Australian Museum Journal On the early history of the Australian Cassowary (Casuarius australis, Wall)

Shortform:
North, 1913, Rec. Aust. Mus. 10(4): 39–48
Author(s):
North, Alfred J.
Year published:
1913
Title:
On the early history of the Australian Cassowary (Casuarius australis, Wall)
Serial title:
Records of the Australian Museum
Volume:
10
Issue:
4
Start page:
39
End page:
48
DOI:
10.3853/j.0067-1975.10.1913.896
Language:
English
Plates:
plates viii–ix
Date published:
19 April 1913
Cover date:
19 April 1913
ISSN:
0067-1975
CODEN:
RAUMAJ
Publisher:
The Australian Museum
Place published:
Sydney, Australia
Subjects:
AVES
Digitized:
16 January 2009
Available online:
06 March 2009
Reference number:
896
EndNote package:
EndNote file
Title page:
Title page (87kb PDF)
Complete work:
Complete work (1647kb PDF)

Abstract

Casuarius australis was the only avi-faunal type secured during Kennedy's ill-fated expedition in 1848, from Rockingham Bay to Cape York, when so many valuable lives were lost. Singularly enough its early history is associated with the second, third and fourth Curators of the Australian Museum, which was the first Institution to receive a specimen.

For my purpose it will be necessary to transcribe the following extracts relating to Casuarius australis.

The existence of a Cassowary inhabiting Australia was first made known in 1849 by the late Mr. Wm. Carron, Botanist to the Kennedy Expedition, who remarks in his "Narrative" November 4th (1848):— "This morning Jackey went to examine a scrub through which we wanted to pass, and while out, shot a fine Cassowary; it was very dark and heavy, not so long in the leg as the common Emu, and had a larger body, shorter neck, with a large red, stiff, horny comb on its head; Mr. Wall skinned it, but from the many difficulties with which he had to contend, the "kill was spoiled before it could be properly preserved."

Referring to this specimen the following is the gist of Gould's remarks in his "Handbook to the Birds of Australia" under the name of Casuarius australis, Wall....

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