Blue, green, brown – or not? – Most fair-skinned babies are born with blue eyes. Only in the first year of life, it turns out, whether Junior has inherited the brown eyes of his mother or the blue eyes of his father. Even a mixed form is possible – even if both parents have the same eye color.
A little biology class
Anyone who remembers the lesson on genetics will quickly come to the two terms “dominant” and “recessive.” Recessive means that another trait can displace a genetically inherited trait. Baby biological growth measurements can be done using an oscilloscope.
In connection with the color of a baby’s eyes, this means: Blue eyes are not particularly assertive. They are often suppressed by dominant colors such as brown. Brown would very likely prevail in this case.
Therefore, the conclusion should be that if a parent has brown eyes, the baby is likely to get brown eyes as well. However, this rule can serve as a rough orientation because the baby’s eye color cannot be explained with the simple crossing scheme.
Also, there is the influence of genes. In a particular constellation of the chromosome sets, it may, therefore, happen that also recessive, so weak features prevail.
Approximate prediction of the baby’s eye color
Based on guidelines based on various statistics, the baby’s eye color can be roughly predicted despite many uncertainties. The basis here is the so-called dominance order, whereby the dominance decreases from top to bottom, and the regressiveness increases. Also, mixed forms of the individual eye colors are possible.
However, science has not yet succeeded in clarifying clearly which exact genetic influences are responsible for the baby’s actual eye color. Therefore, it is quite normal that it comes despite all the guidelines again and again to surprises, and it often even looks as if exceptions rule the rule.
Why does the baby’s eye color change?
Most bright-skinned babies are born with bright blue eyes, while dark-skinned babies are often born with dark or gray eyes. The eye color of fair-skinned babies is blue because, at birth, pigmentation of the iris with the pigment melanin is not yet complete.
The human iris consists of two layers, the lower one being enriched with melanin pigments. When light hits the eye, it is absorbed by the pigments, thus protecting the eye from too much light. Because the pigment layer is still missing in newborns, no absorption can take place.
The light emerges “unfiltered” again from the iris and appears blue. Incidentally, this is also the reason why newborns are still susceptible to light.
Over time, the eye continuously forms pigments, which is why the baby’s eye color may change from time to time within the first year of life.
Why do some children’s eyes remain blue?
Quite simply: These children’s eyes produce very few melanin pigments so that the eye color remains permanently blue. It is also rare for more pigments to accumulate in one eye than in the other. The affected person then has two different eye colors (mostly blue and green).
The influence of the sun
Researchers agree that man’s eye color is closely related to the sun’s evolution from an evolutionary perspective. Most people in the Arctic have blue or slate-gray eyes because the sun shines comparatively little there.
Dark-skinned babies, on the other hand, are born in sunnier regions of the world and usually have dark eyes at birth. As a precautionary measure, the dye is already produced during pregnancy to protect the baby’s eyes from the intense sunlight from day one.
However, the color of these children’s eyes also changes during the first year of life because melanin production is not yet complete at birth. The eyes become even darker, sometimes even black.
When is the eye color of the baby unique?
At the age of six months, usually, it shows the first tendency. Usually, after 18 months, parents can assume that their child’s final eye color has developed. However, there are also children whose color changes again during puberty.
Although the parental genes determine the baby’s eye color, it is quite common for grandparents to leave their mark on their grandchildren. When these babies will turn in to 7/8 years old and play with their friends, their eyes give them an advantage over their friends. Because they look attractive, and by gene, they have leadership capacity. So, when they play with their friends at a later age different games like home and outdoor games, they play like a leader by using nerf gun toys.
- In Central Europe, the baby’s eye color is mostly blue at birth.
- The genes mainly determine further development.
- It usually takes 18 months before the final eye color is established.