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Percentages

ginamarie1221

Savannah Super Cat
I know this might be a very vague question, but I'm hoping I could get a better understanding on how breeders come up with the serval percentages of their kittens; especially when you're breeding SV to SV. How does that work? Let's say F2 queen to an F6. Hypothetically speaking, how would one calculate that? Is it possible for a kitten to come close to having the same percentage as their mother? Or even higher?

Also, I see that some F1's have more than 50% serval. Is this because the serval was bred to a SV? Is that common?

Thanks everyone :)
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
You need to work from a pedigree and calculate from the original Serval cross(es) and work back... it can get complicated when they are not all outcrossed cats too...

Remember that this is a theoretical guess only, as genes don't divide evenly once past that Serval/domestic first cross... so an F2 might be calculated as 25% but could easily be 0-50% depending on how mama's DNA split up in the eggs...

And yes, sometimes a Savannah is bred back to a Serval. I have a 62.5% F1, her mom is an F2A bred to a Serval.
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
Calculating a cat's TWiG (theoretical wild gene) can get very tricky once you start breeding Savannah x Savannah. In the past I have used Wright's coefficient of inbreeding available in the Breeder's Assistant Pedigree Software to calculate the serval percentage of a cat. Unfortunately, the software is fairly expensive, and of course you must have the pedigrees of all the cats back to the serval entered into it in order for it to give you a proper calculation.
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
Except if you calculate the TWiG then you also need to consider any Bengal (ALC) or Chausie (Jungle Cat) in the pedigree. I found early on that the ALC content can be higher than the Serval content in some of our Savannahs!
 

Treywi

April
Not trying to sound rude by asking this. But what is the reason(s)for even wanting to know the %? I don't breed so wasn't sure if it was for that reason or others. Just curious. :)
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
Well the relative % can tell you a lot. There is a BIG difference in a Savannah that is >50% compared to a Savannah that is <5%! An F1 is a very different Savannah!

But when you are interested in breeding then the estimation of the Serval % can tell you if a cat is a good risk for fertility or not. We don't understand it all yet, there are research projects going on investigating it, but male fertility is an issue in our breed. We know that when we were outcrossing, even at F5A we had ~10% infertility in our males. As we have bred SVs to SVs then that % is increased in our F5 generation males, at SBT they can be almost the % of an F3 male, hence we can easily expect fertility to be impacted.
 

ginamarie1221

Savannah Super Cat
I find it all fascinating; how all of it works. For a non-breeder like me, it's confusing! On a personal note, I've had a couple family members, out of their own curiosity, ask me "how much Serval cat" does my kitten have. It's nice to be able to know an approximate if that question ever comes up. :)
 
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