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Selectively-bred Morphs
Genetics For Herpers

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[Melanins]  [Erythrins]  [Patterns]  [Selection]  [Combos]  [Oddities]  [A-what-istic???]

Selectively bred morphs are the result of selecting for a particular look over generations, instead of an on/off gene. Selective breeding is more like mixing paints. After outcrossing a line, some of the characteristics might be recovered in future generations, but much of it can also be lost. Breeds of dogs are a good example: crossing a poodle to a collie will leave you with mixed puppies. You couldn't just breed them and get poodles and collies popping out in the second generation. Instead it would take many generations to recover anything resembling a purebred specimen of either breed.

Okeetee is the name of an area in South Carolina made famous by some field collected specimens. Usage has since evolved to describe snakes from that area with the particular look, and also snakes (regardless of origin) with the particular look. The Okeetee look is one of bright and contrasty colors, an orange ground color with boldy-bordered red saddles.

Miami phase was named after a few snakes found in pet shops around the Miami area. It has since evolved to mean any snake with a light silvery (and not orange) ground color.

Upper Keys or Rosy Rat used to be classified as a separate subspecies. These are somewhat hypomelanistic in appearance and often have very weak belly checkering. The terrazzo and cinder morphs have come from upper keys corns.

Kisatchie corns are now classified as P. slowinskii and are considered a separate species. They somewhat resemble anerythristic, with dark brown saddles on a light gray ground color.

Aztec and zigzag are applied to many pattern variations which include zipper patterned saddles and broken or shattered saddles. There is no clear line between aztec and zigzag and some snakes show both effects simultaneously. There may be a gene responsible for aztec patterns, but if it exists, it is expressed chaotically and is too unpredictable to be relied upon in the same way as other genes. It is often found in lavender corns and hets, and is suspected that the lavender gene is responsible in those cases.

Reverse Okeetee corns are amelanistics which have been selectively bred for large white border areas, and usually also toward a bright orange ground color.

Candycane corns are amelanistic which have been selectively bred for a clean white ground color, and are the amel equivalent of a Miami Phase normal. The saddles range from orange to red and thus are sometimes called red candycanes and orange candycanes.

Sunglow corns are amelanistics which have been selectively bred for a bright orange ground color and a lack of white bordering. The result is a beautiful two-toned red-on-orange pattern. Since motley tends to reduce or remove the border areas, many amelanistic motleys qualify as sunglow motley corns.

Creamsicles are amelanistics which have been hybridized with emoryi. They range from red creams to yellow creams, depending on the amount of heritage from each species. The normal variation is called rootbeer, and the hypo emoryi crosses are called cinnamons.

Bloodred corns are diffused corns (also typically expressing the masque trait, too) which have been selectively bred for a subdued pattern and extreme red. Some lines go for brighter reds while others go for darker reds. Kathy & Bill Love originally named this complex morph in the 80's based on its coloration. In 2004, recognizing that the bloodred morph contained a pattern gene, they suggested that the pattern be called diffused or diffusion. Many hobbyists including myself have supported this recommendation and as a result it is now possible to draw the distinction between diffused corns only expressing the gene, and bloodred corns with the extra selection.

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