The K Gene -which breeds have it?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by texas_chick, Feb 28, 2009.

  1. texas_chick

    texas_chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So does anybody know which breeds have the K Gene and can be feather sexed?
    Or is it more of a sex link thing and actually two different breeds have to be bred to each other?
    If breeds can have it does anybody know if Marans have the K gene?
     
  2. blackclownfish16

    blackclownfish16 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I know that show quality barred rocks almost always have it, any good barred breed should have it. Also you can breed it into a breed but it is difficult. I'm not sure if marans have it.
     
  3. Henk69

    Henk69 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The K-gene is sexlinked BUT you can't use it (as is) for feathersexing.
     
  4. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

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    right. I have had pullets and roo chicks hatch with it. Copper black marans. I am trying to eliminate it from my breeding stock by not using any that show the trait as young birds. Kinda tough to do, but I am just biting the bullet and going for it. According to the French site, there are enough verious other negative health issues associated with it that I feel it is worth eliminating from my stock, especially since it is not "neccesary" for good color, as in the fine barring in the barreds.
     
  5. cwc362

    cwc362 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay - I admit it- Have no idea what the "K" gene is- Somebody want to tell me or give me a link to explain it? Thanks !!

    Wayne [​IMG]
     
  6. texas_chick

    texas_chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The way I understand it is that those chickens that the hatcheries sex by looking at the wing feathers have that K gene.
    Without the K gene the feathers will look the same on males and females (I believe)
     
  7. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

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    Here is an exerpt copied and pasted from the link I posted in my earlier entry above.


    PROBLEMS CAUSED BY (K) OR (t) SLOW-FEATHERING GENES

    It is advisable to remember here that once adulthood, i.e. sexual maturity, is reached there is no difference in plumage between the various subjects whether or not they are affected by this phenomenon. Sorting between them becomes impossible after this age and often even much earlier.

    We have to thus make a type of selection made easier at hatching. Simply eliminating the young chicks locatable by difficult fledging, in particular on the tail, the back, and the wings would make it possible to obtain a rather easy cleansing of the stock over a few years.

    In addition, since during expositions or shows, it is not possible to distinguish the subjects concerned as they are adults, then we are very tempted to think that these types of reducing genes do not present major disadvantages. In fact, the risk exists of a real and lasting laxity in regards to selection for breeders from this point.

    It appears then that these types of “slow-feathering” genes of the young chicks, which are of course hereditary, not only do not bring anything positive to the breed but especially can cause some problems.

    Thus, it was discovered in 1988 that the Asian slow-feathering gene (K) in particular would be in close connection with the existence of an endoviral gene of the viral family which causes leucoses. The subjects with the slow-feathering gene (K) would be thus more sensitive to this group of diseases and have proven to have reduced performance.

    In addition, slow or late feathering makes it obvious that these young subjects are more sensitive to picking, having their back stripped to at least four weeks of age and especially, their puny tail feathers which are not very hard at the base until at least eight weeks of age.

    Let us recall that at this age, the normal subjects have their caudal feathers entirely finished.

    We must still stress that the subjects with “slow-feathering” genes show after slaughter a more significant number of “pinfeathers” than normal subjects.

    Lastly, we must add that the young Marans pullets with normal and rapid feathering tend to begin laying earlier. To contrast, allele (K) might, however, make it possible to support a greater clarity of “barring” in the Cuckoo plumage, or even of the intensity of the red in poultry plumage.

    In spite of the probability of this attraction, which remains to be shown at a greater length, these types of genes are proving more or less handicapping and rather not easily identifiable between them. Consequently, it seems quite obvious, as far as possible, to limit if not eliminate all the young Marans subjects which present one or another of these reducing genes.
     

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