This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
Dear Sir: If you or any of your readers ever "loved a tree or flower," and especially a cherry tree on your own premises, covered with a fine crop of particularly early fruit, which you had set your heart upon enjoying, only to see the spoiler come in the shape of a parcel of little cedar birds, or "ring tails," to make a desert of your cherries before you could get a fair chance to pronounce them ripe, you probably understand someting of the sufferings of such disappointed hopes. As these young Ishmael-ites of "ring tails" make their breakfast on my Early Purple Guignes and Bauman's May every season, I have been a little provoked at them, and at last have succeeded in baffling them, by suspending three-cornered pieces of new bright tin, about as large as my hand, among the branches. These bits of tin may be had from the tin shops for a mere trifle, or if you take the refuse pieces - for nothing. Punch a hole in one corner, and suspend the tin by a piece of twine from one of the outer branches, so that it may swing freely. As it turns it will catch the light and sunshine, and frighten off the robbers.
A neighbor, who never does things by halves, has improved on my mode by smearing a branch or two of each tree with bird-lime. This detains one or two of the little thieves now and then, til he makes a sign of distress, which, connected with the awful brightness of the tin, induces them to give the tree a "wider birth," as the sailors say. W. Boston, June 8,1851.