ESSEX BIRDKEEPER CHRIS Driver has won COM-UK’s first gold medal for a coloured canary at the World Show.
Mr Driver, a Canary Colour Breeders Association (CCBA) member, made history in Almeria, Spain on January 20-22 with a yellow whitewing lipochrome. His birds were part of a team of 229 – an increase on last year’s entry of 186 – conveyed to the show from 39 exhibitors.
This is the first time in at least 15 years that a gold has been won by a UK fancier for a coloured canary, and the first time in the history of COM-UK since its formation in 2011.
Mr Driver also achieved a silver medal for his intensive yellow ivory whitewing lipochrome.
CCBA chairman Simon Meredith said: “The CCBA is very pleased that Chris has taken the initiative to secure the first-ever gold medal at any World Show. His achievement is even more credible considering the length of the journey his birds undertook.
“We must thank the conveyors from the IOA who once again undertook a superb job ensuring Chris’s birds were turned out in such good condition. A fantastic result for Chris, and the UK.”
A second record was secured at the show: 27 medals for COM-UK, which is an extra five compared to the 2016 show results.
Mr Driver, along with exhibitors Ghalib Al- Nasser, Geoff White, Bernard Howlett, Saviour Camilleri, Stephen Cowling, Mick King, Maurice O’Connor, Simon Tammam, Graham Bradbrook and Les Evans won 14 gold, eight silver and five bronze medals.
Four golds were for Mr Al-Nasser’s dark green, lutino, whitewing and crest budgerigars; three for Mr Howlett’s normal song thrush, colour mutation blackbird and colour mutation song thrush; and two for Mick King’s Border canaries. Additional golds were awarded to a Norwich and Fife canary, and Irish fancies. A special mention goes to David Allen, from Oxford, who came fourth out of 44 in the blue Lizard canary class.