When most people think of canaries, they think of beautiful canary songs. However, real canary enthusiasts know that canaries are bred for three traits; type, color and song.
While all canaries sing, canaries bred specifically for their songs have the most remarkable voice. No other bird in the world has such a beautiful song.
Song canaries are bred for specifically for the type of songs they sing. The trained ear can differentiate the type of canary that is singing by the actual tones. The types of canary songs are:
There are five prevalent species of canaries that are bred for songs.
The American Singer Canary was developed in the USA in the 1930's and 40's. The American Singer is a wonderful combination of song and beauty. If you are looking for a canary that offers both striking looks as well as beautiful song, the American Singer Canary will suit your needs. American Singer Canaries use both rolled and chopped notes giving them a reputation for a wide variety of song. The American Singer Canary is hailed by many to the best canary to be kept as a pet. It is certainly the most common species in America.
The American Singer is a hybrid breed and is for this reason it is very prolific and hardy. These traits make the American Singer a more suitable canaryfor beginners.
The average lifespan for American Singer Canaries is between seven and twelve years, with ten being the average. Some American Singer Canaries may be quite aggressive. It has been reported that green colored birds may be more aggressive than other colors, though these may also be the better singers as well. As long as individuals are similar in temperament more than three may be kept in a large flight aviary. If one is particularly mellow, other American Singers in the same aviary may pick him on. A good CD to train and inspire American Singers is the Feathered Phonics Teach Your Canary to Sing CD.
Less common canary types like the following 4 birds will train better with Pet Tapes Classic Canary Songs CD.
The German Roller gets its name from the rolling tours of its canary song. Developed in the Hartz Mountain region of Germany in the 1700's, the Roller Canary sings with his beak closed and, as a result, sings with the lowest volume of any canary. Highly prized by many, German Roller Canaries are skilled not only in singing but also mimicry!
When keeping such a bird, you should be sure that it is not too hot and not too cold! Place its enclosure in a place that is free of drafts. Although seasonal variation is acceptable, try not to keep your bird at a height above eye level, since heat rises. The best temperature range for a German Roller Canary is 50 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Although they need lots of natural daylight, it is essential that your German Roller Canary be allowed ten to 12 hours of dark time, or sleeping time, in a quiet setting.
German Roller Canaries will do well in a cage of about two feet by 15 inches by 15 inches in dimension. The cage bottom should be covered in sand and the birds should have a cuttlebone available on which to dull their beaks. German Roller Canaries will need clean, fresh water available to them at all times and they may be fed a standard diet of canary seed mix. Canary seed should be supplemented daily with fresh green food, bits of fruit like apple or orange, or even corn on the cob. Male German Roller Canaries tend to sing much more nicely than female canaries. Males can be territorial, however, and should not be kept together in the same cage. With proper care German Roller Canaries should live at least 10 years.
The Russian Singer is one of the least known canary species, however, it is gaining world-wide popularity. Specialized breeding of the Russian Canary began about 300 years ago when canary breeders in Tyrol, Germany introduced their canary to Russia. Wanting to tone down the brash LOUDNESS of the new Bunting Tuners, Russian breeders began to breed the Russian Canary for softer canary songs. The Russians trained their canaries using organs, flutes, pipes, and bells to introduce new notes and sounds into their repertoire of canary songs.
The Spanish Timbrado is the newest and LOUDEST variety of all the canary types. The beautiful Spanish Timbrado Canary is said to be the domestic canary that is closest genetically to wild canaries! With lovely, elaborate songs and a variety of beautiful colorations, Spanish Timbrado Canaries can be a joy to own. The song of the Spanish Timbrado Canary consists of twelve notes. Their songs are said to be bright, harmonious, and even a little metallic sounding. Although the Spanish Timbrado is loud, the song is not rasping or strident, and consists of many quick successions of combinations of the range of notes.
Spanish Timbrado Canaries can be taught to sing on cue! They enjoy bathing and, though often kept indoors, they can be kept outside so long as the temperatures are warm. .
The Waterslager Canary has a fascinating way of mimicking running water. Like the Roller, the Waterslager canary singes with its mouth closed making sounds similar to a babbling brook. A little known fact is that this breed of canaries is hard of hearing, thus, their unique sound.
So, what type of care do canaries require in order to produce beautiful canary songs? Healthy, well cared for canaries. Have the energy and desire to sing. Here is how to keep your canary healthy.
Diet: Your canary needs a proper diet in order to feel healthy enough to sing. Healthy male canaries sing as a way to attract a mate. And, good breeders need to be healthy. The mainstay of a canary diet should be fresh, premium canary seed. Vegetables, cooked rice, dark leafy green lettuce, cooked pasta, fruits and egg-food are very important supplements. Cuttlebone and crushed oyster shell provide calcium and nutrients. Always make sure that your canary has access to fresh water. Food or fecal matter in water can create serious bacterial or fungal infections.
Proper Housing: A clean cage is essential for a canary to produce beautiful canary songs. Droppings and food debris cultivate fungus and bacteria making your pet very sick. A sick canary has no interest nor energy to sing. Develop daily and weekly cage cleaning routines for changing water, adding fresh food, changing cage paper and wiping down the cage. The cage must be of adequate size to offer the bird exercise; 15" x 15" should be a minimum sized canary cage. Place the cage in an area where the temperature will be consistently moderate and where your canary will be free from drafts.
Sleep: Canaries need approximately 12 hours of sleep or dark, quiet time per day. Consider keeping your canary out of household traffic areas so that it will have enough quiet time.
Training: Canaries learn canary songs from imitation. Single kept canaries need to hear and learn canary songs in order to produce melodies and canary songs. Provide your canary with high quality recordings of canary songs to teach it canary songs.
Remember, canaries won't sing if they are ill, malnourished or when they are molting