Individual snake personalities?

I have a bumblebee mojave and a super pastel mojave and both of them are really active and curious all the time. My other balls are lazy and just stay in their hides most of the time lol. These are the only two Mojave’s I have.

Anybody noticed their Mojave’s being more active??


I have a Pastave that is chill. But she is much smaller. My Killerbee is active but isnt Mojave.

I don’t have a Mojave but from what I can tell, it is just the personality of the snake. My champagne banana pastel boi is very active and curious but my female firefly is chill and will just sit with you.

I have a super mojave girl and a leopard pastel mojave boy. In daytime they are super lazy but in the evening they are really active and both really like climbing. My most active snake is a pied het albino. This girl is even active at daytime. And even when she is not active, she almost doesn’t hide. She is just lays somewhere out in the open. In the beginning I was worried that something in her enclosure was not correct. I tested everything 20 times, even changed her hides but everything is the same as with the other ones. She eats and sheds fine so indeed, it must be a character thing.

Looking at this from both sides leads me to more confusion.

So “morphs” are mutations of the pigmentation genes, so really there should be no way that ‘personality’ is altered compared to a Normal because the brain cells arnt changing, just the pigmentation cells.

But with that being said, different pigmentations will allow different rates of UV to be absorbed by the skin, so it is possible (at least in my head) that ‘personallity’ is altered through the amount of vitamin D3 they are producing and the differences in bone strength.

I’d need @t_h_wyman to come and correct me though and make it make sense.

I have definitely seen a difference in behavior of some morphs over the years. All of our Super Cinnamon animals are very easily agitated and more defensive, especially the Urban Camos.

All of our Sumas are always moving, very curious and outgoing.

OD are another hissy and defensive morph in my experience.

I know my experiences aren’t exact science, but I don’t think anyone could prove or disprove any certain morph could have different behaviors over others.


Ahh… that’s why my champagne pastel OD which I only have for few weeks already tried to bite me three times and got me the fourth. It’s the OD in her :smile:.

This is what I was confused with. The morph should have nothing to do with there personality but I can definitely see a difference in my Mojave’s vs the others I have. They come out during the day a lot and are super curious when I’m holding them. It’s one of the reasons I love Mojave’s.

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But we keep all out balls in drawers with no exposure to sunlight so they are not manufacturing D3 by way of UV exposure :upside_down_face:

Sure we could, quick example:

None of my OD animals are hissy or defensive. Quite the opposite, mine are all rather placid.

These behaviours, taken from different collections, are contradictory and so disprove the behaviour is intrinsic to the morph. Granted, both of the observations are anecdotal and for a true, scientific level examination we would want larger numbers. But as a quick and dirty look at the situation, it works.

Here is where things get fun…

Many mutations are to genes that affect pigmentation but there are a number of genes that alter pigmentation that have nothing to do with genes responsible for pigment synthesis. Further, there are genes that play a role in pigment synthesis that pull double (or more) duty in processes that are wholly unrelated to pigmentation.

As an example - Melanocytes house melanin after it is produced but their migration through the developing body, especially as it relates to neural tube development, is tangential to melanin display in an animal. So a mutation that prevents a melanocyte from migrating properly would likely alter the pigmentation display of an animal but it would also very potentially alter how certain neurons are laid down/develop which could very well effect a change in behaviour.

To the OP, my guess is that what you are seeing is simply down to the personality of those two snakes and is unrelated to them being Mojave. I have Mojave in my collection and, while a couple of mine are gregarious like yours I also have a few that are incredibly timid and hide all the time and a few that are cantankerous as all get out and would as soon take your face off as look at you.


My mojaves are also very curious in the evening. When they see me they always come to the glass almost like they are trying to communicate with me. If I open the door they crawl out and climb on my shoulder. I always thought that it was because I really got them at a very young age, just around two months old. My son always claims that when you buy a snake very young they are still in their unicorn and butterfly, the world is beautifull stage because they never had any bad experiences. But there is a difference between the young ones.

But the thought that caracter is connected to a gene to me doesn’t sound to strange. We already know that some genes are connected to neurological issues, problems in kinking, duckbilling, fertility issues, gender of offspring, eye development ect. Then to me it only seems logical that there might also bee a genetical connection between some morphs and personality. But on the other side, just like with people, I think also experiences during their live and type of housing play a part. My OD might have been one of the only ones who is more defensive, like my het red axanthic is the hissing one, they all get better when they learn they have nothing to fear.

Good point. I completely overlooked that :sweat_smile:

Thank you :blush: is there any known ways to alter the migration of melanocytes during development? Obviously on a reptile scale (no pun intended) it’s likely lacking study but have we found ways or even use of altering it?

Ok I think my Mojave’s are just curious snakes but this has me thinking about non visual morphs. With the high number of visual morphs out there then in essence there must be non visual. This would be hard to prove but a morph that simply doesn’t have the instinct to hide all the time, one that lacks a defensive nature or has a heightened defensive nature.

It’s a nice thought but no, they’re not puppies. Still snakes. Still just possess snakey qualities.

I understand what you are saying and the only reason I would say you are incorrect is because of terminology and not rationale. “Morph”, as used in the hobby, is a slang for morphology or morphotype which has to do with the physical appearance. Behaviours are not a “morph” because they are not a physical characteristic.

But in the more broad sense, yes, there are behaviours that are certainly influenced by genetics and we have a bit of a grip on some aspects of this. Look at domesticated animals, they all have a fairly conserved set of behaviours that humans have selected for over many thousands of years so as to make them more tractable. If you are interested in a bit of reading on this, check out the March 2011 edition of Nat Geo for the article ‘Taming the Wild’


My Mojave is more active then my other pet rocks, but my leopard. She thinks she is a dog. She seems to really enjoy being out, seems to enjoy being with us. Of course I cant ask her, but behavior wise signs are saying yes bring me out let me explore and hang with you. I have some that absolutely hate being handled or out. My leopard is the only one I have arguements with when its time to go back in her tub.

Ok, I thought it was just my orange dreams, both are hissy. My friend says pinstripe is nasty mean, but mine is a sweetheart. Not as outgoing as my leopard but would still be an amazing educational animal. Both Stitch (pinstripe) and Nala ( leopard) go to the school every so often.

Im not an expert but i believe there is many things that can effect the “personality” of a snake, the newer morphs that have came from the wild probably have a stronger instinct to run,bite. ect because they have not been as domesticated i guess, where something like a pastel that has been around forever has had years and years on captive breeding to kinda breed out the natural fear of us. Also there is probably some neurological changes that come along with the genetics, Most of them just slight changes but IMO could change their “Personalities”

Hahaha…It didn’t enter my mind to compare them to puppies. I have two dogs and I love the to death, but I have ten snakes by now and only two dogs, and believe me, if I would have ten dogs I would really go crazy :joy:. My god…these animals are a handfull. So believe me, I really appreciate the snake qualities in snakes. That said, like every type of animals there are people who in one way or the other anthropomorphize animals and people who believe an animal is just an animal and things like caracter/personality is something we as people want to see in them.

I’m somewhere in the middle. I think it is important to look at the natural behaviour of animals and give them what they need, even if, for me from a human perspective wouldn’t make me happy. On the other side, one thing that I love in having reptiles is studying them, to see how they behave, with me around an also without me interfering. The different behaviour between animals of the same type ect. ect. The thing I notice in the past two years of having them, is that there is a difference in behaviour between them which I can not all explain by the way I hold them, the age they are now or the age I got them. Of course, with two years I’m by far not an experienced snakeowner , and I will never claim I am. But it does give me the idea that even snakes have some kind of “personality”. I’m even the type of crazy person who likes to talk to them, and some even come to me when I do, some don’t care less. We do take them out and sit with them to watch television or simply do so cleaning ect while they snif around hanging on my shoulder. Some I take more than others because some seem to “like” it more than others ( and yes, my leopard pastave is waiting by the glas till it opens and really climbs out) just like my super mojave and pied girl, but some of the others they seem to almost dodge me when I come so I only take them out for cleaning. I don’t know what is going on in their little brains, there is so much we don’t know. I don’t know if it is a morph thing or not. I just enjoy seeing them do their thing and trying to give meaning to it, even though I know I can never think like a snake and as long as they are doing well, are healty, eat, shed well and they seem fine I think " puppy thinking" doesn’t create any problem to them.

Yeah I don’t know why I get so triggered by the anthropomorphism stuff. I love snakes for what they are. Snakes. I enjoy that they are instinctive. That they are so different from humans. It makes them unique.

People seem to have a need to read human emotions/feelings into them. That I don’t understand. They should be appreciated for what they are. They aren’t emotionally intelligent beings, And that’s totally ok. I don’t need to believe that they have emotions towards me to still love them. Different ones still have different “personalities,” different ones enjoy (tolerate) handling more than others, like I agree that’s super cool. I don’t know why it bothers me honestly because of course people mean no harm in doing it :slight_smile:

I guess I see it as a part of respecting nature? Like the guy that got himself eaten by bears, or like the lady 50 miles down the road from me that sadly was killed by a retic a couple months ago because she insisted she had a “special connection” with it (even though the owner told her she should absolutely not handle it alone.)

Things need to stay in their proper place. Yes I know a ball python incapable of harming anyone but it’s the same principle. We all have the desire to relate new things to things we are familiar with to feel more comfortable with them. But sometimes…I don’t know where I’m going with this lol. Halp

I’ll tell my kid someday our puppy “loves them.” I won’t tell them my snake does, because it doesn’t.

I only posted all this cuz I’ve noticed I get snippy to myself when I see people doing it and I don’t really know why. Does anyone else see this the same way or am I just drawing connections where there’s no need?

Be my shrink. Lol.

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I understand your worry and you are right for a very big part of it. A snake is really not a dog and a dog is also not a human. My son just turned 11 and since he was a baby I’m already telling him that a dog is not a human and has different ways of showing and reacting if they had enough of him so if they growl he should back off. We have a lovely boa but I will never leave him alone with this snake, and even when I’m there he is not allowed to hold the boa around his neck even though she will never intentionally harm him, the result is still bad if she does squeeze to tight . I don’t even hold her around my neck. Animals are simply not humans and we should always be aware of that. Anthromorphisme is not bad as long as you only do it a little bit to give it some extra connection, you are aware you are doing it, and always go for the safe side.

Did it really happen, the story of the woman and the retic? I don’t doubt that retics can. There was a woman here in Holland who thought she had a special connection to a gorilla in the zoo in Rotterdam called Bokito. Bokito thought so too. He managed to escape and was ready to make her his “wife”. It didn’t end well. She survived but with mayor injuries. I don’t know if you need a shrink but I think as long as it doesn’t affect your daily life and you walk around angry whole day because of all those crazy “snake whisperers” I think you will be fine :grin:. It is not bad to sometimes remind people that animals are not humans and we should respect them for what they are.

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