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mainelyreptiles
07-10-2005, 11:05 PM
I have a feeling that I'll probably be the receipient of a lot of flack from this post but I feel that I have to get this off my chest and just say it.....

I am a traditionalist in that I've been a herper for a very long time. I've kept AFT's since 1996, long before they gained the popularity that they now have. I've always enjoyed these geckos in their natural color patterns and will always continue to do so.

Having witnessed the Leopard Gecko "morphed" into every conceiveable color and pattern it seems that nothing more can be done with it other than possible variations of current morphs.

Now breeders and hobbyists have turned their attention to the African Fat Tail and in the last few years various color and pattern morphs have appeared.

It is in my opinion that as with the Leopard Gecko this is primarily profit driven as well as being the first to produce the next "gotta have" morph of gecko.

Here is the question that I need to ask: once the AFT has been taken through all the various color and morph variations in 5 - 10 years and the gecko that once cost the hobbyist hundreds (and even thousands in some cases) no longer command those prices because they have become so abundant, which gecko is next on the list to be turned into a living, breathing cartoon character?

(OK, let me have it. Please keep in mind that this is the opinion of someone who appreciates the hobby for the way it used to be and admire these animals the in way nature intended them to be.)

Nathan Hall
07-11-2005, 03:16 AM
Your idealism is noble, but I don't think that you will get a huge response to some of your generalizations. The reptile industry is driven by demand. Some of my "guilt" (producing morphs) is alleviated by the establishment of this forum, which allows you to express such opinions. Bit of a Catch-22, eh? If you are against the sale of these morphs, don't buy them. I, and many other breeders out there, believe it is equally noble to offer healthy, captive-bred specimens. A captive-bred "super tangerine freaky freaky moonglow" fat-tail will always have a much better chance surviving than the thousands of "normal" fat-tails ripped from the wild. The current market dictates the price of such morphs. My production of certain morphs is driven by my absolute obsession with geckos. Some of the more obscure species are expensive. There's just now way around it.


admire these animals the in way nature intended them to be

In the wild?

mainelyreptiles
07-11-2005, 07:10 AM
Thanks for your response Nathan. In some way you've misconstrued the original intent of this post. It was not meant to insult you or anyone else, but to pose a legitimate question concerning the state of herpetoculture today. Maybe this has been posted in the wrong thread. Perhaps you may consider starting an ethics thread to handle this type of post where you, I, and others can have a civil discussion concerning topics of this nature.

Be aware that you threw some stinging jabs my way. Since I once was a practitioner of the sport of boxing, I'll will be countering and you have some coming your way....

It's not idealism that drives my opinion just the fact that I'm amazed at the way the hobby has evolved.

I'm not against the sale of morph's as you suggest. Anyone has the right to purchase one if they choose. That's an individual's choice if they wish to do so. And its yours as well as others right to breed them.

Another thing that I agree with you is that I would not consider buying one. The cost of most morphs on the market is about a week or two of take home (or more depending on the specie) pay for most people in this country. And there is never a guarantee that the herp will live long enough to enjoy. Most breeders offer live arrival guarantees under the right conditions but not lifetime warrantees should the animal die after a few weeks even when properly cared for. I understand that's simply not a realistic business option for most breeders. Refunds or replacements would drive any breeder out of business very quickly. Being married w/children, as in my case, it's often not a good choice with most family budgets to spend a large sum of money on any animal, morph or otherwise. Morphs are a luxury item for most people who can afford to buy one through saving for it, working out a payment plan with a breeder or charging it with a credit card.

As I mentioned in my original post I enjoy reptiles in their natural color states, I "admire these animals the in way nature intended them to be".
I find beauty in their natural pattern and colors "the in way nature intended them to be". Whats wrong with that? It seems that for most of today's hobbyists that if it's not "super tangerine freaky freaky moonglow" then it's not worth keeping. It seems to be this: "Eye-candy is in, earth tone is out". Anything that we can impress our family and friends with as well as post pictures on some forum, and then sit back and watch the adulations roll in.

Herpetoculture has become more sensual and less intellectual over the years. Unless, of course, the individual is into breeding then the science of genetics comes into the picture. The actual study of the biology of reptiles as well as the study of it's natural habitat, behavior, etc. has been lost with most comtemporary herpetoculturists. If it hasn't then it's not readily apparent anymore.


Several things that you stated in your post hit the nail right on the head concerning the status quo of herpetoculture today:

"The current market dictates the price of such morphs." I agree with that. Like everything else that is bought and sold in any market the price remains stable until that market becomes saturated with similar goods and then the prices are driven down. Basic, common sense economy. Herpetoculture is no different. Remember when the "Blizzard" morph of the Leo was first introduced in the late '90's (correct me if I'm wrong on that). I recall that they where being sold for nothing less than $1000.00. I was at the local pet store last week and if I so chose to do so I could have been the proud owner of a very healthy blizzard for only $49.95 plus applicable sales tax! What a deal! $950.05 off the original price! The tangerines and the carrottails and everything else breeders have to offer are next. Lots of people have them and they are breeding them and they've got to sell them! The market is saturated and there is no more real money to made on these Leo morphs. AFT's will follow; everyone will have them, breed them and want to sell them. The originators of the morph(s) will do well in the beginning but will soon have to constantly lower their prices because former customers are breeding the animals and selling them at much lower prices. Call it the eBay effect: one type of item, 500 sellers and 10 buyers. Customer gets to pick and choose from the lowest price.


"My production of certain morphs is driven by my absolute obsession with geckos."

Notice how you used the words " absolute obsession". Go to other forums and you will find that there are some people "absolutely obsessed" with this hobby and that "gotta have it" attitude. Gotta have the latest morph, gotta breed as much as possible, gotta sell as much as possible. Ever here of puppy mills? I've seen reptile mills: they are absolutely despicable.

Some people will also be the first to adopt any animal that they can get their hands on by placing adds in the classified sections of various forums offering to do so. These are the everyday hobbyist and quite possibly some with more unscrupulous motives looking to resell any animal they can get. You've got to agree on one thing Nathan which I am confident that you know to be a fact: keeping a very large quantity of herps is time consuming as well as expensive, not just in the cost to feed them, but housing and utilities (ie electricity bills for heating) as well. And having a large quantity of herps can lead to burn out from the constant maintenance required with proper husbandry. Burn out can lead to neglect. I hope that you'll discourage this type of behavior in this forum.

"A captive-bred... fat-tail will always have a much better chance surviving than the thousands of "normal fat-tails ripped from the wild."

I agree, which is why all of my AFT's are captive bred but one. This is the original male that I purchased from a local pet store in 1996 which more than likely was WC. He is still alive and doing very well. The others followed a few years later and were purchased from reputable breeders. The last two that I purchased were from you Nathan about a year and a half ago. Remember the two juvenile males that you had available for several months a while back? BTW, were the parents or some prior generation "ripped from the wild"? How about some of the other species that you breed?

They are doing very well and have grown to adulthood. I don't own a digital camera so I can't provide you with any immediate photos of them so you'll have to take my word on that.

OK Nathan, bear with me just a little more so that I can respond to the opening statement of your post:
Idealism=idealistic: not at all. Try realistic and possibly pragmatic. Those describe me much better.

Noble? Well, if you consider opening doors for the elderly and ladies noble, then I guess I am. Otherwise, my answer to that would be no. See the above description.

Which takes me back to the original intent of this thread: What will be the next specie of gecko that that will be put through the extreme Morphing process after the AFT has been all Morphed out? A simple question that requires simple answers. Thats all!

Nathan Hall
07-11-2005, 09:02 AM
absolute obsession

LOL! Should've just said passion. I figured that would get a negative pause.



In some way you've misconstrued the original intent of this post. It was not meant to insult you or anyone else, but to pose a legitimate question concerning the state of herpetoculture today
Actually, not at all. I was just trying to defend a position and remain diplomatic. This debate pops up on every herp forum around the world on a regular basis. You questioned the intentions/integrity of folks who breed/keep morphs.


And there is never a guarantee that the herp will live long enough to enjoy. Most breeders offer live arrival guarantees under the right conditions but not lifetime warrantees should the animal die after a few weeks even when properly cared for
Simply because it is a morph? That's the focus of this discussion.


And having a large quantity of herps can lead to burn out from the constant maintenance required with proper husbandry. Burn out can lead to neglect. I hope that you'll discourage this type of behavior in this forum.
This is a morph debate. Obviously, you don't know me that well. I've been doing this for 16 years. If I didn't love working with geckos, I wouldn't spend 60+ hours a week working with them. If you spend a little time and check out the forum, you'll find a plethora of dedicated hobbyists.


BTW, were the parents or some prior generation "ripped from the wild"? How about some of the other species that you breed?
You are missing my point here. Actually, my collection is 100% captive-bred.


What will be the next specie of gecko that that will be put through the extreme Morphing process after the AFT has been all Morphed out? A simple question that requires simple answers
Really? A simple question. You were shaking that stick pretty hard when you stuck it in the bee's nest. It is a loaded question.

Your preemptive defense illustrates your anticipation of the storm that your initial post creates. I was a "purist" for well over a decade. I shared your sentiments to some degree, but I now have a fascination with some of the morphs that I couldn't afford years ago. Wild-type specimens are no less interesting that any of the morphs. Please keep in mind that amelanism naturally occurs.

What is your name?

Geckophile Admin
07-11-2005, 10:12 AM
I'm glad you posted this. There is now an "ethics" forum.

GeckoFiend
07-11-2005, 10:22 AM
I won't get into too much debate here, but my basic drives to pruduce morphs stem from nothing more than curiousity. I'm starting to breed geckos for fun, and while it'd be nice to be able to sell babies and earn back the thousands of dollars I have into my collection(animals, feeding, cages) and possibly add to my collection, I'd still be happy with them if I never made a dime.

My collection is not 100% captive bred-I collected an eastern box turtle, and was given a coleonyx varigatus by a friend. My other 30 animals are all captive bred.

Anyways, about your question, I believe that crested geckos and possibly gargoyles are a lot more popular than AFTs at this time. Therefore, your question should be:
What will be the next specie of gecko that that will be put through the extreme Morphing process after the Crested Gecko, Gargoyle Gecko, and AFT has been all Morphed out?
This question is very difficult to answer, because many morphs are merely "stumbled" upon, thus creating more interest in that species and more people begin working with them. When you have hundreds of people all focusing on one species, many more morphs will be discovered/created. I guess we'll just have to wait to see what comes along.

Geckophile Admin
07-11-2005, 10:32 AM
I said 100% captive-bred. I do have a few wild-caught banded geckos, so I guess 99% would be more accurate. I am not against acquiring certain wild-caught specimens to strengthen and diversify gene pools. I do think that it should be better regulated. I mentioned wild-caught fatties to bolster my point.

mainelyreptiles
07-11-2005, 12:55 PM
Well now, what a lively discussion we're starting to have! lol! Thanks for starting an ethics thread. Hopefully it will be used wisely to discuss various issues concerning herpetoculture.

Thanks babamba for your reply!


Anyways, about your question, I believe that crested geckos and possibly gargoyles are a lot more popular than AFTs at this time. Therefore, your question should be:
What will be the next specie of gecko that that will be put through the extreme Morphing process after the Crested Gecko, Gargoyle Gecko, and AFT has been all Morphed out?
Excellent answer and I stand corrected from stating that the AFT is the next popular gecko next to the Leopard.


Correction Nathan, I'm not shaking a stick and poking a bees nest with it. I suppose it's more like whacking a hornets nest out of a tree and then being crazy enough to try and kick it around! lol!

In all honesty I don't visit many other herp related forums other than this one that I discovered through your web site which I enjoy visiting as often as possible. Since I purchased those AFT's from you I've been a regular to your site which in my opinion is one the the best out there. I mean that in all sincerity Nathan, its very well done and absolutely informative.

No doubt that this a topic that pops up every so often in all the various forums available on the 'net.

I guess that we purists have to rear our ugly heads and shake our fists every so often to remind the newer generation on what the hobby once was, just like our parents and grand parents reminded us that they had to walk ten miles uphill one way in the rain/snow to get to school after they woke up at 3:00am and did three hours of morning chores. lol!



absolute obsession




No harm done, but I hope you get the picture. Too many average hobbyists get in over their heads by taking on way too many animals to reasonably take care of. It becomes an unhealthy obsession.

[quote] You questioned the intentions/integrity of folks who breed/keep morphs.

Yes and no. I don't question the intentions/integrity of most breeders. Their are some out there whose motives should be questioned. Nor do I question the intentions/integrity of those who which to keep them. It's their perogative to do so.

I do question the need for so many morphs of one specie especially in a hobby that not many keep herps as they do with dogs, cats, birds and fish. I don't know many people other than myself in my corner of this world that keep cold blooded creatures. I see more dogs and cats in my neighborhood and hear more parakeet calls coming from peoples windows than I know of people that own herps.

I understand that the popularity of herps has increased over the years but does the market for herps dictate the plethora of morphs in all the various species? What happens to the animals that can't be sold or given away?



And there is never a guarantee that the herp will live long enough to enjoy. Most breeders offer live arrival guarantees under the right conditions but not lifetime warrantees should the animal die after a few weeks even when properly cared for

I did not mean morphs only but any animal in general.


This is a morph debate. Obviously, you don't know me that well. I've been doing this for 16 years. If I didn't love working with geckos, I wouldn't spend 60+ hours a week working with them. If you spend a little time and check out the forum, you'll find a plethora of dedicated hobbyists.
You missed the point on this one. What I meant was the average hobbyist who gets in over their head. See "absolute obession" for a better understanding.

To let everyone reading and participating in this thread, I've been involved with the hobby since I was a child for 34 years now. Without giving away my age I'm almost an old F*rt. So I've been around awhile. Long enough to say that I figured out at an early age that the prepared turtle foods back then were the reason that those cute baby red-ears died so easily. They lived a lot longer when fed earthworms,grasshoppers, bits of raw beef and chicken dipped in crushed eggshell and pulverized bone meal (all chopped of course until they grew large enough).



BTW, were the parents or some prior generation "ripped from the wild"? How about some of the other species that you breed?
I mentioned this only to remind you that all CB reptiles ancestery can be traced to wild caught stock. This is common knowledge to all. I also have no problem with reinforcing bloodines with WC specimens. This practice is absolutely necessary for the survival of breeding stocks and the hobby as well.
I always encourage anyone thinking of purchasing a herp to find a reputable breeder to buy from rather than purchasing from a pet store,especially independents, where the chances of purchasing a wild caught is greater. This is a good pratice to help stop the rapid depletion of many species in the wild.



Really? A simple question. You were shaking that stick pretty hard when you stuck it in the bee's nest. It is a loaded question.

No, not a loaded question; it's a legitimate one, one to encourage honest debate.


Please keep in mind that amelanism naturally occurs.
Understood; duly noted.


What is your name?
I'll PM you with that info shortly.
I'll PM you shortly with that answer.

mainelyreptiles
07-11-2005, 01:05 PM
OOPs! Noticed some spelling and other errors in my lat post. Apologies to all.

Nathan, am I pushing my luck by asking if it's possible to add some kind of edit feature to correct mistakes of this kind in the future? Thamks!

Brian
07-11-2005, 02:08 PM
You know I really see the designer reptiles as no different from the old pigeon "morph" breeding in England. I honestly do prefer the normals. My olny real hope is that the normals continue to look as they do. With Leopards normals now don't look exactly like normal wild animals in some cases.

mainelyreptiles
07-11-2005, 02:21 PM
You know I really see the designer reptiles as no different from the old pigeon "morph" breeding in England. I honestly do prefer the normals. My olny real hope is that the normals continue to look as they do. With Leopards normals now don't look exactly like normal wild animals in some cases.

Good point. I haven't noticed any "out of the ordinary" normals locally but I'll keep an eye out for them.

One way to keep normals as they are is for breeders and hobbyists to continue breeding normals as is in order to keep many healthy normal bloodlines going so that there will not be a heavy reliance on WC to supply the hobby.
Thanks Brian!

Geckophile Admin
07-11-2005, 02:57 PM
I guess that we purists have to rear our ugly heads and shake our fists every so often to remind the newer generation on what the hobby once was, just like our parents and grand parents reminded us that they had to walk ten miles uphill one way in the rain/snow to get to school after they woke up at 3:00am and did three hours of morning chores. lol!

Sounds good to me.


I mentioned this only to remind you that all CB reptiles ancestery can be traced to wild caught stock
Sure, but we were specifically talking about fat-tails.

Herpetoculture has changed dramatically over the last 10 years. Is it negative change? Depends on your perspective. The prevalance of morphs became much more apparent when more folks began breeding their herps. Remember, breeding success was the exception in the earlier days. More morphs were bound to pop up as more hobbyists explored breeding. Refer to EVERY other pet industry out there: dogs, cats, koi, birds, small mammals, etc. My point is that the intentions of herpetoculurists are as varied as the number of ball python morphs. Those who think they are going to make money breeding reptiles are here and gone in a flash. Think of 20 hobbyists you knew 10 years ago. How many of them are still working with herps? Catch my drift? The fundamental love has to be there, morph lover or not.

josh
07-11-2005, 04:07 PM
I think everyone enjoys things that are eye catching. To some the earthy tones that wild caught animals exhibit is the most beautiful thing to look at, while others can't stop looking at the vibrant colors of morphs.

Herpetoculture has evolved 100 times faster in the past 10 to 15 years. Just in products available to a hobbyist today, allows for the care to be as real to "wild life" as possible for the animal. These advances almost give one the god like feeling when keeping and breeding reptiles. "Morphs" are breeding for a specific trait, some occurring naturally and some not. However, the same feeling one gets from either is producing healthy cb babies and knowing what the outcome is going to be and that feeling of god like, might be the only thing one looks for out it.

No matter what one likes to keep, its their taste that dictates it. Now if you are into it as a business, its like any other. You produce what the masses want to make money. That's the beauty of capitalism. If someone is willing to pay $1 million for a gecko and you are the only one to breed that "morph" you would be a moron not to produce the hell out it and make every dime you can. Thats basic business and without the thought of getting rich no one would go out and begin their own business.

What I really think is that everyone out there that doesn't like morphs is just jealous that they were not the first to produce it. If they had produced the first ever "purple pumkin AFT" worth an estimated $20,000 they would never breed it. YEAH RIGHT!!! Gimme a break. Get off the soapbox people.

oscar
07-11-2005, 04:43 PM
very interesting discussion. as a newbie to the hobby.. about a year now.. i can tell you that my interest was not sparked by any morph. i do understand the excitement by all the new morphs that are become available, but i dont necessarily see how that is detrimental to the hobby. the obsession/passion i see from the forums i browse arent necesarily morphs specific, but a general passion. in the past year i have bought about 20 animals. yikes.. i hadnt realized it was that many :lol: but my eyes were just opened to all the different beautiful animals out there, not because of new morphs or a desire ot become rich, but to enjoy them. my opinion on morphs and i do understand your point Mainely is that its a personal decision, but if you dont like it, just live and let live. it doesnt hurt you, does it?

anyway, to the real question.. what gecko is next? hmm i would have to be a hardy animal.. readily available.. and fairly inexpensive to start.. maybe the gargoyles.. and in a few years maybe the chouhouas or leachies when the price becomes more accessable.

Scott

Brian
07-12-2005, 01:38 AM
I remember when a lot of people bred reptiles to "save them". A lot of people (especially turtle people) act as if they're animals might one day be needed to repopulate the wild.

mainelyreptiles
07-12-2005, 02:55 AM
I'm happy to see that others have joined in on this discussion and each response is informative as well as appreciated!

I'd like to respond to several of these posts:


I mentioned this only to remind you that all CB reptiles ancestery can be traced to wild caught stock.

Sure, but we were specifically talking about fat-tails.

Nathan, what started out in the AFT thread was transferred to the Ethics thread that I suggested and you kindly created. It has taken a different turn since and the topic of morphs in general can now be discussed. Lets see how it all turns out. It can only get much more interesting.


Herpetoculture has changed dramatically over the last 10 years. Is it negative change? Depends on your perspective.
In my perspective I am very happy with all the changes with herpetoculture in general. We know so much more now than we did 10, 20, 30 years ago about the more common species that are kept and now some of the less known and more delicate species that are readily made available and easier to care for because of the advancements in husbandry issues that have been addressed.
Technology has even advanced the way we house and care for our herps: at one time not only did we have to worry about keeping our herps alive we also had to worry about keeping plants alive, finding proper and affordable lighting and heating solutions, scratching our heads trying to figure out ways to properly filter aquatic tanks because those darn turtles are regular pooping machines, etc.
We have much more knowledge of all the different species common to the hobby made from observations not only from the field but from the professional and amatuer hobbyist that have contributed through the years. It was,and still is, a labor of love.


The prevalance of morphs became much more apparent when more folks began breeding their herps. Remember, breeding success was the exception in the earlier days. More morphs were bound to pop up as more hobbyists explored breeding. Refer to EVERY other pet industry out there: dogs, cats, koi, birds, small mammals, etc. My point is that the intentions of herpetoculurists are as varied as the number of ball python morphs. Those who think they are going to make money breeding reptiles are here and gone in a flash. Think of 20 hobbyists you knew 10 years ago. How many of them are still working with herps? Catch my drift? The fundamental love has to be there, morph lover or not.

All good points. Breeding in the earlier days was more of a trial and error situation here in the US by hobbyist. Depending on how early you go, most breeding was done in labs by herpetologists or on farms in the southern US as well as Mexico, Central and South America.


More morphs were bound to pop up as more hobbyists explored breeding.

True, as various traits became apparent in specimens curiosities were piqued and the rest is history.



Agreed! It's quite vain to think that the road to riches lies in the propogation of reptiles. It doesn't happen overnight and can take many years for those who are persistent. But it still doesn't guarantee easy money and early retirement. Good observation.

[quote] Think of 20 hobbyists you knew 10 years ago. How many of them are still working with herps? Catch my drift?
Ten years ago I could count the number of hobbyists that I knew on one hand which included myself! I can still do that today! We are a rare breed indeed! lol!!


The fundamental love has to be there, morph lover or not.

Amen to that! The love herpetoculture as well as a child-like curiosity!!

Thanks Nathan!

OK, now on to Josh. Lots of great points as well as looking at the topic from an entirely different angle. I can appreciate that. There is one thing that you and I have to be on the level with and it is this:

What I really think is that everyone out there that doesn't like morphs is just jealous that they were not the first to produce it. If they had produced the first ever "purple pumkin AFT" worth an estimated $20,000 they would never breed it. YEAH RIGHT!!! Gimme a break. Get off the soapbox people.
Hopefully this remark was not aimed at me or anyone else involved with this thread. Personally I do not have any desire to breed reptiles on a full time basis, normal or morphs. I have bred certain species of lizards and turtles in the past and am full aware of the time, money and effort involved with breeding. It's not easy man! I have never made any profit from my successful past projects, often loosing the money that I did invest as I have never sold any animal that was produced. I give them away to certain family members, friends, aquaintances, friends of friends and so on.
If I had a very hard time giving them away I can't imagine trying to sell them. That would be more time, money , more money.............Which leads me to this---- I am in no way jealous or envious of any breeder for not being the first to produce the "purple pumkin AFT". Good luck to the one who does and God bless them. I'll be one that will look at this morph with a smile on my face, shake my head and mumble "What next??"

Now that you and I are on the level Josh there is no hard feelings between the both of us.

Oscar, welcome to the hobby of herpetoculture. Learn all that you can about the various species that you have. Remember that they depend solely on you for all their needs, don't keep more than you came comfortably provide for. Use the internet to learn and grow in the hobby, it's a powerful tool.


my opinion on morphs and i do understand your point Mainely is that its a personal decision, but if you dont like it, just live and let live. it doesnt hurt you, does it?

No it doesn't hurt me; I only ask the question that after the AFT has been squeezed of every conceivable color and pattern combination, what gecko would be the next on the list for the great morphing experiment.
What seems to be the true reason behind this has been answered in two of the above posts:
The hobby of herpetoculture has "morphed" into big business:

The reptile industry is driven by demand.

You produce what the masses want to make money. That's the beauty of capitalism.

My conscience is clear Oscar. A once "noble" hobby of scientific curiosity and wonder has now become an industry of profit and greed, and the herps which obviously can't speak for themselves have become the victims of this selfish greed.



I remember when a lot of people bred reptiles to "save them". A lot of people (especially turtle people) act as if they're animals might one day be needed to repopulate the wild.

This is done primarily with the various sea turtles. They are all an endangered species.The eggs are dug up from beaches around the world and incubated in a controlled environment. The hatchlings are then placed in large indoor pools or tanks for several days or weeks to ensure that they are healthly and are eventually retuned to the area where the eggs were found and released so that they can return to the ocean.

This is done to ensure the survival of of the sea turtle.

oscar
07-12-2005, 08:36 AM
i apologize for the tone of my quote there Mainely. i didnt intend for it to sounds so harsh. it was more of a thing you say and then shrug. i personally dont understand the the big deal over some of the ball morphs and think people are out of their mind to spend $ 3,000.00 on a morph that looks more line bred then genetic to me. heck, i dont necessarily understand why anyone would spend that much on any morph. wait a few years and you'll be able to buy it for a fraction of that cost. i would rather spend my money.. if i had that much.. on a rare species such as those gorgeous New Zealand ones, but that a different thread. lol

anyway, my point is there are always going to be people out there who do thinks that you dont understand and might not agree on, but if its not something that is detrimental to you, why get worked up over it? i understand that in the short run there are going to be too many neglected herps due to short lived enthusiasm from a money hungry person, but over the long term, the amount of true enthusiasts will increase only leading overall to more information about our animals and better care fot them... my opinion anyway.

mainelyreptiles
07-12-2005, 01:44 PM
i apologize for the tone of my quote there Mainely. i didnt intend for it to sounds so harsh. it was more of a thing you say and then shrug.

No apology is necessary,Oscar. I was not offended in any way. Thanks anyhow!
l

i personally dont understand the the big deal over some of the ball morphs and think people are out of their mind to spend $ 3,000.00 on a morph that looks more line bred then genetic to me. heck, i dont necessarily understand why anyone would spend that much on any morph. wait a few years and you'll be able to buy it for a fraction of that cost.

I absolutely agree with you. Part of the reason why I bought this topic up is because it seems that morphs are bred in all the various color and patterns that they are is to appeal to our senses, more specifically our sight. We like what we see and have to have it. It's normal human behavior. It also works out to to breeder's advantage in that we as Americans are impulse buyers; we have no problem spending large sums of money on often frivolous luxury items that most people will spend more time trying to earn the money to pay for it than they will have time to actually enjoy it.
Spending $3000.00 on a ball morph is a personal decision that an individual must make very carefully. Most people don't have that kind of money kicking around, and if they do hopefully they have thought it through very carefully. There are better things to do in life with that kind of money than to spend it on any morph. Starting or adding it to a retirement account would be a better choice.



anyway, my point is there are always going to be people out there who do thinks that you dont understand and might not agree on, but if its not something that is detrimental to you, why get worked up over it?

No it's not detrimental to me in any way. No, I'm not worked up over it. Believe me Oscar, there are no veins bulging in my head or neck over this and I don't have a madmans look on my face either! :D

oscar
07-12-2005, 02:07 PM
i didnt think so, but by your first post i was unsure how fired up you were.. and being a Mainiac, doesnt help me feel any more secure in your stability. :P

Scott

Brian
07-12-2005, 03:18 PM
A once "noble" hobby of scientific curiosity and wonder has now become an industry of profit and greed, and the herps which obviously can't speak for themselves have become the victims of this selfish greed.


I wonder if it was ever free of profit and greed. I mean look at what species get bred. It's the unique stuff, the colorful stuff, not usually the plain lizards (some of which I think are great in their own way).

For instance how many people would keep and breed a lizard that they knew they would have to give away and not sell. Now some people actually would I admit so what if this wasn't some sort of Fuji Iguana, but just a species of little brown anole or sceloporus.

Coleonyx
07-18-2005, 05:12 PM
ALL of my banded geckos are wild caught, and I have no problem with it. Construction for homes spread like wildfire in vegas. One day, perfect desert, next day, broken land and housing lots. it comes without warning. i breed the geckos, hoping that captive bred coleonyx sound more appealing than taking the wild ones.
I wish I could get a permit for C. switaki and reticulatus, and do the same, but government is very strict. :roll:

Viking
09-20-2005, 11:35 PM
This is a very interesting conversation. I am a newbie to this list but have interests in many other species of pets. This kind of event has happened buy times before in human history. Just looks at dogs. They are all from one common ancester. There are over four hundred varieties today. The parakeet have one normal ancester the bright green with a yellow. Look at the dozen of different color combination today. It is a kind of evolution. The developed mutations that human found interesting, beautiful, or more durabily to living with humans. The market will settle down to mostly the other color morphs at sligthly higher price.

Also any species of animals that human start breeding in large numbers evolve to live with humans and usually develope new colors. Just look at pet birds, fish, cats, dogs, and plants. Also in the long ride the animals will be more likely survive minor neglect because they are the ones used in the future generations. And the same time new mutations will be found. You also have to remember that introduced mutation like gene splitting is starting to be seen now. I have some zebra fish (danio) that have a sea anemone gene added to give pink color. It if very expensive to do the first but the trait is now permanent. You might one day "true" designer reptiles like in the movie 'Bladerunner.'

Just my thoughts on the subject.

Scott

Zach Whitman
10-24-2005, 04:39 PM
Isn't there room for both? I think that natural morphs are beautiful. Also I think that it is vitally important to maintain captive populations of genetically pure, local specific, etc animals for conservation purposes. By the same token there are some outrageously beautiful morphs out there. I don' think anyone can walk past an albino honduran milk, or pieblad ballpython without being somewhat impressed by their visual appeal. There is a place for wolves, and foxes, but where would I be without my lab, or poodle, or labradoodle!? If we love our animals and care for them well, does it really matter if you prefer the pink one or the brown one? Not to me!

geckoling
05-06-2006, 01:54 AM
Take a look at a more recent species...the crested gecko. I haven't see anyone offering "wild types" for sale recently...but their are plenty of flames running around. I will admit some flames are an aesthetic improvement in my eyes but it wouldn't be good if we forgot how the wild crested looks like.

Oedura castelnaui is also another one. Quite a few albinos but in this case the wild pattern is also nice so lots of wildtypes still persist. Personally I prefer the wild type in this case.

ryanm
05-06-2006, 05:15 AM
Isn't there room for both?
Yes!


Also I think that it is vitally important to maintain captive populations of genetically pure, local specific, etc animals for conservation purposes.
This is where you are mistaken. Once they go into the pet trade, they cannot and should not be reintroduced to the wild. Conservation necessarily must be a seperate effort from hobbiest breeding. However, I do think it's a good thing that there are diverse interests in this hobby of ours, and that there are some who want freaky morphs and some who want pure locality specimens, because it means both will be available in the future. To me, the best situation would be where the majority of the animals in the pet trade come CBB from professional or hobbiest breeders, with occasional WC animals being brought in to suppliment the captive gene pool.

Conservation needs to take place in the animals own habitat, or if that habitat has been destroyed then in the habitat where you are trying to foster the growth of a population. But you shouldn't be misled to believe that your captive animals can or should be used in conservation in any way. The bottom line is, these animals are pets. There are, of course, exceptions. Extaordinary circumstances (such as the near extinction of a species, etc) may call for captive bred animals to be used in conservation efforts, but for the most part, the animals involved in conservation should not be used in breeding for the pet trade, and pets should not be used in conservation efforts.

ryanm

Thug Child
05-13-2006, 05:08 PM
I personally do not like more than 3 new morphs of leos or cresteds.I personally think that having geckos that look the same as their wild cousins is much more appealing than having some freaky moonglow.I also think if people believe they can take care of an animal that should be in the wild(CB or not)and keep them in good health,it is up to them if they wish to make new patterns and morphs.No matter what kind of morph an african fat tail has,in the end it is still a fat-tail.maybe creating new morphs is not moral, but if herp owners choose to do so,it truely does not hurt anyone.Not to mention that new morphs and colours are simply to look at,it isn`t going to effect the gecko negatively or positively.Like zach said,it doesn`t matter if a gecko is red,white,purple or green as long as they get the maintenance,space and love they deserve.

X-Geckos
08-16-2006, 11:13 AM
and what's about genetic problems from a strong imbreeding for create morphs?
i think an important thing about morphs selection is understand if working for many generations in strong imbreeding or line breeding will cause genetic problem attitude...

Riverside Reptiles
08-16-2006, 01:18 PM
Many people that enjoy reptiles enjoy them because they are different from the average pet. And they take pride in owning something different. And morphs tend to take the "different pet" and make it even more so. It's human nature to seek out the unique.

Morphs are nothing new in this industry/hobby. The first amel. corn snakes were being bred in the early 1950's by Dr. Bechtel. Corn snakes to this day remain one of the most popular pet herps and certainly the most morphed. So to make it sound like this is some new turn in the hobby is just plain false.

As for whether it's right or wrong...good or bad...that's obviously a personal choice. And when it comes to choices like that, there's generally little or nothing one can say to change anothers mind.

ryanm
08-17-2006, 05:49 PM
There does come a point where, ethically, you are responsible for the offspring you produce.

ryanm

Protean
08-17-2006, 08:01 PM
If the animal resides in a cage, it is your responsibility to care for them. so regardless you are responsible for the animal.

But morphs occur naturally regardless if we are there or not. They just do not occur as frequently or in such large numbers. What happens when they are all morphed out.. prices drop but the demand is still there.

I personally am not a big morph fan, however, I am aware that there are a few thousand species of reptiles to know that i am not limited to twenty varieties of the same thing. Its more exciting to me to enjoy ten species that are different then to keep a rack of 10 morphs of one thing. keep in mind though, I go out of my way to find these different species rather than just jump on the band wagon for morphs.

BTW, when was the last group of WC leopard geckoes brought into the US. I would personally rather have a wild leopard than a CB leopard.

my penny shined and pocketed.
jason

Brian
08-18-2006, 02:56 AM
I'd like some as well. :!:

ryanm
08-18-2006, 06:06 PM
If the animal resides in a cage, it is your responsibility to care for them. so regardless you are responsible for the animal.
I meant beyond that, to breed responsibly and be responsible about who you are selling the offspring to.

ryanm

kozmo
08-18-2006, 06:22 PM
If the animal resides in a cage, it is your responsibility to care for them. so regardless you are responsible for the animal.
I meant beyond that, to breed responsibly and be responsible about who you are selling the offspring to.

ryanm

You can't always control that, you just have to hope they go to the best home possible, people can tell you all they want that they will take care of it but once it is packed up and shipped off it is no longer in your hands, all you can do is hope that it ends up with a responsible hobbyist and that it wasn't an impulse buy. Although, I think local pet shops are more vulnerable to the impulse buy crowd, it seems most people that do online reptile purchasing for the most part have an idea of what they are doing.

Protean
08-18-2006, 06:22 PM
Understood.

i have a thing about owning CB animals, after a few generations CB with a lot of the inbreedng going on, they are somewhat limited genetically. I also, using prefer purchasing F1 or P1 generations.

ryanm
08-19-2006, 04:09 PM
Well, obviously you can't control everything that happens to them, what I meant was more along the lines of breeding responsibly and being prepared to keep or cull animals if it would be irresponsible to sell them to people who may end up breeding them later. Things like unknown or unrecognizable hybrids, carriers of harmful genetic mutations, etc. So, for example, don't make hybrids and then sell them to people who don't know the difference, because they may end up breeding them and selling the offspring as pure, and then you muddy the gen pool for everyone.

ryanm

Brian
08-25-2006, 05:52 PM
I'm kind of working on putting things in pairs to end up with F1 as unrelated as possible. So I can keep F1 and basically have unrelated F1's and even F2's. I can switch the pairs up with each other to maxamize genetic unrelatedness for quite a while that way with probably less then 10 pairs. I'm trying this with G. luii.

I blame inbreeding in F1, F2, etc. on the harem system and peoples reluctance to keep extra males.

Nathan Hall
08-26-2006, 12:06 AM
I haven't even looked at this post for many months.


This is where you are mistaken. Once they go into the pet trade, they cannot and should not be reintroduced to the wild. Conservation necessarily must be a seperate effort from hobbiest breeding. However, I do think it's a good thing that there are diverse interests in this hobby of ours, and that there are some who want freaky morphs and some who want pure locality specimens, because it means both will be available in the future. To me, the best situation would be where the majority of the animals in the pet trade come CBB from professional or hobbiest breeders, with occasional WC animals being brought in to suppliment the captive gene pool.

Conservation needs to take place in the animals own habitat, or if that habitat has been destroyed then in the habitat where you are trying to foster the growth of a population. But you shouldn't be misled to believe that your captive animals can or should be used in conservation in any way. The bottom line is, these animals are pets. There are, of course, exceptions. Extaordinary circumstances (such as the near extinction of a species, etc) may call for captive bred animals to be used in conservation efforts, but for the most part, the animals involved in conservation should not be used in breeding for the pet trade, and pets should not be used in conservation efforts.


Excellent post, Ryan. We are definitely on the same page.