Abbildungen der Seite

To the Readers of SCIENCE:

During the past year it has been found possible to enlist the interest of scientific workers in the success of Science to such an extent that more than nine hundred have promised contributions during the coming twelve months. Not only are contributions of merit coming in ever increasing numbers from American scientific men and women, but we are now securing our first contributions, in any quantity, from abroad.

We know that this development in the usefulness of Science is appreciated, not only from the many kind letters received, which are always inspiring and which we wish our friends would mark as at our disposal for publication, but from a marked increase in the number of new subscribers.

Science owes its existence to the munificence of two gentlemen, whose names we do not feel at liberty to publish, who contributed very nearly $100,000 toward the support of the paper in its early years. There is no longer need of such liberal subsidizing, but we do need cash subscriptions from all who feel at all interested in a weekly journal of science in America.

There is no question that scientists are cosmopolites and that a journal is the more useful to them the more it is international in its character. As the result of our efforts to develop the use of Science abroad, we have recently published articles from V. Ball, Dublin; Edward T. Dixon, Cambridge, England; A. H. Keane, London; David MacRitchie, Edinburgh; Edward Seler, Berlin; Isaac

Taylor, York; G. D. Liveing, Cambridge, England; the Marquis de Nardaillac, New
Paris; Miss Agnes Crane, Brighton, England; E. Trouessart, Paris; J. Edmund
Clark, York; and have in hand for early publication a number of papers from
prominent European scientific men.

To develop this international feature of the paper an enlargement to twice
its present size will be necessary, and an increase of the price to six dollars.
If we can secure a sufficient increase in the number of subscribers we can
promptly enlarge and improve Science still further, but cannot without, as in the
past the work, as will be seen, has been largely a labor of love. Within the
acquaintance of each of our readers there must be some one sufficiently interested
in the development of what we hope is a valuable means of scientific discussion
to subscribe six dollars, and we urge each and all our friends to do what they
can to help. If the number of new subscribers is as large as we hope, one-half of
the enlarged Science would be printed and published in London to facilitate
promptness of publication.

Form of Subscription.


Enclosed is check (money order, or whatever it may be) for six dollars, for

Scott's Emulsion

of cod-liver oil presents a
perfect food-palatable,
easy of assimilation, and
an appetizer; these are
everything to those who
are losing flesh and
strength. The combina-
tion of pure cod-liver oil,
the greatest of all fat pro-
ducing foods, with Hypo-
phosphites, provides a re-
markable agent for Quick
Flesh Building in all ail-
ments that are associated
with loss of flesh.

Prepared by Scott & Bowne, Chemists,
New York. Sold by all druggists.

Method of Protecting Property from Lightning.

The Lightning Dispeller.

Price, $20 to $30.-According to size.

The Patent Lightning Dispeller is a conductor specially designed to dissipate the energy of a lightning discharge, -to prevent its doing harm,-placing something in its path upon which its capacity for causing damage may be expended.

No recorded case of lightning stroke has yet been cited against the principle of the Dispeller. So far as known, the dissipation of a conductor has invariably protected under the conditions employed. Correspondence solicited.


United Bank Building. Sioux City, Iowa.

which enter me as a subscriber to Science for one year and thirty-seven weeks, it The American Lightning Protection Company, being understood, however, that if the number of new subscribers received justifies the enlargement of the paper to twice its present size, the price being raised to six dollars per year, the term of my subscription shall be curtailed pro rata for the unexpired term.

[blocks in formation]


A monthly illustrated journal of botany in all its departments.

25 cents a number, $2.50 a year.


Bloomington, Ind.

Ward's Natural Science Establishment

Mineralogy, Geology, Paleontology, Zoology, Osteology, Anatomy.

Send for Circular. ROCHESTER, N. Y.

Stuffed Animals and Skins,










EVER since the beginning of the study of micro-organisms it has been a debated question whether fermentations are to be regarded as biological or purely chemical phenomena. Beginning with the work of Schwann and others in the early part of the century, careful experimentation aided by microscopic study seemed to point to a biological explanation of nearly all forms of fermentation. The work of the third and fourth decades of the century proved beyond question that most fermentations were always intimately associated with the growth of micro-organisms, and the inference was a natural one that the micro-organisms themselves were the cause of the fermentations. Shortly after the valuable work of Schwann, however, appeared the brilliant investigations and discussions of Liebig upon fermentations in general. By Liebig all fermentations were regarded as purely chemical phenomena and the presence of micro-organisms was regarded only as a concomitant incident. According to him all albuminous matter was thought to tend spontaneously toward decomposition, and such decomposition was the basis of fermentation and decay. This, the chemical theory, was for twenty years the favorite theory. The biological and chemical theories were very rigidly opposed to each other and supposed to be contradictory. With the work of Pasteur and the great development of the study of micro-organisms thereby inaugurated, the biological theories of fermentations again came to the front, rapidly gained the ascendency, and soon displaced almost entirely the chemical theory as advanced by Liebig. For the next twenty years it was regarded as an almost settled fact that most natural fermentations were biological phenomena, and the theory of Liebig was at last practically abandoned.

Within still more recent times there has been a partial swinging back of the pendulum toward a chemical explanation of many forms of fermentation at least. This has not, however, been in the direction of Liebig's theory, but rather toward a theory of the action which unites together a chemical and biological explanation. It has been recognized for more than half a century that there are forms of ferments, such as pepsin, trypsin, etc., which do act in a purely chemical manner. These ferments, it is true, are produced originally by living organisms, but when once produced they are not living themselves, at least in any proper sense, and their action is not dependent upon growth or multiplication, for they are not organisms. So far as can be determined their action is purely chemical. On the other hand, a large number of fermentations, such as the alcoholic fermentations, the souring of milk, etc., have been traced with certainty, not only to living organisms in the form of bacteria and yeasts, but to the actual growth and multiplication of these organisms. These fermentations occur only when micro-organisms are present and only when these micro-organisms grow and multiply. The amount of growth of the organism is a measure of the amount of fermentation. Undoubtedly these biological fermentations are of a different nature from the other class. We are, however, learning now to look upon some of the biological fermentations as chemical in their immediate nature.

In the first place, the bacteriologist has been learning that germ diseases, which are caused primarily by the growth of microorganisms in the body, are caused immediately by certain poisonous bodies which these organisms produce. He has called

these bodies ptomaines, and at present biologists are very rapidly becoming convinced that it is the direct action of these poisonous materials which produces the symptoms and disturbances associated with most germ diseases. It is not the simple growth of bacteria which produces disease, but the poisonous products of their growth; and thus a chemical explanation is added to the biological.

Not only in germ diseases but in other forms of fermentations, not associated with disease, bacteriologists are learning of the production of chemical ferments by the micro-organisms. Many organisms have been found to produce dyastase, sucrase, glucase, etc. Within the last year or two it has been demonstrated that many bacteria produce a chemical ferment very similar in its character to trypsin. The general class of bacteria which liquefy gelatin have long been known to have an action quite similar to that of pancreatic juice. Indeed, it is this peptonizing action which is the cause of the liquefaction of the gelatin. Recently Brunton and Macfadyen and especially Fremi have succeeded in actually isolating from bacteria cultures a chemical ferment which has this power even when acting in sterilized media.

Some recent work in the bacteriological laboratory at Wesleyan University has isolated another chemical ferment from bacteria cultures. A large class of bacteria have the following actions on milk: They first curdle the milk rendering it slightly alkaline; subsequently the curd is slowly dissolved into a more or less watery liquid. Chemical study shows that this last action is a simple digestion and peptonization of the curd and that it is due to the trypsin-like ferment above mentioned. The curdling, which precedes the digestion, however, must be due to a different action, inasmuch as trypsin produces no curdling of the milk. It has been suspected for some time that this curdling is really due to a "rennet-like" ferment which is produced by the bacteria. It has been my good fortune recently to demonstrate the truth of this supposition. My method of work has been as follows:

The bacteria in question are cultivated in milk for several days, in some cases for two weeks. By this time the curd is precipitated and at least partially dissolved, and the result is a somewhat thick liquid containing, of course, immense numbers of bacteria. This liquid is filtered through a porcelain filter to remove organisms, and a clear, usually amber-colored, filtrate is thus obtained. The filtrate, of course, contains in solution all of the soluble chemical ferments which may have been formed by the bacteria. This filtrate is now acidified with H,SO, and then common salt is added to a state of super-saturation. When this condition is reached there appears on the surface of the liquid a considerable quantity of snow-white scum. This scum is removed from the liquid, purified if necessary by reprecipitation, and then dried. It produces a snow-white powder, which upon experiment is found to be active in its curdling action upon milk and to have all of the essential characters of rennet. The ferment which is thus obtained is not chemically pure, containing, besides the rennet ferment, a varying amount of the tryptic ferment formed at the same time. But the rennet ferment is most abundant and is very active. This ferment can be kept indefinitely, is killed by heat, acts best at a temperature of 30°-35° C., and curdles sterilized milk under proper conditions in half an hour. Experiment shows that no organisms are present in the curdled milk, and there is thus no doubt left that we are dealing with a chemical ferment similar to rennet, and which is produced by the growth of these micro-organisms in milk. The ferment does not appear to be exactly identical with rennet, some of its chemical tests being different. This may be due to the impurities which are present or to an actual difference in the ferment.

A large number of bacteria possess this power of producing rennet, though not more than nine or ten have thus far been experimented upon. Those studied differ much in the amount of the ferment produced, some giving large quantities, and others only traces. Thus far it seems that all species of bacteria which liquefy gelatin produce this rennet ferment, although some of them only in small amount.

This general line of work is thus leading bacteriologists to a better understanding of the fermentations, although we are as yet doubtless far from any real knowledge of their nature.



THE possibility of a terrestrial origin for masses of native iron being established by the well-known occurrence at Ovifak, Greenland, doubt may be cast on the mode of origin of such so-called meteorites as in their chemical and physical characters depart widely from the ordinary type of meteoric iron. From its size and prominence in meteoric literature the most important example of such a doubtful iron is that found in 1875 near the city of São Francisco do Sul, in the State of Santa Catharina, Brazil, and generally known as the Santa Catharina iron or meteorite. Professors Daubree and Stanislas Meunier regard it as undoubtedly meteoric; while Dr. A. Brezina, whose opinion is equally entitled to respect, considers it as probably terrestrial, placing it alongside of the Ovifak iron in his catalogue of the Vienna collection.

So far as known to the writer, no such minute study as Brezina, Cohen, and others have given to various undoubted meteorites has as yet been made of the Ovifak iron, so that at present we are in the dark as to whether or not it presents definite criteria by which a terrestrial iron can be positively separated from a meteoric one. So many of the characteristics once presumed to be purely meteoric have already been noticed, either in the Ovifak or artificial irons, that it may be doubted if any such definite criteria exist. The published analyses of Ovifak show that neither the nickel-iron alloys nor the association with a monosulphide (troilite) carbon free or combined and phosphorus can be taken as distinctive of meteorites. It is not clear, however, if the carbon presents the same form as in meteorites, that is to say, free in the form of amorphous carbon, graphite, cliftonite, diamond (?), etc., and combined as cohenite, nor if the phosphorus is combined with iron and nickel as in the meteoric minerals schreibersite and rhabdite. On the other hand, the compact (Dichte Eisen) group of Brezina containing at least nine undoubted meteorites, one of which, Nedagolla, was seen to fall, proves that the absence of a certain crystalline structure, indicated by the socalled Widmanstätten and Neumann figures, is not necessarily proof of non-meteoric origin. On the contrary, evidence is accumulating that a very similar if not absolutely identical crystalline structure may, under favorable circumstances, appear in artificial irons. Huntington has illustrated figures very like those of Widmanstätten in spiegel-eisen; Linck has described a crystal from a furnace slag, with cube faces and a polysynthetic twinning structure, which he identifies with the Neumann figures, and a perfect octahedral crystal with a similar twinning structure has recently come into the possession of the writer from a Brazilian blast-furnace.

It may be presumed that it is mainly on the absence of the characteristic meteoric figures that Brezina depends in placing the São Francisco do Sul with the Ovifak iron, as in no other respect are they markedly similar. The Brazilian iron does, however, show, at least in places, a very fine rectilinear cross-hatching indicative of polsynthetic twinning, but according to some law different from that giving the Neumann lines. Another point of agreement is in the abundant occurrence of the magnetic oxide of iron which is either absent from most meteorites or has been overlooked in their description. Both irons are brittle, being readily broken to fragments with a hammer, in which re

spect they differ from the tenaceous malleable metal of most meteorites. Both also crumble to fragments in the atmosphere of museums, though apparently not from the same cause, the crumbling of São Francisco do Sul being due to alteration of the sulphide, which presumably is not the case with Ovifak.

Lawrence Smith and Becherel found the magnetism of the Brazilian metal abnormally weak but that it became normal on heating, from which they concluded that the mass could not have been subjected to great heat. There seems, however, to be a variation in this respect in different parts, since Daubree notes that many fragments exhibit polar magnetism while others do not. Any argument drawn from the magnetic properties would apparently tell as much against a terrestrial as a cosmic origin, since the only conceivable mode of terrestrial origin is in the midst of an igneous magma made fluid by heat.

In other respects, however, a parallel for the characteristic features of the São Francisco do Sul iron is to be looked for in the group of meteoric irons rather than in those, so far as published, of the terrestrial iron of Ovifak. It is particularly characterized by the high percentage of nickel and the extraordinary abundance of sulphide. In the first respect its nearest ally is the Oktibbeha meteorite with nearly double the proportion of nickel, and not the Ovifak iron in which that metal is below the meteoric average. Unlike any other known iron, meteoric or terrestrial, the sulphide forins a gangue inclosing the metallic parts, but it is interesting to notice that it also presents itself in pencil-like inclusions in the metal, surrounded by carbon and other accessories, as in the Bendegó meteorite. The meteoric phosphurets, schreibersite and rhabdite, not yet described from, though perhaps present in, the Ovifak iron, are abundant accessories. In the carbonaceous residue, soft, friable granules, with a crystalline form suggestive of the cliftonite of the Youngedin, Magura, and Bendegó meteorites, have been noticed.

Thus, so far as at present known, the chemical and physical characteristics of the São Francisco do Sul iron do not point very markedly to an association with that of Ovifak. What is known of the geological conditions of the place of discovery, although too incomplete to be decisive, points rather to a meteoric origin. The geological information regarding the place of discovery is derived from verbal communications by the late Professor Ch. Fred. Hartt, a paper in the Revista do Observatorio de Rio de Janeiro for 1888 by Dr. Luiz F. Gonzaga de Campos, and a recent article in the Jornal do Commercio of Rio, May 29, 1892, by Dr. J. P. Calogeras. All these accounts agree in representing the island of São Francisco do Sul as composed essentially of granitoid gneiss cut by dykes of tourmaline granite and diabase and covered by a heavily-wooded soil-cap due to the decay of the underlying rocks. That is to say, it is a typical locality of the coast-belt from Cape Frio to Montevideo, at any point of which, so far as geological indications go, native iron might be looked for with as great probability as at this particular locality. The rocks, granite, gneiss, and diabase, are well exposed about the shores of the island. The latter, which approaches most nearly in character the Ovifak rock, being apparently no more abundant than in any other similar locality. In the interior of the island the soil-cap and forest growth make geological observations difficult. Dr. Campos, in his examination of the place of discovery of the iron, opened numerous paths and pits, and on my recommendation paid particular attention to the question of the possible occurrence of basic rocks in immediate connection with the iron. He says, Although the rock on this hillside is much altered, giving an argillaceous soil of a red color, here more, there less deep in tint, it shows perfectly in some points the mineral composition of granite. At the top of the hill near the point e [one of the points where masses of iron were found] there are large blocks of granite, at times tourmaliniferous. In the vicinity, in all the directions that I followed, all the soil is granitic. In the bed of the stream, which I ascended in various sections, the ma terial was always that of the disaggregation of granitoid gneiss. Finally, I did not find at this place a single exposure of basic rock." The numerous specimens that have come to hand showing foreign material cemented to the iron by the limonite crust formed by its alteration are in accord with this description, indi


cating, as Daubree has always remarked, that the iron rested on a granitic soil.

The topographical sketch of the locality made by Dr. Campos shows no indication of concealed dykes of basic rocks, which, according to universal experience of occurrences under similar conditions in Brazil, should, from their more ready decomposition, form depressions on the surface. The principal mass was found at the foot of the hill near a creek on the point of a spur, and aligned with a mass about 200 meters distant at the extreme summit of the hill and with an intermediate find close to an exposure of granite on the same spur. The other finds are aligned parallel to the course of the creek. In one pit on this line iron was found to a depth of 2.8 meters, covered with wash earth brought down by the rain from the higher portions of the hill.

Dr. Calogeras, who argues in favor of a terrestrial origin, presents no facts in disaccord with the above observation that the only rock known in the immediate vicinity of the iron is granitic. His argument, based on the occurrence in the region (principally at a distance of several miles) of iron and manganese ores (oxides), and presumed to be connected with dykes of diabase, and of a small percentage of nickel (0.30 per cent) in one of his specimens of an argillaceous manganese ore, has no direct bearing on the question of origin. Even if the native iron had been found resting upon the said ore deposits instead of several miles away, a genetic relation would still have to be proven, and until direct evidence was presented most petrologists would probably regard the relation as casual rather than genetic.

No specimens of the diabase of the vicinity of São Francisco have come to hand. Assuming that it is of the usual character of the diabases of similar regions in Brazil, it is not so unlike the basalt, or dolerite, of Ovifak that a comparison might not with propriety be made. It neither approaches nor differs from the iron-bearing Greenland rock more than do the normal diabases of other parts of the world, in which as yet nothing analogous with the Ovifak occurrence has been noted. If the diabase or some related highly basic rock had been found in immediate contact with the iron, a comparison with the Ovifak occurrence would be justified, but even then complete proof of a terrestrial origin would be lacking. As the case stands at present, with tolerably satisfactory evidence that the iron rested on highly acid rocks or their debris, the hypothesis of such an origin involves that of the formation of native iron under conditions entirely different from those of Ovifak.

Another argument in favor of the meteoric origin of the iron may be drawn from the state of preservation of the masses. Although the metal itself is more than usually resistant to oxidizing agencies and to the action of acids, the abundant presence of pyrite renders it peculiarly susceptible to alteration. All the smaller masses are completely changed to limonite, pieces of the size of a man's head or larger are in large part altered, but still show remnants of metal badly fragmented and oxidized in the centre, and only the larger masses retain perfectly sound metal and sulphide. Even in the dryer air of museums it is not a good-keeping iron, the disintegrating action of the decomposing sulphide being singularly favored by the fragmented condition of the metal. Under these circumstances it is extremely improbable that, buried in the soil and exposed to the extremely rainy climate of the coast region of southern Brazil, the iron could have been preserved for more than a few centuries at the utmost. The hypothesis of a terrestrial origin involves the exposure to destructive agencies through untold geological ages, since the present topographical features of this part of the Brazilian coast are unquestionably extremely old. In view of the Ovifak occurrence, it is possible and even probable that native iron of terrestrial origin simulating meteorites will be found in other parts of the world and perhaps in rocks of different petrographical types. It is not probable, however, that the first discoveries of this character will be made in surface exposures in the extremely humid coast region of southern Brazil, where the country rock is of Archean age, and the eruptives presumably date back to the beginning of the Secondary age, if not earlier.




As poisonous snakes are more or less common in many countries, and the circulation of Science is world-wide, and other cases of poisoning often occur, and as I have been the means of saving a life by a new process, one that can be applied when it is too late for the orthodox method of cutting and sucking, and used by anybody, with materials at one's hand in every house, I have concluded that I should not be doing my duty if I did not make it known. Some time since, when living in the country, one of the nicest little girls of my acquaintance, about four years of age, was brought to me by an elder sister for diagnosis and treatment. She was swelling from head to foot, becoming cold and stiff in the limbs, and losing her power to answer or even understand questions. As I had been the means of effecting several simple cures in the district, she was sent in the hope that I would be able to tell instinctively what was amiss, and to cure it as if by magic. As the sequel proved, the latter was almost realized, notwithstanding that in regard to the former I was quite at sea. She had never known what a snake was, but for strategic purposes, wellknown to managers of children, had often been terrified with the name of "bulldog" without knowing what that was (bulldog was the popular name for a very poisonous, pugnacious, and gigantic ant, Myrmecia vindex); so that whenever she got stung or bitten by anything, it was put to the credit of the bulldogs, as on this occasion. She had screamed and fallen a few yards from the house, and told her mother a bulldog had bitten her on the foot; and that was all she knew. The foot was examined, but from running barefoot was so full of scratches and punctures that none could be fixed on as certainly the marks of snake-fangs. The mischief had occurred about an hour before I saw her, and while being examined she was getting rapidly worse; the swelling, coldness, and stiffness were becoming alarming, the lips as thick as one's thumb, the hollows on each side of the nose were filled up level, and of a steel-blue and sea green color, the arms, lower limbs, and body were becoming blotched with irregular raised parts, white and hard, the spaces between being sunk and darkpurple; the pulse, too, was getting exceedingly feeble. Not thinking a bulldog ant could produce such effects, and not being certain that it was a snake-bite, I concluded that it might be a spider-bite, as my only brother had nearly lost his life from that cause. Even if the place of the bite or sting could have been found, it was clearly too late to cut and suck, for the poison was already all over the body, and rapidly mastering the vital functions; besides which, no one in the district had an ammonia syringe for hypodermic injection. The question was, What could be done? Precedent said: Send for a doctor. But there was none nearer than eight miles, and then he might not be at home; or, if at home, most likely intoxicated; and, besides that, she looked as though she would die before a doctor could see her.

In this conflict of thought and feeling, a happy idea struck me. I had proved in my own person the power of a bydropathic, hotsweating-pack to produce a flood of perspiration, and throw off impurities from the blood, and it now occurred to me that if I could sweat the poison out from the whole surface, it would not matter where it got in, nor what put it there; and, moreover, that if it were any good, the danger would be over before anyone could get half-way to the doctor's; and, if twenty minutes or so produced no benefit, the doctor could still be sent for as a last resource. It was a great responsibility, but under the circumstances I felt it a duty, and went to work. Of course, there was no hot water ready, but we soon made some, and put it into a tub, into which the child was placed, with a blanket over all, tucked in close round the neck to keep the steam in, but leaving the head out. This was to open the pores of the skin quickly. While in this I spread a piece of oilcloth on the table, and a pair of blankets on that. As soon as more hot water was ready, a sheet was wrung tightly out of it, and spread on the blankets. The child was laid on this, and then first one side, and then the other lapped over her, and it was tucked in close about the neck; then the

blankets followed, and lastly the oilcloth, and she was put to bed, with another pile of blankets on top. Then some spirits were got to keep the heart-action up, which by this time had almost ceased. Before this the mother felt sure the child was dying, and was nearly frantic with the idea. Hot brandy and water was given in a teaspoon every few minutes, and the case was watched with no little anxiety. She had not been in the pack over fifteen minutes before improvement became apparent. The dark rings round the eyes were less marked, the eyes themselves brighter and less sunk, and the blue and green tints less ghastly. Our hopes began to revive, and our fears to lose their terror. In five minutes more the improvement became so decided that with great gratitude I felt that the novel plan was a grand success, and the danger over. She now became conscious, and, evidently feeling the benefit of the spirit stimulus, asked occasionally for her "toddy," which she, knowing as much about it as she did of snakes and bulldogs, called "vinegar and milk." As the need and benefit of it grew less, she liked it less, and finally refused it. After something over an hour, we took her out of the pack, and were delighted to see that all the swelling, blotches, stiffness, and discoloration had completely disappeared, and Amy was herself again. She was now washed down in cool water, to close the pores and prevent catching cold, and put to bed as usual. She was left with strict injunctions that I should be called up if any. thing went wrong during the night, but my sleep was not disturbed. Next morning I went to see my little patient, and found her at the breakfast table, with as good an appetite as ever. After that we can excuse the mother for thinking that the hot sweatingpack was the panacea for "all the ills that flesh is heir to."

But some will ask, Why call this a case of snake-bite? When she recovered, we questioned her as to the size and appearance of the "bulldog," and she described it as “a big, long, pretty thing." When asked how many legs it had, she said, "No legs; a big pretty thing, as long as my arm, all shiny." But evidence still more definite was at hand. A few days after, the father, who was up-country at the time of the occurrence, sank a well near where she had fallen, and where there was a lot of long grass and loose timber, and, having struck water, stopped for a rest and a cup of tea. When he returned, a black snake (Pseudechys porphyraicus), having smelt the water, was down in the well. He came to tell me that he thought he had caught Amy's bulldog. Then we took her to the well without telling her anything of what was in it, and asked her if she had ever seen a thing like that; and directly she saw it she said, "Yes, that's the bulldog that bit me."

Of course the ligature-cut-and-suck method is best when applied in time, and when the bitten spot is known; but it would be utterly useless in such a case as this, where the poison had already been carried all over the body. The method here advocated would be applicable, I believe, to almost all cases of poisoning that had reached the same stage, whether from snakes, spiders, scorpions, insects, and such like, or from poisons taken by the mouth, whether drunk as liquids or eaten as poisonous fish, etc.; and I have no doubt would save many a valuable life after the venom had got too far through the system for local sucking, or even the stomachpump, to be of any avail.




DIE forstlichen Verhältnisse Europas und Amerikas sind durchaus verschieden:

In dem alten Europa — wir haben hier also die älteren Culturstaaten, namentlich Mitteleuropa, im Auge - finden wir eine Jahrhunderte alte, rationelle Forstbewirthschaftung durch akademisch gebildete, fachkundige Männer, infolgedessen, was uns als erste Vorbedingung für einen geordneten Waldbau erscheint, ein vorzügliches Strassenwesen innerhalb der Forsten. Damit ist ein leichter und billiger Transport der geschlagenen Bäume vorhanden.

In dem jungen Amerika haben wir noch grosse Strecken ganz jungfräulichen Gebietes, sonst grossentheils eine verhältnissmässig junge, ja, wohl sehr junge Forstwirthschaft; infolgedessen ein noch ungenügend entwickeltes oder unentwickeltes Strassenwesen innerhalb der Forsten, und damit eine schwere und theure Abfuhr der Hölzer.

In Europa ferner: eine dichte Bevölkerung, mithin ein flotter Absatz für das Holz, Rinden und Zweige an Ort und Stelle.

In Amerika: eine dünngesäete Bevölkerung, also Mangel an Absatz, langer und kostspieliger Transport der Baumstämme bis zum Verkaufsplatze, während die Wipfel und Zweige der Bäume wegen der ungenügenden Wege und theuren Fortschaffung meist im Walde liegengelassen werden müssen.

Es ist unter diesen Umständen gar nicht möglich, gegen auftretende Waldverwüster, wie solche die Insektenwelt in so grosser Zahl stellt, mit den, beispielsweise in dem forstlich hochentwickelten Deutschland üblichen, radicalen Vertilgungsmaassregeln vorzugehen, auf welche einen Blick zu werfen wir uns für einen späteren Aufsatz vorbehalten.

Nun hat die Natur fürsorglich gar wohl darauf gesehen, dass in ihrem Haushalte das Gleichgewicht erhalten bleibe; sie hat deshalb auch dem Ueberhandnehmen der einzelnen Thiere ein Ziel gesetzt, indem sie ihnen Feinde zugesellte. So haben besonders die Insekten, ausser den Vögeln, sehr viele Nachsteller unter ihresgleichen. Da ist die grosse Zahl der Raubinsekten aller Ordnungen, welche als Strassenräuber über alle Kerfe herfallen; dann giebt es besondere Feinschmecker, die sich nur an eine Fleischsorte halten, deshalb allenthalben mit ihrem Nahrungsthiere zusammen vorkommen; und endlich die heimtückischen Schleicher, die entozoïschen Parasiten, welche in so grosser Zahl unter den Hymenopteren und Dipteren sich finden.

Bei der Natur ging der Forstmann in die Lehre. Ratzeburg,' der grosse bahnbrechende deutsche Forstentomologe, berichtet von 1868 in Posen (Preussen) vorgenommenen Versuchen mit Uebertragung von Maulwürfen auf von Engerlingen (Larve des Maikäfers) bedrohte Kulturflächen, Versuchen, die nicht ohne Erfolg blieben. Weiter hat derselbe Gelehrte die Waldameise (Formica rufa)', sowie Schlupfwespen nach von Schmetterlingsraupen heimgesuchten Gegenden übertragen, und andere Fachmänner sind seinem Beispiele gefolgt. In neuster Zeit hat namentlich C. V. Riley, soviel ich gehört habe, wiederholt Experimente mit der Translocation von Schlupfwespen gemacht.

Wie im July dieses Jahres Mr. Andrew D. Hopkins von der West Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station in Morgantown den Lesern unseres Blattes mittheilte, ist in den letzten Jahren in West Virginia der Borkenkäfer, Dendroctonus frontalis Zimm., in solchen Unmassen aufgetreten, dass auf einem Raume von 10,000 square miles 75% aller Nadelbäume krankten oder abstarben. Der genannte Staat gehört aber zu denjenigen, wo eine rationelle Waldkultur, mithin eine rationelle Vertilgung des Borkenkäfers noch nicht möglich ist. Mr. Hopkins fasste deshalb den Gedanken, um wenigstens zu thun, was möglich ist, um dem Waldfeinde entgegenzutreten, nachdem er beobachtet hatte, wie Clerus dubius F. sich alle Mühe gab, mit den Scolytiden aufzuräumen, ihm einen Helfer in seinem guten Werke zur Seite zu stellen.

Europa und Nordamerika haben seit langer Zeit, wie dies der rege Verkehr zwischen beiden Erdtheilen und die Gleichartigkeit des Klimas mit sich bringt, gegenseitig ihre Schädlinge ausgetauscht: ich erinnere an den Kartoffelkäfer (Leptinotarsa decimlineata Say) in Deutschland und an den Kohlweissling 1 Ratzeburg, Die Waldverderber, 1841, pp. 21, 22. 2 Ratzeburg, Die Waldverderbniss, 1868, II., p. 429. Science, Vol. XX., No. 495.

Dies wird erklärlich, wenn man die beträchtliche Fruchtbarkeit der Scolytiden kennt. In der Mitteleuropäischen Forstinsektenkunde stellen hierüber Judeich und Nitzsche folgendes Rechenexempel auf: Nehmen wir an, ein Mitte April fliegendes Weibchen habe in seinem Muttergange 99 Eier abgelegt, so können wir mit Sicherheit darauf rechnen, dass im Anfang Juni wenigstens 30 Stück davon zu fortpflanzungsfähigen und wirklich begatteten Weibchen sich entwickeln. Legt jedes dieser 30 Welbchen wieder einen Muttergang mit 90 Eiern an, so produciren sie also zusammen 2700 Stück, und wird Anfang August beim dritten Fluge wieder nur ein Drittel davon zu Weibchen, so nagen diese schon 900 Muttergänge und belegen sie mit 8100 Eiern. Gelangt von diesen wieder nur ein Drittel im nächsten Frühjahre zum Eierlegen, so kommen im April bereits 27,000 Nachkommen des einen im vorhergehenden April geflogenen Weibchens zur Fortpflanzung und können nun 2,430,000 Eier ablegen!

« ZurückWeiter »