COM World Show 2012


by Gerald Binks

Confederation Ornithologique Mondiale (COM)

The “Confederation Ornithologique Mondiale” (COM) is a worldwide ornithological organisation covering all types of bird bred for exhibition purposes – e.g. European birds, exotic birds, canaries & of course budgerigars.

Formed in 1952, COM now has more than 40 countries affiliated to it – stretching as far as South Korea in the east to Chile in the west.

The COM structure has two executive committees each consisting of seven members; the COM Board of Directors and the judges’ committee called the Ordre Mondial Des Juges (OMJ). Each committee has its own president, vice president, secretary and members of the board.

The affiliated countries are divided into two groups (A & B) depending on their size and the number of OMJ judges they have.

The Annual COM Show

Each January, COM hold their World Show which usually attracts entries of more than 25,000 birds!

The show is hosted each year in a different country in Europe.

Fanciers who wish to exhibit at the World show or any other COM International show must have their birds closed rung with recognised rings with the actual exhibitor’s code on it.

COM operates a 6-year ring colour cycle and all birds shown at the World and international shows have to adhere to that colour sequence.

The 2012 COM Show

COM 2012 - AlmeríaThe 60th COM World Show show was hosted in January 2012 by COM Spain. The show took place in Almería – situated in southern Spain on the Mediterranean sea.

There is always an air of excitement when attending the World Show wherever it is held and those who used to attend the National Exhibition of Cage & Aviary Birds of yesteryear will understand that excitement. I have attended a number of World Shows in the past but this year’s show was with a difference as I was invited to judge the budgerigars.

The show had 105 judges invited from 13 countries – mainly from Europe but some from Argentina, Brazil & Colombia.

The show received an entry of 26,367 birds from 2971 exhibitors coming from 17 countries. It is mind boggling indeed.

As always, the host country supplied the biggest team and on this occasion Spain’s team was 11,836 (44.9%) and the Coloured Canaries, always the largest, with 48% of the total entry. Our COM-UK team was 142 (0.54% of the total entry) from 29 exhibitors.

With my fellow Italian judge, Roberto Sabatini, we commenced judging the 327 budgerigars entered on the Monday morning.

Friday to Sunday was spent at the show looking at the wonderful birds and the various mutations that you normally do not see at our shows. It was a great time meeting the 30 plus fanciers from our country who attended the event as well as some from Gibraltar, and also making new friendships with so many judges, fanciers and workers as well as renewing old friendships.

Saturday night was the gala night with over 400 attending and our table consisted of 8 British and our friend from Israel Avi Rubens. It was again a wonderful evening with the family of nations sitting together eating some wonderful Spanish food and listing to some lovely Spanish & Italian singers and flamingo dancers.

The finale of that evening was when each country was called to the stage to be presented with their national flag and singing the national anthem. I only hoped that there were more of us to get to the stage and I wished that we were as great as our name indicated – “Great Britain”.

The speaker also announced the number of medals each country has won and it was announced that we had won 5 gold, 1 silver and 3 bronze medals. Of course Spain, as to be expected, won 44% of the total medals awarded.


Almería 2012 COM-UK winnersCongratulations are extended to Geoff Capes, Roger Carr, Bernard Howlett & Louis Spiteri for winning gold medals and to Roy Aplin who won a silver and two bronze medals, as well as John Ward who won a bronze medal.

As “conveyors” for the British Team, Richard Lumley & Gary Mann collected our team from various points of delivery at home and made the long journey to the show and back again, delivering the birds to the various exhibitors on Monday & Tuesday. On behalf of COM-UK and the 29 exhibitors, I would like to record our sincere thanks to Richard & Gary for their tremendous work.

We made an appeal in the schedule for exhibitors to donate birds so that we could sell them at the show to raise funds for COM-UK. Again I would like to thank Richard Lumley, Willy McKay, Rob Bunting, Chris Smith, Gary Mann and myself for donating birds that were sold and raised some funds for next year’s show.

My final appeal is for more exhibitors and more birds for next year’s event in Hasselt, Belgium.

COM-UK Results

The COM-UK team comprised 142 birds from 29 exhibitors and won 5 gold, 1 silver and 3 bronze medals.

These were awarded as follows:

  • Bernard Howlett – 2 golds – Song Thrush & Common Blackbird
  • Geoff Capes – 1 gold – Recessive Pied
  • Louis Spiteri – 1 gold – Common Rosefinch
  • Roger Carr – 1 gold – Team of lutinos
  • Roy Aplin – 1 silver – Grey cock – 2 bronze – Skyblue cock & Opaline cinnamon green hen
  • John Ward – 1 bronze – Bengalese

More Information

For further information about COM:


All photographs below were kindly supplied to us by Ghalib Al-Nasser

Click on any image to enlarge it.


Additional photographs of the event have been posted on other websites: Website 1 and Website 2.



Filed Under: NewsShowsSocieties



About the Author: Ghalib Al-Nasser kept budgerigars as a young boy in his native country Iraq, but after completing his engineering studies in England he started again and joined the Budgerigar Society of G.B. in 1971. He is heavily involved in the administration (management & shows) of many local, national and specialist societies as well as being the secretary of the World Budgerigar Organisation (WBO). He has judged in not less than 30 countries in the 6 continents and has lectured in many countries all over the world. He was made President of the Budgerigar Society of G.B. in 2001.

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