Tangerine Senegal Beginning

This story documents how the Tangerine Senegal came about. This project started in the spring of 2000 with the receipt of some doves from a fancier in Ohio. I was searching for Senegal Doves that were said to be of small size. I had already obtained an unrelated male & female of such & this fancier in Ohio mentioned he had bought a pair of "small Senegals" from a fancier who raised them. Since I knew of the origin of the "small Senegals" & the distribution of any young raised, I was very interested in these possible unrelated Senegals. The fancier had stated that they did not nest at all while he had them & wanted to sell them. To obtain this pair of small Senegals I also had to purchase a couple of Ringneck Doves.

Upon receiving these birds I soon discovered the reason why the birds never nested at the previous place; all the birds had been sexed incorrectly by the previous owners. I discovered that these so called "small" Senegals were actually typically sized Senegals & both were male. Since I already had 7 pairs of normal Senegals set up & breeding I left these two Senegal males in the large community flight for the Ringnecks & Cockatiels. I could pair them with young from the other pairs of Senegals & eventually incorporate the new birds into the sex dimorphism I was documenting in this species.

I did not pay much attention to these two males; they called as single males typically do & never noticed them being paired or trying to court any of the Ringnecks in the flight with them. A month or two after receiving these birds I noticed a couple of Tangerine colored fledglings on a perch. I at first thought they were Tangerine Ringneck young & could have possible came from the couple of Tangerine Ringnecks in the flight. While trying to determine the parents I saw one of the male Senegals come to the two young & feed each one. The behavior of these young convinced me that this male Senegal was one of the parents. In another day or two I discovered the female parent - the Orange Pearled hen. I had received this bird as a male bird in the group with the Senegals. 

I had seen a picture of a Tangerine Laceneck (Streptopelia chinesis) taken by a friend from Israel at a private Belgium Aviary. It was a very attractive & nice looking bird. I then thought could a Tangerine Senegal be produced too? Why not give it a try. Knowing that the fertility of many hybrids between two Streptopelia species was quite high, I then set up do proceed with producing a Tangerine Senegal. I moved the Senegal male & his Ringneck mate to a flight by themselves. This pairing produced 8 young, 4 males & 4 females. The pair was then broken up.

Knowing a little of the genetics of the Ringneck colors I knew the Tangerine color is co-dominate. In talking with several genetic experts I was told that when this Orange Pearled hen is paired with a Wild Type male all young will be Tangerine in color & that all F1 males would receive the "dilute" gene from the female parent hidden. The F1 hens would only be Tangerine.
Would this be true in the hybrids I had just produced? Yes.

All of the F1 young produced by this pair were tested for fertility; all of the males proved fertile & all carried the "dilute" gene hidden. However of the 4 F1 hens raised, only a single female proved to be fertile with either a Senegal or Ringneck male. My records indicate this F1 hen & her pure Senegal mate laid 12 clutches but only two clutches contained fertile eggs. Four young were raised. I knew that in hybrids, most male hybrids were fertile, whereas in hybrids females, many times the sex organs never developed fully & thus these hybrids hens are infertile - some never laying a single egg. This proved to be the same in these F1 Senegal-Ringneck hybrids. 

This new knowledge fueled my interest in this project; eventually I would be able to produce Tangerine, Orange, Blond & eventually Pearled Senegals. I believe a single Tangerine Pearled young was produced from a pair of two F3 Tangerine I had setup, but died when it fledged (picture) & could not verify if it was actually a Pearled or not. Other then this possible pearled youngster, I know of no other "pearled"  or a "Blond" Senegals being produced yet, but it is only a matter of time. I currently have  F4 Tangerine Senegals set up for breeding with normal mates. The young produced have been 6 wild type colored young & two Tangerine young. It is hoped that a Tangerine to Tangerine pair can be set up in 2006 & the "Tangerine Pearled Senegal" will be produced. 

One aspect of concern was the aspects of the appearance of the "necklace" in the hybrid young. I already had F1 hybrids & the "neckrings" were affected & did not resemble either parent's neckring. In researching the races/subspecies of the Senegals there were differences in the neck rings. Some have full frontal necklace & others are broken in the middle of the throat. The thickness & patterns of the necklace was also found to be quite variable in the many Senegals. The necklaces of the F3 & F4 Tangerine Senegals followed a similar & variable pattern as in the pure parents.

The most noticeable differences noted in the neck rings was in the F1 & F2 hybrids; with the F3 generations the necklace's developed as in typical Senegals. I noted in my records that the pairs that contained the F1 male Tangerine hybrids & the pure Senegal hens produced young that had a more typical Senegal necklace then the pair that contained the F1 Tangerine hen hybrid & pure Senegal male. Voices of the F2 young from the F1 male hybrid and the pure Senegal female proved more Senegal like then those the young from the F1 hybrid hen & the pure Senegal male.
Click on the links below to see the pictures of this project. Use your "back button" to return here.

Senegal Male Orange Pearled Female F1 Tangerine Hatchlings F1 Tangerine Nestling
F1 Tangerine Male F1 Tangerine Male & Senegal Female F1 Tangerine Male
F1 Tangerine Female F1 Tangerine Female F2 Tangerine Male F2 Orange Female
F3 Male F3 Male (Open wing) F4 Hen F4 Hen F4 hen (Open wing)

Below Pictures show the 4 young from the F1 Hybrid Tangerine Female & the pure Senegal Male

F2 WT Group F2 WT Group F2 WT Group F2 Wild Type  F2 Wild Type
F2 Wild Type F2 Wild Type F2 Wild Type F2 Wild Type F2 Wild Type

All F1 (1/2), F2 (3/4), F3 (7/8) & F4 (15/16) hybrids were/are paired with unrelated pure Senegal mates. I cannot detect any visual markings other then the tangerine coloration, voice or display differences from the F3 & F4 Senegals & pure Senegals.

FYI: the visual facets may vary slightly from birds; note the light colored flight feathers of the F3 & the dark colored flights of the F4. Even in the F3 male & female there can be color variances. Note also the darker necklace in the F4 bird. This darkness of the flights & necklace I am currently watching & am attributing these to the dark colorations of the pure senegal & them dominating the dilution facet of tangerine.

As for considering if the birds are still hybrids or pure; I leave this facet to each individual. I read many articles on this aspect & talked with many in the avian field about this aspect. It is about divided in half, one half believe the birds are still hybrids & there will always be a "donor gene" gene in the bird' chromosomes & may or may never show itself no matter how many generations the "hybrid" is bred back to the pure species. The other half feel that if only bred back to the desired species that within five generations all facets of the different original parent species will have disappeared & then can be considered once again pure.

 In proceeding with this project I found several thing & documented items that have never been noticed or documented before in the Senegal Dove & also in several other dove species. The first newly found facet, although not directly related to producing the Tangerine Senegals was the discovery of sexual dimorphism in newly hatched young in the Senegal Dove. This discovery made me look closer at the other exotic species. Dimorphism in the hatchlings was also documented in the Dwarf Turtle Dove. 
Senegal Dimorphism Info       Dwarf Turtle Dimorphism Info

Is a Tangerine Laceneck in the future? Quite possible, the original Orange Pearled hen was paired with a Laceneck male & also with a Dwarf Turtle male. Enough F1 young of both sexes were produced to set up breeding pairs. Possibly in the future these colors will show up. One thing I do stress is not to offer any young from such pairing of less than a F3 or F 4 & until you cannot detect any differences in visual facets & the voice from the original intended host species.

Tangerine Laceneck                 Tangerine Dwarf Turtle Dove

This was a fun project & proved very interesting; enough F3 & F4 young were produced & sent to interested fanciers around the US. What is next? For me producing the Pearled Senegal & the Blond Senegal are on the agenda for 2006.

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