The other side of the coin – or the dream of a homozygous strain of Almonds

The stipple factor can produce great colors with Almond, white and black sprinkles/stippers and other variants. But all these colors also have in common that homozygous cocks are almost white. Genetically, they almost always have handicaps such as eye defects and / or movement disorders. A vital homozygous strain of Almonds or Stippers can not exist according to the currently available reliable information. Serious breeders therefore regularly use the complementary colors in the breed.


Fig, 1: Danish Stippers (Almonds) cocks and Kite and Golddun as complementary colors respectively

At English Almond Tumblers and Danish Brown and Yellow Stippers (genetically almonds with a black color base) those are kites and agates. It can be surmised that those who rave about a strain of purebred Almonds are so far removed from genetics that they do not know that in such a strain of homozygous ‘Almonds' there can not be any showable almond cock. The dream of a strain of pure Almonds and the subsequent disappointment is traced in a photomontage.

Fig. 2: The dream from a pure strain of Almonds or Stippers and what follows in reality

In order to convey a realistic picture, it is also necessary to show offspring that are affected negatively and not just the positive exceptions.

Fig. 3: The results from a mating of two carriers of the St-gene with defective cocks in the progeny

Only kept under one another produces a sex-dimorph progeny with whitish cocks and differently colored females. The difference to the sex-dimorph Texans with the Faded gene lies in the fact that only less of the cocks reach the maturity stage. This fact is neglected in reports that only show the positive exceptions. Reports about exceptions serve as alibi for the mating of two carriers of the gene that will produce the non-vital homozygous cocks. Regrettably, since the rule not to match two carriers of the St-gene from an animal welfare point of view has a real basis.

Fig. 4: Mating of a heterozygous Almond cock and a hemizygous Almond hen (Source: Sell, Genetik der Taubenfärbungen)

According to own experiences and observations in other breeds, these exceptions have movement disorders and uncertainties in free flight. This is not noticeable to many breeders who keep their pigeons in aviaries, others are not interested.

From the non-bladder-eyes St//St cocks, the dark color of the eyes changes to pearl within four or five years, and the colored parts of the plumage increase. Shown here is a cock at different age.

Fig. 5: Danish Tumblers and the change of plumage and eye color of a homozygous St-cock with age (Source: Sell, Pigeon Genetics. Applied Genetics in the Domestic Pigeon, Achim 2012)


Genetik der Taubenfärbungen, Achim 2015

Pigeon Genetics. Applied Genetics in the Domestic Pigeon, Achim 2012

Breeding and Inheritance in Pigeons, Hengersberg 1994