Sunday, July 26, 2009


This is DDS243 at 32 days. As suggested by his many photos on this blog, I am glad to have him.

This photo shows the type and structure of most of the birds I breed nowadays to a greater or lesser extent.

DDS243 is well proportioned. His outstanding features are an exceptionally strong large head (which is highly desirable in a male) on a long neck with a body on also long and graceful legs. This combination is one of the most difficult things to find in shamas, whether captive bred or wild-caught. Just have a look at the photos of shamas on the forums and the web and you will know what I mean.

DDS243's parents are Apache and SuperModel's daughter. He is the result of a repeat mating from the pair that was bred last year, when Michael obtained one male, Cochise, from them. Cochise's character, display and song are so exceptional that everyone who saw him (including myself) wanted a son from his parents. Insofar as structure is concerned, the shorter neck of Cochise is corrected in DDS243.

Even when at rest in the photo on the right,
his large head and well defined neck can
be seen.

So far this year, the pair of Apache and SuperModel's Daughter have produced 2 males. One went to Jeffery and I have one. I still have to try to get a nest from the pair for Michael. After that, if they are still in breeding condition, I may try for a final nest to see if I can have 2 male chicks from this pair for myself.

There is a slow motion video of Jeffery's chick DDS239 on this blog which I have reproduced below as it gives some idea of why I regard its parents to be exceptional producers of highly desirable shamas.

The pair not only produce males of the desired type but DDS's 243's sister also seems to be that special "one in a million" female. In all my years of breeding shamas, I have never seen as promising a female at one month of age as this. The photo below shows her at 22 days.

There was a small gathering at my home this evening and I could see the jaws of my friends (who are knowledgeable shama owners) drop when they saw her and her display. She really looks perfect. I hope she turns out well and will be able to pass her genes to her offspring.

I am sorry to have to inform that whilst I have had many enquiries to acquire my captive-bred shamas, I will regretfully have to disappoint. I keep and breed shamas only as a hobby and for this year,I have decided to breed only for my close friends and I so there will be no young birds for sale. The decision was made earlier this year as last year showed me that having many chicks meant that a large part of the time was spent tending to them. This left me less time for the adult birds and the hobby was less enjoyable.

The intention so far this year is only to breed those pairs that are likely to produce exceptional progeny and which have not been bred to any great extent in previous years. As mentioned, Apache has produced only one male chick and so has Ballet Dancer. By the way, Ballet Dancer is the bird whose photo is at the top left corner of this blog. The only son I still have from him is Gifted, whose recent video is on this blog and who is the father of one of my favourite shamas, Pretty Boy. As I am not breeding Gifted at this time, I have loaned him to Michael to breed and I hope he does not disappoint.

For the above reasons, I intend to breed only Apache and Ballet Dancer and give the other birds a rest this year. Males, such as Icon, which was a fantastic producer last year with 24 chicks, several of which were outstanding, will not be bred this year as I have sufficient of his progeny. As soon as my close friends and I have the birds that we want for ourselves, I will stop breeding the birds for this year and take the time to enjoy the birds that I already have.

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