Author Topic: Chick Phenotype  (Read 24447 times)

Mike Gilbert

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #30 on: March 11, 2018, 09:50:00 PM »
Chicks 3 and 4 are blues, correct?   If so they appear similar to the first/top chick to me, except for the lighter shank coloring.  That might be attributable to the diluted melanin (black pigment).   So at this point I would not worry too much about that, as shank color can take time to develop. 
« Last Edit: March 11, 2018, 09:52:48 PM by Mike Gilbert »
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John W Blehm

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #31 on: March 27, 2018, 08:23:07 PM »
Shank colour may change from day-old to adult hood. For example, W+ (White skin) and id+ (dermal pigment) is not usually expressed in day-old chicks.

Wheaten based chicks start out with flesh colored (pinkish) shanks that darken over the first few months.

Buff Ameraucanas are based a "wheaten" (eWH or ey) e-locus gene and like our wheaten variety they hatch with flesh colored legs/shanks that start darkening after a few weeks of age. 
The photo, below, shows two buff chicks with different shank color.  The one on the left is the flesh/pinkish color that it should be.  The other is already showing some dark pigment, so it may be split for wheaten and some other e-locus gene and should not be used for breeding even though the down color looks fine.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2018, 08:25:11 PM by John W Blehm »

Caprice Dowsland

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #32 on: November 15, 2018, 04:51:40 PM »
I think those chicks labelled "bad recessive white" are cute! giggles be funny if that became a new color like buff! If I ended up with one I'd have to keep it if it was healthy and a girl!

Mindy Waters

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #33 on: March 27, 2019, 02:49:48 PM »
So much good info here. Thank you very much!

Russ Blair

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #34 on: June 18, 2019, 09:32:43 AM »
Anyone ever see a splash from a blue x blue mating with this much yellow down? I kept it to see how it feathered and it is exhibiting a lot of blue with 1/4” wide white Feather tips?
S.E. Michigan

Russ Blair

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #35 on: June 18, 2019, 09:35:33 AM »
Here’s a picture of it at hatch
S.E. Michigan

Mindy Waters

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #36 on: July 28, 2022, 04:51:25 PM »
John, I have the same question as CJ. The pics show a darker sooty gray chick as "bad" and the yellow one as normal. From what I've seen, many prefer the light gray chicks (maybe not as dark as pictured) because they are thought to be silver ground color and the yellow chicks are supposedly gold ground color. Have you found this to be accurate to assume, or still variable? With males potentially being split S/s+ and Silver being dominant, I would think even split cockerel chicks would appear Silver IF you can tell by down color. Can you see differences in chick down based on ground color? I've also seen it theorized that e allele matters and extended black and melanizer genes may be what's responsible for the differences. Wondering what your thoughts and experiences are. Personally, I've had the gray downs chicks get yellow/brassy with sun exposure too.

John W Blehm

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #37 on: July 28, 2022, 08:24:49 PM »
John, I have the same question as CJ. The pics show a darker sooty gray chick as "bad" and the yellow one as normal. From what I've seen, many prefer the light gray chicks (maybe not as dark as pictured) because they are thought to be silver ground color and the yellow chicks are supposedly gold ground color. Have you found this to be accurate to assume, or still variable? With males potentially being split S/s+ and Silver being dominant, I would think even split cockerel chicks would appear Silver IF you can tell by down color. Can you see differences in chick down based on ground color? I've also seen it theorized that e allele matters and extended black and melanizer genes may be what's responsible for the differences. Wondering what your thoughts and experiences are. Personally, I've had the gray downs chicks get yellow/brassy with sun exposure too.

I said that day-old down was "bad" for recessive white, because they didn't mature into "clean" white feathers. Look at my post #24 on the Building a White Flock from Scratch thread. There is a photo there of one of the chicks as an adult showing gray color.
Cackle Hatchery started their line of LF black Ameraucanas from chicks I sent to them. Some still carried recessive white and so they used the white sports to create a line of LF white Ameraucanas. When I talked to Jeff, the owner, he said they were feathering pure white so I updated my statement in reply #1 by lining out some words and saying "Beware of unwanted modifying genes that produce more blackish day-old chicks (see photo), since they don't may not mature into nice "clean" white adults."

Quote from: My Ameraucana Chickens book
Day-old white chick phenotype: They should look kind of yellowish/grayish, with dark shanks when they hatch. White Ameraucanas based on extended black tend to be more grayish.

John W Blehm

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #38 on: July 30, 2022, 11:09:12 AM »
As far as I know the yellowish or whitish chick down isn’t an indicator of whether they are silver (S) or gold (s+) based, when hatching chicks that are all of the same variety. This variation in down color, from yellowish to whitish, as with our wheaten variety must be the result of a gene that isn't obvious in adult phenotype. The S-locus really shouldn’t matter with most (updated to add "most") self-colored varieties (black, lavender, white, etc) unless they “leak” off colors when they are mature. Test mating adult birds will indicate if they are silver or gold based, if that is important to you.

Crossing breeds/varieties that are not based on the same sex-linked S-locus gene allele (silver or gold) is done to be able to sex day-old chicks by their down color.
From my Ameraucana Chickens book:
Quote
Color-sexing is often used to sex commercial hybrid brown layers by the color of their chick down. As with feather-sexing, the trick here is to incorporate a sex-linked gene that will make the boys and girls obviously different looking when they hatch.

The photo below is of bantam white Ameraucana chicks that show yellowish down highlighted with gray. They matured with clean white feathers. Recessive white chicks based on extended black, at the E-locus, that don't show gray down may also have a gene that dilutes black...just a thought. In the end whatever day-old chick phenotype that produces a desired adult phenotype is a good one and the one I labeled "bad" matured into a grayish white, instead of a clean white.
 
« Last Edit: July 30, 2022, 01:46:20 PM by John W Blehm »

Mindy Waters

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #39 on: July 30, 2022, 12:22:59 PM »
Thank you. Your input confirms a lot of my own conclusions, based on what I've seen in my own Whites. I haven't bought into the theory that you can tell ground color on E and ER chick down, even with a dilute like recessive white. It's something that gets mentioned often though and I've always encouraged test-breeding and not making an assumption based on chick down.

Mike Gilbert

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #40 on: July 30, 2022, 01:01:20 PM »
I'm going to disagree a little with the premise the the S link should not affect any of the self colors.  That would be most obvious with Buff, which is a self color.   In my experience S instead of s in Blacks is going to result in light undercolor, epecially ahead of the tail in both sexes.  I saw that in my own birds years ago when I crossed Silver Laced Wyandotte bantams with Black Wyandotte bantams.   And I still believe better green sheen can be achieved in blacks using s instead of S.  It's not the only factor - feather structure is also important. and possibly such factors as stress, feather picking, and diet.   In whites, I believe S is best instead of s to help prevent brassiness - again just one factor among others.  The same would be true in lavender.    We may not notice that much (if at all), because I believe lavender was built using S based blacks.  And the brassiness may not be noticeable in white and lavender until the feathers get old, worn, or sunburned.   So it is not just as simple as saying S should be used for this and s for that since other factors come into play.
Mike Gilbert
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John W Blehm

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #41 on: July 30, 2022, 01:59:09 PM »
I'm going to disagree a little with the premise the the S link should not affect any of the self colors.  That would be most obvious with Buff, which is a self color.   In my experience S instead of s in Blacks is going to result in light undercolor, especially ahead of the tail in both sexes.  I saw that in my own birds years ago when I crossed Silver Laced Wyandotte bantams with Black Wyandotte bantams.   And I still believe better green sheen can be achieved in blacks using s instead of S.  It's not the only factor - feather structure is also important. and possibly such factors as stress, feather picking, and diet.   In whites, I believe S is best instead of s to help prevent brassiness - again just one factor among others.  The same would be true in lavender.    We may not notice that much (if at all), because I believe lavender was built using S based blacks.  And the brassiness may not be noticeable in white and lavender until the feathers get old, worn, or sunburned.   So it is not just as simple as saying S should be used for this and s for that since other factors come into play.

I should have said "most" self-colored varieties and have updated my post to add it.
I also tend to try to base self-colored varieties on either silver or gold, but I don't know that it is of any benefit when there is no leakage of either. I believe my blacks, lavenders and whites are silver based mostly, with some gold floating around in the gene pool. In the old days some claimed to get the purest or cleanest whites to include recessive white, dominant white, blue, barring and silver. Some of it sounded good, but I don't know that it was all helpful or helpful enough that anyone could see a difference.

Mindy Waters

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Re: Chick Phenotype
« Reply #42 on: July 30, 2022, 09:39:45 PM »
I wouldn't want barring in there personally, if slate legs are desired. Maybe it would be beneficial in breeds that want white or yellow legs. I've seen it in White Marans and the Cuckoo outcrossing helped with leg color in birds that did not have dermal melanin inhibitor (Id) genes. Their Standard calls for white legs, slate is a defect.

I have some Whites this season from a lavender pen. So they're homozygous for both lavender and recessive white. So far, none are expressing the shredder effect. I'm finding that very interesting and something I'm taking notes about. As always, watching for brassiness too.