Sunday, March 15, 2009

Finding Out Recessive Genes?

I've wondered quite a bit on ear carriage. I did two Jersey Wooly and American Fuzzy Lop crosses, and all of the kits had ears that went up! (that was 7 kits!) Note: This is just a fun post, I'm not trying to say the following is true or that I am proving anything, because I'm not! LOL. It's pure thoughts!

Now, we know that wool is a recessive trait. This was discovered when Angora was bred into holland lops for better fur. Later along the line, "fuzzies" started popping up. These rabbits were originally sold as pets until Patty Greene-Karl, who founded that the gene was recessive, started breeding them amongst themselves deciding to make them a breed of their own.

I have a AFL/JW cross still, I planned on breeding him into my Jersey Wooly herd. I would love to know if lop ear carriage is recessive. I wish I had kept a doe to breed to him to see if any of the kits would lop, proving the gene is recessive.

I'll probably end up breeding him to a Fuzzy Lop, too. I guess, if I really wanted to study it I'd have to do several combinations.


Capital "R" is for dominant (up-eared rabbit) and lower case "r" is for recessive. The rabbit on top who is "Rr" would be our cross buck, who has upped ears, however is out of a lopped parent. "rr" is our example of an American Fuzzy Lop, obviously, with lopped ears.


Our top parent "RR" would be an up-eared rabbit. And again, our crossed buck "Rr" All babies would have up ears, however, a 50% chance each kit could carry the gene recessive gene.

What I could do, is, breed my buck to a lopped doe, and take an offspring with up-ears and breed it back to the father. Giving each kit a 25% chance of being lopped.


All in all, this is all in my head. :) I might go about seeing if I can "prove" anything, but am unsure of it. I've gotten rabbits with up-eared ears from two "lop" rabbits, and if being so, this would make it all false as you cannot get a dominant out of two recessive.


I've only noticed it in the offspring though from parents with "ear carriage". What could this possibly mean? Maybe is it the other way around? Phenotype or genotype? LOL. Just thought I'd ramble of a little bit that goes through my head some days. Hope ya'll learned how to use the Punnet Square! :)

Here is a picture of the buck. He is very nicely typed, except his ears are just a tad under 3 inches!


Most likely, it is just a polygenic trait. Meaning, they can fall in between being lopped and upped. (best example is the mating of a light-skinned and a dark skinned persons, the offspring having intermediate skin colors) I do have a couple Woolies who have "airplane" ears. They lop strait across like airplane wings, I just assume with the size and shape they can't lop any further. So who knows! :P

I'll stop rambling! Good night everyone!
Susie Cederlof


Tru-Luv Rabbitry said...

This is one very interesting and provocative post. I hope you continue working on your breeding to prove the concepts. My eyes are fixed on this blog for now. LOL!

Keep said...

I definitely think it falls between lopped and up earred! Plus you have all the fun of narrow vs. wide crowns, ear thickness, etc. I bet a thin eared lop bred to a thin earred wooly would be more likely to lop than a thick earred lop to a thick earred wooly.

If only we had governement funding to do tests lol.