Their cause is unknown and they do not appear to be genetically linked to other spotting patterns, although they are often mistaken for them. Beyond the obvious case of appaloosa spotting patterns, roans can display similar patches of dark hair. Called ‘corn marks’ or ‘corn spots’, these are spots of solid colored hairs which grow over old cuts, scratches & scars. Another potential culprit is dappling which is patches of darker hairs on a lighter coat (often an indication of the grey modifier).
No Rhyme or Reason
This is a rare and random spotting that is most often found on chestnut & palomino animals. The spots can range from slightly darker than coat color to almost black and vary in size from silver dollar size to the size of an outspread hand. These interesting markings can be present at birth but may not appear until the animal is several years old.
Man O’ War shares bloodlines with the original Bend Or and was said to also possess Bend Or spots.
The Color of Horses
Color genetics are a fascinating field (& one I’ll never fully understand) but I’d like to share the best information available. If you know more about Bend Or spots, I’d love to hear from you in the comments. Be sure to also check out the rest of the equine rainbow.