Is black a dominant color in chicken genetics?

blucoondawg

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I just hatched my first batch of chicks out of my incubator, they are just mixed breeds, I have 3 roosters, a NH, a BR, and a Sicilian Buttercup. I have NH, BA, BR, WR, SLW, EE, and Light Brahma hens, I ended up with 26 chicks hatched 6 are looking like the EE chicks I got last year with the stripes on their back and reddish fuzz, all 20 of the others are some variation of black, all black or black with a white dot on the head like a barred roc or BSL rooster chicks or black with a blotch of white on the body. I didn't get any red or yellow chicks at all, kind of odd considering I have 6 NH hens and only 2 or 3 of the other breeds.
 

donrae

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I can't get into the genetics of it like the gurus can, but yes, black trumps many other colors, seems like red especially. I've found this in my own mixed flock breeding. You can see a great example on the commercial black sex link--a red rooster over a barred rock hen. The female chicks are pretty much black, with some red leakage. I think you'll get chicks that get that leakage a lot as they feather out, it just doens't show up on the down. The barred Rock rooster over your NH hens will also give pretty much black and white barred birds. Black seems pretty strong.
 

donrae

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Red is one of the most dominant chicken colors. Red will usually show over black!
Not so much from what I've seen, and found on the calculator. As I stated above, a black sex link is a red bird over a black barred bird. The offspring come out black with red leakage, not red. I've seen lots of crosses on this board over the years and any time someone has something like an Australorp rooster, they pretty much get black chicks no matter what the hens are.
 

Spangled

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I have 3 roosters, a NH, a BR, and a Sicilian Buttercup. I have NH, BA, BR, WR, SLW, EE, and Light Brahma hens,

6 are looking like the EE chicks I got last year with the stripes on their back and reddish fuzz

all 20 of the others are some variation of black
[or]
all black black with a white dot on the head like a barred roc or BSL rooster chicks
or
black with a blotch of white on the body.

I didn't get any red or yellow chicks at all, kind of odd considering I have 6 NH hens and only 2 or 3 of the other breeds.

Maybe ... your Barred Rock (BR) rooster is the dominant rooster and didn't allow the other two roosters much time with the ladies.
wink.png
Your Barred Rock may be a real ladies man.

My guesses:
6 that look like EE chicks are fathered by the New Hampshire (NH) and/or Buttercup and are crosses with mothers: NH and EEs because that is how those genetic combos would usually work out. Usually pure NH chicks aren't going to have chipmunk stripes, but if they have any Rhode Island Red blood in them from a hatchery crossing, then they could have chipmunk stripes. The ones with more little black markings on the head could be fathered by the Buttercup ... if you have any like that.

The Barred Rock (BR) rooster and Barred Rock hen will make black chicks with white dots on head.

Barred Rock (BR) rooster and EE, NH, BA will give you black or black with white on belly (maybe) and black with white dots on heads.

Here's the kicker ... Buttercup or New Hampshire rooster with a Barred Rock hen or Black Australorp will also give you black chicks.

I'm clueless about Light Brahmas and Silver Laced Wyandottes. I haven't had any, so I haven't crossed them with anything.

Is the WR a White Plymouth Rock? I thought they were recessive white with sometimes a bit of dominant white thrown in for good measure. Either you didn't hatch any of her eggs (which would be white with black spots probably) or she is only recessive white and they are some of the black/combo chicks.

Again those are my guesses. Barred Rocks are usually E/E at the e locus which, I believe, stands for Extended Black. Extended Black is dominant over the other e loci for the most part, but if dominant white (I/I, I/i) is in the crossing mix, then the chick will or can be white. New Hampshires are e^Wh (Wheaten, usually golden colored) and Extended Black is dominant. EEs are mixes ... usually. Buttercups are something like ebc, I think, and when mixed with a Black Australorp (E/E) are going to produce black chicks.

I'm no genetics expert, though, so don't take my word for it. Those are my guesses. And I'm of the opinion that if I want some red or golden chickens, I don't mix them with any dominant white chickens or black chickens because I think that black is a dominant color.
 

dheltzel

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I can't get into the genetics of it like the gurus can, but yes, black trumps many other colors, seems like red especially. I've found this in my own mixed flock breeding. You can see a great example on the commercial black sex link--a red rooster over a barred rock hen. The female chicks are pretty much black, with some red leakage. I think you'll get chicks that get that leakage a lot as they feather out, it just doens't show up on the down. The barred Rock rooster over your NH hens will also give pretty much black and white barred birds. Black seems pretty strong.

You are correct that black, in particular the gene called "extended black" is very dominant over the wheaten and wild colors in the other chickens. We don't tend to think of a barred rock a black, but they are. All the various blue colors, both the partially dominant BBS (blue/black/splash) and the Lavenders (recessive self blue) only show in black birds, or the part of the birds that are normally black.

I hope the helps explain all the black chicks in your hatch.
 

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