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John Zerafa

John Zerafa Profile

While I was only six years old when my parents immigrated to Canada from Malta, I believe that those formative years in Malta had a profound influence on my interest in animals and especially birds. 
I started out breeding canaries in 1960 when I was 12 years old, but soon ventured into softbilled birds and hummingbirds in the early 70's when importing birds had no complications, and when my wife Janice and I lived in an apartment in Scarborough, Ontario in Canada. I also bred fawn pied and normal pied Zebra Finches at that time as the noise level was quite low with these birds and they could be bred in an apartment building without disturbing the other tenants. 
I joined my first club, the Budgerigar and Foreign Bird Society of Canada, in 1969 and started to judge foreign birds in 1975. In 1976, after five years of marriage, my wife Janice and I built our dream home, east of Toronto, near Colborne, Ontario and I was soon into exhibition budgerigars and hookbills, as I no longer had to worry about the possibility of neighbours complaining. It was 1982 when I started to judge budgerigars. 
At present in 2017, as a champion breeder, exhibitor and judge, my interests are still varied with an interest in budgerigars, Zebra Finches, British Birds and hookbills. 
I was the first Canadian correspondent for the international budgerigar publication, “Budgerigar World,” from England, when it started up in 1982. I also published a magazine for Canadian budgerigar fanciers, first in the early 1980's and then again in the late 1990's. Between 1969 and 1987, I held most executive positions with the Budgerigar & Foreign Bird Society and the Dominion Budgerigar Society. From 1987 to 2010 I was active with the Durham Avicultural Society, a club which I still consider my home club. While I have held the position of President and Bulletin Editor over the years, my main responsibility has been as Show Manager for most years and for no less than three Canadian National Shows. In 2003 the BFBS made me an honorary director in recognition for many years of service. In 2008, the Durham Avicultural Society granted me a Life Membership in recognition of my past services to the Society. 

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