I have a very weird situation that has unexpectedly cropped up, and I was hoping to hear some wisdom from those more experienced than myself.
I have a beloved male animal of a polygenic morph that is very rare, purchased directly from the originator of the morph. The originator of the morph no longer breeds the species, and neither does the breeder he sold all of his stock to. I hadn’t expected to see other animals of the same morph ever again, much less someone actively breeding them. I wasn’t going to breed my animal again (he is a healthy senior and confirmed still fertile last season), but I just discovered that a breeder is working with this morph.
I haven’t had any contact with this breeder before and they are not local to me. They seem to be quite reputable, but I’d have to do further research to confirm.
I am not really a breeder per se, but I would love to have another animal of this morph for myself, primarily for sentimental reasons. But I have no idea if the idea of a breeding collaboration with a stranger is totally insane, especially with a pet of mine. I’m not interested in money, only in having 1-2 geckos from any pairings (edit: meaning 1-2 animals total, not from each pairing), and knowing that I helped beef up the gene pool a little bit.
In my case, I grow too emotionally attached to any offspring I incubate myself to part with them (thus far), so I couldn’t be the party incubating any eggs (besides, I kinda suck at it). I guess the situation would call for me shipping my animal to them, then hoping they ship him back, and then follow through and send me my baby or two later on? That sounds insane, but I can’t think of any alternatives.
I’m inclined to say that the risk is too high to approach this breeder. I am not willing to take high risks just to keep the morph going. But I figured I’d stop by here to pick the communal brains available. Do breeding contracts really hold weight? Is there some other way you guys can think of to go about things (terrestrial gecko, if relevant)? I wouldn’t even be thinking about this if I hadn’t been so sad when I thought previously that the morph had gone extinct, and if my wee man weren’t getting on in years. I would not be willing to ship him for that purpose after next breeding season. Is it ever done that a female is shipped somewhere, bred to the (edit: male), then shipped back before laying? (That strikes me as a very bad idea, but maybe I’m wrong.)