The picture above shows how to safely hold your canary – it is important that this is done properly because any pressure on the ribs can cause him to have trouble breathing, or even suffocate – his ribs need to be able to expand freely.
As this picture shows, you can accomplish this by holding his head, just under the jaw, between two fingers, and curling the rest of your hand lightly around his body, with the wings tucked into the palm of your hand.
This picture (below) shows the same method for grasping a canary safely from a different angle. Can you see where he is grasping my thumb with his foot? It helps to encourage them to do this, as it makes them feel more secure.
As you may be able to tell, he is not thrilled about all this, but he is not upset enough to be struggling, either… he is more interested in keeping an eye on what that guy with the camera is up to!
This picture (below) shows a front view of the same method of grasping a canary safely – it is hard to tell this by looking at the canary, though, as he has turned his head to keep an eye on the camera! You can see here how the fingers curl about the canary’s body, ‘caging’ it without applying pressure. The main restraint is the fingers under the jaw – make sure you have his neck between your fingers, and not his head or he might be able to wriggle free! Your fingers should be just under his jawbone…