Preserving Founders and Population Genetics

For those who are interested in the long term preservation of the breed and why it is that the Basenji Club of America has petitioned AKC to open the stud books for the next 5 years to Native Stock imported from Africa, I have started this thread.

A great place to start to learn about the Basenji breed and the basenjis that are the Founder is the African Stock Project Library, http://www.basenji.org/african/library.htm

There are several ways to look at how well we are doing at preserving the contribution of these founders. One way is to look at the total percentage contribution of these dogs which Lisa Corell Auerbach did several years ago though I am not sure where it was published. Another is to look at male tail and female tail lines. The loss of tail lines is quite significant and they can never be gotten back. One example is Fula of the Congo who still has a significant total percentage contribution but there is only 1 breeder who has her female tail line and it was nearly lost because they very nearly didn't continue with the last female.

If anyone wants to talk about the importance of new Founders, researching their tail lines, and other genetic diversity issues, I think it would be best to move these discussions to this thread.

Here is a link to the new african imports from the BCOA website. It has pictures of the imports and information on the process of the AKC opening the stud books.
http://www.basenji.org/NativeStock/ImportIndex.htm

Dan

Sorry, you have to help me out here. I'm familiar with the African Stock Project but have no idea what you mean by "tail lines" and "the loss of tail lines".

Throw a pet owner a bone, please:o

Is there an email or an opinion poll we can contact to voice how important it is to some of us to open the stud books to imports??

The stud book is open per the petition that was presented by the BCOA with that request. It will be open from 2009 to 2011 …. (I think those are the dates)
And if you want your opinion heard, members of BCOA will be asked to vote on groups of possible additions to the stud book...
All of it is reveiwed on the BCOA site... http://www.basenji.org/NativeStock/ImportIndex.htm

And lvoss is a great source for learning about "tail lines"…. so I will leave that to her to explain in "layman" terms.... plus many other questions about genetics...

Tail lines are used to track the inheritance of mitochondrial DNA and Y chromosomes.

Since mitochondrial DNA is inherited Maternally the Female Tail line is determined by tracing your dog back along its pedigree through the maternal line. So basically following the very bottom of the pedigree all the way back until you get to Unknown African Dog.

All of my girls, Rally, Rio, and Sophie have the same female tail line since Rally is the mother of Rio and Sophie. My girls female tail line goes back to Bokoto of Blean. TC the girl that I have bred Nicky to has a female tail going back to Amatangazig.

The male tail line traces the inheritance of the Y chromosome since it is only inherited from father to son. You can trace the male tail line following the very top of the pedigree back to Unknown African Dog.

Nicky's male tail goes back Wau which I think is one of the most common male tail lines in the gene pool. Cole, Rio's littermate, has a male tail back to Kindu. Zeke, Sophie's littermate, has a male tail back to Avongara Diagba.

Some of the founders no longer have tail lines meaning their Y chromosome if male and mitochondrial DNA if female has been lost from our gene pool. Some of these dogs still have descendants just not tail lines, some founders we have lost all together.

Very cool! Riley's goes waaaaay back to Wau also. And Zip's female tail line was Avongara Zamee in oh…4 generations. I never thought to keep clicking back on Zande pedigree search to see how far back it goes...

@lvoss:

Tail lines are used to track the inheritance of mitochondrial DNA and Y chromosomes.

Since mitochondrial DNA is inherited Maternally the Female Tail line is determined by tracing your dog back along its pedigree through the maternal line. So basically following the very bottom of the pedigree all the way back until you get to Unknown African Dog.

All of my girls, Rally, Rio, and Sophie have the same female tail line since Rally is the mother of Rio and Sophie. My girls female tail line goes back to Bokoto of Blean. TC the girl that I have bred Nicky to has a female tail going back to Amatangazig.

The male tail line traces the inheritance of the Y chromosome since it is only inherited from father to son. You can trace the male tail line following the very top of the pedigree back to Unknown African Dog.

Nicky's male tail goes back Wau which I think is one of the most common male tail lines in the gene pool. Cole, Rio's littermate, has a male tail back to Kindu. Zeke, Sophie's littermate, has a male tail back to Avongara Diagba.

Some of the founders no longer have tail lines meaning their Y chromosome if male and mitochondrial DNA if female has been lost from our gene pool. Some of these dogs still have descendants just not tail lines, some founders we have lost all together.

And my Kobey is Amatangazig and Bokoto of Blean also ….

If you all have a chance, go into Sally's pedigree site and you can see pictures of these very, very first Basenjis from the 40's....

Here is the link to Sally's site
http://www.pedigrees.zandebasenjis.com/

This is so cool!!! Thanks Lisa for explaining it all so clearly. Ruby's tail line is back to Amatangazig (neat to see her pic). Brando's tail line is back to Moko (no pic unfortunately). So neat to see pictures of the dogs way back.

Actually, there was another thing that I never noticed before about Ruby's pedigree and that is that she's related to Nate (Akuaba's Tornado)…not sure how I had missed that (Ruby's registered name on her AKC paperwork is Eldorado N Akuaba's Bejeweled).

Sally's site is such a wealth of info! It was especially cool checking the tail lines for me as Ruby is from the US, but Brando is from Finland...so it was cool to look at his pedigree...and I had never done it past the regular 5 levels.

Thanks Lisa!!!

Just want to clarify. At Sally's web page you follow the bitches links back by way of clicks to the bottom most bitch on the page for the tail lines? Studs, only the top most link?

Clarification on one other thing please,Ivoss…..(previous post by Ivoss)...."Some of these dogs still have descendants just not tail lines, some founders we have lost all together." Where's the difference between 'a descendant of', and 'the loss of' a tail line in the documents at Sally's site? I'm not sure what I'm looking at in that respect . Thanks in advance for indulging this particular 'ignorant but trying to educate myself' pet owner.:D

BTW, thanks to those here that posted this thread and it's follow-up posts. That's why I came here to the forums to begin with. To learn and share.

LOL, okay so I've traced back lineage through the years to unknown African on the whole pedigree, but it still means nothing to me.
ha ha

I guess I don't "get" what the "tail line" is - I mean, ultimately they are ALL from an unknown African. Is it a matter of how many generations back?

Maybe it's lack of sleep, but I just don't get it. Thank God I'm not a breeder.

The last dog on the bottom and top of the pedigree BEFORE it says "unknown african dog" is the original founder that your dog is descended from.

On Roo's mother's side, he goes back to Amatangazig, which means that Roo is related to Ruby (owned by renaultf1) distantly, anyway!

It's really quite cool.

Okay, BUT…. aren't they ALL traceable eventually back to a founder dog? So... how is a "tail line" lost?
Or is it a matter of the number of degrees between current and unknown?

{Geez, am I just particularly stupid?}

Okay, it appears that BOTH of my dogs come from Tango {and N'Gashi} at the bottom of their pedigree and BOTH come via Kindu {and Kasenyi} at the top.

Interesting to me because, although I know they are related on the dam side, Keoki's sire came from Australia.

A bit of spam got in there I think.

Anyway what a cool site (Sally's) - I traced EL D back (a long way) to founders Amantagazig and Wau. Interesting to see the pictures - I can see where he gets his chunkiness from.

A question to the breeders on the forum…

I notice that reading through the African stock project pages that some of the original Basenjis seem to be taller than the current. I wanted to get some opinions from those of you actively breeding as to what your thoughts are on this area. I see that the standard places the Basenji at 16 to 17 inches. Do you as breeders feel this represents the traditional height of Basenjis or do you feel that breeders over the years have tended towards the smaller stature. In the original news post from 1937 the author lists Basenjis as the same size and stature as the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound. This seems at odds with both the standard for Basenjis as well as my personal experience with American Basenjis, as both the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound stand at 18-21 inches.

Have we in your opinions selected for the smaller spectrum of these dogs over the years, and as we get more bloodlines of newer imports into the genetic mix, will we continue to look for smaller dogs, or will larger Basenjis still be incorporated if they are over 17 inches?

Ultimately as breeders I am also wondering how high up in the requirements for breeding stock you place the height of the dog.

Thank you so much for indulging my curiosity. 🙂

@LiveWWSD:

A question to the breeders on the forum…

I notice that reading through the African stock project pages that some of the original Basenjis seem to be taller than the current. I wanted to get some opinions from those of you actively breeding as to what your thoughts are on this area. I see that the standard places the Basenji at 16 to 17 inches. Do you as breeders feel this represents the traditional height of Basenjis or do you feel that breeders over the years have tended towards the smaller stature. In the original news post from 1937 the author lists Basenjis as the same size and stature as the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound. This seems at odds with both the standard for Basenjis as well as my personal experience with American Basenjis, as both the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound stand at 18-21 inches.

Have we in your opinions selected for the smaller spectrum of these dogs over the years, and as we get more bloodlines of newer imports into the genetic mix, will we continue to look for smaller dogs, or will larger Basenjis still be incorporated if they are over 17 inches?

Ultimately as breeders I am also wondering how high up in the requirements for breeding stock you place the height of the dog.

Thank you so much for indulging my curiosity. 🙂

Remember we have no DQ for size, the standard is (IMO) from an average… not a limit. We alreaday have ones bigger (and smaller) both in dogs and bitches. I doubt that any new import from Africia that applies for acceptance into the stub book would be discounted just because of size.

And if you have ever seen Veronica Tudor-William's Basenjis, The Barkless Dog first published in 1946, the size is of the dogs were 16 to 17 on the average.

@LiveWWSD:

A question to the breeders on the forum…

I notice that reading through the African stock project pages that some of the original Basenjis seem to be taller than the current. I wanted to get some opinions from those of you actively breeding as to what your thoughts are on this area. I see that the standard places the Basenji at 16 to 17 inches. Do you as breeders feel this represents the traditional height of Basenjis or do you feel that breeders over the years have tended towards the smaller stature. In the original news post from 1937 the author lists Basenjis as the same size and stature as the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound. This seems at odds with both the standard for Basenjis as well as my personal experience with American Basenjis, as both the Samoyed and the Norwegian Elkhound stand at 18-21 inches.

Have we in your opinions selected for the smaller spectrum of these dogs over the years, and as we get more bloodlines of newer imports into the genetic mix, will we continue to look for smaller dogs, or will larger Basenjis still be incorporated if they are over 17 inches?

Ultimately as breeders I am also wondering how high up in the requirements for breeding stock you place the height of the dog.

Thank you so much for indulging my curiosity. 🙂

Remember we have no DQ for size, the standard is (IMO) from an average… not a limit. We alreaday have ones bigger (and smaller) both in dogs and bitches. I doubt that any new import from Africia that applies for acceptance into the stub book would be discounted just because of size.

And if you have ever seen Veronica Tudor-William's Basenjis, The Barkless Dog first published in 1946, the size is of the dogs were 16 to 17 on the average.

Thanks Pat,
I almost included in my post that I know we don't have a DQ for size.
In your opinion is the size of a dog or bitch completely inconsequential to breeding as long as the body conformation is there (And of course HEALTH and temperament)?

Also What is the tallest/shortest dog that you yourself have bred. Just as a curiosity.

@LiveWWSD:

I see that the standard places the Basenji at 16 to 17 inches.

The actual wording in the standard describes height as a single point. Females 16 inches at the withers. Males 17 inches at the withers.

The rule of thumb that I was always told, by many long time fanciers is that most breeders aim for being within +/- 1 inch of that mark. So for females that would be 15-17 inches and males 16-18 inches. I think we drift in that range quite a bit sometimes tending toward larger, sometimes smaller.

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