent on mere length of limb, but represents the product of all the motive powers exerted; the velocity at which the body is moving through the air determines the distance of stride.
If the physiology of progression in the horse can be made plain, such knowledge will, by leading to a better appreciation of symmetry, be of the first importance in practice. It will be recognized in the tenor of this essay that height and long legs do not necessarily give long stride, and we may come to understand how it was that Daniel O'Rourke and Little Wonder, when under fifteen hands high, beat for the Derby in their respective years good competitors which were a hand higher than themselves. We shall further see how it is that a little animal like the fox is able to run for two hours before animals similarly constituted and much larger. The same law is in operation in one case as in the other.
I will conclude with a few remarks about the feet of young horses of different ages before being put to work. If two pieces of advice which I have given be carried out the feet will not require much art; if the stock can have plenty of space the friction caused by exercise will keep the hoof in proper form, and the inner structure will by the same influence be duly developed. Besides this, if horses when brought under cover, stand on a dry hard bottom, the feet will acquire form and strength. Periodical visitations, if to wash and clean the feet, should by all means be adopted;
though if the frogs are free from thrushes there is no necessity for operating on the feet. Paring the feet I do not think advisable. Once or twice in the winter if the colts cannot get room out of doors, a blunt old rasp may be taken to equalize the plantar surface of the feet, and a little lowering of the outside may be necessary, especially with narrow chested colts. The greater wearing down of the inside is apt to twist the foot and pastern and even tends to turn the elbow in. Whenever mares or foals are deranged in health a veterinary surgeon should be called in early, as nothing prescribed by anticipation is likely to meet the requirement. NEW VETERINARY COLLEGE, EDINBURGH.
A LETTER FROM INDIA.
HURRAH, ZILLAH HUDDEA,
My Dear Sir-I write to thank you for the trouble you took in sending. certain books to my father for me. They are at present on their way out here from London.
I am an Indigo planter in Huddea, one of the most fertile districts in India; or, I may say, in the world. Native agriculture here is very poor, but owing to the wonderful productiveness of the soil, splendid crops are produced twice a year-rice in the hot season, and oil-seeds, pepper, wheat oats, barley, pulse of different kinds, sugar-cane, cotton, and many other crops in the cold season. Since the Russian war the cultivation of oil-seeds has been very great, and as the natives of lower Bengal never manure of irrigate their lands, as the natives up country do, the exhausting nature of the oil-seed crops is telling very severely, and the produce of the lands has within the last few years been reduced one-third. A large quantity of land is inundated every year. On these lands which do not quickly dry up Anum dhau or water rice (in contradistinction to Aous dhau, high land rice) is sown.
Indigo is principally sown on the "churs," or banks of rivers, which are formed of silt brought down by the Ganges during the annual inunda tion which takes place in August and September. The Indigo is either sown down in October, (along with a crop of mustard or linseed, which is cut in March), or in April and May, and is cut in July or August, and manufactured at once while green, not dried, as I believe it is in Madras and Guatamala.
Four steam plows have been started in indigo concerns in this district, and have been found to answer extremely well. Fowler's steam plow has turned out much superior to any other. Where a sufficient amount of silt is deposited cultivation is not required, the seed being scattered on the mud as the water subsides, but the strength of the land on the high parts of the churs is so great that jungle gets up in an extraordinary manner, and it is impossible to clear the land without very deep cultivation, and for this the steam plow is admirably adapted.
Tea is grown to a great extent in Assam, Sylhet and Cachar provinces, to the northeast of this, and there are numerous silk factories in this part of the country. This soil is admirably adapted for coffee, many planters growing their own coffee, but none has been found as yet enterprising enough to enter into competition with Ceylon.
I am afraid these particulars will not interest you much, but if I can be in any way useful to you or your Society, please have no hesitation in ap
plying to me. I lead a lonely life, and have lots of time on my hands, and anything I could do for you would afford me the greatest pleasure.
There is to be an agricultural exhibition held in Calcutta in January, 1864, when prizes will be given for the best specimens of country produce, live stock and agricultural implements. As all the railway and steamboat companies have consented to bring things to be exhibited from all parts of India and the Colonies, free of charge, and as the exhibition has been got up by Government, and all Government servants are exerting themselves to their utmost to obtain contributions, the exhibition will be a very fine one. I will send you all particulars as soon as I can procure them. With many thanks for your great kindness,
I remain, my dear sir,
Yours very sincerely,
Hon. B. P. JOHNSON, Secretary.
Jonathan Edgecomb, Lima, Ind., December 8th, 1863:
Hon. B. P. JOHNSON:
Dear Sir-I have protracted writing to you for some time, owing to ill health. I have been the most debilitated for about two months past that I have ever been in my life, and I am now in the seventy-sixth year of my age.
I made out to attend our county fair in October, 15th and 16th, although I was very feeble at the time. It was an entire success. Our new Agricultural Hall was completed on the Penn Yan (N. Y.) model, 38 by 72, with a floor planed and matched, and the hall well lighted. It is two feet larger each way than the Penn Yan hall.
There was the best representation of stock of all kinds, vegetables and fruit, exhibited, that I ever saw in the county for ten years, being about the time I have lived in this State. Our receipts at the gates were double at the last fair they were ever any previous year. The ladies' department added very much to the pleasure of the multitude.
The white and bald wheat the past season was a failure, with a little exception, caused by the fly; while the red and bearded wheat generally escaped the fly, and was a very large yield.
The prospect for a large corn crop in this country never was better until the frost of Saturday night, August 29th, which killed the growth of the corn, and is a drawback on the quantity of the corn at least one-third throughout our western country, and on the quality one-half. My crop on thirty acres of prairie land is four or five hundred bushels less than it would have been, and of second quality; yet there is much good corn in this coun-try which was planted early, and we have some of it.
It is evident that the corn crop through the western States is poor, from the great number of light hogs coming into market to be slaughtered, especially at Chicago.
I have just received the November number of your Agricultural State Journal, and most respectfully thank you for the favor. I am happy to learn that the late State Fair at Utica was so well attended by practical farmers, and the Empire State appears to still hold on her course-onward [AG. TRANS.]
and upward-by tillers of the soil, especially by gentlemen who have been laboring for years to improve on the various breeds of cattle, horses, sheep and swine. I am of the opinion that you will not see a retrogade very soon of the price of sheep, to the old notch of from $1 to $1.50 per head for good sheep. I have often thought that one hundred sheep was of more value to a farmer than a good horse at $150. I once paid, nearly forty years since, when residing in Saratoga county, N. Y., $200 for forty ewes, with the privilege of the use of a Saxon imported male for the season, and I think I improved my quality of sheep in so doing. He was the best buck in Saratoga county at that time.
I like the suggestion of our friend, Hon. Geo. Geddes, in recommending a trial of all the grain gathering and separating, or thrashing and cleaning machines, from corn to grass seed; I hope the recommendation will be fully consummated. I think in this department you must have been fully represented at Utica, as Mr. Geddes states the number on exhibition at three hundred and forty-two.
It will be difficult to accomplish to the entire satisfaction of exhibitors, and the multitude of farmers who will be present, as also the committee, even in two weeks time, from the fact that to cut wheat when it should be, and thrash it the same week, (except in very dry weather,) is not doing justice to the machine. Wheat should be in a mow, or well stacked, at least four weeks before it is in good condition to thrash; and every machine on trial ought to thrash at least fifty bushels. Weather fine and pleasant; no snow; ground but little frozen; we are plowing to-day.
With sentiments of respect,
THE SECRETARY OF THE NEW YORK STATE AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY AND ITS TRANSACTIONS.
The Journal of the Chemico-Agricultural Society of Ulster, Ireland, of which Prof. J. H. Hodges is editor, contains the following notice of the Transactions of the New York State Agricultural Society:
"We have to acknowledge the regular receipt of the Transactions of the New York State Agricultural Society. The enthusiastic devotion to the cause of agricultural progress of the editor of that journal, Mr. Johnson, Secretary of the State Society, has long been known to all persons in this country, whose attention has been directed to the efforts which, in several parts of America, are being made to diffuse agricultural information. The annual report of the New York Society always contains papers of great value, and are got up in a style superior to those published by any agricultural Society in the United Kingdom. Americans may be proud of these reports, and of the favorable picture which they afford of the energy and intelligence of the farmers of New York State."