Flaxen Mane/Tail Genetics - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Flaxen Mane/Tail Genetics

If there is one thing that I am lacking in knowledge of when it comes to the horse world, it would be genetics:)

My mare is in foal for a June 2014 baby, and I was just wondering what the science behind flaxen mane and tail are. Here is the picture of my mare and the stallion she's bred to. What is the possibility of a flaxen foal versus one with normal chestnut mane/tail? If you need their dam and sire colors, I can post those as well. Please, educate me!


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post #2 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 11:24 AM
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It's a recessive trait. If the stallion is a carrier for it, your foal has a 50% chance of being flaxen. If he isn't a carrier, your foal will have a chestnut mane, but will be a carrier for flaxen. Look at the stallions parent and foal. If either of his parent are flaxen, or if he has produced any flaxen foals, he is a carrier, but if not you still don't know.
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post #3 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Both his parents are normal sorrels without flaxen mane/tail. He has sired two foals that I know of that are flaxen.

And thank you for your reply :)

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post #4 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 11:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ponypile View Post
It's a recessive trait. If the stallion is a carrier for it, your foal has a 50% chance of being flaxen. If he isn't a carrier, your foal will have a chestnut mane, but will be a carrier for flaxen. Look at the stallions parent and foal. If either of his parent are flaxen, or if he has produced any flaxen foals, he is a carrier, but if not you still don't know.
This isn't known for sure actually. Some say it's dominant other says it's recessive and some say polygenic. There is more study that has to be done as far as flaxen goes.
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post #5 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Peppy Barrel Racing View Post
This isn't known for sure actually. Some say it's dominant other says it's recessive and some say polygenic. There is more study that has to be done as far as flaxen goes.
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Interesting. So really it's just a coin toss considering that we're not done learning about the flaxen gene? :)
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post #6 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 01:38 PM
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Yes, I thought the particulars on flaxen were not yet determined... so basically it's a gamble with your foal
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post #7 of 8 Old 03-02-2014, 07:04 PM
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Flaxen, in all likelyhood, is controlled by a number of different genes. Sometimes we get a flaxen out of two non-flaxen parents, implying that it is a recessive that can "hide" - however, sometimes we get non-flaxen foals out of two flaxen parents, which means the parents did not both pass it on to their foal, which they would have to do if it were recessive.

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post #8 of 8 Old 03-07-2014, 09:44 PM
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Latest opinion is that it is a polygenic gene as VLBUhot mentioned:

Flaxen Color Genetic Research in Progress | TheHorse.com
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