If you don't see the information you need in the FAQs section below please use the "inquiries" button located in the button cluster at the top left of this page to submit your question(s). The FAQs section will be updated as new relevant topics arise.
the gene responsible for hypomelanism a simple
recessive? And what about the genetics of the pattern
|A:||The gene responsible for hypomelanism has proven to be a simple recessive. The pattern variations are linked to the hypomelanism gene but we are not certain what conditions lead to the expression of the more unusual pattern groups. Consequently, we are unable to predict pattern outcomes at this point. This is likely to change as more hobbyists come on board to work on the puzzle.|
the VRHD hold their colors?
|A:||More often than
not, color related mutations in many species available
today produce very brightly colored juveniles with
adults becoming quite a bit more subdued color-wise as
they age/grow. There is little to be gained by
spotlighting specific examples but they should be more
or less in the real common knowledge. The exact
opposite condition occurs with the VRHD. The VRHD are
one of the rare instances where older, larger animals
are orders of magnitude more colorful than the
large do these animals grow to be?
|A:||VRHD, like other Pituophis, are
large, muscular colubrids as adults. They tend to be
relatively slender as juveniles and sub-adults. Once
they hit about four feet in length they begin bulking
up to become relatively stout adults. On occasion some
adults will maintain the more gracile juvenile form as
an adult. These animals can be very beautiful with a
distinctive "coachwhip" body form. Typical large adult
length would be five to five and a half feet.
Some robust and particularly well fed individuals may
eventually approach seven feet, but that is not the
norm with specimens kept under healthy captive
conditions. Our largest and oldest deppei is a male
measuring about six feet.
|A:||As with their coloring and
patterning, the temperament of deppei varies
quite a bit. Some deppei
can be fearful and others quite calm and inquisitive
like a good natured family dog. The are usually never
bellicose without reason. When they have reached the
limits of tolerance they will expel air explosively
through the glottis and rattle the tail. Striking out
is kept in reserve for the most dire situations. When
grown under good husbandry practices and handled
properly, these snakes are a joy to work with. Our
outreach snake for the last 20 years has been a large
(six foot) male that is very inquisitive and seems to
enjoy human contact.
Durango Mtn. Pines do not appreciate high temperatures. Temporarily warm temperatures for digestion are fine, otherwise they like it on the cool side, ie, human comfortable room temperatures to about 80F. Kept too warm, these animals grow very restless and many will panic. The warm temperatures will evoke fear behaviors such as running away, inflating, tail rattling, hissing explosively, whining, lurching at movement awkwardly. They display clear signs of being in obvious discomfort. They fare best under captive conditions practiced for most other montane colubrid species. Plan ahead for this.
|Q:||Are the VRHD some kind of albino or partial albino?|
|A:||There is often some confusion regarding
how the terms albinism and hypomelanism are used
respectively. The VRHD are not albinos - partial or
|Q:||Can you tell which VRHD will produce the pattern that I am interested in?|
|A:||We don't claim to understand the
inheritance rules governing VRHD pattern expression at
this point in the adventure. It will be interesting to
watch as hobbyists decipher VRHD pattern inheritance
rules. Thus far we have been merely observers of the
profusion of patterns associated with this snake.
|Q:||Are the VRHDs the product of hybridization with other Pituophis genre/species?|
|A:||An easy one. VRHD are pure, unadulterated
deppei. Our deppei collection has been sealed
for many years and is limited to the original Los
|Q:||Can I breed a VRHD to another deppei locality and pass along the VRHD gene?|
|A:||Most likely. This has not been tested, however.|
|Q:||Will Vivid offer heterozygous VRHD?|
|Q:||Will Vivid offer payment plans for the VRHD?|
|A:||We offer a net 30 day, interest free
payment plan. Payment plans will require a minimum 25%
deposit to initiate the plan. The deposit is
non-refundable except under conditions of
non-performance on the part of Vivid Reptiles.
|Q:||Does the VRHD
genotype/phenotype occur in the wild?
|A:||Two or three decades ago I would have confidently answered, "not likely" to this question. However, I have seen strange things in wild over the years, including hypomelanistic specimens. Heterozygous hypo deppei could exist as a subset to the main local population with occasional heterozygous X heterozygous pairings being inevitable. The deeper question here is whether or not the genes associated with hypomelanism play some kind of role in the long term survival of the species.|
the product of crossing a Summer Phase with a Winter
|A:||This crossing has produced
offspring of both types. Oddly, we are not seeing much
by way of intermediates. However, I wouldn't read too
much into this as it is still very early days.