Posted: Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:39 am Post subject: Kakariki sexing and mutation identification
I'm sorry you must get questions about this all the time, but I'm really curious about the birds I've bought recently. I have 3 birds - one green which I think is a female ("Jade"), and two yellows which I think are male and female ("Corfai" and "Teeda"). See the photos here http://www.flickr.com/photos/55575164@N05/
I'm guessing their sex by their beaks alone but although Jade has a slender beak, she seems quite big and her tail looks a lot broader than Teeda's so I'm not sure.
My second question is about my yellows. I bought them thinking they were lutinos but have since done some reading and have discovered they're not because they both have black eyes. The dark patch on the male's rump and his eye streak I had thought were some kind of health problem but it seems it's because it's a pied. The male is a slightly less vivid banana yellow than the female and his crown is not as full and deep red. The thing I most want to know is why are the female's claws white while the male's are white apart from one on each foot which is black?
Are they black eyed clears or gold checks? I don't understand the difference if there is one. Could someone knowledgeable please explain this and verify the sex of my birds?
Dow, In my hummble opinion all three birds look like hens . The green bird is a cinnamon, the two yellows are black eyed clears- the name we seem to use here in Aus. Birds are very hard to sex from photos.
The wild im not sure, I would say a male...we have a breeding male, thu a tellow crown that has a thin long beak like that...
The others I would hazzard a gess at males...again due to the length rather than width of the beaks.
This one definately male thu
Going from the consistancy of the beak shapes I would also gess they are related maybe???
Mutations, I have no experiance and not qualified to comment. _________________ My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'
Dow, I also had the same questions when I started keeping kakariki as many 'goldchecks' have a green feather here or there (I have even bred a goldcheck with a generous green patch in the back). Or as you say a darker toe or toenail. And then I found this forum and found answers to my questions.
I'm a bit wary of using the terms BEC or DEC to define a pied bird, as DEC or BEC is a standalone mutation consisting of a 95% eumelanin reduction, allelic of (Non-Sex-Linked) NSL ino.
A mutation of its own right.
Goldcheck is the name given to recessive pied kakarikis with a completely (or almost) yellow plumage and black eyes, without visible iris.
If it has red eyes then it's probably a combination of goldcheck + fallow.
The male is a slightly less vivid banana yellow than the female and his crown is not as full and deep red.
The depth of the yellow color I think could be probably due to selection. Some birds have a more intense yellow color, due to the psittacine pigment.
In kakariki I haven't paid enough attention to it, but in cockatiels, especially pearl and edged, I try to select and breed birds with a more intense yellow. Also lutino.
I find them more attractive than birds with a whiter background. They are like more colorful. The mask and cheeks are usually more intense also.
I think with kakariki it's probably the same, as the background color is yellow and the crown and cheekpatches are red, 2 colors directly dependant on the quality of psittacine.
I wousay the birds in that picture could be the same sex, but I can't tell male or fem.. The bird on the right hand has more hybrid traces, and it could also be slightly smaller because of that.
The cinnamon kakariki I think is a male.
I would not use the hybrid kakariki to breed, the other 2 seem a lot better and in case of needing a bird of different sex I'm sure you can find a quality kakariki through someone here in the forum.
Do you keep any other species?
Welcome to the forum and good luck!
Cheers / Pablo _________________ AD ASTRA PER ASPERA
Thanks for your replies. I thought the yellows were different sexes because one is noticeably smaller and slimmer and "daintier". The other is more thickset and chunky. You can't really see the difference in size in the pictures but it's noticeable in the aviary. But I'll take your word for it!
I was interested in the comment about "hybrid characteristics". What characteristics are these?
I'm not looking to breed them at the moment but if I were to breed them I'd definitely use the yellow bird on the left which has beautiful colour and feather texture, with no green spots at all.
My cinnamon looks a bit sick today. I think it's a case of diarrhoea from eating too much jasmine (addiction problem!)
we have 2 species of kakariki in aviculture:
- Red fronted (cyanoramphus novazelandiae)
- Yellow fronted (cyanoramphus auriceps)
Due to lack of knowledge and rigor in some cases, and greed (money, mutations, etc...) in others, both species have been cross-bred.
The consequence is that although there are birds in the market that do not fulfill the characteristics of neither of the species.
Yellow are smaller, have a red frontal band with a yellow crown on top, and they don't have the eyepatches.
Red fronts are bigger, the whole crown and front are red, with red eyepatches behind the eye.
The iris color is also different, being a darker red in red fronts, and rather orange in yellow fronts.
Birds with mixed yellow and red in the crown, faded eyepatches, etc... are hybrids. There are also marginal hybrids with a tinge of yellow around the edges of the crown.
I'm talking about red fronts.
(I don't keep yellow fronts myself).
The situation is a bit the same with eye-ring lovebirds, the difference at least in Europe is that there have been imports until recently so it's still possible to find pure strains of lovebirds.
Last kakariki batches imported into Europe I think have been before 1955 or so.
You are very right on paying attention to feather structure, color, etc... every detail counts.
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