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feet to some extent in balancing
itself when turning with
the wind, also by poking them
down at a right angle with
the body to check its course
especially when alighting on
the water.  Generally while
flying they are stretched 
out behind with the webs
extended and assist the
bird materially in guiding
itself, the tail being shorter
than the extended feet.
It rises by extending its
wings and running against
the wind over the water
until it is sufficiently
raised above the water to
use its wings without
wetting them.  A flock
of four or five have
accompanied us from
California so far but
will probably soon leave