The Colors of Life

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Would you like to know what color your horse is? Do you have questions about the color of your foal? You've come to the right place.

The Case for Sabino

The past several days have been very exciting in the world of Equine Color Genetics. The results from the first round of W20 testing has started to filter into facebook and the results are very popular. However, this has caused a problem. More than once over the past several days, I have found myself explaining why this white pattern (and all white patterns at the KIT locus) should know be referred to as “White Spotting” rather than Dominant White or Sabino.

Then it dawned on me...Why can’t we just call them all Sabino? These white patterns, phenotypically, look like Sabino. Who cares if they are inherited as an Dominant, incomplete dominant or recessive for that matter.

And Then There Was One: The Abaco Colonial Horse

The horses found on Abaco Island in the Bahamas are like no other. They are small, and fleet but perhaps their most striking feature is their white spotting pattern. Called Splashed White, the white pattern is known for creating bald faces and blue eyes as well as high leg and body white. In the past, many of the animals carried two copies of this distinctive white pattern giving them a distinctive half white appearance. The presence of Splashed White in their population however, is not their most important feature. Genetic testing has confirmed that these horses have a unique genetic heritage. The horses of Abaco Island are of direct Spanish Descent. With only a few populations of these Spanish Colonial Horses left in the world today the Abaco Colonial Horse is priceless, a repository of equine genetics seen nowhere else in the world.

Causal Mutation for Leopard Complex Located

Leopard Complex (LP) is a white spotting pattern more commonly known as appaloosa or appaloosa spotting. It is characterized by areas of white centered over the hips. The extent to which leopard complex expresses can vary greatly and in part depends upon additional modifiers called Pattern (PATN). When LP is present without a Pattern Modifier, the horse will usually exhibit what is known as LP characteristics. These traits are sclera, mottled skin (pink skin with colored spots) and striped hooves. The horse may also roan or lose pigmentation as it ages. This is known as LP roaning and unlike gray, the horse will maintain pigment in bony areas including the nose and legs.

Study of Face and Leg White in Horses Reveals Influence of New and Known Loci

An article was recently brought to my attention (via twitter) regarding the regulation of white markings in horses. This article was published today (December 12th) but the actual paper on which it was based was published back in September and somehow escaped my notice.