Hey guys I hope everyone is staying safe during these crazy times! I am new to ball pythons but have had other reptiles for a long time. I am looking to get my first ball python with the thought of potentially breeding them at some point just as a hobby. Are there any morphs to stay away from when it comes to breeding? And how old do they have to be in order to breed? Thanks!
Here you go https://owalreptiles.com/issues.php
Breeding is a combination of weight, age and good body proportions.
1500 grams should be your minimum for a female and at least 2 years of age.
Males can breed at a year and at a low weight however it can quickly take its toll and people have bred small males to death.
Again proportions are important
I personnally do not waste my time with males under 650 grams.
Females it depends I may breed a 18 months old female that is 1500 grams, I may breed a 1100 female that is 4 years old or older, but if the proportions are not right I will not breed either.
Usually the bigger the female the better, I like them to be 1800 grams and up, unless it is a slow grower older female.
Females need to be at least 1200+ grams while males should be at 500+ grams. Those are minimums, of course. The condition of the individual is important and that will ultimately be your call. What @stewart_reptiles linked is a good reference for the major health issues associated with certain morphs.
I definitely agree with the weight recommendations above. I strongly believe that we all need to work together to decrease the breeding on the spider morph. This morph causes neurological problems in the snake and eventually causes problems in day to day life. The snakes often have uncontrollable head and neck movements (winding), which is unhealthy, as well as makes feeding time absolute hell. If you breed a spider with a spider it can often kill the offspring. If you were to take my advice, don’t but a spider ball unless it’s a rescue, and definitely try to avoid breeding it! I love helping new owners,so please keep up the great questions!
I’d do your own research on spider (and honestly any of the wobble/“problem” genes) and decide for yourself whether or not you’d like to breed/keep them.
I personally do not see the spider gene detrimental to a snake’s health, except maybe in the rare cases of a extremely severe wobble… in my experience and what I’ve researched, most spiders have minor wobble to no wobble at all.
I’d say decide what morphs you like, then research potential problems with that morph. Some morphs are ok on their own but cause problems in super form, some morphs like blackhead can mask the issues with morphs like spider, it’s a pretty complex list of stuff that can go wrong. For example, maybe you want to breed cinammons but you didn’t do your research and bred super cinammons and got surprised by a whole clutch with kinked spines. Or maybe you wanted breed a russo pied and got tiny eyes by mistake. It goes way beyond “don’t breed x morph because it wobbles” and while spider is the ‘obvious’ one when people talk about neuro issues in ball pythons, it’s not the only morph with a wobble and there’s more things than wobbles that can go wrong. It’s hard to come up with a big singular list of “don’t do this.”
More of “I want to breed snakes like x, y, and z, what can go wrong if I breed them?”