Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Still waiting.. (and New BoyZ!)

I admit, this week is rather blah in concerns to the educational blogs and action shots regarding what is hatching out here.
The problem stems from the fact that the season had a huge lull in egg laying. Heck, I had a clutch laid yesterday!

But we are all still waiting with baited breath on the two egg G-stripe clutch. It is due to hatch by this weekend, so I hope to have some type of photo to share saying "I FINALLY GOT MY GENETIC STRIPE". Beware.

We are also waiting for things to shed so that I can do the Special educational blog, which should happen next week some time.

And here we are with Mister Sterling. He is very difficult to photograph right, as he is much brighter than the photos suggest. I need to see what I can manage in terms of a light box with this guy.

He is a beautiful male, and I can't WAIT to use him this year!!

He is one of the males I am so worried about using just because he can do so much!

Everything Pastel, and half Pewter? How can you go wrong with that?

Now just to see what to pair him with...

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Note to self: Acrylic Breaks!!! (And New BoyZ)

I am very upset with myself...

I was moving my acrylic display tower for the shows from on place in the garage to another last night, and it FELL. And as we may or may not know... Acrylic breaks!

So now my tower is unusable, and I am honestly pretty upset about it. Those things are expensive!

And, since I am doing the Pasadena show, I needed it. Now, I can't use it! ARGH!!

I can get another one, but shipping on such a delicate item is expensive as well. I am pretty bummed out.


Anyway, here is another male I promised I would unveil. Yes, this guy may look familiar, and he has been discussed before, but he is actually going to be in the rotation a lot more since last year he didn't do anything. He is big enough and old enough now that I am counting him in as an actual breeder.

Introducing Pee-Oh-Gee. (Again)

Pastel Orange Ghost that will be put together with a few things, I am thinking Spider as well as maybe a Pastel? I'm not 100% sure. More Ghost stuff would be cool to have.

Maybe even a Pied when the time comes, but I don't have a breeder Pied female yet. Hmmmmm...

Oh the possibilities!

I'm excited!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Weekend update and Introducing the BoyZ!!

This weekend, we went to the Fair. It closes in the next week, and Joel and I make a huge effort every year to make it.

We had a lot of fun!

It was beautiful, we ate too much, got a little overheated (it was HOT!!) and really enjoyed our time. There were a few snakes there (there was a really cool setup with Iguanas and Kinkajous and a Burm, and then there was an Anaconda you had to pay to see) but the camera died...

Hey look! It's the fair! :)

Enough of that.

This week, I will be introducing the new males that will be ready to work it this season.

Let us begin with the newest male.

This is my new Lemonblast.

I am REALLY excited to have him on the rotation, because this is my first Pin Combo EVER! I didn't get into the Pins early on, but now... I'll be rocking it!

He is a really cool animal, and he can do some great things for me.

The one thing I do notice is that he is much browner as a Pastel than other morphs. This happens with Pinstripes, as the browns are already there. Its tough to get a BRIGHT Lemon Blast. I'll be working on it for sure!!

Who will come out of the bag tommorow? We shall see, my friends.. We shall see :)

Friday, September 25, 2009

Waiting... and thinking

So now that most of the clutches have hatched, and I am waiting to see about the other two eggs of the Genetic Stripe clutch, I am at a loss.

Every year it gets harder to plan the season, and this year is just beginning to get frustrating.

I am trying to accumulate the animals that I know I want and can use in the next few years, but then the problem is, there is always MORE.

Its really very frustrating, because with all the cool stuff out there, there is always other things you could be doing with your animals.

I have a lot of time to think about things. Lots of time to sit and look at my room and think "Wow, that would be great to do that... but..."

And I'm not saying I need more.. I'm saying I need focus!

I need to figure out what awesome morphs out there I want to see pipping out of eggs.

Yes, today is a "Heather complaining day" and I apologize. I need to vent, and the blog is a great way to do it.

I have a few already solid plans, and I am proud of myself for that. I am very excited for the season due to these plans, but... there are those straggling animals that I wonder what I should do??

Of course, Visual Recessives to poss hets to prove them out. Co-doms to Normals. But what combos? Run a few males thru my co-dom females? See what pops out? Sure!!! But that is the lazy way out.

I will on Monday introduce you all to the new males that will be ready to go into rotations this season. Maybe then you all can help me figure out who should go to what, eh?

Have a great weekend, my friends. I know I will!

Happy Birthday, Jasmin!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Finally!! But still not good... (Not for the Faint of Heart)

Well, here's the story.

My last poss het Genetic Stripe girl only had THREE eggs. They are due to hatch in a week or so, but of course, one egg went bad a week ago.

So, I got curious, and decided to open it in the name of science (and curiosity, and boredom).

It was not alive by any means, but what I did see made me very sad.

It was a G Stripe. A FULL Stripe too, like its father.

Granted, I could say, "At least I know she is proven.." Yeah, there is that. I'm somewhat glad I did cut the egg. I would have tossed it and wouldn't have known.

But it is always sad to see a bad egg and the baby that tried to live.

But as you can see, it was developed enough to have its pattern (or lack thereof in this case), but something went wrong with the yolk it seems. It was hard and rubbery, when usually it is soft and pliable when attached to a living animal. This may have been the cause of the death, or the subsequent aftermath, but it is an interesting point to note.

Yes, its ugly, yes, its kind of gross. But it is in learning that we grow.

And I have learned a few things by doing this.

And hopefully you have too.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Morphs that don't make you go WOW

I was talking to someone about this a while back, and I wanted to touch on them today.

There are several morphs out there that are "sub par" so to speak. Not in awesomeness, by any means, but by making a non-snake person say WOW!

A few off the top of my head are:

Black Pastels
Het Reds

Now, I only write this from experience. I know people, even snake people, that when I show them some of these morphs, they are like.."Oh."

They are not bright, the patterns look similar to a normal, and they are not distinctively different in color.

Granted, the list has some that are more outstanding than others (aka Axanthic and Fire versus Sable or Chocolate), but it has to do with those people who are immediately drawn to BRIGHT and WOW!

Lets make a Bright and WOW list:

Super Pastels
Super Fires
Any Leucistic
Super Black Pastels
Super Cinnamons

And of course, there are more.

When I took the photos of the children at the show, and told them to pick out a morph, 90% of them wanted to hold the Albino. Why? Cause it is BRIGHT and WOW!

Its obviously different.
Its obviously bright.
And people love them.

Now why are we discussing this?

Cause people love Bright and Wow and want them!

And people are less inclined to buy the NOT Bright and Wow, unless for a planned project or for a particular love for darker morphs (There are few out there that enjoy the darker morphs)

Why do I bring this up?

Because it is much easier to move the WOW morphs than the NOT WOW morphs. Problem is, there are great combos and uses for both, but some people fail to see that. No problem though, as people who have some of both are more inclined to breed them together, making a combo WOW morph. And then the NOT WOW morph goes back into demand.

Can't be mad at that!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


It's been a hell of a week already.

I've been recovering from a really great weekend, only to have things kinda get complicated.

And to top it off, as of last night, the Crystal has gone to a new home.

So, unfortunately, I won't be able to share anymore photos on the blog about him. I can and will, however, go into more detail regarding the Specials. I know that people have a lot of questions about them, and I will try my hardest to get those questions answered.

Today, I actually hadn't planned a topic, other than rambling on about my still unsure season as of next year.

To answer some of the questions in the comment section last week:

Yes, I do have Het Reds I am working with this season, and I will be trying to put more into them this year.

I do plan on Killer Bees this season, depending on the Pastel females I have stashed in the grow up rack.

I am also planning to kick the Pied to a Black Pastel to see what comes out.

I can't do Axanthic Stripes yet, since I only have one Axanthic big enough, and she is going to be proven to be Het Snow this season (I hope)

I do not have a Fire, nor do I have a Vanilla, but I'm sure I can come up with something when the time comes. I'm working on it.

I am planning and have figured out a few more morph combos to play with:

Queen Bees
Spinner Blasts
Super Pastel Yellowbellies
Pastel Ivories
Pastel Lesser Mojave

From there... we will see. I need to gather a few more things this season for the next, so I'm working on it. I will introduce the new things when they come.

And now, its time to breathe and try and relax. Have a great day, my friends.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Crystal Ball

So its been two years in the making, but I have hatched out the Crystal Ball.

How, do you ask?

Well... I own a Special Female.

I bred her last year with no luck, and this year, I had done so as well. She was a finicky eater, so I was resigned not to get anything out of her.

But two months ago, she laid five eggs. I was ecstatic!

So how does one make a Crystal Ball?

In this picture, you see a Special, a Mojave and a Crystal. It is a basic combo morph. You need a Special and a Mojave to make a Crystal, and a Crystal is a Special Mojave. Does that make sense? Also, Lessers have been used to make Crystals as well. I'm almost certain Butters would work as well, but it hasn't been done.

Crystals are beautiful morphs, and I really am glad to have been able to hatch out this guy.

People have asked me, how can you tell what the Specials look like? Well, there are two in the photo below the normal. They are subtle, but obvious morphs with flames and a lighter tone that normal animals. I will make a blog specifically for Specials another day.

And here is the whole clutch. I ended up with 0.1 normal, 1.1 Special, 1.0 Mojave, and 1.0 Crystal.

Can't be mad at that. We'll just have to see what happens for next season.

Friday, September 18, 2009

My Ghost Story

Well, I have to admit, when I started out breeding and gathering my breeding stock, I didn't actually have much of a pull to get Ghosts (or Hypos, as you may say). *Like a certain Krystal out there???*

I didn't see the real need for them, and the combos, although beautiful, were all pretty basic, and not mind blowing.

So I decided to forgo getting any Hets in the beginning, and continued on my way.

A few years later, I saw the most awesome combo of Ghost I had ever seen.

The HoneyBee.

As you may or may not know, the HoneyBee is a Hypo Spider.

And I knew I had to have one.

So in trades, I managed to collect a few Hypos and Hypo combos and hets. Now, I have a respectable collection of Hypo/Ghost genes, and I plan on working them into a few nice projects, one of them being the HoneyBee.

And while I understand that individually, Hypos are not awe inspiring morphs, not animals that people see and go "WOW" to, but they do have great potential for combos, and to be honest, anything with Hypo in it just seems to POP more.

Take the Pastel Orange Ghost. It is a subtle difference from the blaring yellows and blacks of a decent Pastel, but in that subtlety is a great beauty.

It makes the colors more genteel and calm, smoothing out the rough edges of the morph, and making it glow.

Granted, my photography doesn't do the Ghost morph justice, but I hope that in showing you these pictures, you see that the Ghost/Hypo Morph is an excellent morph to work with in making animals glow.

My plans with my Hypos?

Caramel Glows..
Hypo Pieds...
HumbleBees (Hypo Bumblebee)
Hypo Black Pastels
Hypo Pewters

and of course more... Ohh, the possibilities.

So, to those Hypo Haters out there, open your mind!! There are some amazing things to be done with the Hypo. And if nothing else.. You can say you've seen Ghosts.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Pewter transformation

The Pewters are getting big, and my holdback is getting very nice!!!

She's getting her yellows and oranges well, and I really like her. She looks very different from the other Pewters I have had in the past, and I really do enjoy the difference. I even took some pics with some smaller Pewters to compare.

Pewters come out silvery as babies, turn a bit black, and then the yellows start to come out. So with a difference of about a month, this is how the animal turns colors. Isn't it fascinating??

I am actually looking forward to the changes within the smaller Pewters to see how the development changes.

I'll take a pic in the next month or so to see the differences.

Anyway, this is again somewhat along the lines of Pastels, as the whole yellowing effect is only due to the coloration in Pastels themselves.

I am planning on introducing new males to you guys next week, and I hope to have a few more pippers by the end of the week, so stay tuned!!

Maybe I'll do a Ghost episode for Krystal, cause those things are AWESOME!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Pastel Combo Magic

A few of my girls have shed and eaten for me, and I wanted to introduce them to you.

I have a friend, a wierd friend, who actually doesn't enjoy Pastels. She breeds, but she has no interest in Pastels what so ever! I have to say, I don't quite understand it, but to be honest, I don't like a few morphs, and I know there are people out there who don't like particular morphs either.

So she doesn't like Pastels, but HOW CAN YOU NOT??

Here is my Pastel Lesser that is not solid striped. She is gaining a lot of awesome colors...

Yellow is a great color. I really love sunset colors, yellows washing into oranges or reds, and this snake does a great job of making that happen.

And my Super Pastel finally decided to shed. She is a fiesty one, and I am very glad to finally have one in the collection. I love the white-out spots of Supers.. They just make the yellows pop even more!

And my favorite Pastel combo that I produced so far this year. I am so incredibly stoked of my luck of producing this girl and her sister, and I am totally in love with her. I was tempted to try and sell her, but I have since gotten my head out of the clouds, and she is officially Heather's forever.

So even with the basic yellow and brown and blacks that are produced by Pastels, how can you not appreciate what it does in combos???

So I suppose the real question is, you know what you like, what morphs would you not be interested in working with?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Big List

Well, my friend Keith asked me a question that I have decided to make the forefront of today's blog.

Is there a BIG LIST of everything that makes everything in the Ball Python Morph world?


Wanna know why?

Well... Part of the reason is because things are just moving so fast within the morph combo world, some people just have things fall between the cracks. Another reason is that some Ball Python breeders are secretive. People don't want other people to know what projects they are working on, so that they can't be beaten to achieving it first. The main reason I can think of that there isn't a "list" is that people are too lazy.

I have to admit, it is a huge undertaking, and I know people who have tried to get things done. BUT... every year, there are more combos, and those that are only introduced to friends, so the general public doesn't see it until a few months later, and only once before it disappears into the mist..

"Did you see it?? I think it was produced by X this year, but I can't find a picture..."

And of course, the internet lives on pictures.. But for the recluse breeder, pictures are admitting that they have what they have, so some don't take photos at all.

So, bottom line, it would take a huge undertaking, one which I admit I am too lazy to take on. Too much politics would be involved, too much snooping, but I am aware of the goings on enough to say "Why yes, this was made.."

Here are a few links of those lists that are not complete (when it will ever be?):

Living Art Reptiles
World of Ball Pythons

Also, for a list that hasn't yet been done??? That would be enormous. Quadruple co-dom combos and more have yet to be done, and there are innumerable combinations to mix with the more than 40 base morphs that are out there.

So.... That hasn't been done.

And again, on top of everything, to give credit to the FIRST person to have done the combo?? Politics again. I am one of those people, as I did a combo before anyone else. Do I expect to be given credit? Not really, because Ralph Davis did it a few weeks after I did. He has more presence, so therefore, he will more than likely get the credit. Do I mind? A little, but it isn't about the noteriety, its about making pretty snakes.

So there isn't a complete big list, and I doubt there ever will be. Too many things behind the scenes for people in the public to be completely aware of. But, eventually, you will see the new combos of this year... And I will try by damndest to share them with you on this blog.

Never fear.. Heather's got your back!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Debating about what to do

Every year, it gets harder to figure out what to do with the animals I have.


Because every year, new awesome projects come out, new animals are available, and I am torn about what projects I want to pursue.

I know there are a few that I plan to make happen:

Killer Bee Axanthics
Axanthic Clowns
Albino Pieds
Spider Albinos
Super Pewters
Super Black Pastel Pied

But here is the rub...

There is never enough animals for all the projects you want to do!

And of course, getting ahead on the projects you want to do is tough, and what to do and what to get to get you "ahead" is tough.

I'm pretty confused about what to do, which happens every year.

I have a list of what I have available, and I am trying to figure out what is worth doing this year and what is worth saving for the next...

How I manage usually is that I plan my recessive projects first, and then do my double codoms and combos.

And then, I discuss with friends and family to see what projects they like the most, as none snake people or even snake people, it helps to put perspective on the projects that other people like and you haven't considered.

So.. people out there in Blog Land...

What are your favorite projects??

Friday, September 11, 2009

Double het Albino Pieds are out!

They have emerged, and I am not too upset by the sex ratio.

3.2 going strong!

So I have two extra males, which is no problem. I was actually thinking about keeping two males to just put with some co-dom stuff... Why not? Well... I need to think about it some more...

Double het Albino Pieds.. I can't wait until the gals will be ready. I LOVE ALBINO PIEDS. One of my favorite double recessive projects, and now I am on track to make some. WOOHOOO!!!

Now the next project double recessive I'm thinking about working on is the Albino G Stripe, or maybe Axanthic Pied. So many possibilities!!

Now, I am down to four clutches in the incubator, one of which isn't even mine. I'm waiting on four other females to lay eggs, and then I'm done for the season, my friends.

It has been one hell of a ride this year, and I have to say, I am LOVING it.

It is always great fun to see the babies out, see the females recover from laying, getting ready for the next season... Its great.

Now I really need to figure out what my top projects for next year are going to be, since one of my last top projects has just hatched out.

So many possibilities, but that is what makes it fun, right??

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

News and New Stripes

The double het Albino Pieds are pipping, and I can't wait for the sex ratio!

They are all normal looking, but they are really very exciting.


So I have been doing a lot of back end trading and so forth, and have recently been able to acquire some cool stripes!

This female I hatched out. She's pretty awesome, and the only Pin holdback I got this year.

And this is Geena. Maybe... I'm trying to be clever with the naming, but I don't know if that will stick.

She is a new gal from Damian Macioce. With my luck on not hitting on the Stripes (3 clutches from poss het to Visual and no Visual animals), I decided to just suck it up and get me a female. I like her! I think she'll go great with my Gee boy.

She is patternless, which is a great thing, and has almost a solid stripe. She's not Perfect, but she's close enough! I think she'll make some great Stripe babies with Gee man.

So I am off to go cavort in the snake room, and handle some business. I will report back tomorrow with more cool pics and stories. Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Growing up!

Things are winding down from the show, and some of the babies have shed out and have eaten. My most proud baby at the moment? Baby Bullet. He's shed and eaten, and his prognosis is GOOD!

He is looking really very nice, and I am very pleased with him. He was a big hit at the show as well. Everyone loves a patternless snake from a patterned species.

Now that he is on the right path and the anxiety has passed, I have big plans for him when the time comes! Recessive girlfriends, here we come :)

And my Pastel Lessers have shed out. The striped female did make it to the show, but her sister stayed at home.

I really really really like them. I am hoping they just get better and better with age, and as I have heard, that is what I can look forward to.

This picture isn't the best for Miss Stripey, but I'm not too upset. I'm sure I'll get a better pic soon enough to display her awesomeness.

And her sister?? She is photogenic. Ohh yeah.

The next clutch that I am waiting on is double het Albino Pieds in the next few days. Lets hope for lots of girls... PLEASE. Although I'm sure they are not going to look all that exciting, I can't wait for this clutch. I love the double recessives, and this one is one of my favorites.

I also got a few new girls in from trades and so forth. We will be getting the unvieling soon.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

NARBC Show photos

First and foremost I want to thank Lewie for taking these pics, as I was behind the booth the whole time, and didn't have any time to go do my own photography.

I did get to walk around, but briefly, just to see what was out there. To be quiet honest, I didn't find anything I really wanted, so I didn't buy anything! I just had a great time talking to people and meeting new friends.

So onward we trudge thru the mass of photos.

This is a Banana, one of the more rare morphs. Looks somewhat like an Ultramel, somewhat like a Caramel, but totally different. I really like it.

And again, one of those morphs you only see rarely. Here is the Mystic Potion ball. I really like this one too, and may actually get into this project eventually.

Random Beardies

My Booth!

Champagnes.. I like them, but I'm going to wait to get into them until later.

I don't remember what this was, but I THINK this was the Coral Glow Bee that sold for $30k?

Cool project that I plan on working on in the next few years.

Nom Nom Tortoise.

Some Crystal project stuff... and a Crystal.

Axanthic Pied. I really like this one too!

Pastel Sugar. Not really sure how I feel about them yet... Seem pretty cool, but I'm not working with it at all.

And here we are back at Heather's Booth. My Pewters were kicking it...

And so were a lot of people at the table. We had a great turn out of people just wanting to say Hi.

And to take a look at the animals.

I was a busy woman.

Apparently I was too busy to feed the Joel. Woops!!!

I had a blast, and again, thanks to all of you loyal blog readers that stopped by and said hi, and those of you who are beginning to read the blog because of the show, welcome!!!

I am going to be doing the Pasadena show in November, so we can do this all over again!

Have a great short week, my friends.