Specializing offers several apparent benefits. Uniform cages and nest boxes, focused information, the capacity to swap mates, and behavioral patterns may all be present. When I just had three or four breeding pairs, I’d notice that one couple didn’t feed their young corn on the cob for one day. When I had 15 pairs of Greys all nursing infants at the same time, it became clear that this occurred on the seventh or eighth day. This demonstrates a certain pattern, the importance of which I am yet unaware. After a few years of watching your birds, behavioural patterns will begin to develop. I’ve realized that the two most critical factors in effective breeding are TERRITORY and COMPATIBILITY!
I think that if two birds are compatible, they will be strong solid producers who will adequately feed their offspring. If they discard eggs on a regular basis or mutilate and murder chicks, they are either insecure or incompatible. You could get a weak chick now and again, or the breeders might have an illness that causes mutilation or death. That should not, under any circumstances, be a continuous issue. In my case, I believe I have created a very safe environment by rearing all Africans and providing annual preventive veterinarian treatment. In my view, infertility only signifies one thing: incompatibility.
This is merely designed to be a fast reference and is not intended to replace DNA or surgical sexing. Males are often darker in color, as most aviculturists are aware. This is only possible because both birds originated in the same area of Africa, or because their young are from the same clutch. In addition, hens often have a progressive dark to light grey transition from neck to belly, whilst males have a more uniform grey in the same region. Importers sexed using the under-tail coverts as a reference. This is not the “ventral region” or “ventral feathers.” The undertail coverts are located right under the tail feathers and are made up of around eight feathers. Feathers on hens will be grey-edged, while males will be full red. Males will sometimes have a white “hairline” on the edge of their beard.
Observe your birds from a distance of five to ten feet away, whether perched on a perch or hanging upside down from the cage top, flapping their wings. With this motion, you can see three grey stripes on the bottom of the wing. The upper band is made up of the feathers that make up the ventral antebrachial coverts. The feathers of the minor ventral wing coverts are represented by the band just below. The major remiges make up the final band. These bands “look” grey, white, and dark grey in hens, respectively. Grey, grey, and dark grey “appear” on the male. If you hold a bird, rather than viewing from five to ten feet away, and study this, your eyes “see” the actual different bands and you cannot easily distinguish male from female.
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