Horse Colors

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Horse Colors

This is a discussion on Horse Colors within the Horse Breeds forums, part of the Horse Breeds, Breeding, and Genetics category
  • List of rare horse colors
  • A basic list of all the horse colors

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    04-02-2009, 11:12 PM
Horse Colors

I don't know where this would go, but I figure... breeds and colors can sometimes run together. This is the wikipedia list and definition of common horse colors. :]

Equine coat color - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    04-02-2009, 11:52 PM
Green Broke
Not sure why they put black under "rare" colors - red & black are the two bases that every other color builds upon. But that is wikipedia for you. I'm sure there are other discreptancies, but I don't have time to read all of it closely.
    04-02-2009, 11:58 PM
Well, there are likely plenty of minor errors. I suppose they mean true, solid black horses? But it might answer some questions here and there. Thought it might be good to have around.
    04-03-2009, 12:00 AM
Green Broke
Better to post a more reliable link. Here is one that is pretty decent:
Home Page
    04-03-2009, 12:07 AM
I read the wiki one and didn't see anything outrageous on it. I also didn't see anything drastically different on the other site. But I suppose it doesn't matter.

ETA: Both sites list black as a rare color.
    04-03-2009, 12:17 AM
Green Broke
Um where? The only place I find anything that say blacks are rare are when they are discussing the possibility of non-fading black - they say those are rare. They are NOT talking about regular blacks. Here is the quote. If you find another one on the site, please post it because I don't see it.

Quote from site:
"Some older books have theorized that there is a third allele, called ED, dominant to the other two, which would explain the "non-fading black" which is rare, but occasionally seen. However, more recent studies have discounted this theory. It is a fact that some very few black horses do not fade in the sun, but it is unknown at this time what genetic mechanism causes this. One theory that has been conclusively disproved is that the "faders" are Ee, and the "non-faders" are EE. Now that there is a test for the "E" genes, plenty of blacks that fade terribly have been identified as EE, so that can't be the answer."
    04-03-2009, 12:30 AM
It's the first thing listed under the "black" page.


Quote: "The color black appears when a horse has a black gene (is not solid red) and has no bay (agouti) genes. Since bay is so common in the equine gene pool, the black color is proportionately rare."

Also, under the "bay" page:


Quote: "
When the black gene is present, the agouti gene restricts the black color to the mane, tail and legs. This creates the color we call "bay." It is an extremely pervasive gene, and is dominant, so very few horses are free of it. This is why there are so few solid black horses."
    04-03-2009, 12:40 AM
Green Broke
Proportionately rare - compared to red & bay. That in itself does not make it a rare color.

The first sections is called "Basic colors". Red and black are THE ONLY basic colors. Everything else has modifiers on a red or black based horse to make the color. Some people do include bay as part of the basic colors since they are so common - but that is about it. I've never in my life seen anyone who is truely familiar with color genetics list them in the way that article does.
    04-03-2009, 12:54 AM
I wasn't really planning on discussing the genetics of it. I understand that the -base- colors are red and black, but that doesn't mean that the majority of horses are either red or black. It means that that majority of horses have either the red or black gene. Which is true, they do.

I posted my link in an attempt to clarify the standard "definitions" of certain colors, because I've seen a lot of threads lately called "What color is this horse?"

I posted it here because that's where I've seen then threads asking about the color of a given horse.

I'm not arguing that the presence of the black GENE is rare, nor am I saying I have a thorough understanding of color genetics - I don't breed horses.

"Proportionately rare" is hardly worth the argument. It can be assumed that the terminology was meant to say that black is less common than a handful of other colors.

Anyway. I thought the wiki "definitions" were accurate enough to answer simple questions on the grounds of determining color based on appearance, but I'm not worried enough about it to argue anymore. If anyone has major objections to the site, then request for a mod to take it down.
    04-08-2009, 04:16 PM
Weanling what my sister learned at LATech (she has a degree in Equine science and is studying for her masters) True Black horses are considered rare. Most that appear black are really black/bay....I don't know anything about it though...just what she said when I asked her.. but it does make for an interesting question!!! I would love to know more about it

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