Recessive Black Gene and Brassy Back Question

PillBug

In the Brooder
Apr 22, 2022
9
6
11
I understand that BB Red x Recessive black (in Old English game chickens) makes a Brassy Back, but what carries the recessive black gene to make a Brassy Back? Is there any sure way to know that a chicken carries recessive black? or is just something that you have to breed to the bb red to see? I'm looking at the BB red chart and trying to figure out this combination because the bottom half makes no sense to me, especially how brassy back leads to quail.
 
I’m not really sure because “recessive black” is assigned to unknown genes, but I looked it up and quail is one of the colors with “recessive black” and I can only assume it’s the same modifier. What I don’t understand is if recessive black is actually recessive or just a term for an unknown dominant gene.
Quail appears to be the same as brassy back genetics-wise with the addition of the Columbian gene.
 
I’m not really sure because “recessive black” is assigned to unknown genes, but I looked it up and quail is one of the colors with “recessive black” and I can only assume it’s the same modifier. What I don’t understand is if recessive black is actually recessive or just a term for an unknown dominant gene.

I found an article by Punnett (1957) talking about "recessive black," but I couldn't decide whether it's one of the genes we now know by another name, or what. I haven't been able to find anything more about it, either.

https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/jgen/055/03/0562-0569
 
Can I see the chart?
I’ll go look at my genetics book right now. This one is a puzzler.
1656814497860.jpeg

Sorry for the late reply I'm talking about this old chart it really boggles my mind the recessive black gene but I'm starting to understand now
 
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I work with Quail Belgian Bearded d’Anvers bantams and once I interbred my Quail with my Black d’Anvers. My Black d’Anvers hadn’t carried the Columbian gene so I ended up hatching out some chicks a few generations later that were what I call Brassy Back. The males have black or blue chests instead of buff ones.

I kept a few of these birds and bred them as a separate variety. I have called them my Recessive Black experiment up until this point and I have learned a thing or two about the genes involved, if you are interested. Further, I am beginning a project this year to create Black Breasted Red D’Anvers from these birds and I will document the progress for others to see.

From a previous somewhat successful attempt to create Black Breasted Red d’Anvers in 2006 from my Quail d’Anvers ( I got the color but a lot of OEG hard feathering and subpar type) I know that my quail d’Anvers are mostly wild type e^+ e^+, Co Co (or a very few from that Black outcross are Co co), Ml Ml or some other dominant melanizer and have an assortment of recessive black modifiers. What I find interesting is the chart doesn’t seem to mention or be aware that there is or can be a dominant melanizer as well.

For a period there I had to downsize my flock so I got rid of my BBR project. And then When I got to a point I could have more chickens again, I interbred my remaining blacks and quails to revitalize the genetics in both varieties. Blacks, by the way, carry a lot of the same recessive black genes and the Melanotic or Melanotic-like dominant gene that my Quails do, which made the interbreeding practically seamless… except a few generations later I started hatching a few Brassy Back d’Anvers (and Blue Brassy Back, since I have a few Blue Quail as well). These chicks start out striped, looking like Black Breasted Red babies instead of quail.

I used these Brassy backs to explore the darkening potential of the “recessive black” genes. You see, in Quail d’Anvers, it is dominant Ml (or a gene with an identical action) seems to be primarily responsible for transforming a buff Columbian into a quail or a Black Breasted Red into a Brassy Back, but the recessive black melanizers dictate the intensity of the black in the pattern, especially in the male. I kept selecting for darker ( more black) and darker birds until I hatched some males that appeared solid black, just with pale slate legs like you find on Quail instead of the blackish legs you find on extended black birds. Females continued to maintain a bit of salmon on the breast and a bit of shafting no matter how much black I selected for. When bred back to a normal quail, average quail patterns were readily achieved, even from mostly black specimens. I learned that the recessive blacks seem to be a collection of genes, each impacting different parts of the quail color pattern. Some impact the quantity of Black on the hackle, some on the saddle, some on the wings, some on the beard, and some on the breast. Not all of them are recessive, but collectively they are more recessive then dominant. Some may even have a similar action to the dominant Ml that is in my Quail d’Anvers, but as I haven’t worked with birds missing that gene, I couldn’t confirm this.

Hopefully you find this interesting.
 
I work with Quail Belgian Bearded d’Anvers bantams and once I interbred my Quail with my Black d’Anvers. My Black d’Anvers hadn’t carried the Columbian gene so I ended up hatching out some chicks a few generations later that were what I call Brassy Back. The males have black or blue chests instead of buff ones.

I kept a few of these birds and bred them as a separate variety. I have called them my Recessive Black experiment up until this point and I have learned a thing or two about the genes involved, if you are interested. Further, I am beginning a project this year to create Black Breasted Red D’Anvers from these birds and I will document the progress for others to see.

From a previous somewhat successful attempt to create Black Breasted Red d’Anvers in 2006 from my Quail d’Anvers ( I got the color but a lot of OEG hard feathering and subpar type) I know that my quail d’Anvers are mostly wild type e^+ e^+, Co Co (or a very few from that Black outcross are Co co), Ml Ml or some other dominant melanizer and have an assortment of recessive black modifiers. What I find interesting is the chart doesn’t seem to mention or be aware that there is or can be a dominant melanizer as well.

For a period there I had to downsize my flock so I got rid of my BBR project. And then When I got to a point I could have more chickens again, I interbred my remaining blacks and quails to revitalize the genetics in both varieties. Blacks, by the way, carry a lot of the same recessive black genes and the Melanotic or Melanotic-like dominant gene that my Quails do, which made the interbreeding practically seamless… except a few generations later I started hatching a few Brassy Back d’Anvers (and Blue Brassy Back, since I have a few Blue Quail as well). These chicks start out striped, looking like Black Breasted Red babies instead of quail.

I used these Brassy backs to explore the darkening potential of the “recessive black” genes. You see, in Quail d’Anvers, it is dominant Ml (or a gene with an identical action) seems to be primarily responsible for transforming a buff Columbian into a quail or a Black Breasted Red into a Brassy Back, but the recessive black melanizers dictate the intensity of the black in the pattern, especially in the male. I kept selecting for darker ( more black) and darker birds until I hatched some males that appeared solid black, just with pale slate legs like you find on Quail instead of the blackish legs you find on extended black birds. Females continued to maintain a bit of salmon on the breast and a bit of shafting no matter how much black I selected for. When bred back to a normal quail, average quail patterns were readily achieved, even from mostly black specimens. I learned that the recessive blacks seem to be a collection of genes, each impacting different parts of the quail color pattern. Some impact the quantity of Black on the hackle, some on the saddle, some on the wings, some on the beard, and some on the breast. Not all of them are recessive, but collectively they are more recessive then dominant. Some may even have a similar action to the dominant Ml that is in my Quail d’Anvers, but as I haven’t worked with birds missing that gene, I couldn’t confirm this.

Hopefully you find this interesting.
Kristen, I didn't know you were on BYC! This is really interesting information.
 
I decided to include some pictures of my Recessive Black project/ Brassy Backs so you can see what they look like.
 

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