Blue Roan is a combination of roan coloring on a black base. While the black color adds to the darkness of the horse, the roan gene gives the horse inter-dispersed white hairs on its body. So in essence, blue roan is a combination of black and white hairs that give the illusion of being blue.
Blue roan is a rare color and is quite difficult to breed for because the conditions must be 'just right' in regards to the parent's coloring. In order to have a blue roan foal, you need to have a foal with black legs, a genetically black body, and roaning.
The Roan coloring may not be apparent in the foal coat, but once the first foal coat is shed, roan is stable throughout life. Roan is not progressive -- it does not get lighter over the years, as grey does. It does, however, change seasonally; being very light at certain times and dark at others, often dependent upon how thick the base color grows to adapt to temperatures.
Blue Corn is a variation of Blue Roan, in which speckles and spots of the base color (black) appear. Corning tends to progress with age, because whenever a roan horse gets a cut, scraped or bit, the hair grows back as the base color instead of the roan coloration.
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