Pale legs on Leghorns

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Layira, Sep 26, 2010.

  1. Layira

    Layira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2010
    So I have a trio of exchequer leghorns that are about 13 weeks old and I don't know why I didn't notice it sooner, but they all have pale, almost white legs rather than the "correct" yellow legs that leghorns are supposed to have. Their beaks are also this same color, a pale almost white shade. As far as I know, this doesn't fit the breed standard (going by the general Leghorn standards as exchequers technically aren't recognized or something).

    I am curious because as chicks, two of them had yellow(er) legs. Here is a pic of them where I noticed this. Unfortunately, I don't know at what point the legs lost their color.

    [​IMG]


    I'm hoping this isn't a dominant trait that will be passed on to offspring, does anyone know whether or not this is likely to pass on?

    If it is likely, how would I go about breeding this trait out?
     
  2. Attack Chicken

    Attack Chicken [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Hu

    Sep 25, 2008
    Indianapolis, IN
    I have to say they are cute! [​IMG]

    I'm not sure why the chicks have different colored legs. When pullets start to lay they loose color in their legs. I heard feeding corn can yellow up their legs but don't feed it to them yet.

    I'm such a leghorn fanatic [​IMG]
     
  3. Layira

    Layira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2010
    Quote:Thank you! [​IMG]

    Well, they aren't laying yet, but that's good to know.

    Me too! haha

    So, any ideas about the genetics portion? (passing on the pale legs?) [​IMG]
     
  4. Attack Chicken

    Attack Chicken [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Hu

    Sep 25, 2008
    Indianapolis, IN
    No clue there [​IMG]
     
  5. danhonour

    danhonour Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 13, 2010
    Dutchess County,NY
    I have bred Leghorns for decades now and the pale leg is a defect and will not disqualify.It however is of a genetic nature.You have picked up,or it has segragated out of a line or strain.It is a dilution gene and could be a dosage thing. I had it for a time in a new line.I am not sure if it is sex linked or not,but it did behave as sex linked.I say this as I was able to get rid of it by only using rich yellow legged males.I did make use of pale legged females,but did not use pale legged sons.I got rid of it in a few generations and did not have it again. If all your birds have pale legs,I would try to purchase a rich yellow male and go from there.
     
  6. Layira

    Layira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2010
    Quote:What do you mean by "a dilution gene and dosage thing"? I'm not very familiar with chicken genetics.

    You say it behaves as sex-linked? You mean the pale legs are more likely to show up in hens?

    Thank for your input, this really helps. [​IMG]

    Any more info on this, anyone?
     
  7. ()relics

    ()relics horse/dog shrink

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    Jan 4, 2009
    indiana
    depending on where you got these "exchequer leghorns", there would be a good possibility that the breeder, at one point, may have used anconas to perfect their pattern. The pale leg probably is the ancona influence on your "exchequers". I also am working with exchequers. I, like you have some paler than perfect legs, but it is trait that you can try to breed anway from by careful parentage selection....jmo...
     
  8. Layira

    Layira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2010
    ()relics :

    depending on where you got these "exchequer leghorns", there would be a good possibility that the breeder, at one point, may have used anconas to perfect their pattern. The pale leg probably is the ancona influence on your "exchequers". I also am working with exchequers. I, like you have some paler than perfect legs, but it is trait that you can try to breed anway from by careful parentage selection....jmo...

    I'm guessing Anconas have pale legs then...or maybe I'm not getting how they correlate. Well I got them from My Pet Chicken, so I'm guessing that's a possibility.

    How long have you been breeding them? And did you get your original stock from a hatchery or a breeder?

    Here are some pictures I took on Saturday, do yours look similar?

    The cockerel

    [​IMG]

    One of the pullets

    [​IMG]
     
  9. ()relics

    ()relics horse/dog shrink

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    indiana
    second picture...does the bird have speckled legs? if so then they are an ancona cross, as aconas have pale speckled legs....another unsprupuluos breeder trick. An Exchequer should have a deep yellow leg like any other leghorn. The problem being that there aren't alot of true exchequers in the US, so hatcheries just call anconas exchequers, because they are in demand. So I would say you have some really nice Anconas. If you want to try to breed them up you could try and find a really nice Black Leghorn Rooster, then cull everything that has ANY speckles on their legs or paler than you like color.
     
  10. Hollywood Chickens

    Hollywood Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Florida
    Quote:I'm guessing Anconas have pale legs then...or maybe I'm not getting how they correlate. Well I got them from My Pet Chicken, so I'm guessing that's a possibility.

    How long have you been breeding them? And did you get your original stock from a hatchery or a breeder?

    Here are some pictures I took on Saturday, do yours look similar?

    The cockerel

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/50755_excocker1.jpg

    One of the pullets

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/50755_expullet1.jpg

    They look exactly like my Anconas, and all of my Anconas have speckled legs.

    ETA: MPC was running low on leghorns 13 weeks ago, so they are probably Anconas. I got mine from MPC also.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2010

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