Guest Author - Mavis Metcalf
Some of the questions I receive and the answers I give about the cheerful little Canary.
How long do Canaries live?
Canaries can live from between 10 – 15 years of age on average, with some living into their 20's. They are normally quite active for their entire lives, although the male may quit singing several months to a couple of years before the end of his life.
Should I clip my Canary's wings?
NO – a canary's wings should never be clipped.
Where is the best place to get a Canary?
The best place would be directly from a breeder. That way, you will know the age of the bird, you will get the breeders expertise in picking the sex you want, you may get to see his parents and you will most likely have the breeder's permission to call and ask questions afterwards. Most breeders will remove the males as they hear and see them sing, and they keep the sexes separate. It sometimes happens that a female sings when young, so it is possible that you get the wrong sex, even from a breeder – but most will substitute for another if this happens. Many canaries are purchased from pet stores, where the age is guessed, the sex is guessed and there is really no support after purchase.
How do I know if I have a male or female Canary?
Generally, the male canary will sing and the female canary will chirp. Often it takes a few days up to a couple of weeks for the male to begin singing in his new home.
Why does my Canary lay eggs? She is the only bird I have.
Some female canaries do lay eggs when they are kept on their own. This means that she is nice and healthy and since she is in breeding condition, she just lays them. The best thing for you to do is to leave her alone as much as possible. Let her sit on the eggs until she leaves them – usually that will happen shortly after the eggs would have hatched if they had been fertile. If you let her sit on them, she will probably not lay any more for several months, although she might lay and incubate a second clutch before stopping. If you make the mistake of taking the eggs away as she lays them, she will continue laying more and may become ill or egg bound.