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A scur is an incompletely developed horn growth. In cattle, scurs are not attached to the skull, whereas horns are attached and have blood vessels and nerves.[1] Scurs may also occur in sheep.[2][citation needed]

Genetic Inheritance[edit]

The gene for scurs is inherited separately [3] from the polled gene in cattle.[4] Not all polled animals lack the scur gene. Since horned is recessive to polled,[5] no horned cattle carry the polled allele, but they may also carry scurs.

In cattle, genetic expression of the scur gene is different from that of the dominant polled gene, in that the scur gene's expression depends on the sex of the animal. The scur gene is dominant in males and recessive in females.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Dove W. (1935) The physiology of horn growth: a study of the morphogenesis, the interaction of tissues, and the evolutionary processes of a Mendelian recessive character by means of transplantation of tissues. Journal of Experimental Zoology 69, 347– 405.
  2. ^ Johnston SE, Beraldi D, McRae AF, Pemberton JM, Slate J. 2009. Horn type and horn length genes map to the same chromosomal region in Soay sheep. Heredity (Edinb). 104(2):196-205. doi: 10.1038/hdy.2009.109
  3. ^ Asai, M, T. G. Berryere, Schmutz, S. M. 2004. The scurs locus in cattle maps to bovine chromosome 19. Animal Genetics 35:34-39
  4. ^ Georges, M., R. Drinkwater, T. King, A. Mishra, S.S. Moore, D. Nielsen, L.S. Sargeant, A. Sorensen, M.R. Steele, X. Zhao, J.E. Womack and J. Hetzel. 1993. Microsatellite mapping of a gene affecting horn development in Bos taurus. Nat. Genet. 3: 206-210.
  5. ^ Long, C. R. and K. E. Gregory. 1978. Inheritance of the horned, scurred, and polled condition in cattle. J. Heredity. 69:395-400.
  6. ^ Allison, B.C. "Inheritance of Polledness, Horns and Scurs in Beef Cattle". North Carolina State University. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 

External links[edit]

  • The Genetics of Polled/Horned/Scurred in Cattle [1]