Quiz: Can You Guess if These Genetic Traits are Dominant or Recessive?
Can You Guess if These Genetic Traits are Dominant or Recessive?
By: Isadora Teich
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Genetics is a tricky and fascinating field. In fact, every part of you comes down to your genetics! Test if you know your dominant traits from recessive ones with this HowStuffWorks quiz!

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Is red hair a dominant trait?

Red hair is a recessive trait caused when a person has two copies of the mutated MC1R gene on their 16th chromosomes. Only 1-2% of the global population are red heads.

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Dark hair is a _______ trait.

This trait is among one of the most common features on earth and is thought to be the original hair color of humans. Black and brown hair are found in all people of all backgrounds and ethnicities, ranging from Asian to African to Latin American to European.

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Are brown eyes dominant or recessive?

Brown eyes are a dominant trait. Over half of the world's population has brown eyes, as the majority of people from Asia and Africa have this eye color.

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Is tone deafness recessive?

Tone deafness is actually a dominant gene and the ability to carry a tune expertly is recessive. However, the majority of people can still carry a very basic tune.

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Straight hair is a _______ trait.

Curly hair is a dominant trait, however, it is more prevalent in some populations than others. For example, it is less common among Caucasians.

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Is farsightedness dominant or recessive?

This is a common vision problem, in which people can see things from afar, but not so well up close. It's thought that over half of Americans are farsighted, even if it is only to a small degree.

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Nearsightedness is a ________ trait.

It's thought that about 30% of Americans are farsighted to some degree. This common condition makes objects up close appear clearly, but far away objects appear blurry.

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Are widow's peaks dominant or recessive?

A widow's peak is a V-shaped patch of hair where the hairline meets the forehead. It gets its name from the old myth that a woman with one would outlive her husband.

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Which kind of trait are dimples?

While technically a medical deformity, dimples have been considered signs of luck and beauty in cultures around the world for centuries. About a fifth of the world's population has them.

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What kind of trait are freckles?

This dominant trait only becomes visible after sunlight exposure. No baby is born with freckles.

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What kind of gene leads to cleft chins?

Those with cleft chins have inherited a recessive gene. These genes are more common in European populations.

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Curly hair is a __________ trait.

While it is thought that our species originally had straight hair, we evolved into curls. The trichohyalin gene is the one responsible for creating curly hair.

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Is the gene for right handed-ness dominant or recessive?

Most of the world's population carries this gene. It is estimated that about 90% of the world is right-handed.

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Is the gene for left-handedness recessive or dominant?

It's estimated that only about 10% of the entire human population has this gene and is left-handed. Humans have been this way for thousands of years.

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The B positive blood type is ____________.

When it comes to human blood, there are A, B and O genes. A and B are dominant, while O is recessive.

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Are green eyes a recessive trait?

This recessive trait is actually the result of a genetic mutation. It's the rarest eye color on earth, as only about 2% of the global population has green eyes.

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Are double eyelashes a dominant trait?

This transcription error on the 16th chromosome results in extra eyelashes growing in the waterline of the eye. This is a dominant trait, meaning that all it takes is one parent with it to virtually guarantee a child will have it too.

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Is having five fingers a recessive or dominant trait?

Despite the vast majority of people having 5 fingers, this trait is actually recessive, while having 6 fingers is dominant. It's thought that since 5 fingers were considered more attractive, it led to more of these people finding partners, which made this recessive trait more common.

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Blue eyes are the result of ________ genes.

This recessive genetic combination is relatively rare globally, but prevalent in certain groups. While less than 10% of the world's whole population has blue eyes, in the European country of Estonia, over 90% of the people are blue-eyed.

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Is being allergic to poison ivy a dominant trait?

Studies show that 15% of people are not allergic to poison ivy. These people are actually displaying a dominant genetic trait.

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Is shortness a dominant or recessive trait?

Shortness is a dominant gene and tallness is recessive. This recessive gene is more common in women and less common in men.

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Is having type O blood a dominant gene?

Type O blood is a universal donor, meaning that it can coexist with any other blood type. While it's a recessive gene, it is not rare, as almost half of all African Americans have it.

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Hairy hands are a __________ trait.

Hairy hands are a dominant trait, however, they are more or less prevalent in some populations. While African Americans often have hairier knuckles, Eskimoes have almost none.

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Is colorblindness dominant?

This recessive trait affects one in 12 men worldwide in some form, and many others are carriers. It affects almost 5% of the global population.

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Are thin lips a recessive trait?

Thin lips are recessive while fuller lips are genetically dominant. Their prevalence varies by community.

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The ability to roll your tongue is the result of a ____________ gene.

Those who can roll their tongue by raising the sides together have inherited a dominant gene. Those who cannot do this have inherited a recessive gene.

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Is albinism a dominant trait?

Albinism is a recessive trait. This rare condition, in which melanin lacks in hair, skin and eyes, affects roughly 1 in 20,000 people globally.

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Is congenital deafness dominant?

Congenital deafness is recessive, which is why one or two deaf biological parents does not guarantee that a child will also be deaf. About 70 million deaf people around the world speak sign language as their first language.

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Are bent pinkies recessive or dominant?

People who can bend their pinkie fingers inward toward their fourth finger are actually expressing a dominant genetic trait. This dominant gene causes the distal section of that finger to bend.

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The cleft chin is the result of a _______ gene.

Those with a cleft chin have a dominant gene. These without one have a recessive gene.

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Is having no body hair a dominant or recessive trait?

Body hair is a genetically dominant trait. However, the presence and distribution of body hair can differ between ethnicities.

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Are long eyelashes a dominant trait?

Those with long eyelashes have a dominant trait. Those with short eyelashes have a recessive trait.

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Are broad noses a dominant or recessive trait?

Broad noses are ultimately a dominant trait while narrow noses are recessive. However, average nose width can often vary by ethnicity.

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Is astigmatism a dominant or recessive trait?

Astigmatism is a dominant trait. If you have normal vision, you have a recessive genetic trait.

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The O blood types are comprised of ________ genes.

O blood types are comprised of recessive genes but are still the most common blood types in America. 38% of the population is O+ and 7% is O-.

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