Home » Do Canaries Like Music? [Best Calming Music Genres]
what kind of music do canaries like?

Do Canaries Like Music? [Best Calming Music Genres]

Last Updated on: 27th June 2022, 01:57 pm

Canaries are known for their sweet-sounding songs, leaving owners wondering if they enjoy human singing or if musical genres would positively affect these beautiful songbirds.

Canaries enjoy human music but don’t recognize music the same way we do.

Bird songs are a form of communication. When canaries sing or hear songs, they’re speaking and listening, which means that types of music may impact canaries differently than we expect.

Male and female canaries react differently to music they consider to be good. Males could take the music as a challenge to their songs, while females may be impressed by the complicated notes. Even the age of a canary can change how it perceives music.

Most of all, canaries have different personalities. How they perceive different genres of music and songs is personal, so it’s sensible to experiment with each genre to see what your canary prefers.

What Kind of Music Do Canaries Like?

It’s hard to know what type of music canaries like or if they like listening to music. The only good indicator is the difference between positive and negative body language that canaries display.

Some canaries sing along to certain melodies, while others show discontent while listening to them.

With this unit of measuring, according to Watchbird, canaries prefer high-pitched, melodic sounds, which are typically produced by violins. Their second favorite is low, consistent sounds, which are often reflected by running water.

Conventional wisdom holds that canaries are more likely to enjoy classical or acoustic music because it’s more serene, peaceful, and melodic.

Nonetheless, anecdotal evidence from owners shows that these songbirds may like genres like pop or classic rock. There are even some examples of canaries liking nature sounds (such as listening to other canaries singing songs) or white noise.

Your canary’s preference for certain kinds of music is dependent on its mood and personality. What makes one canary happy may annoy another, so observe each canary’s body language.  

Does Music Taste Change In Canaries?

Once your canary likes a song, it’s normal for it to continue enjoying that song. There’s something about that song that’s particularly appealing to that canary.

Male birds in breeding season consider other songs to threaten their chances of finding a mate. However, female canaries in breeding readiness are more likely to react positively to music or songs.

According to Frontiers in Evolutionary Neuroscience, when listening to music they like, female canaries of breeding readiness show similar brain activity to humans that enjoy a song. Males, by contrast, show the same type of brain activity humans have when listening to music they find unpleasant.

best music for canaries

What Is The Best Music for Canaries?

There’s no one musical genre that’s best for canaries since each bird is different. So, the best music for a canary is the kind that garners a positive reaction from your canary.

Begin with melodic, upbeat, or soothing music, as these types are usually most palatable for birds. Also, start at low volumes to ensure you don’t startle your canary or stress it out due to the loud noise.

When conducting this test, consider behavior and body language, as this will tell us what type of music a canary prefers, if any.

Does My Canary Hate Music?

Both male and female canaries show aggression and displeasure through wing flapping, shrieking, and rapid breathing through an open beak.

If you see these behaviors, it’s safe to assume that your canary doesn’t like the music you’re playing. That is, as long as they were happy and contented before you started playing the music.

Does My Canary Love Music?

If your canary’s clicking its tongue, bowing, or bobbing rhythmically (as if dancing to a specific song), you can interpret this as a positive sign that your canary enjoys the music.

Pay attention when male canaries start mimicking the songs they hear, as this signifies they’re feeling happy and upbeat. If you provide a canary with music it enjoys, it may change its song to match the tunes.

Should I Play Classical Music For My Canary?

Classical music is widely accepted as the best musical genre for canaries. The University of Wisconsin found that music of many kinds can be used therapeutically for domesticated bird species.

Classical music is a good starting point if you have a new canary in your home and want to play music as enriching entertainment. Choose light and melodic songs with high notes to start with, as these kinds of sounds are closest to bird songs.

Experiment with different tempos and sounds to see how your canary reacts. You can move on to other genres if it appears to prefer upbeat, fast-paced classical music.

Other popular music for canaries includes the following:

  • Country
  • Pop
  • Funk
  • Rap

Of course, the music you play should depend on the emotional impact that you want to create. Upbeat, energetic music (such as pop or funk) is recommended if you plan on having fun with your canary.  

If you want to help calm your canary, these energetic, bouncy songs may be unsettling. Certain sounds, instruments, and tempos are more likely to soothe canaries than others.

calming music for canaries

What is the Best Calming Music for Canaries?

As complex, social animals, canaries have distinct personalities, impacting the kind of music they find calming or enjoyable.

Genres of music most likely to relax canaries include the following:

  • Classical music
  • Reggae
  • Soft rock
  • Slow folk-rock
  • Country
  • White noise
  • Rainfall/nature/ambient sounds

Limited scientific studies have also indicated that music that provides a soothing or calming effect on birds can change depending on the following factors:

  • Age
  • Sex
  • Species

For example, while dogs are more likely to prefer reggae, small birds (like canaries) tend to find classical music and other melodic songs more calming and relaxing.

However, music alone can’t calm a distressed bird. If your canary is unsettled, check its diet, health, and living conditions. Once any issues are resolved, you can use music to soothe stress and anxiety.

Sometimes, playing the right song can make a canary completely forget what was bothering it.