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MORE SPORT WITH THE FIFE HOUNDS, AND
A WORD FROM IRELAND.
IN our last diary of sport with the Fife Hounds in Perthshire we left Walker and his beautiful pack on their way to Kinross, where their first spree was from Blair Adam on the 7th of November.-Found a brace of foxes in this wilderness of wood; gave one a good dusting for half an hour, when he went to ground in a coal-mine. We shortly after, came up with a few couple of missing bounds amusing themselves with the other Charley: of course we joined them, and had a beautiful five-and-thirty minutes, with blood to finish.
Nov. 9; Blair Hill; lots of the varmint: another good forty minutes, and killed.
Nov. 12; Pitferrane.-Had a capital hunting run of two hours and twenty minutes, and killed him handsomely in the open, near Comrie Den.
Nov. 14; Stuart's Arms.-Found in Cullalo Wood, the Earl of Moray's property: had a good woodland run of an hour and twenty minutes, and Charley cried Peccavi!-Found a second fox at Callis Moor, and had the best thirty minutes this season over a most beautiful line of country, and as straight as an arrow, the steam up all the way, and killed at Broom Hall, the hounds beating most of the horses to a complete stand still: indeed, one of the best of five that may be said to have lived at all with them declared that he only caught a glimpse of their sterns every now and then, or he and they should have been thrown out altogether.
Nov. 16; Milnathort.-This far-famed covert, from which we booked a reg'lar good-'un, turned out blank, to the great disappointment of the Field, and Walker in particular, who had anticipated a glorious chivey. However, he bore it patiently, merely uttering one of Jacob Faithful's axioms, "Better luck next time!"-After a long, long draw, found late in the day at Glenearn, and had a sharp six miles over the hills, but lost him near Dron-supposed that farmer Richmond popped him into his hay-loft, previously to introducing him to his gorse the next morning.
These hounds had another good week's sport in the Eastern part of the country, finishing several excellent runs most days with blood.
Nov. 26; Teasses.-Found at Kidd's Whin, and had an hour and thirty minutes, and killed.
Nov. 28; Foodie.-Found a brace of foxes: went away with a stout old gentleman immediately; had a good forty minutes, and lost. -Found another brace at Aerdit, and had a sharp burst with one of them to ground. Got on the line of the other, and had a capital hour and ten minutes with a blazing scent, and killed.
Nov. 30; Mount Melville.-Found a leash of the varmint: the hounds settled well to one noble fellow, and had thirty-five minutes good, and killed.-Found a second at Kembuck, and had a woodland run of forty minutes, with "who-whoop" at the finish.
Thus it will be seen that Walker had a good November; indeed he never had a better-and we will do him the justice to say no Sportsman is more deserving of it.
Old Daddy Frost has now put a stopper to hunting, but we must console ourselves with the adage, "what can't be cured must be endured;" and hope he will soon loose his icy fetters.
We have been favored by our friend in Ireland with a brief account of the "doings" of the Earl of Shannon's and Sir John Power's hounds. Up to the 7th inst., His Lordship had killed seventeen brace of foxes; but the weather in the latter part of October and beginning of November was very wet, and scent but indifferent, or he would have had more noses on his kennel-door, for his country is well stocked with the Vet, and his hounds and stud in tip-top condition for work.-Sir John has been under the same cloud since he finished cub-hunting; but the the Hon. Baronet had some capital sport at the commencement of the season with the youngsters, with several clippers that would not have disgraced a more advanced period of the hunter's jubilee.
Bank of the Pow, Dec. 12, 1844.
SPLENDID RUN WITH MR. ROBERTSON'S HOUNDS.
HAVING read with much pleasure in your last MAGAZINE a spirited account of a famous run with Lord Elcho's hounds from Ellingham, communicated by your Correspondent, "AN OLD FRIEND," and in which he mentions that Mr. Robertson's hounds had a celebrated run a few seasons ago over the same country, I think a brief account of that eventful day might not be unacceptable to your Readers. Great as the merit is-and every thorough-going Sportsman must accord to Lord Elcho and his hounds the very first-rate character-yet Mr. Robertson happened to be the fortunate owner of a pack of hounds which were considered the best in the kingdom, except Osbaldeston's, for he had the good fortune to become the purchaser of the late Mr. Lambton's celebrated pack.
In the hands of Mr. Robertson it must be admitted these hounds had a series of run and showed sport far superior to anything known even under the former celebrated Sportsman.
On the eventful day I have alluded to the hounds found immediately, and slipped away silently at the N. E. point of the covert. The fox, viewed by Mr. Robertson, with two couple and a-half of the hounds close at his brush, went away at an awful pace. A short check
at a small gorse fortunately enabled the Huntsman with the rest of the pack to get up, but the pace was so tremendous that but few of the Field could live with it. The whole pack got away with a burning scent, making towards Rock covert, passing Bronfield, Heffeley, and Shipley Dean, and then pointing for Alnwick Castle, the splendid seat of the Duke of Northumberland, racing through the very cream of Mr. Robertson's country. Upon pug's reaching the Duke's Park, so terrible had been the pace, and so severe the fencing, that with the exception of Mr. Robertson, Col. Grey, and Treadwell the Huntsman, the Field was completely shaken off. At this time there was every appearance of poor reynard's race being run, when to their surprise for his last struggle he took to the river, the whole pack, cheered on by Mr. Robertson, who gallantly plunged over a very high bank into one of the deepest and broadest part of this rapid stream, followed on the instant, and after a few rings the pack ran in to him in gallant style in a meadow within sight of the windows of the Castle, which were crowded with spectators.
OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE BOAT RACES.
THE annual four-oared races for a Silver Cup and Medals commenced on the 25th of November-five boats entered.
The first heat was between St. John's and Exeter as under :
Saint John's.-T. W. Conant, stroke, H. Hayman, E. H. Penfold, T. W. Robins; and E. L. Pemberton, coxswain.
Exeter.-G. H. Richards, stroke, C. H. Hutchinson, W. H. Thrupp, C. F. Parker; and E. G. Hunt, coxswain.
This race was well contested, and up to the Gut there was no perceptible advantage; but here St. John's crew shot a-head, which they maintained to the finish, and won by about a boat's length.
Baliol and Trinity then contended :—
Baliol.-W. Spottiswoode, stroke, G. A. K. Houman, T. Walrond, W. II. Kars. lake; and W. G. Mount, coxswain.
Trinity.-J. Sagger, stroke, P. Smith, W. Bell, H. M. Turton; and T. W. D. Humphreys, coxswain.
This was a plucky contest. Balio went off with a good lead, and kept it to a little below the Cherwell, when the Trinity boat put on the steam, and were only beaten by less than two feet.
The next race was between the two winning boats of the two previous heats. They kept pretty well together to the Gut, when St. John's obtained a slight lead, and maintained it to the finish.
On the 26th, there was only one race between the St. John's and University, the crew of the latter being as follows :
University.-C. H. Walsh, stroke, A. Gray, - Ffolliott, A. K. Danson; and Shebbeare, coxswain.
University went off at score, were never caught, and were declared winners by five boats' lengths.
The final heat came off on the 27th, between University and Oriel (the holders), the former having the same crew, and Oriel as follows
Oriel.-W. Buckle, stroke, T. Hughes, J. Hughes, W. Edgell; and G. B. Lewis,
On starting, University took a slight lead, and increased it before they got to the Haystacks. The Oriel now made a strong effort to come up, and at the Gut were not more than half a boat's length in the rear. Both kept on in first-rate style, and at the termination University was only declared the victors by about half a boats' length.
The first year (1840) the Cup was won by Baliol College, the second and third by University, the fourth by Oriel, and the University now take it a third time to their College.
THE races for the Silver Sculls presented to the Lady Margaret Boat Club by James Colquhoun, Esq., formerly of St. John's College, for the purpose of establishing an Annual Sculling Match on the Cam, commenced on Monday the 2d of December, and continued during the week, the Club having thrown it open to all resident Undergraduates cr Bachelors of one year standing, being Members of Boat Clubs in the several Colleges. The race is a "bumping race," decided by heats, those boats not bumped in each heat being only entitled to start for the next, and when the competitors are reduced to two, the final heat to be a flag-race, the boats starting 100 yards apart.
There were 27 entries, but five withdrew.-On Monday two heats came off as follows.
First.-Potts, Arnold bumped Cloves, Miles bumped Head, Murdoch, Fielder, Furnival bumped Seymour.
Second.-Anderson, Goolden bumped Smith, Beasley, Pollock bumped Heyworth, Baird, Abdy, Russell bumped Holroyd, Moody bumped Munster, Rippingall.
Tuesday, Second Day.-Arnold, Rippingall bumped Beasley, Pollock_bumped Goolden, Murdoch, Mills bumped Baird, Moody bumped Fielder, Russell, Furnival.
Wednesday, Third Day.-Arnold, Furnival, Moody bumped Rippingall, Russell, Miles bumped Murdoch, Pollock.
Thursday, Fourth Day.-Russell, Pollock, Miles, Arnold bumped Moody.-This was a capital contest between Pollock and Russell, the former being within a yard of the latter for half a mile, but could not succeed in making a bump.
Friday, Fifth Day.-Arnold, Russell, Pollock, Miles.-In this race Pollock pressed Russell for half the distance, when the latter drew a-head, and after a beautiful race bumped Arnold, and Miles bumped Pollock.
Saturday, Sixth Day.-Miles and Russell being the two left, they started at 100 yards apart, Russell getting off with the lead, but was soon overhauled by Miles, who pulled away capitally, and finally reached the goal first by half a minute.
On the whole the racing was considered very good.
ON THE OBJECTIONS URGED AGAINST THE PRESENT
SYSTEM OF GAME-PRESERVATION.
"Necessitas non habet legem," and Sportsmen, yielding to the public weal, must succumb to Railroad Companies: but a word or two in apology of their pursuits must be allowed them at a time when it seems to be the aim of some theorists to prove the preservation of game a political crime. As a means of proof, letters, the produce of deep calculation, appear from time to time in the public prints, to inform the community as to the number of hares which in the extent of their feeding equal an ox, or how many quartern loaves would have been added to the consumption of bread within the space of a year had it happened that a pheasant of ordinary appetite had ceased to exist for that period; and to such an accurate estimate do these researchers carry their investigations, that, I doubt not, it is well known to them how many flies a little boy must kill per diem, before he puts sugar on his bread-and-butter at breakfast, for nothing: yet, although such conclusions may be remarkable for their ingenuity or plausibility, we may be allowed to doubt their intrinsic value as far as their correctness is concerned.
I do not mean to say, that, could the food of a hare, or a pheasant, or a fly, throughout a year be accurately ascertained, it would not be very possible for an estimate to be made as to how far it would have gone towards fatting a beast or maintaining a schoolboy; but what I deny is, the power of certainly laying down the comparative measure of the food of animals, some of which are in an unreclaimed, others in a domesticated state. Keep twenty hares in a yard, where there is nothing for them to eat but what is weighed out for them, and let what they are fed with be such materials as are fitting nourishment for a sheep, and the result will be as reasonable and certain, as it is ridiculous and doubtful when the comparison is drawn between a hare in her wildness and the sheep in his usual course of existence. Were hares as limited in bounds of feeding as the advocates for their utter annihilation are narrow in their reasonings, the case of the latter would be much bettered.
I would know how many nights in the year they allow for feeding in covert upon grasses and other substances which seem to grow for no purpose but for the use of wild animals, or in young wheat-grounds at such times when troops of hares may feast on the green corn without a sensible damage accruing to the coming crop, yet upon which, in its then condition, no farmer in his senses would turn a flock, or otherwise use it as pasture. Considering for a moment the vast quantity of vegetable matter of which man makes no use, but which affords subsistence to animals fera nature, the waste of harvest and such like, and the difficulty, nay impossibility, of making the comparison spoken of, at VOL. Y.-THIRD SERIES, N. S.-No. 25.