Above: The COM-UK committee (l-r): Ghalib Al-Nasser, Robb Brown, Alan Robinson, Richard Lumley, Brian Hogg, Huw Evans (with London fancy specimen), Gary Mann and Simon Tammam. Next job is to translate the standard into French! Photo: Andy Early


A NEW SHOW standard featuring extra classes for the London fancy canary is to be submitted to the Confédération Ornithologique Mondiale (COM) later this month.

On June 2, to assist the London Fancy Canary Club’s (LFCC) campaign to get the London fancy recognised as a valid breed by COM, LFCC vice-president Huw Evans presented the new standard to the COM-UK committee.

COM-UK accepted the standard – which provides classes for both classic-type and spangle-back, and classes for all the established colours – and will submit six copies to COM-OMJ by the end of June.

The proposed standard explains that clear (“classic”) specimens are in the minority and that most modern London fancies are the less familiar spangle-backs, which are essential to maintaining the quality of the breed.

For the variety to be accepted by COM, this standard and a selection of London fancies will be presented at the 2019 World Show in Zwolle, Holland. If the breed is not accepted, its supporters will have to wait three years before they can try again.

Mr Evans explained: “The LFCC asked COM-UK if we could present to them. We wanted to explain our reasons for the new standard and gather their support, and I am glad to say it was a success.

“Most birdkeepers think of the London fancy as a yellow canary with black wings and tail, but the reality is that most are spangle-backs, which display some dark markings on the head and body.”

He continued: “The LFCC felt that limiting the standard to classic-type birds would be too restrictive. We are keen to give breeders many opportunities to show their birds and want to include classes for spangle-backs and colour mutations.”

London fancies faced their first test by judges at the 2017 World Show. Twelve birds were presented and judged via the points system in a non-competitive class, but six were disqualified for failing to match the presented standard  (see News, February 8, 2017).

As a result, COM-UK decided not to put the variety forward for recognition at the 2018 World Show in Italy, but to delay it for a further year.

Ghalib Al-Nasser, COM-UK’s secretary, said: “COM-UK hopes that on this occasion the London fancy will be accepted. The breed will be presented in its three categories of classic, spangle-back and other colours, so we wish the LFCC and breeders every success at the next COM World Show.”

The standard will be available in English, French, Dutch, Spanish, Italian and German when presented at the 2019 World Show.

COM-UK committee member Gary Mann added: “As a member of the OMJ in the section that would cover this breed, I found the LFCC’s presentation very informative.”

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