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14 February, 1770

 

On 14 February, 1770, James Cook wrote “At 8 AM it fell Calm, at this time we had run 21 Leagues So 58° W sence yesterday at noon which brought us abreast of the high Snowey Mountain it bearing from us NW, in this direction it lay behind a mountainous ridge of nearly the same height which riseth derectly from the Sea and runs parallel with the shore... In the PM Four double Canoes wherein were 57 Men Came off to the Ship, they kept at the distance of about a Stones throw from us and would not be prevail'd upon to put along side by all that Tobia could say to them, from this we concluded that they never had heard any thing of our being upon the coast... At 8 oClock PM a breeze sprung up at SSW with which we stretched off SE, because some on board thought they saw land in that quarter”.

 

Joseph Banks wrote “Shooting again, killd Nectris munda and Procellaria saltatrix. While I was out 4 Canoes came off from the shore which I had not the least suspicion of, as we were farther from the shore than ever canoes had come before. Signals were made but as the ship was right in the wake of the sun none of them were seen by us till we saw the canoes themselves, when we immedi[a]tely pulld for the ship and got aboard I beleive without the Indians ever seing us so much was their attention taken up with looking at the ship [hence Cook named the place Lookers on]; indeed if they had no bad consequence could have ensued as they were so timourous that they hardly dard venture within call of the ship. They stayd but a little while and then went away, not time enough to get ashore before it was dark, for at sunset we saw them not more than half way between us and the shore. I had two or three oppertunities this even of seeing Albatrosses raise from the Water which they did with great ease; maybe when they are not able to do so (which I have seen) is when they are Gorgd with food”.

The birds were the Little Shearwater, Puffinus assimilis and Grey-backed Storm-petrel, Garrodia nereis.

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