Serinus flaviventris  

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Yellow canary

Crithagra flaviventris (Serinus flaviventris)

Geographical distribution and habitat
The Yellow canary is found in the west of South Africa, especially the Cape province, Orange Free State, Western Transvaal, Namibia and Botswana. Usually, the Yellow canary is observed in dry wooded areas where water is also found. It is reported that in winter period in the south of Africa - European summer months - these birds gather in groups. The nest with two to four eggs is often found not high from the ground. The period in which the nests are found in nature, differ from one habitat; is from August to April.

Size: 13-14 cm (5.1/5.5 inch)

Description and subspecies
Sexes differ, the gender of birds which are older than 4 to 5 months, can easily be determined by appearance. Males have a completely yellow belly, a yellow supercilium that extends to far into the neck. Also, the male has greenish yellow feathers on the back. The headline, with black beard streaks, is powerful. The female has a pale grey breast and supercilium. In young birds, gender discrimination is often seen immediately after the young ones leave the nest; young males are less grey/brown in color than young females. The nominal form, C. flaviventris flaviventris, can be found in the Cape Province and the extreme south of Namibia. C. f. marshalli in Orange Free State, Lesotho and Southwest Transvaal. The males of C. f. marshalli show more striping on the back. C. f. guillarmodi is the largest subspecies; 14 cm (5.5 inch) and also more striped and darker on the back than the nominal form. Males of C. f. damarensis, Namibia, Botswana and the North of the Cape Union, are the most yellow colored subspecies while the female is the lightest in color and shows some streaking on the chest.

It can be said that these Yellow canaries are no difficult birds in aviculture. Overall not aggressive. Although this behaviour can change during the periods of breeding, specially when the birds get into breeding condition. Good breeding results can be achieved if the birds are kept in pairs in a large breeding cage or aviary. In autumn, winter and early spring, these birds may get into breeding condition. The males increase their singing. Keep in mind that Crithagra flaviventris, in (Western)Europe, preferably breeds in the autumn period, winter or early spring. It is advisable to slightly heat the breeding room. These birds breed easily. Several breeders have experienced that the birds unfortunately are laying the eggs in a nest cup without making a decent nest, despite the fact that a wide selection of nesting materials is offered. The period of moulting can occur at different times of the year and is less intensive than with some of the European serin species.

The advised ring size in the Netherlands; 2.7 mm.




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