Face pattern genetics.. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 04-01-2009, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Face pattern genetics..

Hi Guys,

I was wondering if any formal research has been done on determining which face pattern genetics (Such as a blaze, star, stripe etc) are dominant to others? Or does it depend on the strength of the genes of the particular horse?

Reason I ask is that I am expecting my first foal in late October and I am hoping for a bit more white than mom has...

Here's the breakdown of the colour genetics in the family:

SIRE: Quartz - Bay with BIG Star/Stripe thing going on, too big to be a star, not long enough to be a stripe.
SIRE'S SIRE: Quidam - Bay with a stripe, tends to sire either stripes or blazes.
SIRE'S DAM: Violet - Bay sabino, with one blue eye and a blaze.
SIRE'S DAM SIRE: Cassini I - Grey with LOTS of white, has a blaze.

DAM: Velvet - Bay with a star (large)
DAM'S SIRE: Aristis - Black with Blaze
DAM'S DAM: Satin - Bay with a star
DAM'S SIRE: Al Mufti - Dark bay (almost black) with a star

Your thoughts? :)
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post #2 of 16 Old 04-01-2009, 09:15 PM
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Good question, I really don't know but I do know an Overo Paint stallion that produces about 90% of his babies with his bald face and blue eyes like him. I'd like to know the answer myself

Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway~~John Wayne
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post #3 of 16 Old 04-01-2009, 11:28 PM
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From what I have found, it seems that markings, either on the face or legs, are not really understood all that well. It appears to be tied to the white gene but nobody seems to really understand how it works. A good example of this is Scamper's clone. Scamper himself had white markings on his face but his genetic clone has no white anywhere on his body. It is very strange and seems to be a combination of genetics and the conditions in the womb itself (this is my understanding but I am not genetist.)

Anyways that is what I have found. Let me know if you come across somethng different as genetics are fasinating (sp?) to me.
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post #4 of 16 Old 04-01-2009, 11:58 PM
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Speaking from experience only....

We have bred breeding stock paint mares to solid colored stallions and the resulting foals have commonly shown strong paint genes. Certainly not always, but frequently the foals had very broad blazes and tall socks, often to or above the hocks and knees.

This was by no means a large test group, but still interesting to see the colorings that came out! So, as someone else said, it may have more to do with the white gene.

On another note, one of my geldings was the 13th foal out of his dam. I have seen photos of several of his siblings, and they all have a very small star just like the mare. My horse is the only one who does not. Not that that in itself is surprising, but that the facial markings have very little deviation.

Would certainly be an interesting study!
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post #5 of 16 Old 04-02-2009, 03:06 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!!! This is very interesting!!! :)

Velvet's Grandsire Al Mufti sires mostly dark bays with stars, pretty consistantly...

Something interesting about Velvet's sire is that although he does not often sire foals with blazes BUT his foals often have a star and then a small white stripe (this varies in size) on the nose. In fact, EVERY single one of his foals that I have seen has it. :)

Horses are so precious aren'tthye? :)
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post #6 of 16 Old 04-02-2009, 03:09 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I would be totally DELIGHTED if the foal pops out with a blue eye like its granny!!!!! I know the chances of this happening are virtually nil but still! Would be soooo COOL! Lol
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post #7 of 16 Old 04-02-2009, 03:45 AM
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You never know! :)
I have a filly with a blaze. Her sire has no face white and her dam has a very thin stripe. So she got more than both parents.
I have a half sister to her, same sire. Her dam has just a SMALL and I mean SMALL star (barely noticable) and she got a decent sized star. So, again, bigger than both parents.
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post #8 of 16 Old 04-04-2009, 07:36 PM
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The genes responsible for face white are sabino and splash. Many people mistake splash for sabino. If you have an odd shaped blaze especially one that falls off the muzzle it is probably caused by splash. Not all splash horses have the body white of a splash. Splash also causes blue eyes
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post #9 of 16 Old 04-04-2009, 08:31 PM
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I know that with paint horses, sires/dams with bald faces often throw babies with bald faces. But that's all I know about it. :\ Good luck!
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post #10 of 16 Old 04-05-2009, 03:37 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, I should probably mention that my mare is a Thoroughbred and the sire of the foal and his family are Holsteiners.
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