When most people think of bearded dragons, they imagine a sand-colored reptile. But, you may be surprised to discover that bearded dragons can come in a variety of different colors, patterns, and hence there’s something called bearded dragon morphs or mutations. According to studies, it can be considered as quite an affectionate pet. Here’s all you need to know about them.
After you get through this article, you might want to check out setting up a safe bearded dragon habitat for your awesome looking exotic pet!
What is meant by Bearded Dragon Morphs?
In the world of reptiles, the different color models are called morphs. The rarer the variant, the more expensive the dragon becomes. Usually, the dragon you get is more likely to have a metamorphosis. Examples of some morphs are sand fire, red blood, hypo. Each morph has a different function or a different color. Sand fire is like a dull orange, red blood is bright orange-red, and Hypo means that the dragon won’t have a black line in the middle of its nails.
Morphs often also explain what the size or body type of a bearded dragon looks like. Different bearded dragon morphs can have different colors, but they can also have different beaks, scales, head shapes, nail colors, patterns, and more. Some morphs can fetch a high price from breeders and are less frequent than other morphs, so it is wise to be prepared and educated before you go out and buy a bearded dragon. There are also combination morphs, which can be very confusing if you are not a clever bearded dragon morph identifier.
How to Identify your Bearded Dragon Morph?
Check out this video below for identifying your bearded dragon.
Types of bearded dragon morphs
Nominal bearded dragon
Refers to the real and natural patterns of a Bearded Dragon. Its color is especially brown and gray while the area around the eyes and the beard can be red or yellow. It is usually the most economical and common one.
Regular scale bearded dragons, also called normal scale dragons, are spiked dragons. Please note that normal and normal scale are often interchanged incorrectly. A dragon can be a normal scale dragon and still have other visual genetics, such as hypo, trans, witblits, etc. Being a normal scale dragon does not automatically mean that the dragon is a normal dragon (without other genetics).
Sunburst Bearded Dragon
They are of a spectacular yellow color. But, it differs from normal yellow or gold in that their yellow is intense lemon yellow. They also have orange or salmon markings on their back and the back of their tail.
Bearded Dragon Hypomelanistic
Also called salmon-Hypo, these are lighter in color, as I said at the beginning. You can see many differences among the morphs having the same name. They come from crossing Snow X Sandfire(orange) dragons and are hardly black (dark pigmentation).
Many a times they only have black pigment in the eyes. The hypomelanistic type is a coloration that develops in animals that have reduced melanin in their genes, and therefore have a lesser amount than usual of the color black.
Snow Bearded Dragon
They are hypomelanic animals and they do not have any pigment in their skin which makes them look very white, but they are not albinos, and do not have red eyes(the pattern gene works).
The pogonas with this gene lack a pattern and are usually silver in color, although they can have yellow or pink tones(Recessive gene) (Color gene acts).
It is one of the newest morphology changes. It is a combination of a visual witblits and a visual Zero, they have dark spots that are created by the Zero gene and the non-veined spots that are created by the witblits gene. They can have black eyes (although not all have them) without becoming trans.
The Dragon paradox has a metamorphosis that is an anomaly, it cannot become a het. They are one of the most beautiful bearded dragons. They hatch like typical dragons and then lose their pattern and color, later recovering the color in patches. Every paradox is unique, and there is not one as same as the other.
Leucistic Bearded Dragon
It is a pogona of a yellowish white, off white, or white color with a very slight orange touch (another example of a hypomelanic pogona). They almost look albino but the eyes are not red (the pattern gene works)
It is a cross of a Dragon hypo (it can be snow, leucistic) with Translucent. This results in a combination of very spectacular colors without black tones that are accentuated with the translucent characteristic.
Translucent Bearded Dragon
Translucent (trans) dragons have what is commonly known as a “rubbery” appearance. Their skin has a translucent appearance. Depending on the strength of the expression, some trans dragons will have blue bellies and a rubbery look on their beards. Some (not all) trans dragons have solid black eyes. A trans dragon does not necessarily have solid black eyes. Pogonas that have a slightly transparent skin, in adulthood look like wax (they usually have black eyes, Recessive gene).
Dragons in this phase have a reduction in the size of scales and beards, reduction in tubers. They have a smoother appearance compared to normal scale dragons. There are different types of leatherback, recessive, Italian and American (the scale gene works) (gene with incomplete dominance).
This is a pogona created by Phantom Dragons. It is a specific pattern trait and is a perfect striped dragon. They have good health and are strong in their growth. This characteristic comes after many years of breeding experiments with pogonas having lines.
They are the result of the crossing of two leatherbacks (father and mother). They are pogonas without beards, hardly without scales, with a very soft touch. In the market, they are very expensive. As soon as they are born, they do not show any type of scales neither in the back nor ventrally. They do not have any laterals, and usually have some problems. This is because when they lack scales their skin is much more sensitive and exposed to chafing, wounds, etc. and sometimes they have problems with moving as well. (The scale gene works.)
The Zeros are one of the three phases of morphology without pattern. They cannot have color either. Their color varies between gray and white, and it can be light lavender if it is hypo trans. But, those who are not visually hypo are gray zeros. They are commonly seen (They can carry hiccups like het). White Dragons are hypo zero. Point to be noted here is that a zero can have black eyes without being trans.
There is no Black Dragon and when breeders show you a black pogona, they are actually showing you a zero trans that will clear up as it grows. You should never believe that a visual zero or a het trans will remain black. Surely they will not, and the breeder who says that a trans het zero can go dark does not understand trans zero genetics, plain and simple.
If you are interested to pet the bearded dragon, you should know that bearded dragons are gentle, affectionate & docile, and, if bred with care and attention, they can be educated to interact with men. They are curious animals, and among their characteristics, you will discover some movements that sometimes have social functions, such as shaking the head up and down, raising a front leg similar to a greeting, opening the mouth wide when they are stopped to warm up at the heat source. In nature, the bearded dragon lives for an average 6/7 years while, in captivity, if bred in optimal conditions, it can live even over 10 years. So, go get your favorite bearded dragon morph now!