Friday, June 13, 2008

Learning new genes-- for Horns and Modified color

Hi everyone,
I am one lazy blogger -- or one busy shepherd, this spring. You'd think I didn't have sheep to sell, I've been so reluctant to post information! I DO, so if you need sheep or lambs, email me!
But right now, I'm puzzling on colors and horn types that cropped up in this years' lamb crop.

One handsome lad, the first born, who has a modified (fawn? mioget?)golden color --
He is a twin out of Justalitl Sarah, my fawn ewe-- but the dad was not my mioget ram, FirthofFifth don Telmo Bourbon-- he was my best fleece/tiny horn guy, Little Red Oak Mullein.
So what gives? I wonder. 'Splain to me these horn genetics and these modifieds. . . because it sure looks like he's got the tiniest little horns coming I ever saw in a 7-week old ram. I knew his dad had tiny horns-- and I still don't know if they are "scurs" or just "teacup" horns or "aberrant" horns-- they should teach a class. I know, I AM a member of the Yahoo group about Polled Genetics, and I'm doing my best to "get" it.

Soooo.... here's a picture of several rammies last April, woefully unclothed after shearing. This is AFTER they remembered each other without their fleeces, and were on speaking terms again. ;-) There's a lot of head-butting until then. You can see Mr. Mighty Horns, LRO Alex; a nice brown (moorit) boy with normal enough horns, and third, Mullein, the guy with the not-so-hot but maybe that's good- horns. His right (our left) horn broke the tip off when he was younger.

I throw in this post-shearing picture to show the difference between a mature moorit ewe, in the middle, Sheltering Pines Ferah, contrasted with the mature fawn ewe, Justalitl Sarah, on right. Really pale color at the skin. And some light hairs on her nose-tip, something I've seen on another modified ewe Kim Nikolai brought me, Bramble Bess.

Finally, I just cave for these little white lambs I got this year. This is Little Red Oak Elwood, out of Bramble Elsie and LRO Mullein. He's handsome, don't you think?

See you next week, when I really , really need to talk about which sheep need new homes!


Ebonwald Cardigans said...

did u get any mioget ewes out of Bourbon?! I have a ram lamb of his from last year that went from moorit to fawn last year and by this spring he is the same gorgeous color (only milder temperament).

i need a ewe!

Gail V said...

Hi Garrett!
Your info about your ram lamb's color is great to hear. I have many ram lambs out of Bourbon, but didn't get many ewe lambs this year. I'm in Chicago right now-- someone else is minding the flock--I can't remember without charts the ewes Bourbon threw. I'm thinking the best or only might be LRO Maple, out of HH Bluebell. She is Ag but that modified, beautiful pale color is what she started out as. And her fleece looks wonderful.
An early baby photo of her is on the blog, from earlier this spring. She's perched on a hay bale. . .
I'll look for you when I get home.

Juliann said...

Oh goodie! A puzzle.

What is Mullein's pedigee?

Justalit'l Sarah's dame, Underhill Ethel, has poll carriers on both sides of pedigree. Maple Ridge Philmore on top, Z6399 on the bottom. Sarah just might carry polled from her maternal line, hence throwing a scurred ram lamb.

Gail V said...

Hi Juliann,
I know, I was surprised to see I hadn't registered Mullein yet-- I guess I wasn't sure which twin I'd keep last year. Mullein won. He is out of Highland Hollow (HH)Bluebell and Lamb's Farm Amelia.
I saw that Canada 80 and some other polled carriers back in his lines when I looked.
Your comments about Sarah make me want to go study pedigrees again.
Darn, just when I was all set to get rid of every ewe who didn't love me (and Sarah doesn't). . .

Michelle said...

I would say Sarah is musket and Mullein is a half-poll -- and passed on a poll gene to that handsome ramling in the top photo. From what Juliann said, it's conceivable he could be a full-poll, getting a poll gene from each of his parents, but I wouldn't think he would have even those tiny horns if that was the case. Just throwing in my two cents!

Becky Utecht said...

Interesting comments here! Sarah looks fawn to me, not musket. I know the westerners and easterners have differing views on musket and fawn. FWIW, I had three Bramble line solids (not Ag) that got those white nose spots too.

Gail V said...

Hmmm, re: Juliann's & Michelle's polled comments: I need to learn this genetic shorthand and how it works. I have nothing smart to say about polledness, here, except that it's in the pedigrees on both sides. I do think some of my lambs are looking scurred. I just had one's horns both break off at 6 weeks without much bleeding or fuss. He's out of Mullein and Bramble Elsie, a gray like his dad.
Re: musket vs. fawn: I, too, think Sarah's fawn, but would love to hear more about the east/west ideas that differ. I am concerned, instead, that I mistake age-related color fading of moorit for fawn.

Gail V said...

looking at my former reply to Julian re: LRO Mullein's lineage, I see I said he was born out of two ewes. How modern!
No, his dad was LRO Frazier, who was out of Lamb's Farm Amelia and Bluff Co. Bravo.