How to Teach a Canary to Sing

By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: November 7, 2016
How to Teach a Canary to Sing

Teaching a canary to sing correctly is a task that requires dedication and a passion for birds. Canaries are very sweet, cheerful and active animals you'll enjoy waking up to every morning - if you can keep birds, this is a perfect choice!

We at AnimalWised want to help you make the most of your relationship with this wonderful bird, so have provided some tips and tricks on how to encourage your pet to sing the most beautiful of birdsongs. Read on to learn how to teach a canary to sing.

You may also be interested in: How to Teach a Cat its Name

Family heritage

From the moment of their birth, canary chicks hear the song of their parents communicating. It's from that moment that the young chick starts learning. In a matter of a week or even days the bird will remember certain tones.

For this reason, the way the parents sing will have a direct effect on the young canary. It is a very important phase of its life because what they learn then will be used in the future. This is as a result of canaries' great capacity for imitation.

We cannot change the song engrained within a canary, but we can guide it and finely tune it so it sounds more pleasant - and train it so that it sings at appropriate moments.

How to Teach a Canary to Sing - Family heritage


The canary chick is totally dependent on their parents, who feed, groom and care for it. When it is one month old, you can start thinking about moving it to a cage more suitable for its own development as an adult. Relatively small cages designed for flying birds are recommended - 100 x 80 cms, or 40 x 30 inches.

At that time, the canary will begin to develop strength in its wings and to practice singing. It is very important to separate a young male canary from females at this time, as they will negatively influence its learning. On the contrary, leave males near as long as they are experienced good singers. Female canaries can sing, but it doesn't happen so often nor for so long, and they don't do it that well. This difference happens because singing is caused by testosterone.

Remember that at this stage of growth birds need vitamins and a healthy diet. As a recommendation we suggest you feed them fruit and vegetables - much healthier than vitamins, although these are also a good choice.

Here you can learn what is the best diet for a canary.

How to Teach a Canary to Sing - Independence

What influences a canary's singing?

If you do not have an experienced canary that will teach your young canary to sing, you can use material on the internet to help. For instance, there are plenty of canary bird song videos on YouTube. Canaries have an amazing memory and any poor melodic singing will be remembered by the canary for life.

The ideal starting point for canaries to learn to sing is after their first molt, a time when they will start to develop considerably. This usually coincides with the autumn months. It's important to take good care of a canary during this delicate period.

How to teach a canary to sing

To avoid the development of bad habits, look for a quiet and relaxed place for your canary to start singing. If you have several birds, provide individual, comfortable spaces for each to prevent any clashes.

When the canary that teaches your canary - be it from YouTube or real life - begins to sing, you will notice that the young canary starts to imitate and emit very similar sounds. It will never be exactly the same, as each bird has its own unique tone recorded in its memory. Over time it can develop a nice song which may even sound better than the teacher's.

You can use one or various teachers to teach your bird to sing. Do this 3 to 4 times a day, keeping the birdsong varied, beautiful and long.

How to Teach a Canary to Sing - How to teach a canary to sing


Throughout this process you should follow the development of the canary song closely, making sure you reward it with treats and that it always has plenty of fresh water.

If you have multiple canaries, we suggest you start separating birds that can sing well and those that cannot to prevent them from influencing the others. Give the birds that cannot sing plenty of time so that you can fine-tune their song.

This is how to teach a canary to sing. If you have any tips, please tell us in the comments section. We also recommend our article on how to improve a canary's singing.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Teach a Canary to Sing, we recommend you visit our Basic education category.

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