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The Good The Bad And The Ugly About Canaries

Janeymode

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12/28/14
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11
I've been keeping birds as pets all my life but canaries only for the last 6 years.
My husband got me two Fifes in 2008 and I called them Eddie and Stone (I'm a huge Pearl Jam fan)
in November this year my little Eddie died aged 6, leaving behind Stone (also 6)
On Christmas Day my husband gave me 2 more Fifes...a variegated yellow and a clear blue...they are 8 -10 weeks old
They are all males and the two new birds (Jeff and Mike) fought in the same cage but once I gave them their own cage they stopped...they both seem to like the company of Stone and he seems to like their company
I absolutely love them, they are the most inquisitive birds I have ever kept, they are interested in everything and right there if you're doing something.
I let my birds roam free downstairs, they only roost at night, this arrangement has suited Stone since he was a fledgling and it seems to be suiting Jeff and Mike
BABIES.jpg
 

pajarita

Walking the driveway
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12/13/14
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230
Congratulations on your new Fifes. The little canaries on my signature are either yellow or red but, in reality, I have variegated, bronze, cinnamon and white with blue, too. I have Timbrado, lizard, gloster and red factor (but not Fife :) )
 
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BeakFace

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The only 'bad' about canaries is that you have to keep each male in his own cage and that you have to be strict about a solar schedule for them. You can house hens together as long as the cage is really big and there are more than one feeding bowls but you can't house a male with a female. And the fact that people think they are good aviary birds and normally keep them to a human light schedule (as well as the small size of what is considered a canary cage and a diet of mostly seeds) is the reason why people think they have a lifespan of only 8 to 10 years when, in reality, canaries can live up to 20 (I had a hen that lived to be 18 years old -her name was Big Momma).

Also, Timbrados never stop singing, not even during molt.

PS I have a singing female -she sings so well that she was sold as a male and the man who purchased her returned her to the breeder so I lucked out!
Well my Timbrado unfortunately DOESN'T sing during molting! He is the most magnificent song bird! I bought him right after he placed first place at a Canary Song Show in Orlando about a year ago! The breeder had breed for over 30 years. I had Found her on YouTube video. She does not advertise so I had to run her down by calling local CANARY ASSC. She is so sweet and knowledgable and available for any questions any time. Love him dearly! Just got a custom stainless steel cage from Animal Environments and he has plenty of room! Thanks Carmen, the cage is gorgeous and Elvis loves it!
 

pajarita

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Well my Timbrado unfortunately DOESN'T sing during molting! He is the most magnificent song bird! I bought him right after he placed first place at a Canary Song Show in Orlando about a year ago! The breeder had breed for over 30 years. I had Found her on YouTube video. She does not advertise so I had to run her down by calling local CANARY ASSC. She is so sweet and knowledgable and available for any questions any time. Love him dearly! Just got a custom stainless steel cage from Animal Environments and he has plenty of room! Thanks Carmen, the cage is gorgeous and Elvis loves it!
Well, singing or not singing during molt has to do with a couple of variables these been a healthy endocrine system (kept in tune to the seasons), type of Timbrado (classics -aka 'continuous'- don't sing as much as floreados -aka 'discontinuous') and whether you have a single male or more (male canary song is a form of aggression and will 'defy' the other one singing while a single one doesn't need to). But I doubt your breeder bred Timbrados for 30 years because there were really none until the late 90's (the association was founded in '98 - I started with them in 2001 and bought first offspring of birds brought over from Spain) but I guess it is possible if she is from Spain and brought her birds over from there.
 

BeakFace

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I believe when she said 30 years doesn't mean just Soanish Timbrados! Elvis sings all day long! Never get bored with his beautiful song! Hated when molt started . Couldn't stand the silence.
 

Mr Peepers

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I believe when she said 30 years doesn't mean just Soanish Timbrados! Elvis sings all day long! Never get bored with his beautiful song! Hated when molt started . Couldn't stand the silence.

It's really a gloomy period for the poor canary's when they moult, I hate that they have no ability to sing while they have new feathers itching and annoying them making them preen continuously.

My avian suggested to play music when they are moulting, some how they listen to the different notes and it registers in their brains and stays there, as the moult ends and their scratchy little voices try to peep out some notes they will actually be able to reproduce a bunch of new notes in their song.

.
 

BeakFace

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It's really a gloomy period for the poor canary's when they moult, I hate that they have no ability to sing while they have new feathers itching and annoying them making them preen continuously.

My avian suggested to play music when they are moulting, some how they listen to the different notes and it registers in their brains and stays there, as the moult ends and their scratchy little voices try to peep out some notes they will actually be able to reproduce a bunch of new notes in their song.

.
Well I played the songs from YouTube for Elvis but mainly just missed his little song so much it gave me a fix! It was the longest 3 months ever!
 

BeakFace

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People are always so shocked when they ask what bird of yours is your favorite? Always the Canary! My husband loves the Canary the most. I love them all but a Canary just brings so much joy!
 

Mr Peepers

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People are always so shocked when they ask what bird of yours is your favorite? Always the Canary! My husband loves the Canary the most. I love them all but a Canary just brings so much joy!

I know exactly what you mean, I love all my birds but when the canary sings I just get lost listening to him and watching him.

So much sound from such a little bird. :)

.
 

BeakFace

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Your so right ! I have two Palms that are truly amazing and sound so Majestic! Mayor Mitchell, again very different than the white Cockatoo's and a Rose Breasted. Full house and small dogs. Love them all,
 

imizael

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9/11/16
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Julie
I love my little guy and got a rather big cage for him to fly / hop around in sadly lost my female back there in March old age I think, As my ma and da found her laying at the side of the road I fell in love with my little girl called her Twitter because she made they cute little cheeping sound, Was a lovely lemon yellow in colour looked like the one in my profile pic but slightly fatter.
 

gini

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The attributes listed in this thread are the experiences of each individual and your experiences may differ with your individual bird.

I am going to keep this to my experience only without much generalization, as Kismet is the only canary I have had the pleasure of having in my life.
The Good
He is a wonderfully sweet and soft little guy. What he may lack in willingness to hop on your finger, he makes up for with his beautiful song. He is really easy to care for. He loves fresh veggies, his seed mix with a bit of Harrison's mash, and occasionally a bit of scrambled egg. A cuttlebone and mineral block, and fresh water often for drinking and bathing should be provided,

The Bad
Canaries, like most small birds{and this is just my opinion} get the shaft as far as I am concerned. To me, small birds need big cages just as much as the bigger guys. More so, because they hop and fly.
They can go quiet for a few months{male} during their molt.

The warning I want to write here is just be careful to thoroughly check out the bird you are thinking of adding to your family. A bird that comes from where many are kept, or outdoors, may have scaley mites, or air sac mites.
There is no ugly I can add. I think they are wonderful birds.:)
There is only one negative I can think of to owning a canary (or canaries!). They are messy little birds that require frequent cage cleaning. Having said that, they are worth it. Pleasant, beautiful, small, easy to care for wonderful companions.
 

Serin

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The Good

Canaries are wonderful little birds if you like a pet to look at and don't mind not being able to have a close touchy-feely bond with. They're lively and quickly become used to their owners watching them. The males sing beautifully and there is a breed with a song for any owner's tastes. They are usually good-natured and can be kept with other finches if the enclosure is large enough. They require much less attention than a parrot and are a good pet for the busier individual, as long as they are fed, watered, and cleaned regularly. They're also very easy to breed and they like an open nest cup, meaning you can watch the nesting and the growth of the babies very easily and get a front row seat to one of nature's most fascinating processes.

Canaries are eager eaters and can be used to teach other birds to try new foods. There is no such thing as a picky canary!

They can be kept alone if you can only keep one bird, but they do seem to appreciate company of the opposite sex or another bird species.

Overall, the canary is one of my favorite birds to keep as a pet. I have had quite a few, and will probably always have them in my flock. They come in many colors and breeds, my favorites being the cresteds which have ridiculous bowl "haircuts" of feathers that grow in a circle outwards on their heads.

The Bad


Canaries of the same sex will fight.
In a large aviary, they work out a pecking order, but in a cage one may exhaust or kill the other if it cannot get away - this is more common in males but some females will also not tolerate other females in their cages, and some males will also pick on females outside the nesting season or if the female is not ready to mate but the male is. This can be avoided to an extent by introducing new pairs when both are ready to mate. After that time, they will usually maintain a bond.

The Ugly


Canaries are extremely sensitive to day length.
It is absolutely vital that when kept as indoor pets, they be maintained on a day and night cycle matching outdoor conditions or otherwise changing from 8 - 10 hours in winter to 15 hours+ in the summer, and that they are kept in almost total darkness to sleep (a night light is okay.) This is because canaries come from a temperate climate and have evolved to depend onto he changing day length to regulate their body clocks. As days get longer in the spring, they become primed to mate. As they peak in the summer and then begin to lessen, the bird will molt, a process which is fully completed in 6 weeks. If a bird is kept on 12 hours or more a day all year as very often is the case in the brightly lit houses of the modern dayit will always be primed to mate and will not molt, which will exhaust it and cause it to go bald and reduce its lifespan drastically. A major cause of ill health in the canary is improper lighting, and this quirk is perhaps the main reason the canary has fallen out of popularity in recent years to other tropical finches which are not so sensitive. But if this aspect of their environment is managed, the canary is otherwise a hardy a bird prone to few issues.
 

kiwicockatiel

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no prob for me i got a BIG walk in bird aviary me and my dad build so i might get some :)
 

Skye

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Ahem, may I revive this thread by writing of my experience with zebra finches? Or should I start a new thread about finches?
 

ParrotNuts

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Ahem, may I revive this thread by writing of my experience with zebra finches? Or should I start a new thread about finches?
You could make a new thread. It well help to keep answers organized for viewers:)
 

finchly

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Ahem, may I revive this thread by writing of my experience with zebra finches? Or should I start a new thread about finches?
It would be great to have a thread about them!
Alternatively, you could add to this one.
 
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