Dilutes vs Greywings vs Clearwings

25-Nov-2008 08:42

Many times it is difficult to determine whether your bird is greywing, dilute, clearflight, or clearwing (whitewing).

In the dilute, dilution of color can be anywhere from 5%-95%. All the feathers on the bird will have the same level of dilution. The bird will look 'washed out' all over. It can be difficult to tell a dilute from a greywing for this reason, as the more dilution that occurs, the "greyer" the flights get. Since greywings are of 50% intensity to normal, if the bird has very light grey wings as well as a very light body color, most likely the bird is dilute and not greywing.

The clearwing/whitewing is a bird of normal intensity except the wing feathers (all of them, not just the flights) are white. Light grey is permissible, as the pure white is difficult to achieve. Hence, the opportunity for confusion with greywing unless you know the characteristics. The body color is sometimes slightly diluted, but not more than 10% of normal. The spots and stripes are very light grey. The tail is not white, but rather is somewhat neutral suffused with the body color. Clearwing and whitewing can be interchangeable terms.

With the greywing, the flight feathers are diluted at about 50% intensity from normal, and the body of the bird is diluted at the same percentage. The flight feathers will have a light edging of the face color. The tail is grey with a bluish tinge. A full-bodied greywing will have the 50% dilution of the wings, flights, spots, and barring but will have as close to normal intensity of body color as possible. I think Blossom here is a good example of a full-bodied greywing. Notice the strip of blue on her flights is also diluted from the normal, and you can make out the light edging around her flights. Her tail is greyish-blue, with the grey being more at the center of the feather and the blue suffusion extends out and down. Her spots are also diluted at the same percentage as her wings. However her body color is close to normal. You can compare the color of the wings and tail with Skittles in the second picture to get an idea of what 50% looks like.



***She also has a few other mutations besides being full-bodied greywing. Does anyone want to guess what they are?***

When breeding for a specific trait, you need to know that there are 4 factors that could reside that the same place on the chromosome that are responsible for these mutations. Greywing, Clearwing and Dilute factors are all recessive to the normal gene. Meaning if mated with a normal, the resulting babies will be split. The Greywing factor is semi-dominant over the Clearwing factor and is dominant over the Dilute factor. The Clearwing factor is dominant over the Dilute factor. Dilutes cannot be split for Clearwing or Greywing.

Sometimes people get the terms clearflight and clearwing confused. The clearflight (also known as continental clearflight or Dutch Dominant Pied) is a pied, and the flights and tail will be white. If the tail is not white, the bird is not a clearflight. Body color everywhere else will be of normal intensity, unless there is a dilute gene present also. As the gene for piedness resides in a different place than the gene for dilute, you can have a dilute pied. Blossom the greywing was the product of two pieds - Skittles the variegated pied (above in the second picture) and an opaline clearflight dilute pied.

Contributed by Ann aka rainbow



Genetics:  Greywing is dominant over dilute and Greywing and Clearwing together create Full Body Greywing which is a bird with a bright colored body but greywings. 

Greywing can be split for dilute                                             
Clearwing can be split for dilute
Greywing & Clearwing are co-dominant

Greywing and Clearwing are dominant over dilute
So example if you bred a Normal split to greywing and normal split to dilute budgie you would get 75% Normal 25% Greywing NO dilutes

Normal can be split for dilute OR greywing OR clearwing

A dilute can not be split at all because dilute is recessive to both of the genes above so a dilute budgie is dilute period no split.

So for example: If you bred a Greywing split to Dilute x Clearwing split to Dilute this would be the offspring possible %
25% Full-body-color greywing
(remember the greywing and the clearwing combined create this combination because greywing and clearwing are co-dominant which means they don't dominante each other)
25% Greywing
25% Clearwing
25% Dilute

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