White Ground Color in Canaries

White ground color in canaries has existed since the 17th century, however, the dominant white ground color in present day American Singers has only existed since the turn of this century. Dominant white canaries show a yellow tinge on the shoulder and in the wings. The white of the dominant white canary as its name implies, instead of being recessive to yellow, is dominant. Hence, a canary which receives a yellow-producing gene from one parent and a dominant white gene will produce a white canary. Two whites bred together will produce 25 percent of the young with a lethal gene and the young will die in the shell or shortly thereafter. Due to the lethal gene two whites should not be bred together.

The dominant white canary may be dark-eyed or pink-eyed depending on the presence of the melaninís black and brown or brown alone. The eye color of a nestling on hatching can be observed at a glance. Pink eyes appear light brown and dark eyes appear black.

Matings to Produce Dominant Whites

1. Dominant white singer to dominant white hen.
RESULT: 25 percent yellow young, 50 percent dominant white young, and 25 percent non-viable dominant white young.

2. Dominant white singer to yellow hen.
RESULT: 50 percent yellow young, 50 percent dominant white young.

3. Yellow singer to dominant white hen.
RESULT: Same as previous mating.

The average result of a white to white mating in a nest of four is, one yellow, two whites and a fourth bird that is non-viable and will no live.

It should also be noted that a white to white mating on the average will result in a higher portion of white young.