An interview with Paolo Vicidomini, Part 1

Anyone who has had any contact with the Lizard canary breeders in Italy will be struck by how young they are.    One of the youngest and most successful is Paolo Vicidomini.  He is not well known in Britain, but he deserves to be.  You can get to know him better, and see the quality of his birds,  in this interview with Angelo Citro.

Tell us a little about yourself.  How long have you bred canaries, and the Lizard canary in particular?

My name is Paolo Vicidomini and I live in Montecorvino Rovella, a small mediaeval village in the province of Salerno. I am less of 30 years old, I have a degree in economics and business. I work as a business consultant in Salerno. I started to breed in 2009, since then I breed only Lizard canaries.

What attracted you to Lizard canaries and what convinced you to breed them ?

Simply because I have always considered the Lizard canary as a particular species not just a simple canary. His unchanged secular tradition makes him a unique canary.

Where did you buy your first pair?

I bought my first pair in a bird shop Massimo Sconza in 2009.  The following year I bought a pair from Dr. Angelo Citro and a silver hen of my friend Paolo Leone. Since 2011 I use inbreeding.

Clear cap silver cock, Italian champion 2015
Clear cap silver cock, Italian champion 2015

What have been your major successes at exhibitions?

I won 6 titles of Regional Champion, various nationals and international  shows both in individual category and stams. The main achievements I got at the International Show at  Reggio Emilia 2014: best single gold with a broken cap of  94 points and best stam gold  with a non cap gold stam with 371 points. At Pesaro in 2015 Italian Championship: I won the Best Silver Lizard canary 94 points (with a male! HE) and two second places with two stam one silver and one gold.

Do you prefer the judgment by comparison or by points card?

I prefer the judgment by comparison. At the same time I believe that a good judgement sheet (prepared carefully and well) allows at a breeder (especially when he is young) to understand which characteristics need to be improved or which characteristics are worse.

How should be your ideal Lizard ? What do you think of the cap?

Although the standard provides a Lizard with clear cap, I prefer the charm and beauty of the non cap. I believe that without a well-designed cap, silver or gold, on the back, chest and head is something exceptional and unique. I consider the cap of the Lizard a real mystery. I happened, in fact, to couple two subjects without cap and got 4 sons all with a clear cap.

Vicidomini non cap silver hen 2015
Vicidomini non cap silver hen 2015

What do you think of the size and shape of the lizard?

I consider them to be two fundamental components for the selection and establishment of my own strain.  In Italy, however, lately there is a tendency to exaggerate about the size and shape of the Lizard ignoring other features such as oxidation.

Do you use yellow colourant ?

I am extremely opposed to any type of colour feed, I believe that with the selection and a natural diet you can still get a great background colour.

Vicidomini clear cap gold hen 2015
Vicidomini clear cap gold hen 2015

The colour feeding in Britain has become in this period a much debated topic, I know that in Europe Lizards are exhibited without colouring them in red, and you?

I do not use any type of colour feeding.  I believe we should abolish the artificial feeding both yellow and red.  I can not find anything nice in a Lizard coloured in red.

According to the British colour feeding in red highlights the spangles and the rowings. What is your opinion?

Maybe they are right, personally I would have difficulty selecting a lizard only on the basis of  spangles or rowings. The red masks the true ground color of the Lizard, which is for me an indispensable factor for the selection.

You breed blue Lizards.  What is your opinion  about permitting them at the Italian National show?

I normally, have only one blue lizard hen that I pair with a silver cock.  I am careful not to cross the blood lines, because I believe that the blue Lizard blue pollutes the purity of the classic Lizard.  I hope that this practice, however, shared by many breeders who may not exhibit like me, will soon be abolished on a scientific basis so as to raise the blue lizard more quietly and more at the light of sun.

Vicidomini clear cap gold hen 2015
Vicidomini clear cap gold hen 2015

Which breeders do you think are the most representative of the Lizard canary in Italy?

Surely Domenico Mungiguerra, Fabio Macchioni and Giorgio Massarutto for achievements both nationally and internationally, and Dr. Citro Angelo for the commitment and the passion lavished during his presidency and his participation at the Lizard Canary Club Italia (L.C.C.I).

What do you think of L.C.C.I. ?

I was a member  of the L.C.C.I. for several years, but since last year I decided not to join for some  difference of opinion with some other members.

What steps should be taken by the L.C.C.I. to have more following?
In my humble opinion, the L.C.C.I. should relinquish the organization of the old  show (for example Bologna has lost 50% of  Lizard canaries entries) and promote the knowledge, the protection and preservation of the breed through technical meetings, debates and demonstrations.


  1. My thanks to Angelo Citro for conducting the interview, and for his translation into English.
  2. My thanks to Paolo Vicidomini for the photographs.

3 thoughts on “An interview with Paolo Vicidomini, Part 1

  1. I’m expressing my personal opinion as a member of both the LCCI and the Bologna’s Association. As an informed person on every aspects in hand, I can report that the Italian Lizard Club, according to science and above all conscience, is working to protect, promote and improve the knowledge of lizard canary. We have once again refused to recognize the blue lizard and really we hope don’t to have to return to the issue. Our best experts and judges are collaborating with the official journal of the Italian Federation to post articles to spread awareness of the breed. The last one is on the journal of January and it talks about oxidation and the expression of melanin.

    Our president is the administrator of the LCCI official web site and this year we will organize a single major show at the historical location of Bologna, which is the easier to achieve by majority of our members. It is not true that there was a decrease of 50%… The Show has always had a fluctuating variations between 150 and 200 showed lizards. Last year we had a slight fluctuation in decline because we had organized two almost contemporary events: one in Rome and one in Bologna. This year on the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of the Bologna’s show we will do only one, particularly beautiful, so we expect to exceed 200 benched lizards.

    Paolo is one of the italian breeders who is working well on his stock. I’m concluding by saying that if you want to improve things, you can achieve more by joining the LCCI and working with us to make it better.


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