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But I am not ignorant of what Clearchus, the Peripatetic philosopher, has said about what he calls the exoccetus fish, or fish which comes out of the water to sleep, which he mentions in his work entitled A Treatise on Aquatic Animals. For he has said, (and I think that I recollect his exact words, which are as follows,) “The exoccetus fish, which some people call Adonis, has derived its name from constantly taking his rest out of the water. He is rather of a red colour, and from his gills down to his tail he has on each side of his body one white stripe reaching the whole length of his body. And he is round, but not being broad, he is equal in size to the cestrinisci which are found near the shore; and they are as near as may be about eight fingers in length. Altogether he is very like the fish called the sea-goat, except that the latter has a black place under his stomach, which they call the beard of the goat. And the exocœtus is one of the fish which keeps near to the rocks, and spends his life in rocky places. When it is calm weather he springs up with the waves and lies on the rocks for a considerable time, sleeping on the dry land, and turning himself so as to bask in the sun: and then, when he has had sufficient rest, he rolls towards the water again, until the wave, taking him [p. 526] again, bears him with the reflux back into the sea. And when he is awake on the dry land then he is on his guard against those birds which are called pareudistæ, such as the halcyon, the sandpiper, and the helorius, which is a bird like the rail. For these birds in calm weather feed on the dry land, and often attack the exocœtus; but when he sees them at a distance he flies, leaping and panting, until he dives beneath the water.”
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