The Pearl Society Finch
A Young Crested Pearl Society
The Pearl Society Finch is the newest and rarest variety of Society Finch in the US and probably the world. In 1998, two friends and I located and imported Pearls from Japan. It was an incredibly difficult and expensive task, not likely to ever be repeated. Actually our group of Pearls was the first of any Pearl Societies to ever leave their home land. As far as we know, Pearls are only found in Japan and 3 collections in the US. None are even known in European collections.
The Pearl Society was developed over a 15+ year breeding program by a single Japanese breeder, who apparently discovered the first Pearl Society in a pet shop in Tokyo. (seems many mutations are discovered in pet shops, certainly many Zebra mutations were found this way). Osamu recognized the first Pearl as being a different Society Finch, and began working with this new variety. The Pearls he is producing today look nothing like the original "first" bird he discovered many years ago.
Pearl is a recessive sex-linked mutation. Males can carry the gene for pearl, females are either pearl or normal but cannot be split for pearl. Only males can be split for the pearl gene. The pearl mutation is only attractive in a Chocolate background. In other words Chestnut Pearls and Fawn Pearls are not attractive and according to Osamu, such Pearls do not display the unique color features that make Pearl Societies so unique. Therefore all Pearl Societies are bred from a self chocolate ancestry.
Description: At first glance the color of a pearl appears to be similar to chestnut with some Grey pigment. While the color of a Pearl is certainly chestnut like in appearance, one must keep in mind that these birds are chocolate "pearls" and that Pearls are not at all related to the "chestnut" gene in societies. A well marked Pearl Society has a silver Grey head and throat, plus silver Grey wings and tail. The breast, belly, nape, and back are of a "chestnut" color.
Breeding Pearls: Pearls are not difficult to breed, no more so than regular society finches but, well marked pearls ARE difficult to produce. Many Pearls simply never develop the desired color that characterizes a good Pearl. Poorly marked pearls are too brown with very little grey color and look like a typical chestnut self society, other Pearls have some grey color but not enough, to classify them as great pearls. Nevertheless, even these imperfectly colored Pearls are still attractive birds. Apparently the quality of the grey pigment on the head, wings and tail determine how attractive the Pearl will be. I began by breeding Pearls X Chocolates and I am now prepared to mate Pearl X Pearl in an effort too determine if a higher percentage of well marked Pearl young will be produced. The Japanese breeder who developed the Pearl, classified them in categories of A,B, and C Pearls. "A" being the best marked bird and "C" being the least well marked Pearl. Pearls and Japanese Chocolate Selfs are incredibly tame birds, much more so than any American Society Finches we have seen. For this reason, they may also prove to be some of the best Societies to use as foster parents.
Availability: I expect to have some Pearls for sale later this year (1999) or early in Jan. or Feb. 2000. They will be priced according to the quality of the markings on individual birds.
Click below for more Photos of Japanese Pearl Societies.
Pieds | Selfs | Dilutes | Clearwings | Inos