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Remember the Rainforest 1

 

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which covered it with its bright green and hard foliage, is characterized by the variety of flower formations in very large garlands, in evidence of the tropical climate. In the mountain caves we found isolated pebbles and pieces of diorite that lay scattered on the granite floor.

On December 10, in the morning, we reached Santa Cruz, passing through heavily watered fields, and were greeted in the most friendly manner by Lieutenant Colonel Feldner, who was there. This village of a few hundred inhabitants, which has only recently obtained from the king the title and prerogatives of the village, is perched on a rounded, sandy hill with a very wide,

Royal mansion, Santa Cruz

marshy plain around; except for the royal mansion, it consists of miserable mud huts. The main building, formerly owned by the Jesuit College of Rio de Janeiro and currently owned by the Crown Prince Pedro de Alcantara, who received it as a gift from his father, contains the necessary accommodations for the royal family's country residence. It is surrounded by some buildings for the rural administration. Nevertheless, a very extensive pasture, an extraordinarily large corral, with many thousands of heads, is closeby to a thousand slaves intended for cultivation of the farm. Despite the preference that the court gives to this country residence, it is a rich property almost in the same state of abandonment that Mawe found and described here many years ago. They have not yet taken care of raising pigs here, in the European way, and the king, who has one of the most beautiful herds of cows so close to his home, must settle for salty Irish butter, which has been traveling for a few months. The benefit that such a rural institute could provide for the cultivation of the whole province, if proposed as a model farm, would be incalculable. Most of the oxen raised here are descended from those that had long since been brought from Portugal; However, there was no thought of improving the breed with bulls in Rio Grande do Sul, which, living in complete freedom, became large and strong. This cattle is, therefore, smaller and less similar to those in the wild, which we saw in the pastures of Sao Paulo or those brought from Rio Grande to the North. The hair color is generally dark brown and the horns are slightly arched and not large. It is well known that cows in hot climates give less milk than those of Europe; that's why they usually leave the calves to suckle for a long time. European cows themselves gradually lose their abundance of milk, a fact that can be explained

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