WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A professional reptile breeder’s latest masterpiece is a ball python with markings that resembled smiley face emojis.
- The lavender albino piebald ball python had three smiley face emoji markings on its back.
- Justin Kobylka explained that recessive gene mutations can cause markings that usually resemble faces, but it took about eight years before distinguishable “smiley face emoji” markings appeared.
Python breeder Justin Kobylka made waves online when he showcased a ball python with extremely rare markings that resembled smiley face emojis.
Kobylka is a professional reptile breeder who specializes in breeding ball pythons with unique markings caused by recessive gene mutations. The rare pythons are then sold at high prices at his store in Toccoa, Georgia.
The most popular breeding result is an “emoji ball python,” a lavender albino piebald ball python that had smiley face emoji markings on its back. The video showcasing the python’s markings has since been viewed over 370,000 times on YouTube.
The caption read, “Piebalds sometimes have faces in the pattern like this, however having 3 perfect faces… is astronomically rare (this is the first).”
Kobylka priced the “emoji ball python” at no less than $4,500 (£3,650 GBP). He shared that it took him about eight years of breeding to stumble upon those particular markings. It was recently sold at about $6,000.
The usual cost of normal piebald ball pythons is about $40 (£32 GBP).
Kobylka made a more recent video explaining how the unique patterns came to be. He explained that the markings are caused by recessive gene mutations that occur naturally. However, it is extremely rare to achieve such unique patterns in the wild, compared to a controlled environment.
Kobylka added that he did not create the “emoji” markings on purpose, the patterns were random and just happened to resemble the smiley face emojis we all know.
You can find out more of Kobylka’s breeding processes on his YouTube page.
Source: The Sun