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carnivora and herbivora suggest that the habit of living upon a diet consisting exclusively of raw meat entails dif$-erences in the types of bacteria that characterize the contents of the large intestine. The occurrence of considerable numbers of spore-bearing organisms in the carnivora points to the presence of anaerobic putrefactive forms in great numbers. The results of subcutaneous inoculations into guinea-pigs bear out this view and indicate that the numbers of organisms capable of producing a hemorrhagic aedema with tissue necrosis, with or without gas-production, are very considerable. Unfortunately, the data pertaining to the biological properties of these pathogenic anaerobes are at present insufficient to permit us to classify them or to say more of their nature than that they are organisms representative of a definite group of putrefactive anaerobes which make butyric acid and hydrogen and exert a peptonizing action upon living tissues. Nevertheless, the observations here recorded are of much interest in relation to the bacterial processes and nutrition of herbivorous2 as distiinguished from carnivorous animals and are significant furthermore for the interpretation of bacterial conditions found in mani. The question arises whether the abundant use of mleat over a long period of time may not favor the development of miuch larger numbers of sporebearing putrefactive anlaerobes in the intestinal tract than would be the case were a different type of proteid substituted for meat. Inquiries made of Dr. Blair, the p(athologist at the New York Zoological Park, elicited the fact that while, upon the whole, the carniivorous animals are apt to live sonmewhat longer than the herbivorous animals of about equial size, the carnivora are nuch mnore likely to develop coeiditionis of advanced antemia in the later years of their lives than is the case w ith the herbivora. Dr. Blair states that it is usual in the later years of life for the carnivora to show a much diminished volume Of bloo(d aned at least a moderate fall in the hemoglobin. Instances are stated to hbe not -ncommon ill which a pernicious type of anTmia has (IlCYC2 Many of the herbivora vielded nhixed flora incapable of ma'king gas on dextrose bouiillon.
oped in the carnivora. On the contrary, among the herbivora it is said that pronounced anaemias are very occasional. The examples of severe anmemia encountered amonig the herbivora were said by Dr. Blair to be in nearly all instances referable to gross animal parasites. The information now available indicates that man occupies a position between the herbivora and carnivora with respect to the numbers of putrefactive anaerobes that are present in the digestive tract and their proportion to the total number of bacteria. The influence of a purely vegetable diet on the one hand and of a strict meat diet on the other, upon these anaerobes, is much ill need of careful C. A. HERTER. inivestigation.
THE EXCEPTIONAL NATURE AND GENESIS OF TIHE iMISSISSIPPI DELTA.
AT the December mieeting of the Cordilleran Section of the American Geological Soeiety, 1905, I read a paper under the above title, an abstract of which, printed on the programl, is copied below:
This paper discusses the wholly exceptional materials and form of the lower delta of the Mississippi river, as observed by the writer in 1867 and 1869, and described and discussed in thle 4wAaerican Journal of AScience in 1871. Following ouit the suggestions of Lvell, and the disputed statement of Hunmphreys and Abbott that the alluvial deposits of the great river are only of slight depth, the writer investigated the extreme mouths of the Passes, the 'Neck' and the similar minor, birdfoot- like arms projecting beyonid. It became apparent that the silty river deposit on these narrow- dikes or banks is only superficial, and that their resistance to erosion diuring overflows is due to their being mainly composed of tough, inerodable 'muidlump clay.' That these mudlumps, observed and described by Lyell, are uplheavals of the iiver bottomii, and are forined of such clay as is (leposited outside of the bar, where the turbid water of the river meets, and is clarified by, the satline sea wvater. Also, that the inudlump uplheavals oc'cur in tIme mnain outJets or passes of the river, as a direct result of their being the main outlets. No mudlumps then existed in tIme South Pans, but now that it has been artificially made the main clhaniel, miiudlumiiip ipheaval lhas taken, and i3 taking, lace. Mudlulmp formiiation is tlhus
No such phenomena are known to occur in any other riv er of the world.862 SCIENCE. whose scouring action is powerless so lonig as the clay remains permanently submerged. in its twiceannual overflows. wholly unlike any of the visible sediment carried by the stream. as is done by Russell in his 'Rivers of North America. Gas bubbles were also noted whenever the dredgers disturbed a lump in the channel. UJsually other craters are formed before the extreme height is reached. agitated from time to time by gas butbbles. the normal mode of progression of the delta of the main Mississippi. already elaborately discussed by Sir Charles Lyell in the tenth edition of his 'Elements' (pp. The Mississippi delta should not. River Service could not control. therefore. as ascertained by the writer. It is still compelled to keep dredgers constantly at work. is such a mixture of marsh gas and carbonic dioxid as is evolved from organic debris in their first stages of decay. . and sometimes a flow of liquid mud visible even below water. or several mud-bubbles coalescing may form a small island with several vents. as is frequently the case. however. in Chamberlin and Salisbury's 'Handbook of Geology'. as was suggested to me by Russell. completely blocked by a mass of tough clay on their return. from which there issues a steady flow of semi-fluid mud. VOL. but more commonly six to ten feet. as Lyell correctly estimated. of all places the one where the scouring should be most effectively done? Of this forcing-up there can be no question whatever. I find the same misconception and omission. answers these questionis categ'orically. and why should it be brought up forcibly from the channel of the river. and sometimes direct inspection. But its amount. S. rendered necessary by the peculiar phenomenon of the mudlumps. sometimes attaining the height of fifteen to eighteen feet above tidewater. 448-454). is wholly inadequate to account for the copious and steady flow of fluid mud. WVby does not the scouring action of the current keep this channel permanently open. from whose highest point there frequently issue gas bubbles. Upon the 'correction' of the mouths of the great river. shortly before his death. For years. The material in both cases is a tough clay. 626. XXIV. there are usually formed on its summit one or several vents. the government has in the past been obliged to spend many millions. hence no otlher river has such birdfoot mouths. break and wash permanent lateral channels through the narrow barriers or levees that jut out into the gulf in birdfoot shape. [N. hence it seems desirable to call attention more pointedly. which all the dredging and artificial scouring done by the U. No. notwithstanding the fact that the enormous volume of the river has been turned into the single channel of the 'south pass ' of the delta. the latter forms only a thin surface layer on the main clay mass bordering and confining the currents of the river. as I then thought it sufficienIt to have called the attention of geologists to the omission of so exceptional and unique a feature. Whence this clay. the gas is combustible and.' The above paper was not written out for publication. Soundings around newly risen mudlumps. S. once for all? And why does not the river. and belonging to the principal river of North America. which gradually builds up flat cones of solidified material. Frequently the mud kept rising as fast as the dredger worked. be longer presented as the type of a normal delta. tugs with gigantic engines pulled the entering and the sea-going ships through the tough mud. A ship thus run aground in several feet of water in the evening has found its bow raised out of the water in the mornin veral u wate ne mwlng requiring sevea tugs ln to pull it off backward. This gas is undoubtedly derived from the large masses of trees and other vegetable matter carried and buried by the river in its deposits. Pilots and ship-captains have seen the channel in which they passed to sea a short time before. When a mudlump rises above tide level. like the craters of mud volcanoes. generally show theim to have the form of a rounded bubble. unlike all other deltas in the world? A simple examination of the material of which the banks of the 'passes' and of the uprising mudlumps in the channels are composed.
materials which. The peculiar material. wheare it diverges from the main delta-mass. upon a yielding bottom of fine mud and sand. and are nmade to progress seaward.. to be partly washed away. It should not be difficult to verify this in excavations made at New Orleans. and as such should concern the geologist quite as much as the engineer. mere borings can not. in view of the known average annual progression of the delta into the gulf (338 hardly been enlarged in fifty years. which according to my measurements amount to only one twentieth to one thirtieth of the volume of the material ejected. of course. forts Jackson and St. partly deposited in the intervals between adjacent lumps. some parts of the adjoining bottom of the gulf. therefore. this occurs especially where the material is not a very stiff clay. determine the question. seven miles above the mouth of the southwest pass. In other words. It is this same clay that has for ages withstood the impact of the main river-current at the 'head of the passes. should render this not a difficult problem to solve where sections exist or shall be made within the delta. which certainly constitutes the most gigantic example of creep known. U. sand and sediment accumulated during the flood season off the various mouths or passes.DECEMBE 28. unknnown at present. 1906. continuous clay dam.] SCIENCE.' whence the several outlets diverge. alone exhibit this remarkable feature and mode of progression? and how. as being very fine and impalpable. and bringing it down. he justly ascribes only a secondary part to the gases brought up with the mud. but the peculiar. p. so different from any now deposited by the river above its mouth. seg-ments of circular fissures forming all over it." The great mass of river sediment " may well be conceived to exert a downward pressure capable of displacing. of the River Service. On the eastern portions of the birdfoct area the destructioni of the lumps usually occurs by the waves washincg over the dried mud of the cones. and rose." There can be no question of the general correctness of Lyell's explanation of this phenomenon.' at the head of which. of all rivers in the world. 452) inclines to carry the mudlump-genesis of the delta as far up as New Orleans. Sometimes the lump collapses bodily. of course. Sir Charles Lyell ('Elements. Topographical Engineers. from information given him by Col. S. 863 The latter in the end are usually choked by solidified mud. onion-like structure of mudltumps that have risen above the surface anid become m-ud volcanoes. As to the origin of the mudlumps. have supplied by the existence of an active mudvolcano in the marsh. and which in fact can only have been deposited in slack-water. Lyell says: " The initiatory power may probably be derived from the downward pressure of the gravel. whereas even the channels purposely cut through it by duck-hunters to avoid the long detour through the passes into the bays. Were it otherwise. it is . had long before been carried out farthest from the land. as in the southwest pass. connecting them and thus gradually forming a solid.) considers them to be formed on the principle of the 'creeps' so familiar to engineers and miners. at least sixteen feet above the level of the marsh. and forcing up laterally. Tf any more evidence were needed. often leaving a small lagooni in the middle. For why should the Mississippi. tenth edition. the narrow barrier separatinig the neck from Garden-island Day could not have survived a dozen years of floods. is enough to distinguish the mudlump formation. Sidell. cit. and so soon as this happens the work of destruction begins. the same material forms the narrow banks of the ' neck. Lyell (loc. mudlump formation is at pr esent the normal mode of progression of the visible delta into the gulf. Philip are located.' etc. where the writer saw it spouting mudspatters and emitting mudstreams in 1869. This mudiump (then known as MAlorgan's lump) projected at least eight feet above the tall rushes (Scirpus lacustris). How far back in time or distance this mode of progression reaches is. squeezing. It is in this way that the narrow bands that bound the outer passes of the MIississippi are formed and mainitained. so as to give rise to new shoals and islands. on which the river current exerts no sensible erodilng effects while it remains submerged.
864 SCIENCE. and the pilots off the Mlssissippi mouths. The sediment annually deposited on the marsh areas above. And it isjust there. relieving the superineumbent pressure. feet) shall we account for the continued existence of a fluid mud-layer for mi-ore than a century.-hen these marshes are overflowed. thus enables the mud-bubbles to rise. It is covered by the heavy bar-sand. but a prior elevation. Given a senmi-fluid layer of mud on anl impervious clay bottom. the current excavates the river bed immediately inside the bar. where there is a steep descent into deep water. the divide between the two drainiages being very low. but before reaching it the lead scinks slowly for scone distance in a semiifluid mu(d. Its existence and nature imply that swamp or marsh conditions prevailed to gulfward for nearly thirty miles beyond the present coast line. but not. while the deepest water iniside the bar is found near the base of its landivard slope.ays become more active w. No. It is manifestly the result of the precipitation of the finest clay and silt when the river water nlixes with that of the sea. despite a considerable vis-a-tergo from laudward. S. and. it contains cypress stumps and other vestiges of swamp origin. This former northward direction of the drainage has been discussed somewbat widely before. if not prevenit.25 to as miuch as outflowiiing miiud . oni 'the adjoining bottom of the gulf. XXIV. VOL. the entire phenomenon rests upon and is conditioined by the existence of the 'blue delta clay' and 'blue clay bottomn' long commuented on respectively by the engineers in charge of the river work. so far as I know. must lhave thrown the lMississippi Valley drainage northward toward the Arctic. by Tight and others. in the case of MIorgan's lump-why has not this mud been squeeezed dry into a sheet of clay long ago ? In my view. It is constantly fountd by the sounding-lead outside of the river bar. e. supplies ample wei(ht. This blue clay constitutes a shelf reaching out about twenty-eight miles beyond the present nmouths. Wherever this clay is exposed along the gulf shore.' that the rise of mudlumps chiefly takes place. and not. In its annual advance of 338 feet to seaward. the sandy bar-material covers this fluid clay much faster than the latter can escape to seaward under the pressure. It is not clear whether Lyell considers the bar as such to exert the pressure causing the rise. It constitutes the main body of the formation whicll in my Mtississippi report of 1860 is doubtfully designated as Coast Pliocene. just iniside the bar. which from a boat in the shallow water over the bar-crest enn be seen being carried rapidly over. shallowing the water outside. whlieo is undistinguishable from that flowing from the mudlump vents. and the statement of the pilots that the miudlump springs alw. as Lyell seems to inmply. at any rate. The lower Mississippi River of to-day is evidently a very 'younig' stream.' But there is no doubt that the weight and wide base of the bar is able to materially obstruct. right where the strongest current seems to indicate the best channel for ships to pass. I gave the latter name. Since that time the land has been depressed anid reelevated to the extent of some 450 feet at least. In other words. but to which subsequently. with their heavy growth of rushes and other aquatic vegetation. indicated by stream-gravel beds now 450 feet below sea-level. the source of pressure is not far to seek. prior to the advent of the Mlississippi River of to-day. reaching as far landward as M1organ's lump at least. It is in this respect muchi like the miudlump clay itself. 626. The vis-a-tergo is the everil creasiag wevight of the river-sedime ats The specific gravity of the 1J- ral. [jN.. and is practically water-tight and proof against erosion so long as it r&mains submerged and no gravel is carried by the current. the squeezing of the semi-fluid mud to seaward.nres fromii a miinimum of 1. it is. with special reference to the gulf datunm-plane and its borderinig formnatioiis. difficult to see how the static pressure of a submerged bar could cause the same material to rise froimi ten to fifteen feet above tide-level. adds cogency to tlhis explanation. finding it mriost characteristically developed at Port Il-udson. the blue-clay shlelf is there. i. However that may be.
so that it turns turbid on exposure to the upheaval would surely occur. greater part of the past century. of its being most nearly in line with the main The microscopic character of the ejected mud river at the head of the passes. than could ever be accomerly of the mouths. these unique phenomena sea vessels destined for 'outre-mer'.20 per cent. at the gulf to New Orleans was almost wholly very much less current expense. and the south the twice-annually recurrinig floods of the pass being too narrow and shallow for deepsea ships. There is a mixture of fresh. The earliest navigation froin ing the channel in navigable condition. its mouth of which was then free from mudsulphates have been reduced to iron pyrites.king the eominon salt as the basis that he hoped that the increased velocity of of eomnarison. whose very name indicates plished in the southwest pass. together with the scouring action of history of the several outlets or passes durilng the full river current. but these also being soon such treatises that they should acquaint them- . and allowed to consisted of 86. (lams. a vent on the Passe 'a l'Outre be tried as anl ultima ratio. its chief importance as the outlet for deepTaken altogether. besides necessitating the mudlump ejecta are in a macerated condition. came Eads's proposidiluted sea-water subjected to maceration with tion to turn the river into the south pass. lumnps. of marsh gas.more effectually. it remained the main outlet in of the MLississippi delta seem to be of sufficient use even to the first third of the past century. the decayinig organic matter. and 4. I agreed. Ta. Its channel being very following are of interest as corroborative of wide and its deposits more sandy by reason the above explanation of mudlump phenomena. and cost the govforr1ms such as foraminifera. Amonig the details of the investigation. This The event has in the end justified both approxiimates closely to the average conmposi. That is to say. of course. Eads replied air.south pass bar. To this.39 of nitrogen. No after the completion of the jetties and wingoxygen was present. its use inis precisely that of the mud brought up by volved the additional difficulty of shifting the sounding-lead from the seaward slope of sand bars. 865 proper. all of which were frustrated sandy veents. the writer called Eads's attenition to the the mud. the outlet for navigation. and that at any rate it should The gas from. magnesia and shouLld be made the main outlet.DECEMBER 28. during the great river. pass had been.1 SCIENCE. It is expected of those who write ased by vessels.almost certainty that whenever the south pass nated with bicarbonates of lime. 9. ping. While this matter was before conwhich is scattered in shining crystals through gress. are successfully keephistoric times. of earbonic dioxid. muudlump iron. deposited in the marshes above during heavily obstructed by lumps. the main given in my article above referred to. the proportioni of magnesium the current in the narrow chainnel inclosed by eCIlorid is increased. To keep a nlavigable channel the river bar. with the characterizing the formation and progression northeast pass. while the water is strongly impreg. shows the chemical nature of hy the rise of mudlumps.41 go unchallenged. and much through the 'Passe a l'Outre. the southwest pass was.' the most north. mudlump upheaval began inside of the The commercial importance of the forma. use of enormously powerful tugs for the shipThe water accompanying the outfiowing mud. After miany unsuccessful attempts for oi sometimes welling uip clear from old or permanent relief. but these in the ernment millions.Eads's and my anticipation. importance.through these and the copious mudlump forwater organisms and debris witlh marine oations was an endless task. that of potash decreased. 1906. to Then it became so contracted and shallowed render their omission from handbooks of by mudlumps that the northeast and southeast American geology and hydrology hardly expasses were for a while the main channels cusable. but the watchful activity of tlon of mudlumps is well illustrated in the dredrgers. both theoretical and practical. Not many years tion of the gas from ordinary swamps. h:is jetties would keep it scouredl out to a much the latter doubtless by the absorption of the greater extent than the shallow southwest h}aQe into zeolithic combination.
S. well known as one of the foremost meteorological investigators in the world. Phytion between the occurrence of thunder-storms sique et d'Hist. selves with all previous literature on the same subjects. of the Annals of the Harvard College Observatory contains ' Observations and Investigations mnade at the Blue Hill Meteorological Observatory in the Years 1903 and 1904. aind upon the length of the series of observations. the crediting and utilization of the more remote publications seems in danger of falliing into innocuous desuetude. . by the Diagram Company. The means for these years show so complete an agreement for different phases of the moon that there can be no question that no lunar influence is shown. may well look back on the past twenty years of work at Blue Hill with pride and satisfaction. among them the gipsy and brown-tail moths. has completed twenty years of service at Blue Hill. has completed eighteen years of service. de Geneve. who in the September number of 'Hemel en Dampkring' presents the results of a study of thunderstorm days in Holland for the period 1883-1903. W. and that Mr. H. of Zutphen. Part II. winds. YOTES OY ENTOMOLOGY. without whose untiring devotion to his science and unfailing readiness to assume the increasing financial burden of maintaining this institution the United States would occupy a far less prominent place in meteorological advancement. A great number of experiments were made by the author on the larva of twenty-one different species of Lepidoptera. W. lengthens larval life.. extension lecturer.' From the introduction we learn that Mr. of the seventh issue of 'The Diagram Series. ocean currents and rainfall. NL. on the whole. we do not summarize here. manifest. HILGARD. LVIII. This series comprises a considerable number of lantern slides illustrating the climate of the world as a whole. Mr.' designed by B. 626. WV. of New Malden.' M6m. IlhumiditsSoc. no lunar influence is.. The introduction also contains a review of the principal work done at Blue Hill in the twenty years since its opening. E.. XXIV.127. American men of science can have but one hope and wish in connection with the Blue Hill Observatory: that its next twenty years may be as fruitful in results as the last twenty have been. It is encouraging to see the rapid increase in the demand for such teaching materials in meteorology and climatology for use in colleges and schools. B. but notwithstanding the elaborate bibliographies now so commonly appended to papers on special topics. by his skill as a mechanician and his general ability along many lines of meteorological inquiry has contributed largely to the success of the Blue Hill work. Andrews. England. 1906. who. but as readers of ScIENCE are familiar with much of this. When a long series of observations is available. Nat. DEC. A food difficult of assimilation hinders the growth of the caterpillar and THUNDER-STORMS AND THE MOON. Lawrence IRotch. His results show that changing the usual food is apt to cause variation in adults. Fergusson. A. and A. CURRENT NOTES ON METEOROLOGY. 4 pl. UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA. assistant master at Rugby. The latest con. 1905. BLUE HILL OBSERVATORY. WARD. in consequence the pupal MuCH time has been spent by varlous in" Influence de I'alimentation et de vestigators in the attempt to show some rela. VoL. Among these we observe charts of isotherms. isobars. WE niote the publication. Dickinson. pp. Surrey. Hissink. Evidently the supposed connectlon between moon and thunder-storms depends for the results obtained upon the period which any investigator uses. Vol. Dcetnmber. S. LANTERN SLIDES ILLUSTRATING CLIMATE. A MOST interesting and attractive paper is that of Arnold Pictetl on the influence of food and humidity on Lepidoptera. No. VOL. the founder of the observatory.sur la variation des papillons. Clayton.866 SCIENCE. H. tribution to this discussion comes from C. P. 45and the phases of the moon. 35. R. and of the separate continents.
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