The seal's flesh supplies the natives with their most palatable and substantial food, which however has a fishy flavour, as the creatures feed chiefly on fish. Seals are sometimes taken on land, when surprised basking in the sun, with their young. As soon as they are alarmed by the sight of their enemies, they scuttle away, and make for the sea. It is on the great deep that the Esquimaux, driven by hunger, chiefly seeks his precarious food. In his light canoe, which is made of seal-skins stretched over a slight framework of wood, he hunts, in all weathers, for his prey, especially for the much-prized Narwhal.
There, tumbling in their seal-skin boat,
Fearless, the hungry fishers float,
And from the teeming seas supply
The food their niggard plains deny.
[Footnote 4: See ZOOLOGICAL SKETCHES, Common Seal. Published by the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge.]