Leatherbacks are dragons that have an absence or reduction of tubercles
(rough scales) on the dragons back which give them a leathery
appearance. There have been very few of these hatched in captivity;
making these extremely rare. We occasionally hatch leatherbacks from a
variety of our lines, but have not had success in reproducing the trait
with the 'flukes' we've produced in the past.
There is also a private breeder in California who consistently produces
leatherback dragons from what is believed to be a recessive mutation.
These offspring were available through Amazon Reptile Center for a
period of time last year.
Late 2006 we had an opportunity to import a new line of Co-dominant
Leatherback dragons from a private breeder in Italy. These leatherback
dragons are really cool looking with minimal tubercles and reduced
scale size througout their body. When an Italian Leatherback is bred
with a normally scaled dragon, the offspring result in approximately
1/2 regular scaled and 1/2 leatherback. In our experiences, this form
of tubercle reduction is consistent and does not produce "partial"
leatherbacks. In addition to reproduction predictably, these
leatherbacks are actually a visible HET for a super form - A
scaleless...AKA "Silkback" dragon.
The leatherback dragons do not need any additional care when compared to a normal dragon. The scales are present, just reduced.
The scaleless or "Silkback" dragon is a result of breedng 2 Co-dominant
leatherback dragons together. Silkback dragons do not have scales or
tubercles on their backs or ventral sides. The lateral spines are also
absent from these animals. With the absence of scales, the actual
coloration of the animal is much more vibrant. (This particular
Silkback female is a sibling/clutchmate to the leatherback male in the
Care for the "Silkback" dragons DOES
from the general care of a regularly scaled bearded dragon. While her
diet has remained the same as our other dragons, we have adjusted her
husbandry by lowering her basking temperatures to a high of the upper
90s, with restricted access to long periods of actual basking time. The
combination of a regular fluorescent bulb and a ReptiSun 5.0 are used
for UV lighting and slightly increased humidity.
The skin of the "Silkback" dragon is similar to that of a pinkie mouse
((or your eye lid)) in texture and fragility. Close care must be given
to prevent injury and encourage a healthy shedding process.
Working with this new Co dominant morph of dragons is going to be very
exciting and should open the door to some new projects/morphs in the
future - especially when combined with the recessive Translucent and
Hypomelanistic traits that are currently on the market.
We'd like to thank Alessandro for offering us the opportunity to work with this exciting new morph.
Once again, we'd like to thank Alessandro for visiting Faunaclassifieds
and taking the time to explain in more detail the origination and
husbandry of the Silkback dragon - offering everyone a better