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  ― 288 ―

The Hepoona Roo

This animal is of the size of a small rabbit: it has a broad flat body, the head a good deal resembles that of the squirrel: the eyes are full, prominent, and large: the ears broad and thin: its legs short, and its tail very long. Between the fore and hind legs, on each side, is placed a doubling of the skin of the side, which when the legs are extended laterally is as it were pulled out, forming a broad lateral wing or fin, and when the legs are made use of in walking, this skin, by its elasticity, is drawn close to the side of the animal and forms a kind of ridge, on which the hair has a peculiar appearance. In this respect it is very similar to the flying squirrel of America.

Colour plate facing page 288 of 'Hepoona Roo'



It has five toes on each fore foot, with sharp nails. The hind foot has also five toes, but differs considerably from the fore foot; one of the toes may be called a thumb, having a broad nail, something like that of the Monkey or Opossum: what answers to the fore and middle toes are united in one common covering, and appear like one toe


  ― 289 ―
with two nails; this is somewhat similar to the Kangaroo; the two other toes are in the common form, these four nails are sharp like those on the fore foot. This formation of the foot is well calculated for holding any thing while it is moving its body, or its fore foot, to other parts, a property belonging (probably) to all animals who move from the hind parts; such as the Monkey, Mocock, Mongoose, Opossum, Parrot, Leech, &c.

Its hair is very thick and long, making a very fine fur, especially on the back. It is of a dark brown-grey on the upper part, a light white-grey on the lower side of what may be termed the wing, and white on the under surface, from the neck to the parts adjacent to the anus.

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