EGRETS AND LEGISLATION.
[To THE EDITOR OP THE "SPECTATOR."
Sin,—Being much interested in the anti-plumage question, and having read " Whanghee's" letter in the Spectator of June 27th, and also Mr. L. Gardiner's letter in the following week's issue, I venture to write to confirm what "Whangbee" wrote as far as my own experience goes. Having lived for nearly thirty years in Northern India, and having each winter spent five months under canvas wandering about the province, I think I can speak with fair confidence. I have seen square miles of country white with lovely little egrets in their bridal plumage, and then later on the same spaces still covered with the birds but the ground all round the marshes also white with the shed feathers. These any one can gather up in handfuls, and I have done so. A shake in a bowlful of soap lather and then drying in the fierce sunshine brings them out as pure
and white as possible. I have worn " ospreys " of them for many years, so that " Whanghee" is correct in saying that they need not be killed to obtain their feathers. Personally, I can honestly say that I have never seen a bird killed. The villagers never seemed to molest them, and they were very tame, and there were loose feathers lying in sheets like snow everywhere over miles of country.—Hoping my letter is not