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Keep Your Baby Canaries Happy and Healthy Part Four
8 years ago

Canary Types... Depending on how you look at the word "types"...
There may be three canary types or there may be hundreds.

Certainly, there are HUNDREDS of breeds--or varieties-- of canary but...

Here is how I like to separate the hundreds of canary breeds--in regards to the word "TYPES"...

Domestic canaries can be divided into three basic groups or...

     Please stay tuned for the next installment.....

8 years ago

Types of canary

  1. Type canaries
  2. Color canaries
  3. Song canaries
First let's talk about...

Type Canaries

Type canaries are bred for a specific physical trait or shape with little or no regard for the birds song or color. 

Type canaries can be seen in many strange and wondrous shapes and sizes.   From small to large to humpbacks to frilled and crested.
8 years ago
Some of the most popular Type canaries are...

The Lizard Canary with markings and colorations reminiscent of a lizard's scales.  Bred in the early 1700's in France...

The Lizard Canary.

Source of Photograph.....

Developed in France during the early 1700s the...

...Lizard Canary...

is the one of the oldest breeds of canary still available today.

8 years ago

This unique canary made it's way to Britain via French Huguenot weavers.  These weavers were French Calvinist refugees fleeing religious persecution.

While these canaries were never super-popular in Europe they were in no danger of "going the way of the cuckoo" until...

...they almost became extinct in the early 1900's!
8 years ago

With the ravages of two world wars and disease epidemics the Lizard Canary was reduced to only a couple dozen breeding pairs by the mid 1940's. 

The Lizard Canary Association of Great Britain came to this bird's rescue and began a very closely monitored "come-back" breeding program.  Today this canary thrives and is one of most popular Type canaries available.
8 years ago

Interestingly while most canary breeds were named after their place of origin the Lizard is named for it's...


Black crescent-shaped spots running down the back and breast of the Lizard give this bird a reptilian scaly appearance.  This visual effect is known as "spangling" on the back and "rowing" on the breast.
8 years ago

This Lizard-like Canary gradually loses this lizard-like pattern with each annual molt.  As a result, this striking canary only has one year to do well at canary shows.

Lizard canaries also sport a "cap"...a single circular pattern of feathers on top of the head.  Sometimes this cap is a regular oval shape with clear edges and sometimes it a rather irregular shaped circle.

This is not a cap like the crested canaries have but a simple "cap of color".

Legs and beak should be a shiny black.

8 years ago

Lizard Canary

Lizard painting

8 years ago

The Border Canary

The Border canary, or Border Fancy was developed near the border of Scotland and England...hence the name.

Source of Photograph.....

8 years ago
The Border Canary was once nicknamed the "Wee Gem" because of it's small compact size.

These canaries get there name from their place of origin...the border area between Scotland and England

Also known as the Border Fancy, details of this canary's origins are somewhat one knows for sure exactly when this breed of canary began to develop.
8 years ago

We do know that the Border Canary began as a "Common Canary" probably sometime in the late 1700's or early 1800's.

It became popular as the "Wee Gem" by the mid-1800's and was officially named "Border Fancy Canary" on July 5, 1890.
8 years ago

The Border soon after became the most popular canary in the British Isles.

The Border Fancy Canary is a Type Canary and is bred for appearance with no regard given to it's singing ability.
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No longer a small "wee gem" of a canary, the ideal Border Fancy canary today is 5 3/4 inches one of the larger canary varieties. 

Compared to the Gloster Canary at 4 3/4 inches long...or the Fife Canary no longer than 4 1/2 inches...the Border, indeed, is not small.
8 years ago

Border canaries are seen in the following colors...

  • White
  • Blue
  • Yellow
  • Buff
  • Green
  • Cinnamon

This Type Canary may also be "ticked" or "variegated".

Border Canary painting

Yellow Border Canary
8 years ago

Gloster Canaries...

Source of Photograph.....

The crested Gloster canary looks eerily like John, Paul, George, and Ringo.

You know, the ones with the Beatles haircut...Gloster Canaries.

Gloster Canaries are often confused with Crested Canaries

8 years ago

Although the Gloster does have a "crest"...there is a separate breed of canary--also with a crest--called the Crested Canary.

The Gloster were bred to be small--short and stubby--no longer than 4 3/4 inches. For years the Gloster canaries were being shown along side other Crested Canaries but finally in 1925 were recognized as a separate breed of canary.

Like most canaries the Gloster was named after the area in which he was developed.  Mrs. Rogerson of Gloucestershire---just say "Gloster"...close enough --- crossed Borders, Rollers, and Crested and ended up with the...
8 years ago

Gloster Canary.

Although a Type Canary --and not bred for singing--the Gloster is known to have a beautiful song.  That song, combined with the fact the he sports the...

..."Beatles Haircut", and being small and cute, the Gloster has become very popular.
8 years ago

Any Gloster with the crest is referred to as a Corona and those without crests (plainheads) are Consorts...

Due to some kind of "genetic glitch" a Corona should never be bred to another Corona...low chick survival is the outcome.  Corona and Consort are generally bred together but Consort to Consort is another alternative.
8 years ago

Gloster canaries are seen in many color variations including...

  • green
  • yellow

  • cinnamon.


Gloster Canary

8 years ago

Gloster Canaries

The Crested Canary.

Source of Photograph.....

The Crested Canary
came before the Gloster and is larger and more rare.

The first crested canary--a canary with a crest--is thought to have arisen around 1800. 
8 years ago

It seems several breeds of canaries--including the...

  • --Hartz
  • --Mechelse Waterslager
  • --Sakser
...arose with crests at about the same time.
8 years ago

Using these canaries with crests, breeders in England sought to develop and enlarge the crest and eventually ended up with the crested Lancashire and crested Norwich canaries.

As breeders continued to enjoy the development of this crested bird by crossing the Norwich and Lancashire together...they soon developed canaries that differed in many respects from the Norwich and Lancashire.
8 years ago

In time these "crested canaries" came to be known as their
own breed--about 1880--called...yes...

The Crested Canary.

A large heavy set bird this canary was soon used to create the Gloster...a much smaller canary with a crest.
8 years ago

The Gloster canary became very popular while the Crested Canary breed fell away to a small amount of breeders that remained interested.

The Crested is still around today and bred by a handful of dedicated niche breeders.  It is difficult to find a true Crested but...
8 years ago

You can easily find other breeds of canaries with crests including the...

Crested Canaries

Crested in Cage

Thanks to and for the photos.

A canary with a crest is called a "Corona" and a canary--within the same variety of canary--without a crest is called a "Consort".
8 years ago

The Fife Canary.
The small and cute Fife canary looks huggable but BE CAREFUL! He's small and fragile.

The Jewel of Scotland--The Fife Canary

The Fife Canary was developed relatively recently by Scottish canary breeders in Fife County, Scotland.

8 years ago

Unhappy with the g-r-o-w-I-N-G size of the Border Canary these Scotts went the other direction and bred a small--or miniature--Border canary...

The Fife.

The Fife is small--under 4 1/2 inches long--and agile with a rounded back and breast giving it a rotund appearance...very cute.
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The youngest of the Type canaries-->the Fife was officially accepted in 1957. 

Also known as the Fife Fancy Canary this little bird is seen in many color variations including...
8 years ago




--and Variegated

The Fife Fancy Canary is a Type Canary and is bred for appearance with no regard given to it's singing ability.

8 years ago

Fife Canary

Fife Fancy painting
8 years ago

The Norwich Canary...The Norwich canary with its "padded" head is one of my favorites.

The Norwich Canary was brought to Norwich, England by Flemish refugees over 300 years ago where the canary became very popular and eventually took on the name of the town.

8 years ago

The Norwich canaries were smaller back then...a little over 5 inches long and skinny-ish---Is "skinny-ish" a word?

The large Lancashire Coppy Canary was bred to the Norwich in the late 1800's increasing the size of the Norwich. 
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Also, about this time color-feeding was introduced further changing the appearance of the Norwich Canary.

In 1890 a group of 400 breeders and enthusiasts got together in Norwich and decided on a new standard of type and quality regarding the Norwich.
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While color at one time was considered an important attribute, it has NOW been forgotten and ignored and the canary's Type has taken the lead in importance.

The Norwich is one of my favorites...the way the head feathers BULK UP around the eyes gives these canaries a very unique look.
8 years ago

Norwich Canary

Crested Norwich

Norwich Plainhead

Norwich Plainhead
8 years ago
The "Guardian" or Yorkshire canary is a proud tall-standing gentleman.

The Yorkshire Canary... At over 6 inches long the Yorkshire Canary is one of the largest canaries out there.
8 years ago

And with his...

--large chest and shoulders

--narrow waste

--and erect stance

...the Yorkshire has become known as the "Guardsman".

8 years ago

Also known as the "Gentleman of the Fancy", these canaries were developed in the mid-1800's and first shown in 1870.

While the canary was developed in Bradford, England it was first shown in Yorkshire...hence the name...and intentions of breeders were to improve upon the appearance of the Lancashire canaries.

8 years ago

Development of the Yorkshire

Development of the Yorkshire included crossbreeding among the...

  • --Norwich
  • --Lancashire
  • --Belgian Bult 1935 desired standards of posture and size and shape for the Yorkshire were reached.

8 years ago

In the old days of the breed the Yorkshire was said to be so slender it could pass through a wedding ring.

A myth?

A fish story?

An out-and-out lie?

All of the above?

8 years ago

-->The statement is unlikely...but it does give us an idea of how important it was to have...

Tall Slender Yorkshire Canaries.

What time is it?  Five past seven...

The Yorkshire Canary stance should be at an angle that looks like a clocks two hands at 5 past seven.  See the canary pictures below.

8 years ago

Yorkshire breeding takes a little more effort than other canaries...

The diet is more demanding and the size of the canaries necessitates larger nests and cages.

Yorkshire Canary Yellow

Yorkshire Canaries painting
8 years ago

Type Canaries... Type canaries have been bred over the centuries for "appearance only"...however strange.

Some of the ways canaries have had their natural "Physical Appearance" changed include...




--feather arrangement and texture

--novel appearance


8 years ago

All this experimentation created some very...oh, let's just say...

"INTERESTING" looking say the least.

This type of selective breeding doesn't mean that these canaries don't sing. Most sing there little heart out! Of course...

They're no match for a Song Canary -- And Type canaries WON'T win any singing awards BUT..
8 years ago

To the novice like me and you-->The lack of a championship singing voice is barely noticed.

Dutch, French, and Belgian breeders in the 1800's couldn't help themselves and exploited every variation of posture, size, and frilled feathers they could.

Some of these canaries have the hunchback vulture like pose, some are short and stout while others are tall and thin.  You've got the Beatle-like hairdo of the Crested canaries and the fluffed-up-and-hung-out-to-dry "stylings" of the frilled.
8 years ago
Some of the more popular Type canaries are...
  • Border or Border Fancy
  • The speckled Lizard canary
  • The many varieties of Crested canaries.
  • The smaller crested Gloster
  • The large and strong Norwich
  • Fife
  • Yorkshire
  • Stafford
  • The large and sometimes crested Lancashire
  • Columbus Fancy
  • Belgian
  • Hunchback
  • Scotch Fancy
  • Italian Gibber Italicus
8 years ago

Don't confuse "Type canaries" with "Canary Types"...they're 2 different things.

Canary types are the three groupings of canaries defined by the purpose of their breeding. As mentioned, the three canary types are Type, Color, and Song.

Next are the...

Color Canaries

8 years ago

     Please stay tuned for Part Five.....

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