Empty Back Project

Project History

The Empty Back or "EB", as you will see it referred to, project is a newer one I've been quietly working with over the past several years.  As you may expect with an operation of this size, the gene slowly leaked from my collection into those of my customers (and the customers of my customers) before I realized exactly what was going on with it - sometimes the hets were obvious, but sometimes not.

Any Empty Back animals you see sold on my website are derived 100% from my own bloodlines, developed from the founding stock I purchased in the early-mid 2000's.  FYI, I have only added 2.2 crested geckos (all with the LW gene) in the past 15 years, and the EB project is in no way related to those.  

From my best estimation, EB started in my animals descended from founding stock that I purchased from Allen Repashy, but these didn't seem to pop up until about 10-12 years (and nearly as many generations) after the last geckos I bought.  Originally, I just looked at it as a trait - I liked how the pinning tended to run to the head on many of the Harry line geckos that I made with it.  I hadn't really taken note that it was diminishing the dorsal pattern because those geckos only had orange on the dorsal anyway (not cream). I originally labeled those with the code "P2H" (Pinning to Head) and held all of them back until I started mixing it with creamy-dorsal geckos in order to put it on other base colors.  I started getting geckos where it didn't really do much for their appearance except add some dark figure to the creamy dorsal....little did I know these were hets for something much more extreme.  Other times I sold hets completely unaware they even had the trait because the pinning wasn't going up to the head like it did with the ones from my Harry/Soft stuff.

Other Lines of EB

While there could be more than just my EB project floating around, I would contend the vast majority of the Empties (Hets) and Super Empties out there are from my line and therefore should be genetically compatible.  We have sold animals with this gene all over the US and Asia.  I would guess it got into Europe before COVID made things difficult for our Hamm show distribution. 

Judging by how long it took to pop up here after acquiring my founding stock, I would say the odds of a similar appearing gene popping up in the same timeframe elsewhere is slim to none.  The odds are even more slim that the same exact allelic mutation popped up here and elsewhere in the same 5 year period. I won't give numbers on these, but suffice it to say this gene has already been extensively worked into several of my top projects here, so any animals released were ones that did not fit into the projects we're working it into and they will look different.  As such, you most likely will see variations of the EB and Super EB gene, especially when those animals get worked into bloodlines unrelated to mine.  I've seen Super Soft Scales that were clearly descended from my own lineage re-branded, so I would suspect the same will eventually happen with this gene.  Any time something costs significantly more than a similar, but established gene that it's being compared to, buyer beware. That holds true regardless of whether or not the gene is supposed to be allelic or compatible.


This is an incomplete dominant mutation having been proven independently now by at least three breeders (myself, two direct customers) and as I'm now learning, the same results have been reproduced in Korea.

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