Report Says Redheads Disappearing - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

8/27/07-Longview

Report Says Redheads Disappearing

The days of "redheaded freckle-faced" kids may one day be a thing of the past, if a genetic science report is true.

"My brothers called me carrot top and red on the head" said redhead Kathy Page of Longview. 

But according to a genetic scientists' report in National Geographic, the recessive gene that causes red hair is disappearing.

"It just really surprises me.  I thought that there would be more, but I never really thought that we'd be a dying breed," said redhead Tracy McKinney.

"I hate to think that redheads may no longer exist, because I think we're very special" said Page.

According to the article, red hair is thought to be a genetic mutation that began in northern Europe, which helped its owners make Vitamin D from sunlight. Today, only two percent of the world's population has red hair, and scientists believe it could totally disappear within a hundred years.

"When I was growing up, there were no redheads.  But here recently I've seen more redheaded children" said Ashley Blocker, whose nine month old daughter is a redhead.

One place where red hair could survive is Scotland, which has the highest proportion of redheads in the world. 13- percent of people there have red hair.

Bob Hallmark bhallmark@kltv.com.

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