This post first appeared on December 13, 2011
Back in July, I posted about an unusual grey Connemara stallion (Ponies don’t read). There I linked to two unusual grey Iberians, Comico IV and Comico VI. Recently someone sent me a link to the stallion in the video above. He is Favacho Único, a Mangalarga Marchador from Brazil. His resemblance to the two Comico horses is striking.
Many wanted to call Comico IV a rabicano. I think the dramatic white tail head was what gave people that impression. In the video of Único, that same trait is very noticeable. It can also be seen in the photo of him on the farm’s website. The concentration of the white on the face and legs is also very similar to the Comico horses.
He does have a grey parent, and he does have grey offspring, although whether the color came from him or not is not immediately clear. Grey is a common color in that particularly bloodline, so ruling the stallion in or out as the source is difficult. It is clear that whatever is going on with his greying, it was progressive. He is presently 27 years old. Here is a video of him as a younger horse.
That is an extreme amount of greying for a horse that, while definitely older, isn’t truly ancient. Still, it is even more unusual for a grey horse to look so dark so late in life. That could have been said for the Comico horses as well. They are certainly oddities!
Whatever it is, there are more horses like him among the Herdade horses, the bloodline that produced Único’s sire. This is Herdade Cadillac. Here is the dam of Herdade Cadillac, Herdade Alteza. The sire of Único, Herdade Teatro, is a paternal half-brother to Cadillac. Notice these horses the same concentration of greying on the face and legs. The stallion, Cadillac, even has the same kind of irregular white spots on the body that can be seen on Único. Finding it within a family like that suggests that there is some kind of genetic component. It would be interesting to test the horses (those still living) to see if they are genetically grey. If that is the case, then it would seem that there is some kind of modifier at work that changes the way the greying progresses.