National Capital Region Aviaries

NCR Aviaries

Coloured Canaries
Yellow
Red Factor
Bronze
Brown
Isabel
Blues
Greens
Pastels
Mosiacs
Agates
Opals

Singing Canaries
American Singers

Waterslagers
Hybrids/"Mules"

Type Canaries
Frills
Glosters

Exotics
Green Singing Finches

Gray Singing Finches
Gouldians
Society Finches
Blue Headed Finches Red Headed Finches Gold Finches
Zebra Finches
Others

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Origins of Canaries
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Contact:
(613) 842-9561

Ottawa, Canada

 

Origins of Canaries

Wild Canaries

The common canary (serinus canarius) is related to finches native to the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa and under the rule of Spain and Portugal.   The Canary Islands were not named for the birds, but were named for the large dogs that were kept by the locals of ancient times (dog=canis in Latin).   Europeans began making pets of the wild canaries (Fringillidae of the finch family) in the 1400's.   They were originally a grayish green color with only a hint of yellow on their breasts, looking more like sparrows than what we now see in canaries.   The male's song was noticed and pairs were eventually kept in captivity to be bred and enhance certain characteristics - song, feathering or conformation.  Over the past half century, this has led to the development of numerous breeds of canaries, all of which are quite different from the original finch.