White Parks and Galloway are ancient breeds of cattle found primarily in Great Britain. Within these breeds there are four different white spotting phenotypes. These phenotypes are solid, well-marked, strongly marked, and mismarked (white or almost white). The well-marked and strongly marked patterns are the most desirable and result in color being left on the ears, nose, and legs as well as some small colored spots being present on the body.
Most of us are aware that some diseases can be inherited. These inheritable diseases are the result of mutations, affecting the functioning of a gene, thus causing illness. Examples of inheritable diseases in humans include Sickle Cell Anemia and Cystic Fibrosis. Something that is not commonly realized however, is is that the same mutations that cause variations in color, also affect the function of genes.
Color genetics is the study of the genes behind coat colors. Since genes determine the way colors express and the way they are inherited, in order to understand color genetics, it is necessary to understand some very basic genetics.
Color Genetics is the science of genetic inheritance specifically as it applies to coat color. The basics are the same for all species whether canine, feline, bovine, equine...well you get the picture. Here we strive to make color genetics easy to understand and fun.