American Fancy Rat & Mouse Association

This article is from the March/April 1992 AFRMA Rat & Mouse Tales news-magazine.

Colors & Coats

Gold Frizzie Mice; Reverse Siamese Caracul Mice; Creating Odd-Eye Rats; Mink vs. Blue Rats; English Silver Mice (Blue Agouti); Hidden Treasure Mice (Blue Dilution Recessive Yellow)

By Troya Duncanson

Gold Frizzie Mice

Gail DeHayes, Stone Mountain, GA
Q If I want gold Frizzies, can I just breed with my Dove or Champagne Frizzie boy to one of my dominant gold girls and then take a female from this and breed back to him?

A Yes, that would work fine. I prefer the look of recessive fawn on a black background instead of chocolate, so I would probably choose another cross myself. It may not matter with dominant gold anyway.

Reverse Siamese Caracul Mice

Michele Buck, Rootstown, OH
Q I’ve got English Tans, but does anybody there have English Fox? I’ve got Reverse Siamese but in Caracul. I saw a picture of an English one in Rat & Mouse Tales which I thought was pretty. How is that gene inherited?

A Reverse Siamese is still a difficult term for me because I’m trying to breed an even color on this mouse which is directly opposed to its name. At any rate, this gene is at the same location as albino, chinchilla dilution, and Siamese. It’s referred to as extreme chinchilla dilution and it’s recessive. If a mouse is half "Reverse Siamese" and half albino, you get what AFRMA calls Ivory (known as Cream in England and Bone in Rat, Mouse & Hamster Fanciers), a very pale off-white mouse. You probably get partial expression of Siamese or regular Chinchilla too if they are paired with this gene. All of my English Fox are of this extreme chinchilla stock. See the Sept/Oct. ’91 back issue regarding getting Fox by crossing with regular Chinchilla.

ED. NOTE: See also the Oct. ’84, March/April ’85, March/April ’87 and Sept./Oct. ’87 issues for more on breeding Tan/Fox and Chinchilla mice; see the March/April ’91 Colors & Coats and May/June ’91 Some Comments issues for more on Caracul.

Creating Odd-Eye Rats

Jessica Jakubanis, Norridge, IL
Q How is it possible to start breeding odd-eye without having odd-eye to begin with?

A The odd-eye gene is a mutation. In the rats, I got the original ones from Cal Poly, Pomona, California. The zoology technician there was breeding rodents to feed the many reptiles the college had and these just popped up. He didn’t think he had anything that unusual as there are odd-eye in dogs, cats, horses, etc. I have seen many odd-eyed hamsters but only an occasional mouse. Karen Hauser

Mink vs. Blue Rats

Michael Emerson, Burnham, ME
Q How do you tell a Mink from a Blue? What do the California Blues look like? I have some that are a deep gray-blue, no brown except for when the sun dilutes it like a black. I was told they were smoke blue, then Mink. Then I got some Mink Rex rats. Nothing alike color wise.

A Mink is just like the Lilac-a gray-brown color, only a more gray and not as much brown (England calls this color Mink, we call it Lilac). The Blue rats we have here are a slate blue color (similar to the "Country Blue" color popular now)-a definite difference in color from the Lilac and Mink. Compared to Lilac/Mink they look blue where the Lilac/Mink looks very gray. I have heard a couple people refer to the Blues as "gray rats" though. The rats in the photos you just sent look like a Lilac/Mink color, not Blue, at least not the Blue we know of out here. Karen Hauser

English Silver Mice (Blue Agouti); Hidden Treasure Mice (Blue Dilution Recessive Yellow)

From Wanda Wilson. New Cumberland, PA
RE: English Silvers Jan./Feb. ’92 issue.
There is recessive yellow in the Chocolate Fox/poor Chocolate line (Godiva/Hershey)(he turned out in our colder climate to be a fine Sable Siamese by the,’ way). I have looked at hairs from several volunteers-Blue, English Silvers (that I now call my hidden treasure designer mouse line), etc. They are the same as blue dilution but with clumps of yellow pigment, not black. If that’s the scientific description name for Opal, then that’s what I have. But they don’t look like any Opal I’ve ever seen (maybe because of the Satin? or the Long Hair?).

My hidden treasures breed true. The other line is from Hershey/KKBlue. Hershey was the sire to both lines which had not been crossed until after the hidden treasures appeared. They are a big, slightly beefy, Long Haired Satin mouse, with a calm temperament. I think you’ve hit the diagnosis exactly—blue dilution recessive yellows. I have yet to mate them with anything else to see if it does anything to any other color-like make Blue Tans of Black Tans, etc. *

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October 27, 2018