Mountain Oaks Ranch, Inc. has raised oranges, llamas, alpacas since 1985. The owners are Richard Thibert and Norma Stevens. You can read more about llamas and alpacas at www.whyllama.com.
We moved to Northern California in 2007. Still having strong ties to Valley Center and San Diego County.
So how does that all lead to canaries? Norma has had birds for decades, in fact when she lived in Hawaii at age 11 it was her good fortune to live down the street from a very large bird breeder, Mr. Parrish. He noticed her interest in the birds and started teaching her how to care for them, he appreciated the company and assistance and she appreciated the education.
Norma’s dad built her an aviary with the instruction of Mr. Parrish and of course his own creativity. The aviary was easy to care for and the birds thrived. It was sad for her to have to sell the birds when the family moved back to the mainland.
In Southern California the aviaries were always outside, only having to protect the birds from wild birds and drafts. Now that we are located in Northern California with the changing weather, it is a little more challenging. In the past we have had Toucans, Cockatoos, Catalina Macaw, Canaries, Parakeets, Cockatiels, Doves……. One of our favorites was a male canary we named “GrandPa” because he lived for 16 years! He was a bright orange crested canary that could really sing! Now we only have canaries.
We decided to purchase three breeding pairs and fortunately found a breeder Larry Pera in Sacramento (3.5 hours drive). The benefits of buying birds from an experienced breeder instead of a big box store is the same for all animals. In one word SUPPORT! In addition to good breeding records.
We have a large aviary outside but are not using it at this time. We need to learn more about the proper care in this climate. So the birds are in the house. We are enjoying the antics and song of our feathered friends first hand.