Sunday, November 9, 2008

More sooty oddness



This Morgan gelding, Sky, is the oddly marked sooty palomino I mentioned in the previous post. In this picture where he is darker, it is easy to see that his dark hairs form a pretty typical sooty pattern with the dark knees, dappling and ear rims. He even has the dark ridge along the leading edge of his cheek. If you look closer, though, you can see some slightly darker areas on his barrel and hip.



Those same areas are much more visible when Sky turns lighter. (Having been around a number of palominos in the last few years, I have found it interesting how dramatically their color changes with the seasons.)



The pattern of the dark hairs is very reminiscent of those seen on blood-marked fleabitten grey horses. It's also interesting that whatever is concentrating these dark hairs into patches, it hasn't disrupted the dappling pattern. That's also true on Prince (the horse posted yesterday), though he is much paler so his dappling - which is obvious in person - doesn't tend to show up in pictures.



Here is the other side of Sky, showing that his odd markings are not evenly distributed. That kind of asymmetry is typical in blood-marked greys, too.



Although it isn't really related to his odd coloring, Rebecca said that Sky had another unusual quality. He's a gaited Morgan. What a really cool horse!

3 comments:

Kelly said...

Hi Lesli, thank you for sharing these fascinating images! I have a question - could this horse's unusual colouring have been caused by something that happened in the womb? As it's all on one side I just wondered. I don't know about genetics but wanted to put this to you and see what you say.

Thanks
Kelly Savage

Lesli Kathman said...

Hi Kelly! Right now I think that something "in utero" is the most popular theory for odd things like these marks. But beyond knowing that sometimes sooty marks get concentrated in certain areas, or form patterns of some kind, we really don't know enough.

Reannon said...

I have seen Chestnuts with the same kinds of markings ( which would of course make sense, since Palomino is red), I always just chalked them up as super large Bend Or spots?