| Distribution - Hunting
| Indian Rhino
And now let us try a rhinoceros hunt. This animal is found in the same regions that the hippopotamus inhabits, but he also lives in Asia. He is rather a dangerous animal to hunt. He is a savage fellow when provoked; he has a great horn on his nose, and a skin so thick that it is almost bullet-proof, and, besides that, he is the largest and strongest animal on the earth, excepting the elephant. So no wonder he is a little unsafe to hunt.
The rhinoceros lives on grass and herbs, and makes his home entirely on the land. His flesh, like that of the hippopotamus, is very good to eat, but rhinoceros-beef ought to be dear, if the trouble and danger in getting it is taken into consideration when the price is fixed. He very often turns and charges on the hunters, and if he gets his horn under a man or a horse, he is likely to cause trouble.
It is said that a rhinoceros can kill an elephant, by ripping him up with his horn, and that the lion and all wild beasts are afraid of him. I am not at all surprised that this is the case, for I have examined the skin of a rhinoceros which I saw in a menagerie, and it was so thick and heavy that scarcely any animal could tear it, with teeth or claws, so as to get at the enemy within it. The rhinoceros
which I saw in a cage was not quite full-grown. His horn was not more than an inch or two above his nose, but he was an enormous fellow, and his great hide, which was as hard as the sole of your shoe, hung on him in great folds, as if it had been made large so as to give him room to grow. He was gentle enough, and let me put my hand through the bars of his cage and take hold of his horn without making the slightest objection. But we will not find that kind of rhinoceros on the plains of Africa, and if we hunt one we must kill him very soon, or be prepared to get out of his way.
After a rhinoceros hunt we will not be apt to be easily frightened, no
matter what beast we pursue, so we might as well go to India and hunt
the Bengal tiger.
There is no animal more graceful in its movements, handsomer in shape
and color, or more bloody and ferocious in its nature, than the Royal
Bengal tiger. Even in a cage he is a magnificent creature. When I go
to a menagerie, I always look first for the Bengal tigers.
If we go to hunt these animals, we had better ride upon elephants, for
we must go into the jungles, where the tall reeds, through which the
tigers roam, are higher than our heads.