The domestic canary, in comparison with its wild relatives, is somewhat larger in size. As a rule, most decorative canary species have a body length within 15 cm maximum. At the same time, there are species that differ in either greater or lesser size.
These birds have a fairly harmonious body shape, with the same harmoniously folded round head. The bird's beak is short, pin-shaped. The main color of most song canaries is considered to be yellow.
Despite this fact, in our time, it is permissible to purchase a bird with an original color without any problems. If a canary has red feathers, then it is the result of crossing with a fire siskin.
It should also be noted that in our time there are other artificially bred forms of canaries, with the presence of a visible crest or various curls. The flight pattern of this domestic songbird is similar to the flight pattern of wild individuals.
Lifestyle and behavior
For the first time, the world learned about the wild canary from the famous German naturalist Karl Bolle a little over a hundred years ago.
This interesting bird, small in size, prefers to live in sparse thickets of vegetation, in bushes, as well as within forest edges. At the same time, the bird cannot be found in places where the shade from dense green spaces prevails. Canaries can be found in gardens as well as in the immediate vicinity of human habitation.
When the birds are not nesting, they prefer to keep in small groups, in which they fly from tree to tree in search of food. Being in the wild, these birds feed on the seeds of various herbs and plants, greens, and various types of berries, including grapes, both wild and cultivated. Most of all, these birds love to feast on the seeds of poppy and garden salad, as well as partially ripe "canary seeds".
While feeding their chicks, birds prefer to hunt various insects such as scale insects or green aphids. Before sunset, these birds form numerous flocks and go for the night, having chosen one of the tallest trees.
Interesting to know! In February / March, the mating season begins for canaries. During this period, groups or flocks break up, and the formation of pairs begins, after which the birds begin to mass form nests.
Types of canaries with photos and names
There are several varieties of song and decorative canaries that are suitable for keeping in captivity. The most common decorative types include:
Humpbacked Canary (Belgian Fancy Canary)
The peculiarity of the bird is that it has a characteristic vertical type of posture and a strongly lowered head.
Yorkshire canary, which is slightly larger in size, as well as a carrot-like body shape.
Border Fancy Canary
This is a small bird, with brilliant plumage, and also undemanding in keeping.
Fife Fancy Canary
In appearance, this canary is similar to the Border canary, but at the same time it has a slightly smaller body size.
Which differs in that it has several longer and raised feathers on its head, giving the impression of a tuft.
This bird is characterized as large and massive, with a dense build and original appearance.
Has a very bright and attractive plumage, which is dominated by bright red or contrasting pink shades.
In the color of this bird there is an original speckled coloring, reminiscent of lizard scales.
Parisian Frilled Canary
It is considered the largest variety and the most popular. It is distinguished by the presence of curly plumage, as well as legs twisted in the form of a corkscrew.
Mehringer Frill Canary
It has a complete resemblance in appearance to the Parisian Curly Canary, but at the same time it has a much smaller size.
The purpose of breeding home song canary there was an improvement in the singing natural characteristics of male canary. Canaries have the ability to play many sounds and even primitive melodies, regardless of the variety. Depending on the species, canaries are capable of making the following sounds:
German Roller (German Roller Canary)
It is a singing canary, emitting low-pitched voices, therefore it is characterized by a quiet sound. She can also make sounds without opening her mouth at all. At the same time, when playing sounds, intermittent, harsh sounds may appear, not very pleasant, which is a disadvantage of this type.
Malinois Belgian (Waterslager Canary)
The Belgian song canary has an attractive appearance and a pleasant voice. Her singing consists of sounds reminiscent of gurgling, gurgling and bubbling in conjunction with nightingale trills.
Spanish Timbrado Canary
The Spanish Singing Canary easily performs three song tours in a strictly defined sequence, as well as with a metallic sheen.
American Singer Canary
Represents the American Singing Canary. This variety saw the light after crossing the German Roller and Border canary. The bird is distinguished by its beautiful appearance and pleasant, melodic and loud sound.
Interesting to know! The singing Russian canary is also very popular. Her singing is based on the trills of the titmouse, common oatmeal, and also of the Dubrovnik.
How many canaries live
The life span of a songbird is directly dependent on the conditions of its keeping, and it is very important to maintain the correct temperature, lighting and humidity. In such conditions, a canary can live up to 12 years. It should be noted that there are individuals that have lived for 15 years.
Keeping a canary at home
Canaries are birds that can be "raised", they are easy to tame and very trusting. They breed without problems in captivity. They can be kept both in cages and in special enclosures.
Cell selection and filling
Choosing a cage for a canary is a rather demanding task. The best option is a hardwood cage such as oak, beech and ash. A good option is a metal cage that is easy to clean and disinfect.
Increasingly, canaries are kept in a kind of houses made of organic glass and which have basic dimensions of 30x35x20 or 22x27x29 cm.The distance between the rods can be no more than one and a half centimeters. For keeping such birds, structures with side doors are better suited. In this case, it is desirable that the model has a double bottom, with a retractable part.
Alternatively, the feeders can be placed directly on the bottom of the cage, although this can lead to rapid clogging of the feed. As a more relevant filling option, a perch-perch with a rough surface, round in shape, can serve. In the case of group keeping of poultry, you should opt for cage cages, as well as spacious fly-by cages.
These birds love water treatments, especially since frequent bathing helps to cleanse the skin and strengthen the plumage. Birds should receive water treatment in an environment where the water temperature matches the ambient temperature.
The bathing suit should be fixed on the outside of the door so that during bathing, water cannot get inside the cage. At the end of the water procedures, it is better to remove the bathing suit and close the door. The bird should be taught to this important process from an early age.
An important point! The cage should be in good lighting conditions, but never in direct sunlight. Do not place the cage in a draft area. In an enclosed space, it is necessary to allow the canary to fly.
Care and hygiene
The cage should be removed at least 2 times a week. For this period, the bird should be placed in a temporary cage, and clean. The cleaning process should be that all elements of the cage are thoroughly washed with hot water. After that, they are scalded with boiling water and disinfected with strong chamomile infusion. After that, all elements are wiped dry and dried. Dry chamomile should be poured into the area of the cell pallet, and dry, clean river sand should be placed on the pallet itself, and a thin layer of eggshell on top. The shell will serve as a kind of feeding for birds, as a result of which the digestion process improves. The feeders are filled with food. Pure water at room temperature must be present without fail.
How to feed a canary
Ornamental birds feed 2 times a day, in the morning and in the evening at a certain time. In the morning, birds should be fed soft food, insects and other feed mixtures. A basic diet of vegetables, fruits and herbs is given every evening. The nature of the food depends on the species characteristics of the birds, as well as on the season. In the case of several birds, it is natural that the diet should be increased.
In case of improper feeding in poultry, metabolic disorders are possible. As a consequence, feather loss is possible in birds. To prevent this from happening, a pet should be accustomed to eating different types of food from an early age. In the case of the beginning of the breeding process, the amount of feed, as well as their quality, increases. At the same time, highly nutritious components must be present, with the inclusion of vitamins and minerals.
As a rule, the daily dose of feed is determined experimentally and depends on the individual characteristics of the birds and their appetite. Experienced canary owners recommend the following dietary guidelines. For a canary for a day, it is enough:
- Grain mixtures - 20 g.
- Half an apple.
- One tablet of calcium gluconate or glycerophosphate.
- One fresh cabbage leaf.
- One teaspoon of grated carrots.
- Two teaspoons of minced chicken eggs.
- One glucose tablet.
- Steep millet, buckwheat or rice porridge - 5 g.
- One slice of white bread or croutons.
- Two teaspoons of milk to soak white bread.
- One teaspoon of fresh cottage cheese.
With the onset of winter, the diet should be expanded by introducing fish oil and brewer's yeast into the diet. In order to minimize the chances of the appearance of various negative manifestations with health, the pet's diet should be as balanced as possible. It should be remembered that these birds are not recommended to feed branches of oak, pear, poplar, conifers and bird cherry.
Health, disease and prevention
If the canary is sick, then it must be quarantined in a separate cage.
The most common and common diseases of canaries include:
- The appearance of growths on the paws.
- Intestinal blockage.
- Constipation and diarrhea.
- Catarrh of the upper respiratory tract.
- Metabolic disease.
- Getting injuries, fractures and wounds.
- Inflammation of the goiter.
- Liver dysfunction.
- I’ll lose my voice.
- Loss of plumage.
- The presence of various parasites.
Preventive measures are reduced to keeping poultry in compliance with all the rules, keeping the cage clean, as well as providing the birds with a balanced diet. When there is a noticeable change in the behavior of your pet, associated with the appearance of lethargy, apathy, loss of appetite, problems with the digestive system, you should immediately consult your veterinarian.
The process of breeding canaries at home is not difficult at all. When canaries are ready to breed, they become agitated and hyperactive, and also show restlessness by screaming and flapping their wings. Males begin to make loud sounds, and during this period they do not shine with a special variety of melodies. Females start looking for any building material to build a nest.
Breeding canaries at home can be done in two ways:
- The first option is closer to natural conditions, therefore it is considered more correct. It is associated with the fact that the male takes part in all stages of the breeding process.
- The second option is associated with the fact that the male is deposited after the female has laid eggs.
Two canaries, which are ready to breed, are placed in a special cage with a nest base. The cage can have dimensions of 60x50x40 cm. The base for the nest is about 10 cm in diameter and about 5 cm deep. Such a cage is installed in a place where there is the most light.
The mating process is accompanied by games, as well as frequent copulation. After that, the female lays about 5 eggs and the hatching process begins. As a rule, the female is engaged in this. This process continues for 2 weeks. Chicks are born, which begin to see already on the 5th day.
An important stage! After one month, the chicks can be transplanted from their parents into a separate small cage.