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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > Budgie Breeding > Mutations and Genetics


Mutations and Genetics Learn about budgie genetics and the wide variety of mutations.
Thread Description:I can't figure out one baby's color by looking at the parents

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  #1  
Old 01-09-2016, 10:20 AM
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Default Mystery coloured baby

I have a sky blue violet opaline hen and a sky greywing split opaline male with the most wonderful clutch Iíve ever seen, but one of the babies is a color I just canít explain.

Hen (a baby picture):


The female is a bit more cobalt looking now since her first molt, but she still has a definite, unmistakeable violet shade (that unfortunately doesnít photograph well) and her tail feathers are definitely turquoise at the base, which Iíve come to undestand as a good way to identify sky violet from cobalt. She also has a certain shine to her that just isnít there on the non-violet budgies I have.

Iíve seen pictures of her parents and all the siblings from her clutch live and they also looked all like birds with no dark factors. Her father is a light green violet and her mom a normal sky blue.

Male:



The male has been a bit trickier and for some reason he looks a bit too intense for a sky blue in certain lighting. For a while I was wondering if he could be a cobalt. Still, compared to a opaline sky blue baby, the male is very much lighter. But for me, all sky blues usually have a certain turquoise hue and he just doesnít have that. He is a colder, paler shade of light blue which is probably partly because of the greywing, but still looks sort of weird to me.

And now to the mystery babyÖ

One of the opaline babies in the clutch looks like he has a grey base color. Someone suggested that he might be mauve, but I think he looks just pale grey. I do have normal patterned cobalt, grey violet, grey, violet, mauve and mauve violet in my flock and compared to any of them, the only one identical to this baby is the grey one. The baby even has black tailfeathers (those thathavenít been lightened because of the opaline).



Unfortunately I only have a picture from his back for now, since he isnít quite old enough to perch yet and I only managed to get very unclear, shadowy pictures from the front.

There is no way that another female could have laid the egg, so itís definitely the hen in the breeding cage. The pair was separated nearly a month before any eggs, so Iíd say itís very likely that the father would in fact be the father. Also, all of my greys are female, so they cannot be involved making this baby anyway.

I consider myself to know usually quite enough about genetics and that I usually know how to identify different colors. I feel like I should know by now the difference between mauve and grey and by looking at my adult mauve and grey birds I see huge differences between them. But this baby confuses me. Mainly because he just looks like he should have been born in another pairs clutch. I also realize that since the grey gene has popped up spontaneously before both recessive and dominant in both Australia and other parts of the world, even spontaneous re-appearance of a mutation isnít completely impossible. However Iím still looking for a bit easier explanation than that. Does anyone have any ideas on what might have been the cause?

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Old 01-09-2016, 10:39 AM
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Since you mention the tail feathers are really black in colour, it does seem that you have a grey opaline chick there.
Did the female by chance have contact with another male (a grey or grey green one) during the breeding process? To my understanding, grey is a dominant gene, meaning one of the parents must show the colour visually (there is no split form).

The male budgie who is supposedly the father of this chick, really is a sky blue greywing. And even if the mother were a cobalt, there would be no way for them to have a mauve coloured chick nor a grey, since they don't visually show the grey colour.
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Old 01-09-2016, 10:54 AM
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Can you get pictures of the chicks face?
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Old 01-09-2016, 11:56 AM
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I can try to take pics of his face tomorrow.

Quote:
The male budgie who is supposedly the father of this chick, really is a sky blue greywing. And even if the mother were a cobalt, there would be no way for them to have a mauve coloured chick nor a grey, since they don't visually show the grey colour.
Yep, this is what confused me even more. Even if I was mistaken and the baby would infact be a mauve, I would also have to be entirely mistaken about BOTH of the parents as well. Also the siblings (six of them) all look either sky blue or sky violet (again with the turquoise near the quil of the tailfeathers and the shiny sleek look of a violet).

Quote:
Since you mention the tail feathers are really black in colour, it does seem that you have a grey opaline chick there.
Did the female by chance have contact with another male (a grey or grey green one) during the breeding process? To my understanding, grey is a dominant gene, meaning one of the parents must show the colour visually (there is no split form).
Nope, I have only one green male (a pure light green that is definitely not grey green and is still in quarantine, so he hasn't been in contact with the mom). My other males are mauve violet, cobalt violet and cobalt. So no greys or possible grey masking birds in the males. All of the others are 100 % sure females.

That's why the baby's color is so odd and fascinating to me. He just shouldn't be that color. At least I can't think of any reasonable explanation on how it is possible (other than spontaneous new mutation or something like that, which - even though not entirely impossible - still feels a bit far fetched). Could there be some other (than a inheritable mutation like grey) randomly occurring thing that would somehow alter the way the feathers reflect the light, making them look grey?

Last edited by annip; 01-09-2016 at 11:58 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 01-10-2016, 07:06 AM
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It's hard to get a good picture of him, but I think I managed to get a few that at least look exactly the right color on the camera screen. But as we all have different settings on our computers, one of my friends mentioned he looks clearly blue/violet shade on her screen. And there is a blue hue on my computer screen as well.

When looking at him live, his cheek patches are very weirdly coloured: completely dark grey, almost even black looking. That's not normal for either grey's or mauve's as far as I know. The tail feathers are pitch black and the body a cold, even shade of grey.

If I compare him to Cute Little Birdies mauve/grey identification guide (LINK), the body and tail colors match the grey perfectly, but the cheek patches look weird. They're not even close to either one.
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Old 01-10-2016, 07:45 AM
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I don't know about the chick's mutation, but he is stunning
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Old 01-10-2016, 11:53 AM
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Im on my phone so its not the clearest.

Could you have a mauve violet?

Ice had some that i would have thought were grey till i had a closer look.
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Old 01-10-2016, 02:02 PM
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The tail feathers really do seem to be black in colour and as to the cheek patches, while they don't have the more silvery colour to it and are very dark grey, I'd say at this point that your chick is a grey.
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Old 01-10-2016, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Could you have a mauve violet?
This would still mean that first of all both parents would need to have a dark factor, which seems unlikely and as far as I know, the bird would still have dark violet/navy tail feathers and cheek patches. He's also quite light shade of grey. Much like a grey bird with no dark factors. To my belief, a mauve violet should be much darker.

Quote:
The tail feathers really do seem to be black in colour and as to the cheek patches, while they don't have the more silvery colour to it and are very dark grey, I'd say at this point that your chick is a grey.
Thanks. For me he looks definitely like a grey too. Then the only issue is to figure out what happened to make him grey. Is it a re-appearance of the grey mutation (either dominant or recessive) or something else that might alter the structure of his feathers similar to the grey mutation.

I will make sure he'll get a home where he will be test bred with a suitable partner and I'll get to see the results myself. Luckily I have a trustworthy breeder friend that might be interested in such a deal.
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Old 01-11-2016, 06:53 AM
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The only other possibility I can think of to explain this would be if your hen had recently mated with a grey budgie prior to your getting her and if you placed her immediately to breeding with your chosen male right after purchasing her.
I'm perfectly aware of how far-fetched this is.
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