Hey there everybody. I've been studying up on genetics lately and seen plenty of examples of the way genes work in my own breeding, but I've got this silly little Booted Bantam hen who's been a bit funny since she was a chick. She's had this - I want to call it soft frizzling. The feathers of her hackle and saddle have been like this since I purchased her at the age of about 10-12 weeks. She is now around 6-7 months of age. Neither the cockerel nor the other two pullets purchased with her showed any kind of abnormal feathering, in fact the two splash girls have the most lovely, sleek and soft feathering of most of my bantam girls. So is it possible this is some kind of phenotypical frizzling? Maybe she had a frizzled (or double frizzled?) ancestor and for some reason got a little bit of it herself without actually recieving the gene? The next question is about mottling. It's a recessive gene, of course, and I've had a chance to see it a lot in my flock as my dominant male, Benedict, is a Speckled Sussex and most of my mixed-breed chicks are heterozygous for mottling. As such, I see the signs of this (a bit of spotting on the beard/neck) pretty frequently. Now, when I purchased these birds, the breeder said both this female and the male (similar color to this female, a sort of gold birchen(?)) were heyerozygous for mottled. I checked the beards of both and they both had the mottling on the chin, and the female actually had a few spots on her back/wings too. But as they grew, while the male lost his little spots, she actually developed many more - to the point where I'm questioning if perhaps she's actually a homozygous mottled bird. Is it possible for her to be mo/mo and not show spots as a juvenile? Or is she just a really loud/weird heyerozygous? Is this maybe an entirely different gene? Whatever she is, she's beautiful and very sweet. I'm looking forward to breeding her with the male next year. I'd love to develop this color more, whatever it is - mottled birchen? Since I've got a male with the same base pattern, I plan on throwing them together in a breeding cage this spring and seeing what happens.