Black


























Black (E) is one of the foundation colors. Ponies are black, chestnut, bay, or brown with other colors diluting/modifying the base colors. Extension and agouti form the basis of all equine color. Extension determines whether or not a pony has black or not and agouti determines where it will go. Black horses have the dominant form of extension and the recessive form of agouti.

Many blacks do not look true black due to sunbleaching, which are known as fading blacks. Some blacks don't fade no matter the elements, and are known as non fading blacks. Non fading blacks often have a bluish (aka blue black) sheen to their coat. Blacks can be born as either an obviously black color or as a greyish black color. The best way to determine if a horse is black or not is to look at the muzzle. If the horse is sunbleached but the muzzle is still black it is most likely a black. If the muzzle is brown than the horse is a bay or brown.

Black is known to be a suppressor of white markings and patterns. Black based ponies can have extensive white, however it will be less common than in chestnut based ponies. Minimally marked white will be more common on black based ponies than on chestnut based.

Black is likely an original color in Chincoteagues as it is widespread and the breed was originally all solid dark colors. A 1891 article in the New York City newspaper The Sun stated that the ponies "are most frequently black, gray, sorrel, or dun [buckskin]." Leonard D. Sale wrote in 1896 in The Horse Review of Chicago that, "The prevailing colors are bay, brown, chestnut and light sorrel. A Washington Post article from 1902 stated that the prevailing colors were bay and black. A 1923 St. Petersburg Times article described the ponies as "bay, gray, dun [buckskin], black, and sorrel". A Delmarva Star article describing the 1930 Pony Penning described the ponies as "many colored", with blacks, browns, bright bays, and so many with spotted coats."


Nonfading solid black. He has the blueish sheen to his coat. Black Gold, Picture courtesy of the National Chincoteague Pony Association.


Sunfaded solid black. Chincoteague Sable, 2008, Picture courtesy of Matt DesJardins.


Nonfading black tobiano as an adult and as a foal. Misty's Black Mist, 2003 and 1989, Adult picture by Amanda Geci, Foal photo courtesy of Kendy Allen.


Black minimal tobiano as a foal and as a 7 year old. Ace's Black Tie Affair, 2007 and 2014, Foal picture courtesy of Matt DesJardins, Adult picture by Amanda Geci


Black tobiano+splash. Tested homozygous for black. Chesapeake Powhattan's Promise, 2014, Picture by Amanda Geci.


Sunfaded black tobiano as an adult and as a foal. Misty's Storm Chaser, 2010 and 2003, Adult picture by Amanda Geci and foal photo courtesy of Kendy Allen.


Black splash with sunfaded winter coat. CLG Surfer's Blue Moon, 2016, Picture by Amanda Geci.


Black tobiano in summer and winter coats. Baybe, 2014 and 2016, Picture by Amanda Geci.


Solid black colt in sunfaded foal coat. Wild foal, 2007, Picture by Amanda Geci.


Solid black as a foal and as an adult, Misty's Midnight Moon, 2007 and 2010, Pictures courtesy of Jennifer Hagquist


Nonfading black tobiano+splash as a foal and as an adult. Misty's Morning Glory, 2001 and 2003, Pictures by Amanda Geci.


Non-fading black tobiano. Historical reference. Wild stallion, 1967, Screen shot from a Wild Kingdom episode.