Breeding a Brooks to a Thayeri?

I am newer to the hobby but have two gorgeous kingsnakes among my collection. I have plans to do limited breeding of ball pythons in a few years and have been researching that fairly easily, but finding information on breeding kingsnakes has been a bit harder for me.

I know it is possible to interbreed colubrids together (e.g. corn/kings), but are there any issues to be found when breeding two different types of kingsnakes? Here is my boy (Thayeri/Variable) and my girl (Brooks):

(Obviously they have years to go before breeding would be a thing.)

Would breeding the two even result in anything interesting?

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I don’t have any experience making hybrids so I’m not sure if anything special is done. If you do please make sure to list offspring for sale accurately and be prepared for some hate since some people have strong feelings against doing it.

Species wise I believe the Brooks will be a lot larger than the Thayeri which could cause some trouble and may turn the Thayeri into a snack.

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Why the hate for two different types of kingsnakes? I can somewhat understand hybrids involving other colubrids like corns, but two kings doesn’t seem that far-fetched. Of course I would accurately label them, though. It would be dishonest not to.

Although you make a very good point for the size difference between the two–a lot will absolutely depend on how big they both are once they’re breeding age/size adults.

The hate comes from the issues down the road regarless of the hybrid.

The person producing the first generation might be honest and accurately describing the animal, however that does not mean everyone down the line will do so and since some hybrids can reproduce it can become a serious issue, having an animal that look like something pure but is not is not something a lot of people would want in their collection, so between people losing track/forgetting about lineage and percentages and people knowingly lying about them it creates a big mess.

Many feels that hybrids should not be done and some feel that if done they should be pet only sadly the temptation to breed for many is too great.


It makes perfect sense. Thank you! I hadn’t thought about that point of view, and it’s chock full of nothing but good points. From my perspective I was thinking of breeding for pets only, but as you’ve mentioned that would not guarantee anything from people who buy.

In retrospect, I think I will limit my future breeding projects to ball pythons and have my kingsnakes just purely as pets. I can’t wait to see how beautiful they are when they’re adults!

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When attempting to breed hybrids like this you would be better off using a Male of the larger species. Why? Because the males can breed safely at a much younger age and, more importantly, smaller size. That way you can use a fully matured thayeri female and a “barely legal” breeding size male brooks. The idea is that she would be too big for him to eat and being a male he should be more interested in breeding. Thayeri of course can eat other snakes as well, but they are not nearly so notorious for being the gluttons that brooks are.
A second point is this, it is easier to breed hybrids when you have a female of both the target hybrid species and another that is the same species as the male. You want to use one female to scent the other to trick the male into breeding the one you want.