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To those interested in Agapornis information and Hybrids please check this site:

Distinct wild bird species example ( Hybridizing & Speciation)

Please remember that this site is provided for breeder interaction and discussion. The discussion, opinions, processes and methodology suggested for improving a stud are the result of experience or of theory.  They are here for discussion purpose ONLY ! Please do not assume that because they are posted they will benefit you without careful selection and historical knowledge of your own birds... this would be an erroneous assumption.  If something appears interesting or different, please seek further clarification through questions rather than haring off after an ill-conceived thought or idea.

Please remember that questions and answers are sent from all over the world, and some may not necessarily apply to your situation.

Q        Hello,  I've had a look at the hybrid viability chart that you have set the link up to and I have to admit that I am speechless.  Everything I have read or heard suggests that only eyerings are fertile.  I truly do not know what to say about the information at this site and the link site.  I am amazed.  I don't know how we could all be in the dark so long with so many "experts" out there.  Is there any way to confirm these findings?  Why don't more peole know abouit all of the potentials ??

A        Thank you for the question.  It makes putting up and maintaining this page all the more worthwhile.  If only a few people check some of the links on these pages, I think they will be amazed by the apparent lack of knowledge or unwillingness to share information about the possibilities with our birds.  However, I must stress that the links was not provided so that people could run out and see what they could get from all sorts of crossings:  If indeed the information is correct.  Even I question some of the potential crosses, but that imay be a result of constant misinformation or practical inability to breed birds that are fertile.  One point I would make is that some of these crosses may refer to hybrid fertility inter se (between offspring).  many people would never attempt full-sib crosses in their own stud, let alone a hybrid one.  Consequently, much of the hybird information may have been lost over time.  This would have been exaccerbated by the application of human perceptions and morality to animal breeding.

I am glad you enjoyed the site, and that you too are think ing of the potential for continued problems with hybridization, unless it is talked about/ discussed in more open forums.  I think it worthwhile and interesting to discuss the many aspects associated with breeding.

Q1    I've had a chance to read your web pages for several days, and I am continually reminded how shallow people can be.  You use a fake name, so that we don't know who you are; you suggest that the Standard Type roseicollis is a hybrid, although you don't actually say it; you imply that inbreeding is not necessarily bad, and worst of all you are one of those people who keep suggesting that hybrids are fertile.  Where did you go to school? Do you have you any genetic or hybridizing experience at all?  Everyone knows that hybrids are infertile...mules... cannot produce offspring, Get it !!!  Species CANNOT cross or if they do they can only produce infertile offspring. Stop wasting our time with your hallucinations and rubbish and get rid of your pages, so that people don't get the wrong idea about the uselessness and waste of inbreeding and hybridizing.  I think I speak for the lovebird community, when I say that all of the stuff you have here is rubbish and hybrids should never be contemplated or pursued.  Only arrogant people think they are right all the time.

I am an active member of a number of Lovebird groups, and the "Experts" in those groups (credible people... like the psittacine genetics group for color genetics (psittacine = parrot in  case your wondering)), Lovebird societies and groups,  say the things you write about are not possible... Where is the true "blue" roseicollis if hybrids are fertile.

"We", the lovebird community do not agree with your rubbish !

The objective is to get rid of hybrids and keep only pure species.  I cannot believe that someone who claims to belong to the "lovebird community"  can put such ridiculous thoughts in writing.  I cannot believe that anyone would knowingly try and cross lovebirds, whether there was an intent at the end or not!

Get with the program... are you an American ??  I know you will not have the courage to put this up on your web site, so the hell with you !  I don't think anyone will support your stupid site.  Science is science, fool, you can't change the facts !  Don't try and play God with genetics

A1   Thank you for writing to the site and supporting it by perusing the documentation, links and opinions.  I hardly know where to begin to respond to your questions, as they are in a somewhat different format than I am used to.  Perhaps one question at a time would be the most beneficial.

Ai    Hi,  I have been "lurking" around your page for some time now and would like to respond to the first question on hybrids, that was put up yesterday.   I am still trying to get my head around hybridizing, and its pros and cons (why someone would want to do it ), but was shocked at the e-mail you posted.  Let me assure you that most people, and that includes the lovebird community, do not feel like the individual who wrote the nasty letter or whatever about hybrids.  In fact i think that most people are unsure of their opinion about hybridizing.  They are certainly uncomfortable with close matings, but they also very much appreciate new breeds, varieties and the like.  I think your approach on this page and the effort to educate people is commendable, and I hope more hybridizers and breeders hear about this page.  I for one have certainly been e-mailing to my friends.
It is refreshing to see a page where the extremes of a spectrum have as full a voice as the majority.  Regardless of how strongly that last individual feels, I can assure you that the person does not represent the majority of lovebird "breeders and care-givers".  Please keep posting information.  It is extremely interesting and information that is sincerely thought provoking.

Aii     Regarding the question 1, posted yesterday.  Please don't think that the lovebird community thinks as the writer of Q1 suggests.   The majority of people are fun, exciting to be around and generally care sincerely for their birds.  I do not think there is one person that would try to kill a hybrid just because it had the misfortune to result from an indicriminant breeding.  These birds need to be cared for and yes, stopped from being bred into a "normal" population or a select line, as the damage one can do to their stock is difficult to address.  Please keep writing and addressing this issue.  As for the question raised about an alias.  Well, I know that I would not feel comfortable writing if I had to sign my name to a letter.  people are to ready to judge and condemn without having all the facts.  You seem to be trying to dig into, accumulate and disseminate those facts, which would help dispel rumor and myths.  Please keep it going


Aii    Hello, I just read the response of the person who is ranting about hybridizing lovebirds.  It is obvious the person does not know they first thing about her own birds.  Some people believe that the eye-ring group is all descended from or linked to an original species and that the birds separated over a period of time, but not so much that they are infertile when brought together.  there are not many species out there that have not at one point or another been subject to crossing or "hybridizing" to make a "new species".

I have found your site to be very informative and it certainly does make one question what we hear and what we believe: some would not consider freedom of thought a good thing :-) Back to my point.  The person writing the nasty comments about hybridizing obviously does not understand your intent and is focussed on the human morality question associated with close matings.  The person certainly does not speak for the lovebird community at large, as we are all, or at least many of us tend to be independent speakers and thinkers.  I am glad that others are speaking up to support your site.  It should be a must for breeders and exhibitors to participate in.  It is along the lines of the ALBS' Agapornis World in terms of the issues and information.  We need more sites like this or more people writing in so that it can get posted on this site.  Perhaps you are right, if we work together to collect interesting vital statistics and information we can solve or address some of the myths and misconceptions perpetrated about lovebirds in general.  Keep it up.  You are doing some good stuff !

Aiv  I'm a budgie breeder, but I am fascinated by some of the information in your pages and the apparent similarities between lovebirds and budgies.  Although I do not see a lot up on your web page about budgies, I feel that this is something that we need for our fancy as well.  The documentation to confirm a significant alteration in morph is a good idea, and I am surprised, but not surprised by the anger expressed by your non- hybrid letter writer.  I think that your answer was very good and this is the type of site that would indeed require anonymity to express opinions because of fear of reprisal.  I wasn't sure what you meant by a forum for anonymity, but having watched some of the postings, I certainly feel better about putting my thoughts on electronic letter and sending them to you.  To the person who doesn't believe in hybridizing and went on a rant, I can only suggest that they get another hobby.

Thanks for the sight and I look forward to participating more in the future

Q2    Are you promoting hybridizing ?

A2   The page is not necessarily to promote hybridizing. People will do that anyway.  However, if people really understand what they are doing (hybridizing) and its impact, there is a greater potential for them to be responsible with their birds, versus selling them into the "normal or pure" population and thus infecting the whole.  Education is key to this area as it is in most.  The words: hybrid and  hybridizing, are words that are usually kept in the backroom and softly, if ever, spoken and discussed.  However, for those who are dedicated to the task of creating a new and wonderful color or variety of lovebird for the rest of us to enjoy... I for one would like to know of it.  I would like to know what the breeder may have done differently to develop the variety,  and how they safely disposed of the cull factor.  The reality is that there are going to be culls in the hybridizing process.

If we look at finches, budgerigars, pigeons and chickens, people will often say "WOW"... it is the sheer variety and wonder of what can be accomplished from crossing and selecting through careful selective breeding that opens our eyes to the wonders of genetics and their impact.

This site is meant to encourage people to understand, if not agree with the intent of the page.

Q3    Why is there still some question regarding the fertility of offspring between two different species such as the Peachfaced and the Fischer.  It should be apparent to anyone who has studied even basic genetics that two species cannot produce fertile offspring.  Ipso facto they are mules... sterile, unable to produce offspring.  I would suggest removing this from the site !!

A3   Thank you for the question.  This page is meant to address just such questions as you have asked.  The interesting thing about science, if you have an open mind, is that nothing is fixed in stone or reliant on dogma.  Scientists are always asking questions and trying to improve their knowledge and understanding of how things work and why.  In genetics or any other field, beliefs or statistics can change based on: reviews of sampling methodology; validity of a sample size; a later assessment of statistical analyses used at the time of the study and the identification of restrictions placed upon researchers, such that they are unable to gather data long enough to identify errors in assumptions.  This is more often a financial issue or change in direction versus a researcher's "choice".

Regarding your specific point, let me suggest why the question is asked.  In many instances the crossing of two varieties or breeds (pure- bred) can result in a "hybrid" F1.  The genome may have been altered significantly enough through intensive selection, that a variety or breed could be significantly different, genotypically, from its wild population or from a variety or breed that has been taken in an opposite developmental direction.  That is why crossing different breeds of dogs often results in dogs called "mutts"

It is my understanding that a species may be defined by something as simple and at the same time as complex as a single chromosome being physically changed, destroyed or re-aligned.  This is not the same as gene transference involved in color mutants, crossover and the inheritance of certain physical traits already present in the population.

Geneticists have, in the past (I am not sure if they still do, but it is important to know when looking up old data), applied the term hybrids to organisms that are heterozygous with respect to one or more pairs of genes, so the semantics may get tricky, as it does for breed; line; variety and strain.

The other interesting thing is, as far as I am aware there are rare occasion when an F1 may be fertile (fertility may range from poor fertility through to fertility that is equivalent to the parent generation). Nature seems to have a way of overcoming things in a way that we haven't quite put our finger on. However unlikely it may be for two F1s to be fertile (as you say) at the same time, there is a possibility that an F1 hybrid maybe fertile.  This unusual F1 might be crossed back into one or both parent populations and consequently introduce size and hybrid vigor into the next generation.  Intensive selection might result in a different phenotype, once selected for over a period of years.

It is these unknowns that this page is looking to address, and to derive a variety of opinions on.  Please keep asking the questions.  I would appreciate if individuals could point out errors in my answer or can categorically deny hybrid fertility from a statistical basis, or respond to the suggestion that two "species" might indeed generate a small percentage of fertile offspring (in one gender or the other) is totally unfounded or founded.  I don't mind if what I say is wrong and someone can correct me, because that is simply another step forward in learning. I also understand that some genetic work is being done on lovebirds to determine how closely related the various "species" may be. Does anyone have an up-date on that work ?

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