Corn snakes are possibly one of the most commonly kept pets in the UK today. They are easy to care for, easy to handle, great with kids and come in almost any colour or pattern you can imagine.
As I think back to the earlier days of keeping these pets I’m amazed as to how much they have changed. Collectors used to be limited to choosing between the 4 main varieties that were available.
1. Commons. The original corn snake is also known as the Red Rat Snake. This is the ‘wild’ corn snake and has always been the most commonly kept.
2. Anerythristic. A common corn snake bred to be missing the reds, oranges and browns. This produces a white, grey and black snake. Sometimes also called the ‘black albino’.
3. Amelanistic. This variety has been selectively bred to lack black pigment. This leaves a corn that is a mix of reds, whites and oranges.
4. Snow. Crossing an Anerythristic and an Amelanistic produced the first snow corn snakes. These are a combination of pinks and whites and one of my favourite morphs.
These old varieties have consequently artificially evolved to produce the staggering array of varieties we see for sale today. We now have lavenders, blood reds, butters, ultramels, blizzards, hypos, caramels, gold dusts, ambers, etc… the list is endless!!
With all these new varieties being bred and new morphs being created all the time it seems like the original 4 have been left a bit by the wayside. Breeders concentrate on the ‘high end’ corn snakes, hobbyist breedings are usually accidental between mixed varieties.
Who is continuing to breed quality Commons, Amels, Anerys and Snows?
What do you think? Is it all about the new generation corn snakes these days?