Report of Canary Council 2023 AGM Heralding Major Changes
The Canary Council Annual General Meeting took place on 1st April 2023 commencing at 1030 am at The Fieldhead Hotel, Markfield Lane, Markfield, Leicestershire LE67 9PS.
Apologies were received from Andy Early, Malcolm Neale - Hoso Alliance, Kevin and Ann McCallum – OVCA, Saviour Camilleri – Norwich, Tony Horton – LCA.
Present were: Barry Mills, Adam Roper - Yorkshire CC
Adam Raine, Henry Cooper - Fife Council
Charlie Gardiner, Paul Gillott - Fife Federation
Dave Allen -- Blue Lizard Club
Keith Ferry – Norwich
Maurice O’Connor - Irish Fancy
Chris Smith - Kernow (Rare) Club
Minutes of the AGM held on 10th April 2022 were accepted as true record and there were no matters arising not already on the agenda.
President Maurice O’Connor welcomed everyone especially new faces. The gradual passing of Covid has brought the hobby closer to normality but the cost-of-living crisis and threat from avian influenza present new challenges.
Chairman Barry Mills welcomed everyone and pointed to the issues of avian influenza and the Government’s consultation document which we need to address today. Our support of the NCA and the National Exhibition remain high priorities. The NCA’s generous offer of free affiliation and PLI cover in 2023 for those who affiliated in 2022 will help many clubs financially this year. Meanwhile the Canary Council needs to maintain its profile through better use of its website.
Secretary/Treasurer, Chris Smith, gave his final report in this role after more than 20 years in office. His services to the NCA are even more impressive: 43 years a member, 10 years as Chairman and 2 years as President. Health concerns oblige Chris to step back from some of his many commitments across the fancy but he will remain National Exhibition Co-ordinator for 2023 with some help. Adam Raine (Fife Canary Council) offered to help with organising the judges for final awards at the National and Barry Mills volunteered to procure the National trophies for the canary section and distribute rosettes.
Wearing his Treasurer’s hat, Chris presented the balance sheet for the previous financial year. Income and expenditure each year is around £1000 and funds lie currently at just under £800. We now have 14 member groups although not all of these are up to date with subscriptions. As our main source of income this clearly affects our financial position. The ring scheme brings in about £200. We have sufficient rosettes for a year or two. The balance sheet was agreed and the meeting thanked Chris for all his work over the years. His will be a hard act to follow.
Officers elected for 2023 were as follows:
President: Maurice O’Connor
Chairman: Barry Mills
Vice Chairman: Dave Allen
Treasurer: Adam Raine
Secretary: Charlie Gardiner
Ring Secretary: Chris Smith
NCA Delegates: Saviour Camilleri, Keith Ferry, Adam Roper, Charlie Gardiner
NE Judges Adjudication: Adam Raine
A long and serious debate followed an item of correspondence from the Fife Fancy Federation expressing concern over the presence of three different models for the Fife fancy, one from the FFF, one from the FCC and another from COM. It was eventually accepted that one model would be preferable but how to achieve this was problematical. A suggestion to consult all Fife exhibitors was not acceptable to some. The canary Council offered to mediate in any future separate discussions to resolve the issue and it was thought that some progress was made in bringing the two sides together for further discussion.
The Chairman took it as a positive step forward that Chris’s post was now being shared by the Chairmen of the FFF and FCC whose co-operation will be essential for the future of the Canary Council and Fife fancy.
One area where the Canary Council needs to raise its profile is the website which has been neglected over the pandemic. The Chairman urged all present to make use of the website to promote their own sections with photos, reports, and any other positive material.
A request from the Irish Fancy club show for financial sponsorship could not be met given our own modest funds at present. However, we would provide rosettes for their show.
The Parrot Society is minded to hold no National Exhibition preparatory meeting this year given that the procedures are well-known now and the formula works well.
The COM-UK president and secretary visited the World Show in Naples on behalf of British fanciers though the number of exhibitors was down. Current discussions with DEFRA suggest it will be 2025 before legislation is changed to permit UK birds to attend without the need for quarantine. The 2024 World Show will be held in Telavera de la Raine, Spain in January. Open to the public from 26th to 28th January.
On the DEFRA consultation regarding bird keeper registration we had a useful insight from Charlie Gardiner of Northern Ireland where a scheme has been in operation for ten years or so. He reckoned it worked quite easily with every bird keeper issued with a “flock number” which you had to quote when entering birds for exhibition. Presumably this was to allow contact to be made by DAERA (Northern Ireland DEFRA equivalent) in the event of an avian flu outbreak at or immediately after the show. This has not occurred yet. Charlie was not aware of premises being inspected.
In discussion the consensus was that compulsory registration of all bird keepers seemed excessive when the risk of avian influenza from and to our birds is very low given that they are mostly “domestically housed” in dedicated bird rooms where biosecurity is employed. Passage between home and shows is in closed boxes and biosecurity is employed. There were concerns regarding inspection, by whom and at whose cost? Using the register to contact all bird keepers via text in the event of an avian influenza outbreak could equally well be done via social media, news broadcasts, websites or the new public alarm system being trialled in late April via everyone’s mobile. The greatest concern was that such an imposition would deter a lot of fanciers, particularly the older ones, from keeping birds.
CITES/SUN meetings continue with DEFRA via Microsoft Teams though they still concentrate on CITES legislation. The NCA currently contributes £300 to support the SUN group.
Under AOB it was reported that some shows and venues were being abused via social media which is not acceptable and action would be taken against those individuals.
The date of the next AGM would be 6th April 2024 at 10.30am. Venue to be confirmed.
20th April 2023.
The Canary Council for Great Britain and Northern Ireland - AGM
Sunday 15th April 2018 at 1030 am
At The Charnwood Arms, Coalville, Leicestershire.
1 Chairmans welcome – the Chairman welcomed delegates to the AGM and thanked them all for making the journey and for their time given up for the meeting. He was pleased at the turnout for the AGM and as there was a number of new faces around the table he asked members to introduce themselves.
Yorkshire CC – Barry Mills and Terry Salt
Frill Club – Simon Tamman
British Colour Canary Club – Ivan Chapman and Peter Finn
Border Convention – Colin Egner and R Thorley
Irish Fancy – Maurice O’Connor
Blue Lizard CC – David Allen
Lizard CA – John Martin
OVCA – Brian Hogg
Norwich – Keith Ferrry
Kernow Old and Rare EC – Chris Smith
Kevin McCallum - OVCA
Malcolm Neale - Hoso BA
Saviour Camilleri - Norwich
2 Minutes of AGM - 7th May 2017
Accepted as a true record
Proposed B Hogg
Seconded D Allen
3 Matters Arising – none.
4 President’s Report
The President indicated it would be a short report, he thanked the committee for all the work they undertook and wished everyone a good breeding season.
5 Chairmans Report
The Chairman thanked all the delegates for attending, there is obviously renewed interest in the Canary Council. He thanked the secretary for all the work he undertakes for the Council and the NCA. The last year has seen us grappling with a number of issues, not least the imposing legislation from Government which could present difficulties for breeders. He praised the work we undertake for the National Exhibition in running the judging for best canary and best in show and for the recognition for fanciers with the Canary Council awards. Generally he felt the hobby was under attack and facing decline with some clubs falling by the wayside, we need to rally together to support those that remain.
6 Secretary/Treasurer’s Report
The secretary reported that we have some quite contentious issues to discuss today, in particular the licensing scheme which comes into force on 5th Oct 2018, it will have great affect upon parrot and hawk/falcon breeders but may also affect commercial canary breeders.
It remains my intention to stand down as secretary in April 2020, so we have 2 years to seek a replacement. I would be willing to continue with the ring scheme after that date.
We have an application for membership from the British Colour Canary Club which I am sure we will approve later on in the agenda.
The Parrot Society would welcome our views on the proposed 2 day National Exhibition which we can discuss in detail later.
There is a meeting with DEFRA on the 15th May in London to discuss animal and plant import/export controls post Brexit which I will attend.
The NCA/Canary Council ringing scheme has taken off with 1930 closed id coded rings sold to date, generating a surplus of £201.88 for the canary council. It was suggested that we get the supplier to send out rings direct to the breeder, something to be looked into.
100 rosettes have been ordered, which should last for about three years and I would like to thank Brian Hogg for arranging the trophies for the National Exhibition, for which Brian and I donate the cost.
The balance sheet was sent out with the agenda and I now present the accounts to calendar year end showing a balance of £662.64. Three canary sections remain one year in arrears so the balance would be much healthier when all sections are up todate. The ringing scheme will grow a surplus as more breeders use it, but we need your help to publicise it more. Happy to take any questions on the balance sheet.
Balance Sheet accepted, proposed T Salt, seconded, B Hogg.
7 Election of Officers - Web Editor.
The web site is updated but poorly used by the canary sections present. We need a dedicated person to use the web site more on everyone’s behalf. Brian Hogg volunteered to set up a CC email address so that all canary sections could send information to put on the website as detailed later in the minutes.
8 Correspondence - British Colour Canary Club application for membership – approved unaminously.
– Birds First – an invitation to join this organisation has been received. Promoting birds through bird watching and bird keeping , it is proposed to hold an International Birds Day on 27th April , would we care to participate. With little evidence of any activity on its website todate it was suggested we hold off joining for now. Proposed we review next year by S Tamman and seconded B Mills, all agreed.
9 National Exhibition - PS email for a 2 day National Exhibition
Following last year’s National Exhibition I was approached by three canary clubs suggesting a possible two day event in the future. I have tabled the proposal I put to the Parrot Society which has gone out to all clubs participating with a view to take a decision at the PS meeting in May 2018.
Staging would be erected Friday PM or early Saturday morning, judging Saturday afternoon and the Exhibition open Sunday morning to all sales attendees and exhibitors.
There was concerns from the smaller canary sections with regard to additional costs for clubs and exhibitors, extra stewards required, already difficult to get sufficient for a one day show. The larger canary sections saw opportunities to socialise more and attract new members, this is the biggest show we have in this country.
Upon a vote it was 4 in favour and 5 against a two day show , with one abstention.
10 NCA/Canary Council Ring Scheme.
The NCA has agreed to allow us to use their intials (NCA) so as not to clash with the Colour Canary breeders (CC).
To date 1930 NCA id coded rings have been supplied to 30 breeders of canaries (and two for parrotlets).The secretary will amend the ring order form and send it out to all delegates in OCT for your members, also put on the website at that time ready for next year. The ring colour for 2019 is BLACK
11 CC Web Page
The secretary suggested clubs may want to advertise on the CC website with a link to their own website, things such as:-
Show dates, venues and links to schedules
Show results and photos of winners
Links to each canary section own web site
12 COM UK matters – World Show – a great success with over 32,000 exhibits beautifully presented and in an excellent venue. UK team comprised of 205 exhibits from 34 exhibitors, but achieved 5 gold , 10 silver and 5 bronze medals.
- COM review of canary standards
- Lizard – still awaiting confirmation that only the scorecard has changed. A lot of unnecessary anquish has been caused by mis-information.
- Yorkshire -awaiting proposals from COM though indications are again only the scorecard will change.YCC have written to COMUK with formal objection.
- Lancashire – representations have been made from Lancashire Canary Club and OVCA with regard to proposed classes for variegated exhibits.
13 Canary Breed standards
-draft booklet in preparation , ST needs description of standard ,pictorial model and photo of each breed to complete.
14 NCA Report
It was agreed to forward NCA minutes to all CC delegates following NCA meetings.
- Insurance -162 affiliated societies with PL insurance to the value of £5million. Uptake partly due to the Midland insurance scheme folding.
- Facebook page - still to be done.
- Defra update - none
- CITES / SUN meetings from now on will only relate to CITIES issues with other sub group meetings being held on other issues such as Brexit controls, British Birds, etc.
- Animal Activities Licensing - probably not as bad as first thought, trading standards officers in two London Boroughs have confirmed that their local authorities are only interested in the commercial traders not hobbyists. We do need to be vigilant though.
15 AOB - none
16 Date of next meeting - CC AGM 7th April 2019 at Charnwood Arms.
CANARY COUNCIL AGM 2017
The Canary Council Annual General Meeting took place on Sunday 7th May, 2017 at the Fieldhead Hotel, Markfield, Leicesteshire with Brian Hogg (OVCA) in the chair.
The chairman welcomed delegates Keith Ferry and Saviour Camilleri (Norwich), David Allen (Blue Lizard Club), Chris Smith (Kernow Rare and Old Club), Simon Tamman (Frill Club), Barry Mills and Terry Salt (Yorkshire Canary Club) and extended warm thanks to Chris Smith for his hard work in his capacity as secretary and treasurer. He described 2016/17 as a very testing time for the Canary Council and COM-UK.
It was a great disappointment that three major sections of the canary fancy (the Glosters, the Fifes and the Coloured Canaries) have not renewed their membership apparently “seeing no benefit” in affiliating. This, he felt, was short-sighted bearing in mind the changing circumstances of our hobby nationally and internationally because of Brexit and other challenges heading our way (e.g. the possible registration of all bird keepers) and also the very modest affiliation fee required to support the Canary Council in its role as the representative of the canary fancy through the NCA and COM-UK in discussions with DEFRA, COM or Natural England.
An example of the need for our various canary sections to work together was illustrated this year by COM who, without proper consultation, changed the standard of the Lizard Canary for COM shows and proposed amendments to the Yorkshire Canary model by 2018. The review of other standards of UK canary breeds is expected. This has to be resisted via COM-UK or we will lose control of our own breed standards.
More positively the chairman was pleased to report the continued success of the National Exhibition at Stafford and the Canary Council’s collaborative work with the Parrot Society in organising the largest all variety show in the UK and providing a range of trophies for the event.
The chairman acknowledged there has been justified criticism of the outdated state of the Canary Council website which he had attempted to rectify - regrettably without success. This and the development of other means of communication with the fancy must be a target for the year ahead.
Having served as chairman for a number of years Brian had decided to stand down in order to devote his energies to the National Exhibition and the work of COM-UK.
Secretary, Chris Smith, thanked the chairman on behalf of the whole council for his years of service.
The election of officers for 2017/18 then took place as follows:
President Maurice O’Connor (Irish Fancy)
Chairman Barry Mills (Yorkshires)
Vice Chairman Brian Hogg (OVCA)
Sec/Treasurer Chris Smith (Kernow Rare and Old Club)
Web editor Chris Smith/Barry Mills
Publicity Officer Barry Mills
In accepting the chairmanship Barry Mills expressed his belief that the Canary Council has a vital role to play in defending and supporting the canary fancy and all its breeds at national and international level. The Canary Council was originally set up by the NCA to look after the interests of the canary fancy and is now an integral part of the NCA structure, being one of the four parent bodies. Government departments will only deal with national bodies not separate and various canary groups.
The challenge is to convince others of its importance, to communicate better and regularly with the fancy and seek its essential support. The outgoing chairman kindly offered to sponsor the revised website. Other fund-raising activities are planned.
In his own report the secretary confirmed the need for the Canary Council to update its communications and increase its fund-raising activities. Updating the website is a priority and a regular ‘electronic newsletter’ to members will be issued commencing with the business of this meeting. It was the responsibility of section representatives to make sure this information is reported back to their members.
Brian Hogg and Chris Smith are both NCA delegates on COM-UK which should benefit the Canary Council in its defence of canary breed standards which are currently all under review by COM. Dave Allen, as Lizard Canary Association representative, thanked the Canary Council for its help with the changes proposed for the Lizard Standard. Simon Tamman, UK representative on COM’s technical committee, reported that he has requested details of Turkey’s proposed changes to the Yorkshire canary standard but no response so far. Canary sections may wish to consider registering the copyright of their standard to gain some protection. The YCC have already done this. Simon also reported that a draft booklet of all the current canary standards would be available by the end of the year with an estimate of printing costs.
Regarding the judging of the London Fancy at the World Show delegates agreed that only clear body birds should be put forward and that COM-UK should make this clear to exhibitors.
COM has announced a southern hemisphere World Show in Cuba 21st-23rd July 2017 and a northern hemisphere show in Cesena, Italy in January 2018.
The Secretary made a proposal for the Canary Council to work with the NCA in issuing id coded closed rings to canary breeders under an adapted version of the NCA ring scheme. To avoid confusion with other canary sections the NCA has agreed we can use their initials on the rings. This will lift the profile of both NCA and CC and bring in much needed funds for the CC. This proposal was approved by the meeting and the Secretary was instructed to seek a suitable ring supplier.
A further report from the NCA included the news that its public liability insurance scheme is now being taken up by over 100 clubs and a new NCA Facebook page is to be launched. Due to the general election DEFRA has put on hold changes to legislation, including future class licence for northern bullfinch and goldfinch. CITIES has requested a country code on closed rings for CITIES species (mainly raptors and parrot like).
As a final item the CC agreed to provide trophies and rosettes again for the National Exhibition 2017.
The date of next year’s AGM was agreed as 15th April 2018.
The chairman thanked the delegates present for their contributions to the meeting and closed proceedings at 1.15pm.
CHAIRMANS NOTES May 2013
My remit for the year as Chairman was to promote the All Canary Shows the CBS clubs and the very important National Exhibition.
Starting with the National I think we will have achieved the near perfect result the Norwich and Yorkie sections will be present at this years show in October. The Norwich section is being promoted by the Norwich Midland Plainhead Show under the guidance of Chris Mellow and Saviour Camilleri. This is the first time this section has attended the show and I wish them every success. The Yorkshire section is to be held in conjunction with the OVCA with myself and Kevin McCullam there for guidance. Paul Rayner from Staines CBS will be show secretary and we already have a promise from 3 Fanciers to show their Yorkies. You may ask why the OVCA well unfortunately no Yorkshire Specialist club would take up the banner. What would the National be without the Norwich and Yorkies I think incomplete.
I always support all my local CBS clubs and I truly believe without the CBS Clubs there would be no hobby. I would like to think we support our CBS clubs as much as we can.
There are a few all canary shows around and I am pleased to see ALL VARIETY CANARY SHOW re-emerge at Wisbech after a doubtful future, please get your members to support this event.
The South Bucks Canary show has now run for nearly 20 years and as chairman I am proud we are going from strength to strength but we do need the support of all Canary exhibitors.
I believe we should be trying to promote best practice within our judges panels. In the UK we are miles behind the rest of Europe when training judges. l am told that even the Yorkshire Canary Club has no training programme and also the Norwich. The Canary Council must try and help these great breed clubs to produce a judges training programme. We in the UK should be the leaders in everything connected to the UK breeds. After all Europe ask us as the breed Country to set the standard for their judges to adhere to. Its a nonsense if we have no qualified judges ourselves, surely a minimum requirement for a candidate to attend training with an experienced judge for one show season. Let us start to lead the world with our expertise judging again.
I am watching finances of the C C very closely and we must find new avenues to bring in new income, and we will discuss this at the meeting as I believe we need a fundraiser.
Finally I would like to thank all of you for attending the meetings with your input as without you the C C cannot operate. Our Secretary Chris Smith has my special thanks for all his work during the year.
Please remember as delegates you should report back to you society with all meeting news. In the past some delegates have not passed this information onto their respective clubs and the officers in the clubs feel its a waste of time being involved in the Canary Council.
Brian A Hogg OMJ