Above: How to Breed Cage Birds for Colour by Herman van Niekerk is available from Amazon 


THE AUTHOR OF a new book about breeding cage birds for colour claims it will allow readers to “exactly predict and plan bird breeding to achieve specific outcomes and colours.”

In How to Breed Cage Birds for Colour: New Discoveries Require New Approach, bird breeder Herman van Niekerk, who has studied bird colours for more than 40 years, shares his discoveries related to the formation, reproduction and changes in bird colours. 

Mr van Niekerk explained: “Understanding bird colours is an interesting and fascinating subject, but very complex. 

“The main reason for this is that the colours that the human eye perceives, are actually reflected or refracted light waves; the reflected light waves according to one of two different colour systems. To understand colours is, therefore, a hybrid science between biology, optics, chromatics, chemistry, physics, psychology and genealogy.”

Mr van Niekerk’s discoveries centre around three principles:

Normal bird colours are a creation of only three basic colours, mixed in different proportions.

Each bird species’ members have specific colour blocks on their bodies where the three colours are either active or not active.

All colour changes are as a result of specific inheritable, identifiable and controllable defects. No colour change is spontaneous or a “sudden” new mutation.

The book includes in-depth information about the formation of colours in birds and a step-by-step description of how bird breeders should plan, track and breed their birds for colours.

“With the knowledge contained in this book, bird breeders will now for the first time, by breeding with virtual birds and keeping proper records, be able to fully understand the differently coloured birds of the same species that they may breed,” Mr van Niekerk added.

For more information and to purchase the book, visit www.amazon.com and search for How to Breed Cage Birds for Colour”.

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