A sound theory which I feel sure any breeder can apply to his birds with great advantage to himself if he desires to be the owner of home-bred winning Mauves, is to avoid using Mauves which show a considerable amount of cobalt colouring intermingled with the other mauve colouring as so many Mauves do. Desirable as such birds may be for Cobalt breeding. In the days when there were good Olives in the land Olive/blue x Mauve gave us the best Mauves, providing always that the Olive/blue had a good coloured Mauve parent and not a Cobalt parent. The principle is a simple one, keep as far away from the Cobalt as you can and the probability is that you will have less Cobalt in your Mauves, although I have to confess that I have seen some amazing exceptions.

Several Budgerigar fancier friends of mine have told me that they have had unsatisfactory experiences with the cross Mauve x Mauve, alleging that continuation with this straight pairing season after season often has resulted in deterioration in size. Nevertheless I cannot see any reason to ban this mating completely. But when I mated Mauve to Mauve I should want both birds to reach somewhat high standards regarding colour, shape, and size. For instance, I would not mate together two Mauves both very light or patchy in colour, or more important still with a lot of cobalt flecking or suffusion. To do so would intensify these faults. If, on the other hand one becomes possessed of a number of Mauves bred correctly, nicely coloured, shapely and big enough, strict selection of the best and ruthless elimination of the worst should one would imagine, lead to a gradual improvement. Nevertheless, in the light of my own experience and the experience of others, it would seem to be unwise to persist with the mating Mauve x Mauve season after season without any colour crossing and immediately if there is the slightest sign of any deterioration another colour must be introduced.

The course pursued by the old-time breeders of Mauves was to cross Olive/blue and Mauves, but the scarcity of good Olives would make this difficult today. In previous paragraphs about Cobalts and Mauves I have not referred to the pairing of Cobalt x Violet and Mauve x Violet, but it is under the heading of Violets. Actually the development of the Violet birds has greatly changed the Mauve story, and very good Mauves and Violet Mauves are being bred in Violet breeding families. Many of these are much better in colour than one might have expected them to be.

E-Mail: berniehansen@sympatico.ca