Three Hundred Games & Pastimes - complete online book

A Book Of Suggestions For Children's Games And Employments.

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Blowing eggs-
166              What Shall We Do Now?
The wren and the redbreast,
The martin and the swallow ; If ye touch one o' their eggs,
Bad luck will surely follow.
For the purposes of this volume, this is enough to say con­cerning eggs. Scores of books are published for the benefit of more serious collectors. One of the cheapest, simplest, and best is Bird-Nesting and Bird-Skinning, by Mr. Miller Christy.
For blowing eggs a brass or glass blow-pipe is the proper thing, using only one hole, which is made at the side with a little drill. But for your purpose a hole at each end made with a pin is simpler and equally good. In blowing you must be careful not to hold the egg so tightly in the fingers that its sides crush in. Before making the holes it is well to put the egg in a basin of water. If it sinks it is fresh and can be blown easily ; but if it floats it is set—that is to say, the young bird has begun to form '—and blowing will be difficult. In such cases it is wise, if you are using a blow-pipe, to make a largish hole and put a little water in and leave the egg to lie for a day or so ; then blowing it will be not much trouble. But if you have no blow-pipe the best thing to do is to make one good-sized hole in the less interesting side of the egg, and empty it with a bent pin. Then, when it is empty, you can put it in the egg box with the broken side under­neath. Country boys often thread birds' eggs on a string which hangs from the ceiling, but the ordinary way is to put them in cotton-wool in a box with cardboard compartments. Making this box is a good country occupation for wet weather.
Butterfly-hunting begins when birds'-nesting is done and the weather is hot. Here again it is not the purpose of this book to go into particulars : the subject is too large. It is enough to say that the needful things are a large net of soft green gauze, a killing-bottle with a glass stopper, a cork-lined box with a supply of pins in which to carry the butterflies after they are dead, and
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