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17 January, 1770

 

On 17 January, 1770, James Cook wrote “AM Careen'd scrub'd and pay'd the Starboard side of the Ship: while this was doing some of the natives came a long side seemingly only to look at us, there was a woman among them who had her arms, thighs and legs cut in several places, this was done by way of Mourning for her husband who had very lately been kill'd... PM righted the Ship and sent on Shore all or most of our empty Casks”.

 

Joseph Banks wrote “This morn I was awakd by the singing of the birds ashore from whence we are distant not a quarter of a mile, the numbers of them were certainly very great who seemd to strain their throats with emulation perhaps; their voices were certainly the most melodious wild musick I have ever heard, almost imitating small bells but with the most tuneable silver sound imaginable to which maybe the distance was no small addition. On enquiring of our people I was told that they had observd them ever since we have been here, and that they begin to sing at about 1 or 2 in the morn and continue till sunrise, after which they are silent all day like our nightingales”.

The Bellbird, Anthornis melanura, Korimako.

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