Breeding collaboration advice

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.)


It is not common practice to ship a gravid female. Generally, it is either the male who travels, or the female stays with the male’s owner until she lays eggs/gives birth.

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Here is a thread on the matter;

I personally think it is too risky given you could lose your animal pretty easily. If I were you I would just see about purchasing an animal from that breeder with said morph if it is something you want to produce.


I personally wouldn’t do it. I have one guy I let use my snakes and he lets me use his. I’ve know him 6 years but only loan buddies for 2 years. We also trade babies and give each other babies. But he is probably the only person I would feel comfortable taking care of my animals. I would never loan my animals to someone I don’t have complete trust in there ability to take of my animals. Just my opinion I have know people that do loans and never even meet each other in person. They had good luck but never worth the risk to me.


I second what every one else is saying on not trusting a stranger to shop your animal to.
I do have a few collaboration projects going with my snakes currently, but only because it is with a very good friend that lives two hours away and I know how their animals are cared for. He has a male of mine for a few joint pairings and I have a female if his here that we are using one of my males for.
I would reach out and just see about buying one of these animals from him?


Thanks for talking some sense into me guys! It’s just not worth it, especially given that I am very attached to Adonis and that I’m not seriously planning to work with the morph myself. I just got way too excited, seeing that it still exists. I can’t afford to purchase one of this morph these days, but I’ll keep my eyes out- you never know, for the future!


Do you mine me asking what kind of gecko and morph?

I don’t know if it would be considered advertising? @eaglereptiles ?

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If you aren’t selling you are welcome to share your reptiles I believe

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I’m definitely not selling anything! My little goofball is here to stay! He isn’t the brightest, but he’s a sweet, silly boy very dear to my heart. He is an Albey Scholl Snow leopard gecko I bought from Albey Scholl in 2005. It’s been a looooong time, but I think Adonis was the top male he sold that season. He’s the gecko in my current avatar.


As long as it is not a direct request to other users to take part in a breeding program, it is fine :+1:.

Here you are discussing the potential benefits Vs the potential flaws, nothing to worry about Marla :blush:


I had an idea right as I was falling asleep last night, tell me what you guys think about this scenario (more the general concept than the details at this point):

The breeder lists a female animal of this morph that I love, and I make him an offer- if they will sell the female to me for (50%? 75%? Suggestions?) of the listed price, then I will breed her to my male the next season she is mature enough. If there are offspring, I will send (1? 2?) to this breeder as payment for the discount. Should there be no offspring, barring a situation where it is obviously related to the female’s fertility, e.g. she turns out to be male or never lays any eggs at all, then I would pay the remainder of the full price as listed.

Does anyone ever do that sort of thing? I honestly have no idea; I’ve never had any reason to think about collabs before.


If you offered that to me I would reject it because I have no way of knowing if you will live up to your word.

I think it would be a tough sell without knowing the person.


I imagine I’d do the same myself!

I do come with more ‘insurance’ in terms of being more likely to follow through on stuff, though. It’s in my interest to maintain my veterinary license, anyone who has gone through the years and years of work to earn a DVM/license knows what I mean. In Washington state (where I am licensed), a veterinarian can lose their license to practice for a lot of reasons, including “moral turpitude.” Defaulting on a reptile breeding agreement definitely qualifies as that. If the breeder could provide proof that I hadn’t kept a signed agreement, I would lose my license. I don’t know if it would be permanently or only a few years, but that doesn’t matter much- it is a massive black mark against your name, and that follows you everywhere. It would definitively end all future prospects of me working as a veterinarian, even if they do make the medical advances to fix my hands. (Other people might conceivably eventually recover, but I’ve already not been working.) Veterinarians are not at all in demand right now, I’d have a hard enough time getting a job even with no black mark.

The main reason I bother to mention the above is that I think it’s important that people know that DVMs can be held accountable to their actions, just like MDs. (Rules regarding state veterinary associations and licensing boards vary by state, but HERE is a good place to get started, if you have a grievance.

But yeah, I don’t think I’m going to pursue this idea of mine either- it just sounds like a recipe for trouble. It was interesting to think through, though. Thanks guys!