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Cock-feathered male Sebright Bantam, United States, 1914-1924

Thomas Hunt Morgan (1866-1945) bred this pair of male Sebright Bantams (a type of chicken) in order to investigate the genetic inheritance of plumage. One male has the plumage and feathering normally associated with hens; the other has the plumage associated with cocks. Morgan found that the dominant gene for plumage is hen-feathering. Morgan won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1933 for discovering the role played by chromosomes in heredity.

Object number:

1996-136 Pt2

Related Themes and Topics



Glossary: bantam

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Glossary: inheritance

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Glossary: gene

Part of the nucleus of a cell that determines how our bodies function. Genes are passed from parents to children.

Glossary: Nobel Prize

Awarded annually for outstanding work in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, economics, and the promotion of peace.