Morphs

Ball Python Morphs

This is just a short introduction into the history of ball python morphs and morph

game in general. Over time I plan to add more and more information into this category as far as

breeding information goes and really try to break things down into great detail, but for now this is

just a basic intro into the history of the ball python morph game. I specifically left out a lot of detail

regarding individual breeders and such.

First you may be wondering what exactly is a

python morph? Well, allow me to attempt to answer

that question without getting too technical. The

word morph is more or less a slang term that

originated from the biology term polymorphism.

Legitimate polymorphism is the occurrence of a

mutated gene(s) that are responsible for creating different phenotypes through color and even

patterns in a particular species that differentiate it from the normal wild type animal. Putting is as

simply as possible, all morphs are basically genetic mutants. Science is still not 100% sure

why genes mutate but we can make an educated guess that it related to adaptability and survival.
These genetic mutants are extremely rare in the wild because most of the time their phenotype like

albino for example puts the animal at a huge disadvantage due to the inability to camouflage properly

and seek out prey. With that, most reptile morphs dont survive long in the wild. Keeping all of

this in mind, you can easy see how a ball python thats different and extremely rare can quickly

generate interest to private keepers and breeders. Thats pretty much where the whole ball python

morph craze started with a single albino that was caught in Africa and sold to an American breeder

who bred the animal and introduced it to the reptile market.

Ball python breeders took notice of the these cool little albinos and how much interest they were

generating within the hobby and the ball python morph fever started to take hold. Other morphs like

the pastel jungle and ghost ball python came onto the scene and all of a sudden ball pythons went

from a not so interesting and possibly even boring animal, to all the rave. With the explosion of

interest the prices were also exploding, base

morphs were being sold hand over fist for 25k and

up. Early ball python investors/breeders where

making hundreds of thousands of dollars. People

were quitting their jobs and getting 2nd mortgages

on their houses to pursue the ball python craze.

What started with just a couple morphs being

imported into the United States quickly turned into

several different color and pattern mutations that are inherited in a variety of different ways. Today

we have anywhere from 50-100 different genetic ball python morphs on the market.

Well, as many of you know most bubbles end up popping at some point and that popping point

started in 2005 and continued with ball python morph prices falling year after year until late 2009

when the market began to stabilize. That stabilization was most likely caused by the huge increase in

new breeders into the hobby buying and selling on a huge scale. Fast forward to 2012 and we have a

very stable ball python market that appears to be doing very well despite the current state of the

economy.

 

There you have it, a quick over view of the last 10-12 years and how they evolved into the current

state were at today.