Scientific Name: Serinus canaria
Average Lifespan: 10 to 15 years
Size: Up to 7 inches
Color: white, yellow, and green
Interaction: Somewhat social
Physical Characteristics of Belgian Canary
They are long and thin birds with a hump posture resembling the shape of a crescent moon. They are known as “type canary” which means being bred for its type rather than its skills or color (see: American singer canary). They are bred in colors white, yellow, and green. They are also called as “bird of position” because it is trained to perch in a hunched position which is a requirement in shows and exhibitions. Furthermore, a Belgian canary with red markings are not qualified to join shows and competitions.
The form of their back and tail is straight and is perpendicular when they are perching. They have small head and neck and broad shoulders. Feathers are looking smooth and clean. When looking at them from their behind, their body will look like a triangular shape form. They could grow up to 7 inches in length from head to tail.
Personality and Temperament
This type of canary bird has a timid and shy personality. They can easily get nervous when they feel threatened. At first interaction, they would show the above mentioned traits but they could overcome through frequent interaction and socialization. Once they overcome, they would show a gentle and pleasing disposition.
They can be social birds and have the potential to do well in extra-large cages or aviaries with other canary species or birds that are less aggressive. However, having them to hangout with parakeets, hookbills, lovebirds, and species that shows aggression can cause attacks and fights.
Belgian canaries are territorial that is why a large cage for them is a requirement especially if you are going to house them with other male canaries, finches, and hardbills. To be on the safe side, it would be better to leave them as solitary pets considering that a male Belgian canary can also sing well when they are alone and looking for a mate.
Health and Care
This canary specie could be hard to breed that is why an expert breeder is required if you want your pet canary to reproduce. They like to be in wide and open spaces that is why the need to prepare a cage that is larger than usual for their type is important. Bird cage must also be placed in high area with average temperature and not too drafty. For their cage amusement, offering toys is not necessary, perches of different sizes and height is enough to keep them amused and occupied. Make sure that these perches can swing to and fro because they are happier when they are swinging.
Their diet must consist of highly formulated canary seeds with vitamin coating to give them the required nutrients for their type. Green leafy veggies can also be offered from time to time. Calcium requirements can be provided by offering the cuttlebones. These birds enjoy water ad can be seen often bathing in their cage when you provide them with a shallow pan with water enough to dip their feet.
History and Background
The Belgian canary is one of the oldest breed of canaries which are developed by the Flemish during the 18th century. They are originated from the specie of the Old Dutch canary. Most canary breeds these days are greatly influenced by the canary specie such as the Scotch canaries and the Italian Gibber Italicus.
As pet birds, their breed are sold starting at $60 and above for one bird. They are very rare to find in pet shops that is why the need to find a reliable canary breeder is highly recommended. A Belgian canary hen can lay from 3 up to 6 eggs but birthing takes 1 day for each egg. Breeders will need to take over caring for the eggs when they start to hatch because these birds are not very good in terms of feeding their young ones. Most female birds neglect their hatchlings and may die of starvation.