Category archives: Genetics

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Last update on .

Orange Dream Leopard Desert Ghost Pied by Ozzy Boids LLC
Orange Dream Leopard Desert Ghost Pied by Ozzy Boids LLC

We are excited to announce that we now offer volume discounts on RGI tests:

  • Orders of 10 tests or more get 10% off
  • Orders of 100 tests or more get 15% off

It is a great time to take advantage of these discounts, because RGI has been hard at work and two new ball python tests are now available:

  • Leopard
  • Orange Dream

We are also happy to inform you that the Desert Ghost test is no longer an “elimination” test. The test is now good for two genes, DGa and DGb, since it is polygenic. This new test version is now available.

Run any single gene test for $65 or the whole panel of all 14 mutation tests for $120.

The full list of Ball Python tests currently includes: Albino, Asphalt, Black Pastel, Candy/Toffee, Clown, Cryptic, Desert Ghost, Enchi, Genetic Stripe, Gravel, Hypo, Lavender Albino, Leopard, Orange Dream, Piebald, Red Stripe, Spark, Specter, Sunset, Ultramel, VPI Axanthic, and Yellowbelly. More tests coming soon!

To purchase tests, click here.

Last update on .

Rare Genetics Inc. had a breakthrough in their study of the Desert Ghost gene of Ball Pythons. As a result you can now order this genetic test; however, there is a catch. The DG test is an elimination test. This means it's highly accurate to detecting if the animal does NOT have the gene, but only 85% accurate in detecting the presence of the gene.

Also the Ultramel test has been added back, for a total of 16 genetic ball python tests.

Order tests here or read on to learn more about Desert Ghost.

Last update on .

Rare Genetics has been hard at work and has recently produced three new Ball Python tests:

  • Genetic Stripe
  • Black Pastel
  • Enchi

Run any single gene test for $65 or the whole panel of all 14 mutation tests for $120.

The full list of Ball Python tests currently includes: Albino, Asphalt, Black Pastel, Candy/Toffee, Clown, Enchi, Genetic Stripe, Gravel, Hypo, Lavender Albino, Piebald, Spark, Specter, and Yellowbelly.

Don't spend years trying to prove out your animals when you can find out within a few weeks.

Learn more here.

Last update on .

Calculating Allelic Recessives

We are excited to announce a major update to our genetic calculator. This update adds support for allelic recessive genes. Also known as "visual hets", these are different recessive genes which can combine to create visual outcomes. Read on to learn about this and some other improvements.

1. Support for Allelic Recessives

In 2015, MorphMarket launched its platform with a genetics engine that powered its calculator and trait extractor. This system was later extended to other species.

One innovative feature of our calculator was the support for possible het output. For instance, when breeding a het recessive to a wild type, each baby will be either het or wild type, but a person can't tell from looking which is which. Each baby has a 50% chance of being het, so the calculator will label each one as “50% possible het”.

Yet there was a limitation in that it did not correctly model allelic recessive traits. Output for these combos included a disclaimer explaining that it was not fully modeled.

For example, in Ball Pythons, the Albino trait and the Candy trait are both recessive traits, but they share the same locus. A ball python cannot be both fully Albino and fully Candy, but it can be 50% of each, or "Double Het (DH)" for both. So if you breed a DH Albino Candy to a Normal, the calculator. would output "100% 50% ph Albino and 50% ph Candy". The correct output, which is now displayed, is "100% Het Albino OR Het Candy". This is because either one or the other gene must be passed on to all offspring.

These improvements are not limited to Ball Pythons of course. This fixes issues with visual recessives across Boa Constrictors, Reticulated Pythons, and Corn Snakes, to name a few.

2. Updated Gene Complex Data

We have updated our engine's knowledge of complexes from feedback in our forums. If we are missing any data please comment on this in the appropriate forum discussions.

3. Improved Offspring Generation

If you have used MorphMarket's Offspring Groups to track and advertise your breeding history, you have noticed that our wizard will assist by automatically adding traits to offspring that you add.

Initially, traits added were those which would be inherited 100% of the time. Now, we add traits which are most likely to be inherited, to minimize the number of updates you have to make to those offspring. For example, in a het x het scenario, the system pre-assigns all offspring to be 66% PH. You would now only have to update 25% to visuals, which reduces the data entry by 75%.

4. Simplification of Het Display

A simple but elegant change is that we now display 100% Het traits on the site as just “Het.” Het implies 100%, so there's no need to state this explicitly. This makes the interface a bit cleaner. We still need to update this in the select inputs but it is rendered in the new way on all pages.

5. Maximum Trait Count Increased

The calculator previously refused to process breeding pairs with more than 10 total genes. Thanks to optimizations in the algorithm, it now supports up to 14 traits. This is very helpful in Corn Snakes where there tend to be a high number of traits.

What's Left?

One thing that is still not resolved for ads is the representation of trait disjunctions. That is, the traits on ads do not yet allow sellers to label an animal as having trait A OR B. This is tricky for a few reasons, not the least of which is the interface to input this data.

We're glad to have finally tackled the tough issues mentioned above that pave the way for even more great improvements to come! These were important as we will be leveraging the calculator more extensively throughout the site in features for animal management.

Last update on .

Ivory Ball Python
Ivory Ball Python

We are excited to announce that Dr. Hannah Seidel and team have just published a scientific paper in which they present the details of the Yellowbelly (YB) complex that they have decoded.

First, they were able to show that there are TWO mutations in the same gene that cause the YB morph. Either of these mutations can cause a yellowbelly, and Ivories can be two copies of either one of these mutations, or one copy of each. So, the YBs and Ivories we are all used to seeing as keepers and breeders are technically not all the same genetically.

Their research further explained the mutations that cause YB and Ivory are mutations that completely alter the genetic product (i.e., protein) and likely render it totally inactive. Whereas the mutations that cause Spark and Specter cause less of a change to the resulting protein, and the protein is still able to partially do its job (hence the difference between an Ivory and a Super Specter).

Finally, the mutations that cause Asphalt and Gravel change the normal protein even less than Specter and Spark, so their effects are less severe than what you see in an Ivory or a Super Spark or Super Specter.

Because of this amazing work by Eastern Michigan, RGI has now added ball python morph tests for Yellowbelly, Spark, Specter, Gravel, & Asphalt, bringing the total number of ball python morph tests to 11. Order tests for your animals today.

Ben Morrill, PhD, Rare Genetics Inc

Last update on .

Genetic Testing Now Available!

Exactly a month ago, we announced our partnership with Rare Genetics Inc. to bring you reliable and affordable genetic testing for your reptiles.

Great news -- IT'S READY!

Click here to see currently available tests, prices, FAQ's and to place orders.

This testing is useful in so many ways:

  • Save years of time by immediately proving your breeders
  • Increase your sales by selling Pos Hets as 100% Het
  • Verify that your purchases were advertised correctly
  • Discover genes in your lines that you didn't even know about
  • Distinguish between incomplete dominants like Asphalt/Gravel/YB in the future
  • Find out if your pet is a boy or girl

Please let us know if you have any questions not answered on the FAQ's.

Last update on .

Genetic Testing! What the Het?

MorphMarket is excited to bring you a new technology that is going to change the industry: genetic testing for your animals to determine their sex, genetic traits, and other characteristics.

Rare Genetics Inc. (RGI) is a new company that has developed genetic tests for reptiles that are reliable and affordable. These tests from RGI will be available for purchase through MorphMarket in a matter of weeks.

With a small piece of shed from your reptile, RGI's tests can tell you if the reptile is male or female, or if it contains certain morphs. This means you can prove out your possible het animals without taking years to grow them up and breed them. It can also confirm incomplete dominant traits such as Asphalt/Gravel/Yellow Belly.

When is this useful?

  • Test your offspring so you can sell them as 100% Het instead of Pos Het
  • Test the animals you buy to verify they were accurately advertised
  • Test your breeders to find out if they have genes you didn't even know about
  • Test your pet to know if it's a boy or girl

Join the Waiting List now to be first in line for this service and receive updates on its availability!

As of today tests already developed include:

  • Ball Pythons: Morph Identification for Clown, Piebald, and Lavender Albino
  • Ball Pythons: Sex Determination
  • Colubrids: Sex Determination
  • Venomous: Sex Determination

3-5 additional Ball Python morph tests are planned to be added in the next few weeks, with more to come every month.

RGI has sold these tests in the past in limited supply, but moving forward they will no longer be selling directly to the public. These tests will be available through MorphMarket. Click here to get updates and early access.

Last update on .

500 Morphpedia Articles

Since the initial release of Morphpedia back in October, our team has been hard at work to bring as much information as possible together for the whole community to explore and learn.

We recently hit the 500 Published Articles mark, which is an amazing milestone. At this point 21 categories are represented, and we have covered about 50% of the traits listed in our marketplace.

This wouldn’t have been possible with the outstanding amount of help that has been contributed so far by members of our community, we are extremely grateful for their assistance in our mission.

Along the way we have gotten input from breeders from all around the world, to hear their first-hand stories about the history of traits. We have also connected with expert geneticists from multiple fields to help incorporate a whole wealth of information to introduce features such as "Complexes" and "Tags" to help herpers understand how traits interact with one another.

Last update on .

We are closing out 2021 with another round of updates to market data organization. This included some category improvements following the massive 12 Category Update from August and trait updates to 11 categories.

You can view the discussions that led to these changes in the genetics area of our community forums as well as make your own requests.

  • Western Hognose is now a subcategory of Hognose Snakes. Hognose also gained 10 new subcategories plus Tricolor Hognose, which was moved from Other Colubrids.
  • Sand Boas was added in August with no subcategories as we imagined most of the ads were Kenyans. Kenyans are now a subcategory of Sand boas, along with 10 other subcategories.
  • A few new subcategories were added for Skinks and Monitors. Tortoises got an "other" subcategory.
  • We did a huge trait update, touching 11 different categories. You can read about those here.
  • We did not update the subcategories of Rat Snakes yet, but plan to make some changes there to improve its organization in the next round.

In the future, the continuous stream of updates to will drive the market data instead of these occasional updates. Did you know that Morphpedia now contains over 300 articles!?

Last update on .

Today we issued another round of trait updates to the market data which includes the following changes. In the future, we plan that the continuous stream of updates to will drive the market data instead of these occasional updates.

You can view the discussions that led to these changes in the genetics area of our community forums as well as make your own requests.

Ball Pythons - New incomplete dominant traits: Smoke, Tango, Solar, Carnivore, Java, Striker - Urban Camo definition updated: sandblast, super cinny, pastel, het pied - Genetic Black Back type changed to “other”

Sand Boas - New recessive trait: HRP - Rufescens spelling corrected - Axanthic renamed to Anery as the primary name for this trait

Skinks - Pitch Black add as NBTS polygenic trait

Boa Constrictors - Albino (Caramel-hypo) renamed to Albino (BWC)

Corn Snakes - Palmetto changed to incomplete dominant

We still have a number of subcategory updates planned, but those take a bit more work and we wanted to release these changes without any more delay.