By Nigel Tonkin

On a visit to the aviaries of Kevin O’Callaghan in Rockhampton Queensland AUSTRALIA
in 2010 a couple of birds that did not appear to be the norm stood out. These birds had a Yellow Face with no yellow in the cap. The cap was white in fact almost whiter than white if this could be so.

On asking Kevin where these birds originated, he advised Graeme Kerle of Townsville in
Queensland.

Graeme produced from a Yellow Faced Opaline Cobalt hen (purchased at auction from Ernie
Wise of New South Wales) and a Spangle Grey cock – non yellow faced (purchased from
Robert Manvel also of New South Wales in one of his sale lots) 2 x Spangle Yellow Faced
Sky cocks, 1 x Spangle Yellow Faced Sky hen, 1 x Spangle Sky cock. This occurred in 2003.

These ‘Yellow Faced’ progeny were all visual ‘White Caps’ and were quite obviously
different when viewed in the nest. The mask being yellow, the cap white and the body
colour ‘Seafoam’.

Neither parent had any visual variations to what would be described as ‘normal’ for their
respective variety.

The initial resultant offspring from this pairing suggest that the Spangle was not a Double
Factor Yellow face.

The term ‘Seafoam’ was nominated by my soul mate, Jennie Liebich as soon as she sighted
these birds; the body colour in each resembled the colour of the sea just below the foam of a
breaking wave.

Whilst writing the article, and having knowledge that seafoam was referenced many years
ago, and after corresponding with Dieter Keller of Germany we both agreed that the obvious
naming of the birds produced by Graeme Kerle should be ‘White Cap’. After consulation
with Kevin and Graeme, this naming has been agreed to. Others within the fancy in Australia
have agreed with this ‘naming’.

‘Seafoam’ does not reflect the mask and cap colouration, but the body colour only and likely
only in the Sky Blue version. They could have beed called ‘Kerle Faced Blue’ to reflect
the origins or ‘Seafoam Yellow Face’ to embrace Jennie’s initial artistic interpretation,
but ‘White Cap’ reflects the wording in the first paragraph of this article and the visual
attributes of the bird.

The pairings at Graeme’s resulted in nests averaging 70% visual ‘White Caps’ with the non-
visual still carrying the trait as ‘White Caps’ were bred from these non-visual pairings.

Visual ‘White Caps’ to Normal Green series birds resulted in visual Blue series (non White
Cap), and Opaline Green hens, these paired back to Blue series (Non visual White Cap) then
gave a very high visual result in ‘White Cap’ of about 60%, this being Graeme’s assessment.

When the first of these ‘White Cap’ birds were produced, Graeme gave a couple to a
backyard breeder not knowing what he had produced, this breeder in recent times has
produced some ‘White Cap’ Greys.

Kevin noticed ‘White Caps’ on a visit to Graeme’s and was fortunate enough to obtain some
to breed with and Kevin then was kind enough to gift a couple to Jennie for her to work with.

The pair that arrived with Jennie back to Mount Gambier were both visual ‘White Caps’,
one being Normal Sky and the other a Spangle Opaline Sky, these produced chicks and we
were overjoyed to see that a couple were ‘White Caps’. The resultant chicks did not seem to
have a long life expectancy thus a number of outcrosses occurred quickly to try and ensure
that the strain remained. Both Graeme and Kevin did not have the same issue; it may have
been that the birds that arrived at Mount Gambier were a ‘little’ close or not quite in breeding
condition.

On pairing non visual to visual, there are now a couple of ‘out crossed’ visual birds to work
with. There are others that have been paired to non-visuals with no resultant visuals as yet
thus more ‘proofing’ will be required to fully ascertain breeding possibilities.

Graeme and Kevin have sent down some further birds that are non-visual that have produced
this new variety for them and to these two gentlemen Jennie and I cannot thank them enough
for giving us the opportunity to work with these and the previous pair of birds.

One interesting occurrence is that we now have a Green with a Yellow Mask and White cap –
and produced from two blues? The original pairing in fact.

This years breeding (2012 / 2013) has produced White Cap Cobalts and White Cap Greys
(Normals & Opalines) from White Cap Normals to Normals and Cinnamonwing Greys plus a
White Cap Spangle sky from a White Cap Light Green Spangle to a Normal non White Cap.
All the pairings were from progeny from the original pair.

The observation currently is that the White Cap is a variation of the Yellow Faced Blue, the
cap feathers seem to confirm this as the bottom portion of the pure white outer feather is
yellow and other features seem to relate to the Golden Face.

The cap and wing feather ground colour (white) appear to be linked thus if this were the case,
the Golden and Cream Faced forms of Yellow Faced Blue would by assumption have yellow
instead of white in the wings, the latter is suggested by some.

This information is being released to share this new mutation with others and to also see if
changes are occurring elsewhere in the world of a similar nature.

It is a bit premature to determine the breeding habits of this variety, noting that it is Dominant
but other surprises might present.

I believe the Spangle has something to do with this mutation and other aviaries that I have
visited recently have changes occurring and all of these go back to the Spangle parentage.

It is interesting as Roy Aplin of the United Kingdom painted birds similar to these some years
ago predicting such a change might occur.

white mutation_dam

opalinebabyatvariuosstages

opalinebabyatvariuosstages2

opalinebabyatvariuosstages3

Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Tail Feathers and Upper Tail Coverts

Spangle Opaline Sky from the same pairing

whitemutation

WhiteCapOpaline LightGreen

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