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John Gilbert diary entry

14 October 1844 - 17 October 1844

Page 88. Volume 1

productions of the country, in the first place the whole country we have yet gone over, is certainly unfavourably [sic] to the sportsman, only one Kangaroo has been as yet killed, and at the present not a dog is able to run either from lameness or they are so poor, from not having sufficient animal food, Ducks α Pigeons therefore have been all that we have as yet to de=pend on excepting now α then a Bandicoot or Kangaroo Rat, neither of which however are despised by [either, deleted] any person28; The rain came on again in the after=noon and prevented us finishing our general re=pairs, our stock of flour is to day 1032½ lbs. giving us 200 days supply, if we can for the future manage to take better care.

Tues. Oct 15. To day still repairing our damages, we weighed Sugar α Tea, of the former we have 240 lbs α of the latter 69 lbs. two parties went out hunting but only returned with a couple of brace of Pigeons. they report that the ground is in a very bad condition so that we shall be obliged to remain stationary for another day at least. a fine day enabled us to dry all our clothes and in fact ourselves for when I arose in the morning I found we were all actually lying in a swamp, and the ground all round our tent ancle [sic] deep in mud α water. the Dr opposed my proposition of making a general tent of all the Tarpaulings, and Mr H α I was under the necessity of making a tent of one of our Blankets.

Wed Oct 16. Stationary all day, repairing da=mages, the several hunting parties unsucessfull excepting 3 Ducks, our food to day being for breakfast Gelatine thickened with flour, in the evening we had chocolate thickened with flour both of which formd excellent messes. with each our usual supply of half lb flour made into a Damper. the country still in a very boggy state.

Thurs Oct 17. Mr H α myself intended going out with our Guns before daylight with Charlie, and were up for the purpose very early, but Charlie got up in a very bad humour, and kept us waiting till long after the sun was up; at which I was an=noyed more so as the black fellow now made all kinds of ex=cuses, and became very impudent in his remarks, and when I endeavoured to check him, he threatened to fire a ball into me, the Dr now came up but as he was no more successful than myself in getting the black fellow to move, immediately stripped him of all his clothing gave him no Breakfast and insisted upon his leaving us which Charlie said he would do, he then lay

Note 28

Nevertheless Gilbert managed to collect several shells on 14th October 1844: Several “Succinea” (BMNH 1846.10.7.139-142) and “Ancylus” (BMNH 1846.10.7.183-186) are recorded with this collecting date in the Register of the Natural History Museum, London, collected by “Mr Gilbert” and purchased from John Gould.