The genetic rules don't change. It's always the
same thing, like the sex gene seen on the previous page. Each parent gives on
allele to the baby. You'll see on this page, the explanation for the fur colours
The gerbil hairs are composed of 3 different
pigments. At the bottom, there is gray, in the middle, the yellow/orange and
the tip of the hair is black. Those 3 colours put together produce a brown
gerbil known as Agouti. The mutation change how those pigments are produce
in the gerbil fur. This is what causes the different gerbil colours.
I don't know exactly how the mutation changes
each pigment but the illustrations might help you to understand. They are
not scientifically accurate but will help!
choice of the letter and their scientific meaning
letter used to write the phenotype(the code) of a gerbil is usually the first
letter from the dominant phenotype of the gene. But, each time a new mutation
is discovered about the same trait (in our case, the color) they had to use
the recesive phenotype to name the mutation.
= Agouti or non-Agouti
Being the first mutation observed, the normal or
dominant colour for this gene is Agouti; the wild colour. Even if the
recessive form of the gene is Black. Gerbilís genetic enthusiasts may
speak about the "black gene" instead of the "agouti gene".
Some may also speak about the "non-agouti gene".
= Color or coloration
the genentic world, this code is used to speak about albino colors(totally
white). So, the dominant or normal color for the gene is "with color".
Until now, there is no REAL albino gerbil discovered. So no "cc"
mutation is found on the same chromosome then the one responsible for Albino
color. So, a [h] is added next to the main "c"
= Chinchilla medium
one is also found on the same chromosome then the Himalayen gene.
= Burmese The Chinchilla medium gene was formaly known under
this name. But the burmese color is not representative of the real color of
the c[chm] gene alone but from the combination with the Agouti gene, "aa".
Since 2001, c[chm] took the place of c[b] even if some peoples still use it.
= Extension of yellow
Extension of yellow fading
= Pink Eyes
defenition of the different mutations
gene commands how the pigments will behave on the gerbil's hairs. The mutation
makes the base pigment cover the entire hair. In the gerbil case, the first
pigment to grow, is the black one giving a totally black gerbil. Some white
marks will remain under the chin and on the front paws.
No change, it's an agouti gerbil.
No change, it's an agouti gerbil.
: A black gerbil.
: Himalayan c(h] and Chinchilla medium c[chm]
This gene is temperature
dependant. This means that colder the temperature is, weaker will be the
lighting and darker will be the color. In hotter temperature, the gerbil color
will be lighter. You must wait the molt to see the changes.
: This gene commands the
general color intensity in the hair. It behaves in a different way depending of
the other genes present in the gerbils. With "pp" and "ee"
it can show with only one recessive allele present. It also lightens the eyes.
: A Himalyan gerbil, totally white
with a dark tail.
pp : Argente Cream: the ch lighten the
normal Argente golden color.
pp : A white gerbil with pink eyes.
: This gene commands the color intensity in the hair but in a different way then
the previous one. The c[chm] gene light up the color in the centre of the
animal, keeping the extremities darker.
Colorpoint Agouti or Chinchilla Medium
Colorpoint Agouti or Light Chinchilla Medium
is still pretty new. We doesn't yet know how it works. We usually don't use it
in gerbil genetic here in America because we have few chances to see one, one
day! This color been discovered in Germany where only few breeders keep them.
: No change.
Extension of yellow
and Extension of yellow fading (efef)
gene tells how much yellow/orange there will be in the hairs. The eye color
won't change. This gene is very sensitive to spotted and lighting gene like
c[h] or c[chm].
When this gene is present, the
color will become more yellow removing in parts the black pigments.
For efef, it as the same effect on the yellow and black proportion but the
yellow/orange coloration will fade drasticly once the gerbil is 2 months old.
Dark Eyed Honey, but with less black ticking.
gene remove all the yellow pigments.
gene romove the black pigment. It also lights up the general color of the
gerbil. The gray stays present.
(Sp) The exeption that confirms the rule!
gene is a dominant gene. This means that the
mutation is dominant. Being spoted is dominant.
: A spotted gerbil.
: Impossible, the 2 dominant gene will create
a weak and deadly combination in the baby. This situation will denie the growth
of the baby. Don't worry, the baby won't die, it just won't be ever really
created and absorbed by the mother.
this case, when a parent is spoted, you can be sure that 50% of the babies
produced will be spotted. If both parents are spotted, there will be 66% of the
babies will be spoted.
2/4 spotted) If you count only the ones who live, you got 2/3 who will be spoted,
both parents are non-spotted, all babies will be non-spotted.
Non-spoted gerbil cannot carry the spotted gene.
simplify the genetic writing, wrote only Sp at the end of the genotype.
gerbil Genetics Calculator
hope you begin to understand a little how works genetics.
is a gerbil calculator that allow you to predict the colors of the babies when
you know the genetic of the parents.
can downloader it here
When you don't know for sure if a parent carry a recessive gene, write the 2
Capital letters, don't use the (-)