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different types of fischer's lovebirds

Different Types of Fischer’s Lovebirds (Genetics + Mutations)

Last Updated on January 28, 2024 by Carrie Stephens

Fischer’s lovebirds are native to Africa. Specifically, they’re found south and southeast of Lake Victoria in northern Tanzania and a small area of east-central Africa.

Fischer’s lovebirds have bright green bodies, olive-green heads, and red beaks. Their genetics give them blue, lutino, dilute, dark-eyed clear, dark-eyed white, albino, pied, and cinnamon color variations.

Agapornis fischeri is the scientific name of Fischer’s lovebirds, and Agapornis refers to the bird’s genus. According to Ostrich, the Agapornis has 30 color variations.

Fischer’s Lovebirds Identification

There are three main species of lovebirds. Since they belong to the same genus, they have similar temperaments and physical characteristics.

Fischer’s lovebirds are easy to identify for these reasons:

Colors

Fischer’s lovebirds can be separated from other lovebirds by their colors alone:

  • They have a green back, chest, and wings.
  • The top of their head is olive green.
  • Their face is a bright orange, eventually becoming a golden yellow at the neck.
  • The beak is bright red.
  • There’s a broad ring of white around the eyes.
  • The tip of the tail can be either blue or purple.
  • Legs and feet are blue-grey.
fischer lovebirds types

The juveniles are a similar color but have the following distinctions:

  • The colors are duller.
  • The base of the mandible has brown markings.

Size

Fischer’s lovebirds are smaller than others, with the following measurements:

Species ComparisonFischer’s LovebirdMasked LovebirdPeach-Faced Lovebird
Height12.5 to 15.5 cm14.5 to 15.5 cm13 to 19 cm
Weight1.5 to 2 ounces1.5 to 1.75 ounces1.5 to 2.5 ounces
Wingspan9 cm9 cm10 cm

Fischer’s Lovebird Genetics And Mutations

The green-bodied Fischer’s lovebird retains the colors of their species.

If you want a unique bird, you can achieve the following:

Blue

This mutation changes all parts of the bird, not just its body.

This lovebird will have the following characteristics:

  • A bright blue back, tail, and chest.
  • The top of its head is a pale grey.
  • The remainder of its head is white.
  • The beak is pale pink.

Lutino

The lutino mutation is produced when the melanin pigment in birds is suppressed, resulting in an almost entirely yellow bird.

The lutino mutation is similar to the albino mutation. Lutino affects green-series lovebirds, while albino targets blue-series lovebirds.

Suppressing melanin results in no black, brown, or grey colors. This results in the following colors:

  • The back, tail, and chest are bright yellow.
  • A red beak.
  • Solid, orange head.
  • Some red on the face.

Dilute

The dilute mutation reduces the black pigment in the feathers by 80-90%, resulting in a pale bird.

The dilute mutation is a recessive gene. For a chick to be visibly dilute, both parents must be at least split for dilute. If so, there’s a 25% chance the offspring will be visibly dilute.

The two primary dilute mutations in Fischer’s lovebirds depend on whether the bird is a green or blue series. These are as follows:

Green Dilute

A green dilute produces a more diluted bird than the wild type. This often results in dark grey-green, unlike the bright green of the wild lovebird.

A green dilute bird is easier to achieve because there’s only one recessive gene, the dilute gene. The green body gene is dominant, so there’s more chance of a pair producing green offspring.

Blue Dilute

The blue Fischer’s lovebird has a bright blue hue. When the dilute gene is visible, it produces a bird with duller shades, like grey-blue, sometimes called navy blue.

The green body color is dominant over the blue. A bird can be split for blue or hiding a blue gene.

Two green birds can create blue offspring, meaning the parents were split for blue or hiding a blue gene. Specifically, the parents have a 1 in 4 chance of producing blue offspring.

The dilute gene functions similarly because it’s recessive. If both parents carry the gene, they can still produce dilute offspring even if they’re visibly non-dilute.

Dark-Eyed Clear

The dark-eyed clear results in a bird similar to the Lutino mutation. However, melanin is only reduced by 95%. It results in the following:

  • Yellow-bodied birds.
  • Blue rumps.
  • Grey feet.
  • Bright orange hoods, heads, and masks.
  • Red beaks.
  • Black eyes with a white ring.

Dark-Eyed White

The dark-eyed white is a variant of the dark-eyed clear mutation. This describes birds with the dark-eyed clear mutation and the blue mutation.

Dark-eyed whites are characterized by the following:

  • White body.
  • Pale pink feet and legs.
  • The abdomen and tail can be a pale blue or pale violet.
  • Pale pink beak.

The dark-eyed white is named to differentiate itself from the albino mutation.

The main difference between albino and other white mutations is in the eyes because non-albino whites will always have dark eyes.

Albino

An albino color results in a mutation that suppresses melanin production. The albino mutation functions similarly to the lutino mutation, affecting blue-series birds.

Birds with albinism are different from dark-eyed whites because there’s no melanin in the eyes, resulting in a bird with a bright red iris.

Dark-eyed white Fischer’s lovebirds also have a diluted color on their tail and abdomen, which is never present in albino mutations.

The albino mutation is characterized by the following:

  • White body.
  • Pale pink legs and feet.
  • Pale pink beak.
  • Bright red eyes.

Pied

The pied mutation is characterized by patches of feathers, which are due to the lack of melanin. Piedness can result in different colors, depending on the dominant color.

For example, in pied greens, like the non-variant color of Fischer’s lovebirds, the pied mutation results in yellow spots. For pied blues, piedness produces white splotches of color.

Any bird can carry the pied mutation on top of others. Depending on its dominant color, the bird can be blue with white spots or green with yellow spots.

Cinnamon

The cinnamon is a diluting mutation, affecting dark or dark grey markings.

Females have a more diluted color than males. This diluted color is often a light brown, similar to the shade of white coffee.

Cinnamons have feathers that appear tighter than usual, resulting in silky plumage.

Fischer’s Masked Hybrid

Hybrids between Fischer’s lovebirds and masked lovebirds are common. This hybrid is often mislabeled as a pure Fischer’s lovebird. To differentiate them, focus on the following:

  • Forehead.
  • Cheeks.
  • Head.

They’ll be noticeably darker in a Fischer’s/masked hybrid than non-hybrids. They’re characterized by:

  • A face is reddish-brown, slightly black, with some dark orange.
  • The top of the head is a dull olive.
  • The chest and neck are orange, with some dull yellow.
  • The rest of the body is bright green.
  • They have white rings around the eyes, with brown irises.
  • The beak is red.
  • The top of the wings is dark green, with a lighter underside.
  • Outer tail feathers are edged with a yellow band.
  • The rump is greyish blue.
  • Legs and feet are grey.

Fischer’s Lovebird Male-Female Difference

Fischer’s lovebirds have no sexual dimorphism, which means no physical characteristics differentiate females from males.

Due to sexual morphism, the most reliable way to determine a bird’s sex is through DNA testing.

According to Bio Web of Conferences, the polymerase chain reaction test can also be used to determine the sex of a Fischer’s lovebird.