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Arild Skimmeland Of Sandnes Norway


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pictureaspx.jpg Breeder: Arild Skimmeland

 

I live in a town in Norway called Sandnes. Sandnes has approximately 60 000 inhabitants. Sandnes is the neighboring city of Stavanger, which has 120 000 inhabitants.

 

I started with budgies around 1980 and bought my first exhibition budgies in 1982 by Nils Asbjørn Knudsen and Kjell Karlsen from Stavanger in Norway. In 1987 I stopped with budgies because of studies and moving.

 

I started up again with the exhibition budgies about ten years later. I had been married and we had bought a house. I had also made a birdroom back in the garage.

 

In 1998 I bought birds from Nils Asbjørn Knudsen and Arne Andreassen, Norway. These were birds related to different breeders in England. I think it was Bowley, Topliss and others. They also had birds in the lineage from wellknown Danish breeders.

 

In November 2001 Olav Halvorsen and I started to collaborate. Olav Halvorsen is perhaps the one in Norway that have the greatest knowledge and interest in colours and mutations.

 

There were two breeders who were retiring from the hobby - and we bought their one hundred exhibition budgies. Since then, we have cooperated on the purchase, breeding, and our common homepage: www.undulat.com

 

We often sit in the birdroom and takes us a beer or two while we plan the pairs to be put together or the birds that can be sold. There are many advantages of a partnership. We can discuss the hobby and we can look after the birds for each other during holidays. We also travel together on exhibitions.

 

This hobby has made many friends. I have for many years been a member of the club "Living Bird Club of the Stavanger Area”. This is the oldest ongoing club in Norway. It started in 1953. I am also a member of "Norsk undulat (budgerigar ) club (NUK)" and has at times been a member of the budgerigar society. In recent years, I have also been a member of the club "Danske udstillingsundulater - (DUU)" in Denmark.

 

Since 2005, I have bought my exhibitionbudgies from Hans Christian Østergaard(HC), Denmark. HC won the DUU exhibition in 2008. We've bought several great lacewing, Danish pied, Inos and normals from him.

 

I've got better and better quality in my birds because of these imported birds. The trend can be seen by browsing the photos from the period 2005 to 2009. Placements for exhibitions also show that the quality is improved. I was “best breeder” at the national exhibition in 2007, when I got 2. and 3. best males and 3.best female.

At the national exhibition in 2008, I had 4. best male. It is a tough competition among the most active exhibitors in Norway. No one knows who will win the next exhibition.

 

In March 2009 I had about 30 youngsters. There are also chickens and fertilized eggs in some nestboxes. I recently put several pairs to nest, so I expect that it will be some more youngsters before the end of the breeding season in june. Several of the youngsters from 2009 looks very promising with regard to the exhibition and further breeding.

 

My birdroom is approximately 10 square feet. I have a Van Keulen rack with 12 breedingcages. 1-2 of these cages are used for the youngsters.

There are 2 indoorvoliere. They are nearly 2 meters long, 75 centimeters wide and 2.40 meters high.

I have the youngsters in one voliere and the adults in the other.

 

I've used to start breeding season in October, but has now been starting in September.

 

 

I use a seedblending with 50% canary-seed in the breeding season. The birds get soaked wheat and mungbeans. They can also eat carrot. Eggfood are mixed into the seeds / carrot. Once a week it is added a mineral / vitamin mix. Newspaper paper in the breeding cages are changed once a week, more often if needed.

 

My former favourite is the Inos. But the last few years I have been less concerned with colour. Yet I do not want to have only grey and greygreen budgies. Therefore I also retain bright green and blue birds. Spangle is also one of my favorites. The last mutation which have been given to me is goldenface.

 

 

 

Olav Halvorsen, and I try to think about both the quality and the colours when we put together birds. But sometimes I also put two greygreens together - if they fit best together.

 

 

Starting out with Exhibition Budgerigars.

Most of us have started with regular budgies. You may become a member of a local club. Maybe you bought a so-called "English" parakeet from a zoo shop and been fascinated by the budgies with a little more size on the head and body? Or you've seen on the internet that there are budgies called "exhibition budgies? You may want to try you as a breeder of exhibition budgies after you have obtained valuable experience with regular budgies ..

 

How should you go forward?

 

1. Knowledge.

There is always a bit difficult for a novice to buy new birds. One may not have acquired a good enough "eye" for quality. A good advice is to spend time looking at the exhibits and to visit various breeders. One can also "visit" various breeders in Norway and abroad on the internet to see what it is all about. Some believe we should spend at least a year to "probe the terrain", but most of us are a little quicker on the trigger than that. One should try to gain the most knowledge before acting. Another good tip is to bring an experienced breeder when you go shopping exhibition budgies. There are many breeders that have good birds, and you do not need to buy from the first breeder you contact. Most breeders are willing to share their knowledge of their potential buyers. It is also wise to become a member of the local birdclub or a budgerigar club. Then you can easily obtain good contacts.

 

2. Color.

You must also decide which color or mutations to begin with. Need normal green and blue? Or will you raise lutino? Are you fond of Danish pied, Spangle, isabel or opaline? Another thing you must take into account is that you do not always get the chance to buy the color / mutation you want. It is easier to buy the most common colors of exhibition budgies, such as gray-green, gray, green, and more, than to buy Danish pied, yellowfaced, Viol, lutino and so on. It is more difficult to buy good specimen of the more rare mutations. You have to find out which breeders who have the colors and mutations you want. Finally, one must be realistic, a breeder can generally not sell any "dream bird" to you. Many breeders have spent several years building up. You can not expect to fulfill all your dreams first year.

 

3. Goal.

What would you like? Is the ambition to be a breeder of exhibition budgies, or is the goal to become a champion?

 

If you want to beat the best it requires harder work than if you "only" want to raise exhibition budgies.

Traditionally it have been easiest to buy gray and gray-green birds of top show quality. This does not mean that all gray and gray-green is good. What I am trying to say is that those who try hardest on the show bench, are usually less interested in colors / mutations. They are working most with the visual quality - regardless of color.

It is also possible to consider both the quality and color at a time, but this is a somewhat heavy way to go if you want to become a champion, but it is still possible.

 

4. Limit the number of breeders.

It is recommended that you do not buy birds from every corner and every a place. It is recommended in the literature to start with birds from one or two breeders. Later you can add from these breeders, or from other breeders who have birds from the same "blood". Try to build up a stock with related birds of the type birds that you likes. Purchasing from fewer breeders can also reduce the risk of infection of different kinds. If you do not try so hard on the show bench you could buy from more numbers of breeders, it will often be necessary to collect the various mutations / colors that you want.

 

Remember that breeders do not sell the very best birds. You can still make a good progress by buying birds related to the breeders winners. They will be able to give you good birds in the next generation. Especially good is it if you have siblings of the breeders best birds.

Get help from the breeder to put the pairs together. Have you gotten advice from an experienced breeder , it is wise to follow the advice. The breeder usually know their birds and their backgrounds.

 

5. Costs.

Expect that there are some costs to be in the hobby. Cost depends on the level of ambition. Do you have limited money, buy either two to three good pairs than six pairs of inferior quality. You can have some ordinary budgies to make noise –or as fosters.

 

 

You pay not necessarily (much) more for show budgies from a awarded breeder than birds from a novice. Think not only of the purchase price then and there. Think about whether you get along well with the breeder, if he can give you advice on inheritance, and if he has the quality and the colors you requested. Remember that it is important to build up a relationship. Many breeders try hard to help his good and customers. Remember to tell the breeder what you will with the birds. Serious breeders are selling exhibition budgies in various price ranges. The price should reflect quality, age and rarity. If you are seriously interested in joining the champions and ask for quality from the very top shelf, you must expect to pay more than if you should have some pairs of medium quality or lower quality. In other words, you can decide how much money you spend on your hobby.

 

The advice given by the English farmer Gerald Binks is that you must sell ten of your own birds and buy a new one.

 

You should expect to pay more for quality - if that's what you want.

 

If you are offered exactly what you want and you think it is a reasonable price, then try to get the complete the trade. But if you feel that something is not right, so remember that it is more exhibition budgies of good quality out there.

 

6. Exhibition.

If you are seriously interested in showing, so check out how the seller has made it on the past exhibitions. This can be checked in the result lists on the Internet or in magazines. Remember also that in breeders are in different stages, such as forexample, beginner, novice, champion breeders. This can give an indication of the quality in the stock.

 

Ask the breeder where his birds come from. Many farmers in Norway has in recent years imported exhibition budgies from known breeders in Denmark and Sweden. Quality in Norway have been much higher in the last two to three years and this increased the quality becomes more and more available, so everyone has chance to acquire great exhibition budgies at an affordable price. It is not recommended that beginners import exhibition budgies on their own. First, one must have experience and "eye" in order. There is a lot of costs with a vet, transportation and so on - and it is a big chance to take for beginners. This advice is also given in the English magazine 'Budgerigar World'. (I will not be blamed for protectionism.)

 

When you've been in the "game" a few years, you can consider whether you need to import a mutation or special qualities. But there is also a lot of good exhibition budgies in your own country and there is - and will be - very much good quality available for those who want a cheaper price than if you import yourself.

 

There is no shortcut to success other than to gain expertise in breeding and exhibition. Good birds is not enough, you also need the trained eye and experience.

 

7. More advice.

If you only afford to buy a new purchase, then buy a male of top quality. The male can be used on several of your homebred medium quality hens. You get most of the money when you buy a male. Top-quality females are rarely sold alone and if they do - maybe the seller want a higher price for the same quality as the male.

 

 

Do not dream to win the exhibition the first time. You have to gain experience and knowledge of heritage, the exhibition technique and you have to know your birds.

 

Remember that in many exhibitions you can show your purchased birds. This can provide useful experience and knowledge that you can use when you build your own stock.

 

8. Last advice.

Remember that this is just a hobby-enjoy your birds, whether they do it well at the show or not. The most important thing is that you are comfortable with your budgies. Do not take things too seriously.

 

Remember that there are only shows a few days a year.

There are over 360 "working days" where we are enjoying ourselves with our exhibition budgies - whatever show results. The greatest joy for me is to see how this year's youngsters are developing. Are they as good or preferably better than their parents?

 

Good luck with the purchase of new exhibition budgies!

 

 

 

Website http://www.123hjemmeside.dk/HS-undulat/1603481

Edited by KAZ
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