The Color Gray

In colored angora goats this color is called blue …silver…gray.  I will refer to it as gray.

Food for thought…black can fade…meaning over time change from solid black to a form of gray as the goat ages.  That is not the gray we are going to talk about here. We are going to talk about gray as a birth coat.

The color black is at both ends of the order of dominance.  At the top we call it dominant black or black in the red brown black pool, or black in the dominant pool…whichever way you think. The other black is at the bottom of the list of agouti patterns and it’s called no pattern black or black in the black pool or recessive black.  When you look at the two different black on an angora kid you cannot tell the difference. Keep the in mind as you look at gray. Because of some sort of magic by Mother Nature changes that black to gray.  And that gray can go from almost black to almost white.  So your kids can be born almost any shade of gray.  Keep in mind that the same happens for brown and red as well.  It’s important to keep that in mind as you look at the kids birth coat…because the red, brown, black can be so light as you cannot tell the base color.

Let’s talk about a pattern we all know fairly well…dark belly. 

Full siblings

Dr. Sponenberg’s definition is Tan with a black belly, back stripe, lower legs, and face stripes. Now that tan can go to white and the black can be a very light gray and when that happen it is almost impossible to see a black belly kid pattern. What you see is almost white, or silver or blue…but the pattern is still there in the genetics.


So when you look at the gray kids look close to see if a pattern is there at birth.  If so it will soon be gone as the mohair grows.

So you see a solid gray kid at birth, and I said solid because I want you to think as solid black.  It can be in either color pool as a recessive gray or as a dominant gray and can be a very dark gray to a very light gray.

Gray is not an easy color for a breeder. It can be a pattern, it can be a solid colored goat.. It can be very dark almost black and it can be very light almost white goat. Breeding gray to gray doesn’t always get you gray.

Spotting on agouti patterns

The pictures of spotting on this site have been limited to spotting on solid or near solid colored goats.

If you are breeding for spots you are aware that only one of the parents needs to show spots to have spots on the kids. We are going to avoid the genetics of spots but if you are breeding for spots it’s a completely different set of genetics than the agouti patterns.

We will show spots on patterns here so you can see why it’s hard to see the pattern when spots are added.

When you look at the first two pictures it’s not hard to find the red cheek pattern.

Looking at the last two pictures it becomes difficult to see the pattern because there is so much spotting.

How to use these pages

How do I use these pages to help?

We could write a bunch or rules here…but then we would have to write the exception to each rule as well. This is not going to take care of 100% of all colored angora kids.

The pictures and pages are to identify colors and patterns in kids.

The easy start is to decide if you have a solid kid or a pattern kid.

If your kid is a solid you will have a uniform color over the whole body.

If you have a solid color goat go to the pages that show solid colored kids.

There are patterns that also appear to look like a solid.

You should have found a color that is close to your kid… if not you may want to look at the pictures on the pattern pages and see if there is a pattern that looks close to what you see in your goat.

What is a pattern?  

The pattern can be as simple as face stripes on a solid body.

Pattern can be leg stripes on a solid body.

Pattern can be a light belly on a dark body

Pattern can be a dark belly on a light body

Pattern can be a light front with a dark rear

Pattern can be a dark front with a light rear

Pattern can be a color that is solid but not uniform top to bottom front to back.

Pattern can be two different colors with in the coat.

If you have a pattern the first thought should be is the pattern an agouti pattern or is it a spotting pattern.

How do you tell the difference…spotting is usually white…but not always spotting is usually random.

The agouti patterns are usually the same on both side of the goat.

Usually means that…spotting can be any color but… white is most frequent.

Usually means that…if you have spotting mixed with the agouti pattern separating the two will require some extra thought.

Proposed CAGBA Patterns

White to Tan is an agouti pattern.  The pattern is not an exciting pattern to get in angora kids.  In fact it is probably missed more times than not. How many of you have seen a kid that has an oatmeal appearance at birth.  What do you call that color…it looks like oatmeal but that is not a color we register it’s a white to tan pattern. There is another that is almost white but dirty white…also probably a white to tan.

The white to tan can go to a red as well. And it impossible to tell it’s not a solid red.  We don’t think twice and register it as red.  If you look close at those white to tan red colored kids you may be able to tell there is some dark soot to the color but not always.

We need a place when we see an obvious white to tan its registered as a y to t…Why it’s an educational process.  It’s not a life and death deal.  If you never see or identify this pattern that’s ok.  But you should be aware that there is an agouti pattern that is at the top of the agouti order of dominance that is white to tan.

There is another color that is both a pattern and a solid that is the color black.  Black is at the bottom of the agouti order of dominance.  That is the recessive or no pattern black.  Black is also the most dominant color other than white at the top of the list in dominance.  How can that be?  Mother Nature just threw a curve ball.  It’s true it happens.  You cannot tell by looking at them… they look the same. You can tell if you study the pedigrees. I am going to avoid the genetics.  This is about how to identify the colors and patterns.

The top of the list of patterns an almost solid or appears to be solid   White to Tan the bottom is a solid no pattern black.

If you look at Dr. Sponenberg’s list of patterns you will see that the patterns move from an almost solid light color to a solid dark.  This is change the terminology from black and tan to light and dark.  That is more meaningful to colored angora breeders that black and tan.  We are not going to get very many kids that match Dr. Sponenberg’s patterns in the order of dominance. The patterns on his list are very specific to stripes, location and color. We will have more that do not match those patterns than we will have that match.  We will have partial patterns, we will have two different patterns on the same goat.  And that’s ok…we are not breeding for specific patterns.  BUT… We need a guide so we call the same pattern by the same name.

The generic names that are proposed are similar to what we have been doing but just a little different. We have been using the term badger, dark belly, and black belly, all to describe the same pattern.  The proposal is to call them all dark bellies.

The same is true about the reverse badgers light bellies, propose is to make them generic light bellies.

There is a pattern group that is dark on the front part of the goat and light on the rear part of the goat. The reverse of that pattern is dark rear and light front. WE have called them peacocks, mantled, black and white. Propose dark front light rear, light front dark rear.

There is a color pattern that occurs frequently in wild animals, deer, and antelope.  The pattern is called a wild pattern. The pattern is a dark red or tan top of the body and a light belly, think white tailed deer.  There is a similar pattern that occurs in goats.  In goat the pattern can have a dark shoulder strip or a dark head, with a tan or red body with a light belly. In the angoras this can look like a red or tan with a dark head or shoulder…you may not see the lighter belly at all. Propose use wild color to describe that pattern and its variations.

The next pattern would be light cheeks.  The true pattern is called red cheeks but in the colored Angora goat the cheeks are light on a dark body with light hair on the ears and can be seen on the body as well.

There is another pattern we see with some frequency. It is the Swiss markings or toggenburg pattern.  We have in the past called it a tog.  Suggest we stick with tog with the understanding that it is not a Toggenburg pattern, that is a very specifically defined pattern. Our tog is generic for a pattern that has a dark body to the knees and is light below the knees with a light face. The face may or may not have dark stripes.

About Spotting

The spotting description are self-explanatory With the exception of pinto, the term is generally referred to a car name and spotting patterns in horses.  Suggest we stick to spotting and express if it’s white or colored spotting whatever color spots you see on a colored body.  The patterns can be more extensive by adding flowering frosting and roaning. Keep in mind we are using birth coat patterns.

Birth Coat

We need a starting point to look at the colored angora goats to determine color and pattern.  That point could be at any age.  There are reasons to not use birth coat. The most compelling is that the birth coat is not all mohair and that is what angora goats are all about.

The most compelling reason to use birth coat is that this is the only time in that in the life of a colored angora you will see the color genetics in full display. When the mohair comes in the color gets lost in the mohair.  The other color genetics start to change the goat color such as fading.  The environment can change the color as well.

This project is going to try and stay as close to birth coat with the pictures and descriptions.

The plan was to use birth coats in the pictures.  If you look thru the web site you will find we have deviated from the plan.  We have not been able to find all the patterns in birth coats. There have been a limited number of farms that have been willing to look through their pictures to find the different patterns.

We are looking for pictures if you have them and are willing to share them please contact me. 

If you look at the web site you will see that you can click on the picture and expand it to fill the screen…that was one of the goals.  There are a couple of the pictures that are not in sharp focus.  I am looking for better pictures to replace them.

If you go to the web site  you will see they used some drawings to show the patterns.  The plan is to get similar drawings using an angora out line for the patterns.

We have asked Dr. Phillip Sponenberg to look at the pictures to see if there are any that are not correct.  There are some that do not match the drawings. The drawings are more correct than the pictures.

We need to give credit on the pictures to those that have supplied pictures…not done.

Purpose of this web site… develop a usable guide to assist in registering the colored angora kids. The guide needs to have written descriptions with pictures and drawings.

This started out to be a collection of pictures that would show and name the known goat patterns. These colors and patterns would help in registering our colored angora kids. In looking at 1000’s of pictures to find the patterns to match the description we are producing more that do not match the written descriptions than that do match. The reason is simple the color and pattern for angora goat is a solid white, We as colored angora goat breeders are trying to get the colors and patterns out from under the solid white. When they show up they are every possible color and pattern possible in goats. The published and recognized patterns are bred or goat type specific plus a couple that are unique to angora goats

Need More Pictures It would be nice to have pictures to fill out the Agouti Pattern Page. Here are the pattern descriptions for the pictures needed.

Black Mask Abm tan with black on head, brisket, and down the spine. Pale stripes on head may overlap with white or tan. Can be white.

Repartida Arp black front half (generally lacking light eye bars), tan rear half, legs black on backs and tan on fronts, black sides on thighs.

Fishy Afsh black front half of belly tan and rear half black, black udder or scrotum, medium wide bars on face, legs with continuous black strips down fronts.

Lateral Stripes Als as “black and tan” but a darker zone on belly, reversed leg stripes (black back portions).

There are pictures on the CAGBA Patterned goats that are needed.

Black and White dark front , light rear, no facial stripes

Tog Dark body and belly, light facial and leg stripes