Black Orpington x Buff Orpington = Lavender Orpington????

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by MelissaBA, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just read somewhere that a black orpington crossed with a buff makes a lavender...Is this true or am I misunderstanding what I am reading?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Sorry but that is not true. Neither buff not black has the lavender gene.

    In theory if you cross a buff with a black you get solid black in the first generation but buff is a funny color. There are different ways to make buff genetically. Often it has some genetic modifiers that can have an effect on some of the black. With that cross you should get solid black chickens but occasionally people get mostly black with splashes of some shade of red or orange. I haven’t hatched any of that cross myself but some people have posted some really nice photos of black and buff crosses.

    Did you read that on this forum? Could you please give a link to that post if possible?
     
  3. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Habib’s Hen was guessing and guessed wrong. The original poster did not even mention buff.

    I don’t know how much you know about genetics in general but chicken genetics can get pretty messy really fast. There are a lot of different genes involved and the effect of one will often depend on what other genes are in the genetic mix. We are talking about gene pairs not just individual genes. Some genes in that gene pair might be dominant, recessive or partially dominant. I’ll try to keep it simple but you might want to have a Tylenol handy.

    There is the concept of split. If a chicken has the same gene on both sides of the gene pair, it is called pure for that gene. If it has two different genes at that gene pair, it is said to be split. When chickens pass genes down to their offspring they randomly pass either the left gen or the right gene at that gene pair. If they are pure for a gene then you know what they will pass on but if they are split you don’t know. It could be either one.

    A chicken is going to have a basic background color, sort of the blank canvas to start the painting. There are five different options here. Extended Black gives you a black canvas. Birchen gives you a black body for the hen but with a colored head and neck. The other three give you a red but with different patterns. Roosters usually have more options for pattern colors and differences so sex even plays a part. That’s why I qualified the birchen for the hen.

    Then you have a lot of different genes that paint on this canvas. They may add or take away patterns. They may totally change the color of the basic canvas. They may turn a black feather (or portion of a feather that is black) to a white, lavender, blue, or some other shade. Some may turn a red feather buff, orange, black, white, or something else. Lavender is a gene that changes Black to Lavender, but it is a recessive gene so a chicken has to be pure for lavender to change a black chicken to lavender. Black is dominant over all the others so the chicken does not have to be pure for black to be lavender.

    A Black Orpington should be pure for Extended Black but it is possible it could be Birchen with Melanizers, modifiers that turn feathers black. There are a lot of other genes that could be masked by that black because black is so dominant. But a Black Orpington should pass on am Extended Black to its offspring. The basic offspring canvas will be solid black before the modifiers step in.

    A Buff Orpington will have one of those three red blank canvases. I think most people assume Wheaten but in theory it could be any of the three. Then there are modifiers to turn that chicken buff colored instead of red. There are different modifiers that can be involved and still wind up with a buff color. A Buff Orpington will pass on a basic red canvas to its offspring but the Extended Black from the Black Orpington will give a black blank canvas since it is dominant. Some of those modifiers can affect black too, not just red. That’s why you might get some red or orange splotches on that basic black canvas.

    I don’t know if this helps or not. Neither the Black nor Buff Orpington should have the Lavender gene so a Black x Buff cross will not get you Lavender.
     
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  5. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Whew! That is a LOT to take in...I'm going to print your comment to reference back to...LOL Thanks though for explaining this to me. I think over time and reading your post I will eventually get it down! [​IMG]
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Thanks. You might want to play with this calculator. There is a learning curve but if you have questions just PM me and ask.

    The calculator does not go into a lot of the nuances but it gets the basics down pretty well and can really help you understand how to put it together. The hard part for me is to know what genetics to start with.

    Cross Calculator
    http://kippenjungle.nl/Overzicht.htm#kipcalculator
     
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  7. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great! Thanks so much for all your help!
     

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