Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year's Eve!

I am super late on this one, but that is due to the fact that I actually had to go to work today.


So I went in, did my thing, and now am home, catching up on house and life stuff.

Happy New Year's Eve, my friends!

I was hoping to get into the room and clean out everything to make it fresh and new for the new year, but I think I was being overzealous.

My hope is to get that done this week, however.

Problem is, I have been allowing myself to get easily distracted, especially by movies and games.

I am officially addicted to several games, including Plants vs Zombies.

Yeah... I'm a dork.

So with the "free time" I have, I have been using it being rather non-productive, but it has been fun.

So of course, here we are, New Years eve, and I am playing video games and cleaning house.

Maybe tomorrow will be snake cleaning day...

Anyway, have a safe and glorious New Years, my friends.

I'll see you on the other side!

Friday, December 28, 2012


So my father was in town, and he wanted to take pictures of snakes.

He asked me "What is your rarest snake?"

I wasn't quite sure, but I pulled out the Zebra Bee (my TSK Axanthic Bumblebee) and told him "This took me six years to make..."

Which to me is kinda a big deal...

So he snapped some photos, and I brought out animals for comparison photos.

"This one is a Bumblebee, without the Grey factor"

And that is where it started.

So of course after the Axanthic Bumblebee and the Bumblebee comparison, I remembered a friend asking to see what the big deal was about Stingerbees (Enchi Spiders).

So of course, I had to throw that in there.

And then I remembered I had a Pewterbee about the same age...

And then I remembered I had the Butter Enchi Spider as well.

So of course, after all the jumble, I piled on "just a Spider" to make it all make sense...


I love having all of the critters to be able to do this kind of photo shoot...

So of course, now that I did this, I need suggestions on other morphs to do it with as well.

Any requests?


Thursday, December 27, 2012


So this last day has gone to nothing...

I believe I have gastroenteritis, which is basically the Stomach Flu in lamens terms.


I came home and just stayed in bed (and the bathroom) for the last 18 hours.

So of course, I didn't get much done in the way of Snakes...

But I did get a chance to sleep and clean a little bit.

So here are some photos that I took over the last week that I have yet to share.

I had someone mention on Facebook that the Sulfur Crystal and the Pastel Crystal are similar.

I beg to differ.

The head pattern is much more obvious, but also, as the Sulfur/Fire gene does, it lightens up the morph significantly. 

Can you see the difference?

Sulfur Crystal on the left, Pastel Crystal on the right. 

I think it's pretty nice looking, and gives a better perspective of the slight difference between the two. The problem is that the Sulfur Pastel Crystal and the Sulfur Crystal are much more slightly different even than this.... So of course with age, it will be much more obvious, but until then, I can only make an educated guess.

And here we have a Reduced Pattern Clown female that I picked up this season. I LOVED this animal, and had to have her. I hope that my reduced animals end up being much like her in the future. Here's to awesome Clown stock!

And lastly, a Pastel Pied male. I still have a few available, and I have to say, I'm shocked at how they are not as popular as I had expected... Seems a bit odd, but hey. I know I don't need one for my breeding plans (as I already have one), so maybe other people don't either.

Anyway, I'm off to recover some more. I hope to have more photos to share (hopefully of breedings) for tomorrow. 

Have a great day, my friends!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


So it's been a wet few days, with some breaks in between.

Due to the Holidays, I admit that all I have done is a cursory peek inside some tubs, some very half-hearted male shuffling, and a lot more relaxing and enjoying the time with family and friends.

It's raining, and males are in tubs and stuff, but I have to say that I am not really sure who is where right now.

Which means, I need to get my act together again with this breeding season.

This is not to say that I have been randomly throwing snakes into other tubs and waiting for the winds..

I have my plan, and I'm sticking to it, but I haven't moved males in a week or so, so have lost some exposure time to other females.

Is this a big deal?

Not so much, although it is late enough in the season that I may miss some females that could be doing the growing/glowing thing.

It doesn't snow where I live, but the rain is basically the equivalent. It is wet and dreary and not particularly pleasant.

The dogs don't enjoy it, I don't particularly enjoy it, but I have to say the snakes seem to enjoy the "Bow-chicka-wow-wow" time.

And I'm alright with that.

Any silver lining is one worth admiring..

And when I get home from work (yes, I'm working), I will do a more serious move around of males and hopefully have some photos to share.

Have a great post-Christmas day, my friends!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas this year, and a wonderful Holiday season!



From our home to yours,


Heather, Joel, Regal, Xena and the wrigglies.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Grey Anatomy

Today's blog is about the color grey.

Mostly Axanthic stuff, some silver thrown in, but Grey.

The anatomy, if you will, of the color grey in Ball Python morphs.

HAH! You see what I did there? I made a funny...

Above we have the Super Pewter and the Silver Bullet, both which hatch out a nice shade of grey.
Obviously the Bullet (the darker one), hatches out darker, but makes a dramatic transformation over a year into the almost black slate grey you see before you.

The Super Pewter was very light when it hatched, but I love the color it ended up. I would love to have a few more of these babies in the collection. The colors are just stunning, with flecks of gold in both the Bullet and the Super.

Here we have the TSK Axanthic Bumblebee. 

I didn't take pictures of the other TSK Axanthic stuff, so we will need to do an extension of the Grey theme.

And here we have the Sterling/Pewter (not quite so sure still) Fire, which would be more grey if it didn't have Fire in it, but has turned a nice yellow tone. 

And last but not least, the VPI Axanthic Spotnose. This guy will be a nice interesting project, especially turned into a Powerball, the super form of the Spotnose, which will be even more Grey!

So tomorrow, we shall continue on our quest for Fifty Shades of Ball Python Grey.

HAH! I did it again!

Have a fun filled day, my friends!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


It's cold in Southern California.

The heat is on, the blankets are several layers, the dogs are snoring...

It's cold.

Going into the Snake Room is actually pleasant...

How cold is it?


I know there are some of you out there that are laughing your hiney off about that number.


40 and below is considered "freezing" by most native Southern Californians.

Even work is running the heaters...

I can't wear sandals or tank tops comfortably.

It's a shame.... but it's part of the season.

And this is the worst it will get.

Maaaaybe 35F at night.

Frost on my car and on the grass.


But... this is a good sign for the breeder-ings of Ball Pythons, for the most part.

So I hope to actually have some good photos for you tomorrow.

Have a great warm day, my friends.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


Yes, not just breedings, but breeder-ings.

I felt the need to make up a new word, partially because I feel like "breeding" as the blog title has been a bit overplayed.

So here I am, introducing the Breeder-ings.

Here we have my Spotnose het VPI Axanthic male with one of my Spotnose females.
There will be no chance for Powerball Axanthics, but at least a Powerball, eh? Should be a fun one to see what happens.

Here we have a hideous Spider het TSK Axanthic het Albino male with my Pastel het TSK Axanthic female. He apparently didn't have interest in shedding correctly, but more in doing the deed with this female.

When they unlock, he will get the spa treatment.

And in this corner, we have a Pastel Orange Ghost het Pied male with one of the Black Pastel females. I am secretly hoping that this Black Pastel is het Pied because of her markers, so we shall see what ends up happening here.

Fingers crossed, but I know this is wishful thinking.

Wish with me!!!

This is the last pairing I caught last night, and this is my Spinnerblast male with one of my Pewter females I produced back in the day.

I am super excited to see what comes out of this pairing, due to the awesome possibilities that can arise from it.

Super Pastel Cinnamon Pinstripe Spider! What the heck is that called, anyway?
Sterling Spinner.. but I'm sure there is some random name for it that I am not aware of. 

Here's to random names of morphs!

Have a great day, my friends!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Paired up and Pastel Vanillas

This weekend was a bunch of holiday stuff and fun goodness, with some snake stuff thrown in.

I did pairings on the 12th, and the only physical evidence of pairing over the weekend was this pair.

This is one of my Het Red Axanthic females with Mister Lucky, the Silver Bullet. I'm shooting for Pastel Gargoyles or Onyxes. (He is a Pastel Cinnamon Black Pastel)

Should be fun! I'm excited to see some eggs and stuff, but here's to getting there.

He is a stud muffin, that's for sure. I'm excited to see some babies from him.

And since I had the camera out when pairing again on Sunday, I decided to take some other photos of holdbacks and animals that I have yet to touch on in the blog.

This here is my Pastel Vanilla.

They are a PAIN to identify, as they are not as obvious to me as the Fires or other lighteners.

I kept back two females that were OBVIOUS, but as I have been informed, they can present themselves very subtly, so... there may have been a Pastel Vanilla out my door that was sold as a Pastel.

I don't know, and honestly, I'd rather just sell it as whatever and if it happens to be, Congratulations! I'd rather it be that way then sell it as one and have it not be, right?

Seeing as how this is my first year producing them, I am pretty sure I will get the hang of it.

This one was a "duh", as you can see from the head. This is very similar to my breeder male, who looks like he has a white head. The same could be said for this female as well.

I'm excited to see what I can do with them over the next year or so. Plans being what they are, they do not have any specific boyfriends as of yet.

Too many possibilities.

Anyway, pairings occured last night, and I hope to have some more awesome coupling photos to share.

Have a great day, my friends!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Solar Flare

So what's the story with the Solar Flare?

Honestly, I am not the best one to tell it.

My friend Tim Johnson of Royal Morphz got a pair of animals from a collection buy out. Early on, they were dubbed "Tequilas". They looked like wierd Yellowbellies, and he bred them together to prove them out.

I had an opportunity with the buy out to pick up the other pair. I didn't really need more yellowbellies, so I only picked up the female. 

It wasn't until Tim got eggs from his pair that I started to think that they could be something else.

To this day, I have still yet to hatch out an Ivory myself, so I just thought they were weird Ivories.

He ended up with a few, I admired them briefly and moved on to my own stuff.

But as they grew, they just kept getting darker and orange-ier.

Tim bred the male to an Ivory to prove out the compatibility, but the eggs went bad.

My female was bred to his male, and I got three eggs out of it. Two Solar Flares and a Flare, all males (of course, right?)...

The photos you see is of one of the males, which has been offered up for sale.

I compared it to the other Yellowbelly stuff out there, and the most similar things that stand out to me are the Puma and the Highway.

I believe that they are similar in terms of the alleles, but obviously present themselves differently.

I look forward to mashing it up with the other stuff, including the Super Stripe and the Paint (which would be cool to see).

It is brand new in terms of the combos being made, so I am really interested to see what will happen with it.

A few people have gotten wind and have gotten involved as well, so this will be a cumulative project within the next few years with what everyone can do with it.

It's exciting to be at the beginnings of a fledgeling project, and to see what can be done with it.

What would you do with this guy? What would you pair him with?

Have a great weekend, my friends!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Contrast and Breeding

Contrast is the spice of the color world when it comes to Ball Pythons. I am lucky enough to have a few animals that span the spectrum, and I love comparing them.

The photo above is of the Silver Bullet and the Super Pewter. I LOVE these two critters, and I can't wait to actually use them for some rocking projects.

The difference that one additional lightener gene makes! The Super Pewter is a Super Pastel Super Cinnamon (or Black Pastel), and the Silver Bullet is a Pastel Super Cinnamon (or Black Pastel). One additional Pastel gene, and the colors change like magic.

This is true for the Sterling (Super Pastel Cinnamon (or Black Pastel) and the Pewter as well. The color difference is stunning.

(NOTE: Yes, I am aware that there are different names for the morphs depending on the Cinnamon versus Black Pastel gene involved. For the sake of simplicity, I wanted to define them as above... Too many complicated morph names make people's heads spin! Feel free to correct in comments, but honestly, I like defining them by gene now a days... It's easier.) 

The Cinnamon and Black Pastel genes are some of my favorites, and I really do love playing around with them.

Case in point...

Here we have my Black Pastel Pied with a Het Pied female.

I love the idea of more Black Pastel Pieds, and making a Panda Pied is just making me tingly just thinking about it. That may be in the works this year, depending on a few things.

Black Pewter

And of course, the other magic that can be made with the Cinny/Black Pastel genes, including this  Black Pewter female, who was getting her photo taken for the availability page.

I did take some other photos as well, including that of the Solar Flare, which I will get into on it's own separate day. (And yes, it's mine, produced with my animal)

More photos and info to come, my friends.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Down to the Wire

Super Pewter

Well, this week is Finals week for me, and I'm getting down to the wire.

I'm going to be honest. This blog is up because I'm procrastinating on my studying. It's a nice balance... Knowing I have to blog, yet knowing I should study, yet playing on the internet and looking at pretty snake pictures.

The blog won out for a little bit.

I also want to go and play and take more pictures, but honestly I go in, take a ton of photos, then post them up sporatically thru the week.
Black Pastel Lesser
I also need to focus on breeding, which I have pulled everyone for feeding, and need to re-pair up this week. I shall do that some time today...

But more than anything, I want to avoid thinking about tests and real life issues. Which is, as the phrase goes, a "first world problem." I enjoy that phrase, as it does put things in perspective.

Everything reptile breeding related is a first world problem...

Which in essence means a not true life changing and life devastating issue...

Like most problems in the first world.

Also, YOLO.

You Only Live Once.

I spend way too much time on the internet to know these turns of phrase.

As the come back says, "YOLO is Carpe Diem for stupid people"

Friends... Carpe Diem. Seize the Day! Because remember, YOLO. (You Only Live Once)

(And it's 12/12/12! You will only live to see this day, just as other days, once...) 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

When is it enough?

Pewter Mojave

Continuing from yesterdays blog, the question came up of "when is enough enough?"

That is an absolutely excellent question.

I have my own answer for that, and the quantity I have now is enough for me to handle.

I'm around 300 animals, and I can safely say that this is pretty much my limit. 

Now this could change if I had a huge facility and many more available resources, but at this point, that is not the case. 

I do this myself, I live and I learn this like you do, and I know that I am at the brink of my capacity.

If I were not working full time, if I were not attempting to get a Masters Degree, if I were not doing so many other things, that number may change. 

But right now, that is it. 

And it is a significant number.

Pastel Spotnose

It absolutely doesn't help things that the farther along we get as Ball Python breeders, with the combinations that are available and attempted, that it is not easy to distinguish combinations of morphs now a days when we get into the quintuple combinations and such.

Part of me is frustrated by that fact, that combinations are starting to look alike, but then again, that is the power of genetics and the fun of it to find something different and awe inspiring.

Silver Bullet
There are arguably "millions" of combinations available to be made, and I really do plan on being in this long enough to see a ten gene animal and to produce one myself. I hope it doesn't just become a random mishmash of randomness, but we shall see.

What do you think your limit is? Can you afford to house/feed/care for your magic number of X animals?

It seems like more and more people are getting fed up, tired and getting out of breeding Ball Pythons as well... I wonder if its a numbers game, or if they were in it for the wrong reasons, or... whatever else.

That may need to be a commentary discussion, as I am not really sure what to think about that either.

Is it the economy? Is it just the lack of consistent excitement? Is it just flaky people getting into it because it was the next big thing?

I don't know.

I just know I'm somewhat patient when it comes to that stuff. I know when the fun starts...

Have a great day, my friends.

Monday, December 10, 2012

How do I do it?

Hypo Butter

I feel like this question comes from my often outspoken complaining about my own life, which I really don't particularly mean to do.

There are days where I just feel completely overwhelmed, and I need to vent. The blog is usually the place to do it, and I tend to do it more so than is probably necessary.


I did get the question from my friend, Chelsea, about how I manage to do everything.

Well, Chelsea, sometimes I don't.

But I try my damndest to do it.

Right now, I am only doing one class, and I will be done by the end of this week. (YAY!)

I work full time, and I am never going to be done with that, until I make a career change or something else dramatic happens. I work in an industry that is relatively demanding, but I personally choose to keep my home life and my work life separate, aka I don't bring my work home with me when I leave the office. I tend to make that a rule, considering I have enough work to be done at home with the snakes.
This helps immensely with being able to draw a line in the sand between "real life" and "snake life."

When I get home, home life does happen. Joel and I, being newly weds, but being long time partners (nine years and counting) has been relatively easy in terms of a transition. He knows what I have to do for the snake stuff, and he helps where he can.

I do tend to get lazy and not be the ultimate domestic goddess that I would love to be, making a six course dinner after a 8+ hour work day and dealing with the snakes and the dogs and the other things going on. I tend to opt for canned soup or going out when time is of the essence. (Going out is not cost effective, by the way, but sanity effective, which is sometimes more valuable)

Yes, we have fuzz children, and they are awesome, but they do require attention and care as well. Xena is a fantastic addition to our family, but she does have some baggage from being in a kennel for a year, so we are working on that as well. Regal is getting old (he is 11), so we are making more trips to the Vet to make sure he is living a healthy life.

Super Pastel Mojave
All of this is not including the snake cleaning, the e-mail responding, the blogging, the feedings or lack there of (with the lack of rodents in the area), the room checking, the constant vacuuming of sani-chips, etc... 

But I have to say, and I fully admit this, there are days where I fail.

I have lost animals that I feel I could have saved if I had more time to pay attention to them. Sometimes you don't notice that some animals aren't eating until they are just not interested at all for a long period of time, and depending on that time, it may be too late.
I get annoyed with myself when I find a rodent that should have been removed from a tub still sitting (or rotting) there...

But honestly, I am not doing too badly. It is partially a head game. I know I can do this, I've done it before, I know what needs to be done.

When you get too wrapped up in the bad things that happen, you make it even easier for the bad things to happen again.

Live and learn from it, move on, and know that this too shall pass.

This is true of school, true of relationships, true of pretty much everything.

Cliche B.S. aside, it is very comforting reminding oneself that this is life.

It happens.

And if you aren't living it the way you want to, change it!

You are the only one who can.

Have a great day, my friends.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Cinnamons versus Black Pastels

I am rehashing this topic for a friend of mine who wanted a more definitive answer on how to determine Black Pastels versus Cinnamons.

I realize that it can be tough now a days with everyone and their mother posting up pictures of things and advertising.

This is not the best way to learn about specific morphs, but that's alright.

You came to the right place!

Let's begin, shall we?


Cinnamons are more common than Black Pastels, but not by much. Black Pastels came a tad bit later than the Cinnies to the morph game. They, like the Butters, were actually worth more back in the day, although now that is debatable.

I still think Black Pastels are harder to come by than Cinnamons, but that is also because I am not really looking for them and honestly am not really paying attention much to that particular sector of the market. 

Yes, they are compatible, but they, again like the Butters and the Lessers, are visually and distinctively different.

Cinnamons are notably more reddish in tone than the Black Pastels. They have brighter notes of brown, and brighter notes of color in general. (Ergo the name Cinnamon, reddish brown)

They have squiggly patterns, with somewhat odd shaped alien heads that can actually continue down the body of the animal. (As you can see above, I am talking about the tail pattern below the striped portion of this particular animal)

The head coloration compared to normals and the like is different. The head color is brown all over, a chocolate color, if you will.

Good quality Cinnamons have significant blushing on the sides, which will grow into light reddish brown tones later in life.

Note the pattern on this baby. Melted alien heads, high blushing, a dark overall color, and a dark similar head color.

Now let us compare that of the Black Pastel.

Black Pastels are much darker. They tend toward dark chocolate rather than a cinnamon tone, and do not have as much blushing that is inherent in Cinnamons. Their patterns are even more "wonky" than that of the Cinnamons, with what I like to call the "extra". As you can see in the female below, there are dark black speckles within the alien heads of the pattern. This is a clear indicator of a Black Pastel, although this is also a marker of a Het Red. Other than the speckles, the type of patterning is similar to that of the Cinnamons.

Note the color difference.

This female below is also a Black Pastel, but bred into a lighter animal, thus producing a more complicated Black Pastel coloration. She is absolutely a Black Pastel, as indicated within her pattern (note the squiggles), but her color is much lighter than that of typical Black Pastels.

This was done on purpose for a breeding project, and will be used for lighter projects in the future.

She does have more blushing, and a lighter gold tone.

The difference between a light Cinnamon and a light Black Pastel is that Black Pastels turn gold, where Cinnamons, when lightened up with breedings, turn red.

It can be complicated, but know that it can be easily solved once you learn what to look for.

Just keep looking.

Hope this helps, and have a great day, my friends!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

'Tis the Season

So it is the Holiday Season, and I always get excited for time of year. I enjoy celebrating all the various holidays with my friends, and it just seems like a happier time for most.

With the need to get my head out of my rear end and focusing on the future of the season, I have started getting more questions prepared, and putting myself back out there in the internet world.

I haven't really been involved this past year in much on the forums, which I am sad to say.

And now that I'm making my rounds, I feel out of place.

Some people don't know who I am, some people don't care (which is fine), some people want to argue...

And then there are those who do listen.

It's an odd world, the Internet is.

You are only relevant for as long as people care.

It's humbling and rather painful sometimes.

And of course, I don't know what to share to be helpful, as I have been out of the loop.

And then there are those angry internetters who claim that Breeders come out of the woodwork only when they are trying to sell things.


I hope I don't fall into that category, and I'm pretty sure I don't.

But I buck up, post things I think would be helpful, and try to get back in the game.

Same with the blog, although here I feel like I can share more than most places.

And why I ask questions of my blog readers rather than ramble (although I know I do) when I'm not sure what to talk about.

So please, let me know what you want to hear. I know I have missed a few questions this week, but I need to go and take pictures and stuff to validate some of the questions. I will get to them, I promise.

Until then, keep piling them on!

Have a great day, my friends!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

And the next day...

So Joel and I put up our Christmas Tree yesterday. It has never been a tradition to get the tree at any particular time, but since I love the smell of pine trees, we decided to get it earlier this year.

Since this is a new house, it was also harder to get things set. I forgot that we had a low ceiling, as the last house had vaulted ones. So 7 feet later, our angel topper almost scrapes the ceiling.

That's alright though. It's still pretty.

After all that hard work and dinner, I went into the snake room to check on the other pairings that I had yet to see locks from.

Here are the best pictures from the 48 hours after pairings. 

The Pewterbee (which I actually forgot to add into the Official Planning Spreadsheet) got the opportunity to work with an awesome Pinstripe female. Of course, they messed the tub, and he isn't quite there yet in terms of lockings, but we are on our way.

Now this pairing was absolutely locked, and I am very excited about this one, although hesitant to get too much so. These are my Double Het Albino Pieds, and I have one more female for this guy this season. I really hope to hatch out an Albino Pied, as so much can be done with that critter... Fingers are quadruple crossed, although the odds are not particularly in my favor, I can still hope! 

This trio I produced back in 2009.. I know they are guaranteed, but now it's up to the odds to be in my favor. 

May the odds always be in your favor, my friends....

(HAH! Movie/Book reference.. NAME IT)

Have a great one!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

That was Fast...

So 2013 Breeding Season, yeah?

I believe I mentioned that I paired up on the 2nd of this month for the first time, which is technically of these photographs being taken, around 24 hours ago.

Here is what I found 24 hours later!

This here is my Albino male with a Het Female, both of which were up for sale, but now... not so much!

Albinos are always a great fun to hatch. Bring on the Albinos!

Below, we have my Firefly with a Pastel Lesser female virgin. 

He seems to like her a lot though. They should make some awesome looking babies, if they could stop being so dirty all the time.

I had to move the water bowl for this shot, and of course, they had dumped some of it out already anyway...

This here was not a confirmed lock, since I didn't see any flesh anywhere, but this is my Lemonblast het Albino with an Albino. Should be an interesting outcome, as I have never hatched out Pastel Albinos before, much less Lemonblast Albinos. Fingers crossed that eventually I will have that conundrum!

And last but not least, my Silver Bullet male, Lucky, getting frisky with a large Het Red Axanthic girl.

Here's to more Gargoyles and Pastel Gargoyles and the like.

So this is looking pretty positive already, considering the fact that this is 24 hours into the season.

In the next few days, I hope to be able to showcase more breedings... but until then, I shall see what I can do!

Have a great day, my friends!