Partial blue eyes


It can be really hard to get good shots of horse eyes, so I was really pleased to get a number of good shots of this Pintaloosa mare and her partially blue eyes. The placement of the blue segments certainly give her an unusual expression. This first image shows how her left eye has a blue section towards the upper front of her eye. The apparent shape is accurate – none of the bluish area is glare – since it is consistent across a number of images.

Here is her right eye, with a blue section on the lower side. Notice how a thin line wraps up along the back edge, and how uneven and inconsistent the blue area is. (The blue coloring on the left eye was uniform.)


Here she is looking forward with her mismatched eyes, one with a blue bottom and one with a blue top.


Here are some full-body shots of her, showing her varnish roan (leopard complex) and tobiano patterns. The varnish mark on the top of her tear bone is particularly noticeable in the first picture, and the mark across the nasal bones in the second one.



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9 Responses to Partial blue eyes

  1. Mangalarga March 1, 2012 at 3:22 pm #

    Gorgeous combination! I’d love to make a custom like her one day. She’s simply beautiful! And those eyes are just insane!

    I really enjoy reading your blog, Lesli, and all that you write about horse colours on FL. I’m interested in this topic very much, I’m always happy to read something new, especially when there’s still so much to discover in this matter 🙂

  2. Christine Sutcliffe March 1, 2012 at 7:37 pm #

    Beautiful horse! 😀
    I knew a cob called Robin at my old yard who had an eye a little like that. He was a good old fashioned black tobiano. (and had a deathly fear of jumps, poles, wings, blocks, you name it, he’d bolt at it! XD)

    Here we are after a lesson…can you tell he lived out? XD

  3. DeeAnn Kjelshus March 1, 2012 at 9:56 pm #

    Gorgeous and fascinating. Thanks so much for sharing!

    Love this Blog Lesli, thanks for sharing your knowledge.

  4. Kristina Pry March 4, 2012 at 12:41 am #

    What is the difference between a leucistic animal vs. an albino?

    • Mindy March 6, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

      If I remember correctly, leucism is lack or reduction of all pigment including chromophores and albinism is lack or reduction of melanin only.

    • The Equine Tapestry March 6, 2012 at 7:47 pm #

      The difference that is going to matter to most people interested in animal coloring is that albinos do not have melanin, so they have pink eyes. Leucistic animals have impaired pigment, but they typically have dark (or at least not pink) eyes.

      Leucism is a confusing term for horsemen because it is used to mean incomplete coloring, or “piebald” coloring. Horsemen have been taught that the term “piebald” (along with the related “skewbald”) is not scientifically correct, but that’s actually the traditional scientific term for white patterning in animals.

      It is also used to refer to reduced pigment. Instead of white patches, those animals have an allover paler appearance. The Leucistic turkey vulture that appeared in this blog a while ago is a good example of that use of the term.

      I don’t know if one is more proper than the other, but both are used pretty often.

      • Alissa Hoerdt March 7, 2012 at 10:14 am #

        I do really need to add that no true known cases of albinism has been documented in horses but it is more a term to describe ‘white’ horses such as cremello.

        • Kristina Pry March 11, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

          Thanks Alissa, although I’m aware of that fact, I was asking about all animals in general not specifically horses though, since there are leucistic zebras that look like a cream dilute horse with stripes.

          • dakota328 March 15, 2012 at 10:34 am #

            So happy you already know that! Its a personal pet peeve of mine when others talk about albino horses.