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Undeservedly Forgotten Canaries

It so happened that now in our country the most popular pets are cats and dogs. Almost no one is interested in such amazing things as aquariums, terrariums, few contain rodents or birds. No, of course they are, but their number is not comparable with the army of cats and dogs. Naturally, most veterinary clinics are focused specifically on these animals. As a result, it is rather difficult for lovers, for example, birds or rats, to find like-minded people or get qualified advice or help.

These are canaries, if someone does not understand … but more on that below

But once it was different. So at one time the world was overwhelmed by a canary boom. Canaries were brought into Russia in the 17th century. Fragile birds with an unusual voice and amazing ability to imitate quickly became popular. “Canary farming” quickly developed in the Nizhny Novgorod, Bryansk, Tula, Smolensk provinces. Birds were bred by thousands! They were not just fashionable, but a necessary attribute of any home, because their singing was considered purifying and beneficial.

Particularly gifted canaries were specially trained in singing – they were planted with old experienced males, settled together with songbirds – titmouse, oatmeal, larks, played them on special pipes and organs. And then they drove to competitions, which were arranged twice a year before the revolution. Great connoisseurs of their singing were Nicholas II, Glinka, Chaliapin, Bunin. But after 1917, everything fell into decay.

While the rest of the world continued to conduct selective work, although changes in the world affected other countries. As in the case of other animals, the breeders tried to achieve not so much an improvement in vocal data as a change in the appearance of the bird. Although work is also underway in the first direction. People try to improve their voice, and to diversify and enrich the songs themselves, and to consolidate this hereditarily. So the Bulgarian canary farmers managed to fix the nightingale trills in the song of their birds.

Nowadays, canaries are divided into colored, decorative and song, with most of the birds belonging to the first two groups.
With singers, everything is clear, especially since there are very few of them. With color – too. It is interesting that initially all canaries are greenish, they are known to us as yellow, but in fact there are red, and motley, and white, and even almost black and other unthinkable shades.

But among the decorative canaries, a lot of unusual things await us. For example, curly canaries. This is the most difficult breed to maintain. Its representatives need special food and require ideal conditions, are very reluctant to breed, and most females are completely devoid of parental feelings.

Crested canaries differ from their counterparts in an amusing forelock.

But the most unusual form are the humpback canaries. Especially among them stands out a rather young breed – the Spanish Humpback or Djibosso. The body of the bird resembles the seven, and its legs and the skin area around the eyes are devoid of plumage. It is this breed that is depicted in the opening photo. And in the picture below – a similar breed of Belgian humpback.

As you can see, the world of canaries is large and surprising, it is a pity that Russia has lost most of this heritage. But there are enthusiasts who are trying to preserve and continue the work of Russian canary farmers of past years. Clubs are reviving, singing competitions are again held.

Moreover, not so long ago, in 2005, a new breed appeared in Russian registries – the Russian singing canary. And although until this breed is recognized by the international community, we are sure that everything will work out!

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