Originally Posted by malndobe
I'm curious about the genetics behind birds that are mainly solid white, but with the occasional colored feather showing through. For example, a bird like the one below. He is a "Spangled" Russian Orloff, I put spangled in quotes because while that is what they call the color of his parents, they are technically speckled or mille fleur, similar to a Speckled Sussex. But this excessive white seems to pop up in the breed on occasion, from parents who are normal colored. Even the example photos of the breed on this page look like my boy
On the left one that is properly marked, on the right one that has started to get to much white. The amount of white increases as they age and molt, however the breeder hasn't had one start out "normal" and then end up looking like mine. The ones like mine seem to be that way from the beginning.
I can't completely explain spangling to you, but I can try to help. From what I've researched, true spangling has a dump of pigment with the remainder of the feather tip white because there is no more color to pass to that portion of the feather.. And with no other pattern modifiers. If you have white feathers with no color buildup dumped before it on the shaft I do not think the color is spangling. The location on the body also plays a part in that locations color..
I also have spangled Russian Orloffs, but my concern was opposite of yours. My flock all started with a solid mahogany base.. Then about two months ago (6 mos old) black flecks started to appear and now some of those flecks are starting to be tipped with white.
I have also read balancing where on the feather and at what age the spangling is best is one of the hardest patterns to get uniform. Females typically show the pattern better so special focus should be on perfecting them. I'd recommend adding a breeder with good black dumping to help get your pattern back.
Please update us, as I will do the same.
This pullet had maybe 10-15 white dots on her entire body 2 months ago and almost no black ticking.
This picture you can see the feathers fluffed out more.
Same pullet 2 months ago