Honestly, I find it very difficult to believe Phoenix is anything other than a stone cold bay. I have done a fair bit of reading on colour genetics and I have never seen anything in him that says brown to me.
Can I ask NdAppy what makes you think brown and not bay? Especially in the summer coat photo that really shows off his colouring.
The winter coat. The summer coat you loose the shorter hairs around the muzzle. In a true bay those hairs would not be that mealy lighter color, that is the biggest indicator for me. Summer pictures makes it hard to judge browns from bays due to more sunbleaching and the short/finer hair. Winter hair, more so early winter hair, will show the difference between bay/brown more so.
This is just my observations and my gut feeling on it.
Okay.... apparently I need to do mroe research on my colours now. I always thought a bay was just brown with black points. So to the OP I would say bay... but that's not saying much as now im confused! Lol
OP, a better picture would help everyone out with suggesting which colour. We need to be able to clearly see muzzle, legs, and flank; as those are what must be black for it to be a bay instead of just brown.
Someone mentioned that bays cannot have sunbleached manes or tails, I beg to differ. I don't have a picture right now, but the bay pony at my barn is most definitely bay, has -all- black points, and the bottom of his tail is sunbleached horribly at the moment.
HowClever, I'd definitely say that your horse is bay and agree with you. They're allowed to have lighter spots as long as all the points (legs, ear tips, muzzle, some consider flank but I've never seen a horse with a dark muzzle have a lighter flank...) are dark (look black). Even though part of the muzzle on your horse has the lighter mealy colour, he's still bay because of the fact that his lips (muzzle) are dark and not the same mealy colour. A lot of bays I've seen have the little bit of mealy fur above their dark point on the muzzle.
A bay is a brown with dark (black) points. So, if a brown has a mealy muzzle, the dark point would either cover up all of the mealy colour or some of it, as long as it would cover part of it enough to say that the muzzle is a dark point. Am I correct? Posted via Mobile Device
okay.... apparently I need to do mroe research on my colours now. I always thought a bay was just brown with black points. So to the OP I would say bay... but that's not saying much as now im confused! Lol
AngieLee- it's okay I always thought the same too haha.
Here are some more pictures, I saw someone mentioned that the one picture wasn't the best.
I've always been fine with him being "just" brown, but my friend keeps INSISTING he's bay hahaha
The lips will not be a mealy color on brown horse. A brown (At) horse has ligther coloration around the muzzle and in the stiffle area, as well as around the elbows. The lighter area is not always that much of a difference in the "soft" areas of the body. Brown horses can and will have black points, just like a bay since they are a variation of bay. Just like bay horses, there are many, many shades of brown. Being as brown isn't thought of as a color in and of itself, most people write it off as bay.
HC - On my phone so the two side pictures aren't showing up real well. Will check those when I get home. The middle face pic, well the mealy tells me brown. *shrugs*