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  1. #1
    Where The Birds Always Sing Tailfeather Birdmad Girl's Avatar
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    Exclamation First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Some one in South Africa has bred the first ever all red African Grey Parrot! Here is a photo of the bird, in the centre.



    I was reading an article about this in Parrots magazine whilst I was at work at the weekend. I already know about the existance of what is known as a 'King African Grey', which is a grey parrot with red feathers on it's belly, like the two either side of the red grey above. In fact I think the Red Grey was bred from two King Greys. Basically, breeders have cottoned on to the fact that sometimes you see greys with the odd red feathering on the chest, and have bred them as such to create the red bellies and called them King Greys, and as you can imagine, sell them for quite a profit. I have always had a worry about this, because very often, when an african grey presents with the odd red feather on the body where they should be grey, it can be a sign that there is something wrong with the liver. In some of the few cases I have seen, this has turned out to be true, in the others that were not diagnosed, so the liver problems were not ruled out.

    To me it seems like breeders have taken something that is an indicator of poor health, and bred with it to create colour mutations in order to make a profit. I know that this hasn't been proven, but I have concerns that breeding these King Greys, or Red Greys, could seriously be breeding birds with health problems. Maybe these birds are more prone to liver problems? Maybe not. I just can't help feeling concerned.

  2. #2
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Don't these "King" greys tend to lose their extra red feathers after they moult? It'll be interesting to see what happens to this "Red" grey.

  3. #3
    Moderator Tailfeather Community Moderator notredamebird's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Wow, I didn't know that was possible! Part of me almost wants to believe it is fake.

    The coloration is definitely abnormal, so I too wonder if it could be linked to certain health problems. It will be interesting to see what the larger community has to say and what happens healthwise with this particular bird. Also, I wonder whether other grays would accept a bird of that color or reject it? Grays hang out in single-species groups in the wild, so they aren't used to the intermingling of different species like macaws and conures are. Maybe a red bird won't look like a gray? Or might look "wrong"?

    On the desirability, I am not against new mutations in birds. I enjoy mutatations in cockatiels, for example. But I do prefer my african grays to be gray. The color gives them their classic understated, calculated, goffy appearance. I think they are by far the most beautiful that way.
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  4. #4
    Where The Birds Always Sing Tailfeather Birdmad Girl's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Hi Steve, to Tailfeathers.

    Don't these "King" greys tend to lose their extra red feathers after they moult?
    I don't know, but if they are selling these birds at a higher price because of the red feathers on the chest as the novelty factor, then I can imagine a whole load of very angry owners if their bird moults out it's feathers to look like the standard grey!

    I'm curious to track down someone who has experience with a King Grey now to find out whether they keep their colouring or not. I would imagine they probably would if it is part of the genetic make up, but then again, if getting that colouring is related to health issues, then they could disappear perhaps? I know that the red feathers that occur from a bad liver can go if the liver gets better.

    Hmm, I'm curious now!

    We need someone who understands about breeding mutations and genetics to give their thoughts to this.

    Part of me almost wants to believe it is fake.
    It isn't, I've read a whole article in Parrots magazine about it with baby photos of this bird all fluffy and a few red pin feathers breaking through. I can't remember the name of the breeder though, I will see what I can find online.

  5. #5
    Fledgeling Aviennda's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    The grey I used to have had a lot of red feathers, but he did molt them out. He had a full vet work up and was perfectly healthy. The vets were stumped - they'd never seen that coloration in a grey before.



    Sorry for the image quality, but it's all I've got that shows his red coloration.
    Last edited by Aviennda; 12-20-2007 at 04:56 AM. Reason: Added photo
    - Aviennda, Bunji and Henry (Meyer's and Senegal)


  6. #6
    Where The Birds Always Sing Tailfeather Birdmad Girl's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Thanks for sharing about your grey, it's really interesting.

    He looks like he was a fairy old bird? I wonder if his red feathers were always there, or if they came through with age? In fact, the oldest african grey I ever met was in his 50s, and he was mostly plucked bald apart from a few chest feathers, some of which were red. He was malnourished and had a fatty liver though.

    All I have managed to find online is THIS LINK which shows a baby grey with red feathers. It says though that all his extra red feathers were moulted out at the age of 9 months. Someone also mentions on that page that they think it could sometimes be the result of damaged feather follicles if it is in older birds.

    I wonder if there have been any instances of anyone finding a grey in the wild with this red colouring on it's chest? Obviously not to the extent of the King Greys, but more like Aviennda's bird?

  7. #7
    Caique Crazy! Tailfeather BareFootAviary's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    There are 2 breeders here in MN that have had red factor Greys. I saw both in person, very unique, but I too have heard that red or yellow feathers like that were linked to other problems (poor nutrition, liver problems, stress, etc.). I do hope that the breeding of these red factor Greys proves to be healthy for the sake of the birds. They are pretty, though I think an all red Grey is rather an odd idea since they are called "Greys" but I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    I have seen other odd colorations in Greys and other African Parrots. My Senegal has yellow feathers around her neck and sometimes on her back which molt out at different times and sometimes disappear altogether. I have seen Blue series Greys that have white tails. Nature, or I guess domestic nature is a funny thing. Since importing has been banned (besides private individuals under specific regulations), the gene pool has become rather small for domestic breeding, so most birds can be genetically linked to each other from original breeding stock, which is why we are seeing more mutations now rather than when we first started domestically breeding them.
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  8. #8
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    I will try and find a pic of winston our CAG. We believe he is a king. He used to have lots of red scattered all over his wings and chest. Looked STUNNING. Im sure we have pics somewhere.

    Apparently is upped his value dramatically and made the breeder want him back even more! (She adored him and always said it was her favourite baby).

    He lost them all though when he was about 10 in one of his moults Now he just looks like a standard grey, but still looks great

    EDIT: After having a look around and seeing all this about health factors Id all my 2 cents. Winston has always been healthy and never seen any problems when hes visited our local vet. When his red feathers first came through (after his first moult) we told the breeder to see what she said. She was very excited and said he was a king. Im sure I remember her saying (I was young, so could be wrong) that in the wild these are the leaders of the flock? Would this make sense? She said it was a genetic thing, but very rare to find.
    Last edited by kurusui; 12-20-2007 at 01:58 PM.

  9. #9
    Fledgeling Aviennda's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    No, he was only about 6 months old in that picture. I won't tell him you said he looked old, though.

    *edit* I take that back. He has his full yellow eyes, so I'd say he was about a year old in this pic. He'd molted all the extra red out by about the age of 2, if I remember correctly.
    - Aviennda, Bunji and Henry (Meyer's and Senegal)


  10. #10
    First Baby Hatched! parrotsRmyLove's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Thanks for sharing the photos. I will stick with my African GREY Ruby. I think the all red "grey" is ugly, IMO and I love all birds. Not to say I probably would not fall in love with him or any bird for that matter if I saw him in person but just to make a $$ someone is doing this, sad.
    I do like to see CAG's that have red chest feathers here and there, they are so pretty but all red ewww it just creeped me out.

  11. #11
    First Clutch Hatching... Albe's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    If this bird does not molt out the red and this proves to be a healthy gene not an unhealthy fluke, it will probably become the gateway to new mutation greys. If this bird is crossed with some of the white tailed greys they could end up with some entirly white greys. I am sure that this bird would look adorable in person, just as any grey would. They may have to change the name though! African reds?


  12. #12
    His Royal Greyness' Mom Chick spoosrule's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    I will stick to the beautiful grey African GREYS as they are supposed to be. Not African Reds or African Whites. I'm not a fan of mutations and think that people should learn to leave well enough alone.




  13. #13
    First Clutch Hatching... Albe's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    If Kris remembers correctly about the king greys being the leaders of the flock, then this bird could have had this color in the wild too.


  14. #14
    Brand New Egg kibibi's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    The red feathers (Red Factor) is a result of genetic mutations and not health issues. Selective breeding of Red Factor Greys could lead to health problems in the future though. The selective breeding reduces the effective size of the gene pool. A large gene pool is natures way of not amplifying genetic mutations. So selectively breeding Red Factor Greys basically goes against nature and amplifies these mutations.
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  15. #15
    Brand New Egg SkittlesSlave's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    You have to remember that these animals are domestic, and due to a small gene pool new mutations will pop up no matter what.
    Another head hangs lowly,
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  16. #16
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Lee-Anne :
    the breeders name is Hennie Diedericks.
    would a pied or lutino bird of any other species be a concern. ?
    red factor grey's ( kings ) are merely a pied...

    would a grey with a white tail be a concern ?

    would an incomplete ino ( almost all white / light greyish colour with a red tail ) would that be a concern ?


    F2 Pied


    An F2 asymmetrical Timney Pied mutation

    all red ( the bird in your pic )


    all these birds appear in a DVD

    regards
    matty

    As early as 1868 African Grey parrots with mottled red spots were trapped from the wild and sold in Europe. Needless to say, these birds, often referred to by dealers as King Birds or King Jokos, commanded a very high price. Today, some breeders of African Greys believe that certain birds with these mottled red spots, in fact, suffer from a liver disorder. No conclusive proof of the perception has, as yet, been offered and the belief certainly does not apply to all red color mutations. Experts estimate that only one in every 10,000 African Grey Parrots in the wild carries the mutation gene"

  17. #17
    Brand New Egg SkittlesSlave's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Quote Originally Posted by mattybgood67 View Post
    Lee-Anne :
    the breeders name is Hennie Diedericks.
    would a pied or lutino bird of any other species be a concern. ?
    red factor grey's ( kings ) are merely a pied...

    would a grey with a white tail be a concern ?

    would an incomplete ino ( almost all white / light greyish colour with a red tail ) would that be a concern ?


    F2 Pied


    An F2 asymmetrical Timney Pied mutation

    all red ( the bird in your pic )


    all these birds appear in a DVD

    regards
    matty
    She was just stating an observation...?

    "I know that this hasn't been proven, but I have concerns that breeding these King Greys, or Red Greys, could seriously be breeding birds with health problems. Maybe these birds are more prone to liver problems? Maybe not."

    You almost sound offended..?
    Another head hangs lowly,
    Child is slowly taken.
    And the violence caused such silence,
    Who are we mistaken?
    -----
    Another mother's breakin',
    Heart is taking over.
    When the vi'lence causes silence,
    We must be mistaken.

  18. #18
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Lee-Anne : just to clarify..
    i was only posting pic's of different mutation and asking a simple question, are they a concern.. if they were a different breed of bird would it be a concern..
    nothing more nothing less..
    if you would like a link to the DVD with these birds i will provide it for you..

    i have no idea what adam's problem is and don't really care what he reads into my post.

    regards
    matty
    Last edited by mattybgood67; 12-24-2007 at 03:21 PM.

  19. #19
    First Clutch Hatching... Albe's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Wow, that second pic of the red mutation grey really shows how beautiful its feathers are! It juat looks so... Fluffy!


  20. #20
    Brand New Egg SkittlesSlave's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Quote Originally Posted by mattybgood67 View Post
    Lee-Anne : just to clarify..
    i was only posting pic's of different mutation and asking a simple question, are they a concern.. if they were a different breed of bird would it be a concern..
    nothing more nothing less..
    if you would like a link to the video with these birds i will provide it for you..

    i have no idea what adam's problem is and don't really care what he reads into my post.

    regards
    matty
    No problem, no problem.. Just seemed like you were mad that the red factor was concerning her a bit.

    -zen mode people-
    Another head hangs lowly,
    Child is slowly taken.
    And the violence caused such silence,
    Who are we mistaken?
    -----
    Another mother's breakin',
    Heart is taking over.
    When the vi'lence causes silence,
    We must be mistaken.

  21. #21
    Four More Babies Hatched! Jojo's zoo's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Quote Originally Posted by mattybgood67 View Post


    Oh my god, Matty ... This bird just took my breath away ... It's like an angel, or a ghost, or something. Wooooow... can't stop looking at it ....

    No opinion on the genetics thing ... just lurking, don't know enough to have an opinion ... just had to comment on that bird! Where do I get me one of these magical creatures??

  22. #22
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    joanna ; LOL a ghost with a bright red butt...!
    i bet thats what he's sayin.. " stop staring at my butt...! "

    regards
    matty

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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Mell: Checked with my dad and yes this is what we were told by the breeder. According to her knowledge Kings are the leaders of the flock in the wild. They have lots of red randomnly over the whole body / wings. Which is what winston had when he was younger.

    the second picture of the red grey is impressive. I think I could get used to it. I mean we have other red parrots!

  24. #24
    Fledgeling Aviennda's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Personally, I think the all red one looks freaky. I must confess that I LOVE the grey with the white tail though. I think because it reminds me of an eagle.
    - Aviennda, Bunji and Henry (Meyer's and Senegal)


  25. #25
    Bella's Personal Maid Moulting elfhome's Avatar
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    Re: First ever Red African Grey parrot...

    Mutations are not always an issue. It is unscrupulous breeders who calously breed the mutation again and again just for profits. Not just mtuations that ARE a sign of ill health but also mutaitons that are linked-to or come paired with illnesses and genetic defects. Good dog breeders, for example, are trying to breed out genetic faults. Then on the other side of the coin you have those who just see a profit in a new mutation instead of making sure the mutation is safe to breed into new lines. I am concerned that the mutation is not an issue, but the breeders are. Dollar signs can be powerful motivators.

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