This page needs to be proofread.

156 THE CONDOR VOL. XII cubation. Vhen I joyfully informed my expectant companions of the victory, Duttke, who among other things was yell-leader of the expedition, started three rousing cheers; and no small victory it was, for to me it ment that the two trips to the peak and back, 120 nailes, taking almost two weeks time, had not been in vain. Heinemann and Duttke now joined me, and the camera was set at once for pictures. As the bird was not in the least afraid, and lit on the rocks all about the nest-entrance while we were arranging the camera, we dispenst with using the long rubber tube. In fact we soon found that so persistent was the mother- leucosticte in her efforts to reach the nest, that it was necess.ary time and again to drive her away in order to keep her from entering. I notist particularly that this bird never once used the broken-wing tactics that we had seen others do on our previous visit. The method she employed was to disappear for a time among various nearby rocks endevoring to draw us away from the spot. It was on one of these occasions, after our patience had been almost exhausted, that I decided it might be barely possible she had returned to the nest by some of the under-rock passages. On looking in towards the nest all appeared dark and I knew at once l*ig. 50. GRAY-CROWNED LEUCOSTICTE APPROACH- ING NEST-SITE AMONG THE BOULDERS the bird must be sitting. It was only due to the fact that the nest and eggs were light colored that they had been visible at all. I experienced consider- able difficulty in flushing the bird, al- most touching her before she finally left the nest; and then the way she went fluttering along the narrow pas- sage made me fear for the safety of the specimens, which had not yet been collected. Gently-persistent, with those little cheery, pleading notes, over the rocks she came again and again altho re- peatedly'driven away, and the solici- tude she showed could not have but toucht the hart of any observer. I must say, even in spite of their ex- treme rarity, it was not without a certain feeling of compunction that the eggs were taken. Every tixne the bird re- turned, when it was possible, a picture was taken and in all we secured fiine photos, the best ones being herewith produced. This work covered a period of two and a half hours and during all this time the male did not appear; in fact, no other birds at all were seen. At last, for it seems even the patience of the Leucosticte had its limitations, the bird would no longer come within camera range, and we turned our attention to the eggs and nest. In order to reach these it was only necessary to move a single boulder, and this, weighing but about 100 pounds, was an easy matter. Even with the boulder removed Heinemann pronounced the nest photographically im- possible. Before disturbing the boulders we had taken a view of the nesting site, so we had to content ourselves with this. Bringing the eggs to light disclosed the fact that these consisted of four insted of three, one being hidden by feathers and by the depression of the nest, and, insted of being advanced in incubation as we had supposed, they proved almost fresh, two being practically so and two slightly incubated. One of a poetical turn of mind might compare the rosy plumage of the