About thirty years ago a gentleman, who was fond of birds and beasts, took into his head to try if parrots could not be persuaded to make themselves at home among the trees in his garden. For a little while everything seemed going beautifully, and the experimenter was full of hope. The parrots built their nests in the woods, and in course of time some young ones appeared, and gradually grew up to their full size. Then, unluckily, they became tired of the grounds which they knew by heart, and set off to see the world. The young parrots were strong upon the wing, and their beautiful bright bodies would be seen flashing in the sun, as much as fifteen miles away, and, then, of course, some boy or gamekeeper with a gun in his hand was certain to see them, and covet them for the kitchen mantel-shelf or a private collection.
The cockatoos however did not always care to choose trees for their building places. One little pair, whose grandparents had whisked about in the heat of a midsummer day in Australia, found the climate of England cold and foggy, and looked about for a warm cover for their new nest. They had many conversations on the subject, and perhaps one of these may have been overheard by a jackdaw, who put into their minds a brilliant idea, for the very next morning the cockatoos were seen carrying their materials to one of the chimneys, and trying to fasten them together half-way up. But cockatoos are not as clever as jackdaws about this kind of thing, and before
1 Naturalist's Note-Book. Reeves & Turner: 1868.