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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Just wanted to share some pictures of the two newest babies on my balcony - Roberto (grey) and Aramis (brown). Paloma (on the nest) is the proud mother - she's a pigeon I hand-raised and released last summer when she was abandoned during painting of my apartments. Harlequin (on the table - don't have a good picture b/c he isn't tame) is the father (at least I think) - is it possible to have a brown baby with two grey parents?!? I haven't seen any brown pigeons around here so I was really surprised to see this cute little one. :)
 

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They are really cute. Can't answer your question about the red one but George could.
Congratulations grandma!
 

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I had a white hen mate with a dark grey homer and they somehow came up with a baby that looked like a brown and white milk cow lol so it is definetly possible!
 

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You can't get a red pigeon from a blue bar and blue check. Plus Harlequin looks like a young pigeon himself, too young to be the dad (from what I can tell).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm going to have to do some research to figure this one out. I think Harlequin is about the same age as Paloma (a little over one year.) He does look small in that picture though. They've been hangin out since the middle of winter, and Harlequin helps feed the youngsters as well. Maybe I'll hear from George - I'm curious...
 

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I'm going to have to do some research to figure this one out. I think Harlequin is about the same age as Paloma (a little over one year.) He does look small in that picture though. They've been hangin out since the middle of winter, and Harlequin helps feed the youngsters as well. Maybe I'll hear from George - I'm curious...
Ah. I've seen pigeons that just have that 'baby face' :D Maybe that's what he's got, and makes him look so little!
 

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Here's what the dad would have to look like:


If you'd like to get into the genetic reasons why, I could explain :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Genetics!!!

Well, that picture was a couple of months ago too...and through a glass window. I did some reading on some genetic websites. What do you think about this possibility? Say that Aramis (the brown one) is a hen, and she got the recessive brown (not ash-red) gene from her father. In theory, her father could carry the blue gene and the brown gene, and only the blue gene would show up in him b/c it's dominant. And the mother hen wouldn't have contributed b/c she passed on her W gene to the little hen??? Would this work? It doesn't make sense if this color turns out to be Ash red because that's dominant over blue. I really just haven't seen any red or brown pigeons around here...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
More genetics....

Just got a reply from Ron Hunt who has put together an awesome pigeon genetics page... (his answer is in red):rolleyes:

The only way I figure that this could be possible is the following scenario:

the brown chick is a hen and inherited the brown, non-dominant allele from her father. Does this work?

(If the youngster is indeed a brown then “YES” that would work. If the youngster is an ash red then “NO” it does not work and the mother must have a boyfriend somewhere. It only takes one encounter at the right time and yes it does happen. On my monitor the youngster looks very much like an ash red t-pattern. Keep an eye out for a stranger. <grin>
 

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IF the baby was indeed a brown, then yes, the father would have to be carrying the brown gene, and the brown offspring would all be hens.


However, the baby in question is ash-red, not brown. What we see as brown in many cases is called red in pigeons.


And like I said, that's why there's another pigeon out there somewhere who is one sneaky little guy :p Another reason why it could not be the pairing you suspected, is because the mom is a normal blue check, and "dad" is a blue bar. While the red baby is a t-pattern (aka - velvet). T-pattern is dominate to check and bar. So neither mom or dad can possibly carry that gene, or they too would appear as t-patterns :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Interesting...so the red baby had to get it's T-pattern gene from the dad (whoever that might be...). Do you happen to have any picture of true "brown" pigeons?
 

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Well, not of my own birds, but I can certainly find you some! There's actually quite a bit of difference between a brown and a ash-red bird. The main difference is ash-red birds do not have tail bars, while browns do. In fact, brown birds often resemble blue pigeons more than they do red.

There's a brown check bird on the right, compared to a dilute blue check on the left:

from http://www.angelfire.com/ga/huntleyloft/brown.html

Now compare that brown to a ash-red check.

from http://www.angelfire.com/ga/huntleyloft/ashred.html

You can see the ash-reds have a light ashy color tail and base color with rusty red markings. While brown pigeons look basically like blues with a brown tint.
 

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Another thing, the second row of pictures down on the brown page, you'll see a T-pattern brown on the right. Pretty big difference between that one and my ash-red T-pattern, huh? :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yep, big difference!:) Just for the sake of mental gymnastics...what if my red chick has the "recessive red" autosomal genes? Would that be a possiblity? Granted, that doesn't explain the "velvet" pattern...i'm just trying to figure out this whole genetic thing. My college major was in genetics, but I never thought I'd be using it on the pigeons on my balcony. :p BTW, you'd clearly be ahead of the game if you decided to do something along the lines of genetics in college!
 

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Just from what I can see, the baby doesn't appear to be a recessive red. It's not a very common factor in feral pigeons. Both parents would have to be heterozygous for recessive red, which isn't very likely.
Genetics has always been one of my favorite things in school :) I find it very interesting!
 
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