Warning: Use of undefined constant is_admin - assumed 'is_admin' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/metalmon/public_html/blog/wp-content/plugins/photojar-base/pj-base.php on line 52

Warning: Use of undefined constant ace - assumed 'ace' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/metalmon/public_html/blog/wp-content/plugins/advanced-category-excluder/advanced-category-excluder.php on line 310
ASF rat :: Metal Monkey Exotics

Hide this notice

You are using an outdated browser to view this website

We highly recommend you update your browser to either Internet Explorer 7 from Microsoft or Firefox which will enable you to enjoy safer web browsing and enable you to make full use of all the features of this website.

We do appreciate however that you may not wish to, or do not have permission to update your web browser, in which case you can HIDE THIS NOTICE and continue viewing our website without seeing this again.

Posts Tagged ‘ASF rat’

All about the White ASF rat!

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

(Pictures used with permission from Stefan K. from ratfrett.jimdo.com)

I had the oppourtunity to discuss the amazing snow white ASF (vzm) rat with Stefan from Germany! Although he has since moved on to other endevours, he was gracious enough to answer some questions I had for him regarding the genetics and breeding for the elusive high-white ASF.

First, some explanatory remarks from Stefan:

I use this gene code:
Agouti: +
Cinnamon: b/b
Argente: p/p
Ruby Eyed: r/r
Silver Fawn: b/b p/p
I use these names for the different White variations:
Platinum: White rat with black eyes, black ears (B/B) or gray ears (B/b)
High White: White rat with black Eyes and white ears (b/B)
PEW: White rat with pink eyes and white ears (p/p)
I have no experience in breeding Ruby Eyed. I assume that this is a new variety based on a recessive dilution. If anybody has Ruby Eyed rats with b/b or p/p, please send me a picture!

Find more on Stefan's website at ratfrett.jimdo.com

1. Can I get some of your background? What first interested you in the African Soft furred rat?

I needed some company for my single fancy mouse buck (male). Many German websites and forums recommended Mastomys as great fellows. So I got my first group from an [exotic animals expo] especially for reptiles in 2002.

2. How long have you been breeding small mammals?

I began breeding fancy mice in 2003. I met some people who wanted to build the first German community of mouse fanciers. We decided to found a club and agreed upon a breeding standard. A [little while] later I bought some fancy rats and started colour breeding. Rearing other exotic mice wasn't something I would call "breeding".

3. What other species do you own?

At the moment I am breeding Mastomys and Campbell's Dwarf Hamsters. I also keep Deer Mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). Deer Mice are not often kept in Germany. I think I am the only fancier who has offspring for sale.

4. Let's discuss the high white ASF. Are they your creation, or did you learn about them someplace in your readings?

I got my first platinum ASF rat in 2004 from a animal dealer in Netherlands. These have actually been the first white Mastomys I have ever seen (and they've been the last for three years). My specimen was very small and did not mate. In 2007 a friend of mine gave me a little group and I decided to breed with them.


5. How many generations did it take to get the high-white ASF?

When you mean the Whites with white ears? It took me two generations by using a Platinum male and a Headspotted Cinnamon female and inbreeding the F1.

6. Do you have any insight into the genetics behind the high white appearance?

In my opinion the Whites (regardless which ears or eye color) only evolve from two pied alleles and a special modifying gene, that is obviously only found in Europe. This modifier maximizes the white of the pied ASF so that the offspring are clean white, or with only little coloured spots in the neck. These spots are very insistent and appear on and off.

I believe that the platinum modifier is diluting the colored coat areas: A white rat that has one white eared and one black eared parent has grey ears. I would take the non-white counterparts of these (Agouti and Cinnamon) the offspring has black ears.

7. Can we discuss your opinion about a special gene? Do you believe it is easily identified just by looking at the rat that it is a carrier for the gene?

When you mean the special modifying gene of Platinum mice: I don't know. I have never seen Solid Agouti rats with a platinum-gene.


8. Can you give an example of how you have bred the high-white into the other base colors? For example, a Fawn crossed with the H-W (high-white) to make essentially a Pink Eyed White rat?

In my case a Pink Eyed White came up in a litter randomly. I did not know that my mice had a heterogous Pink-Eyed-Gene. But it is very easy to combine Platinum/High White with argente or silver fawn. Just like I described it in question 5. It doesn't matter if you take rats with or without bb (brown lightening/brightening). The results are simply snowy white rats with pink eyes.

9. Speaking of base colors, do you also share my opinion that there are 4 colors of ASF's available? What are they named in Europe or your native language?

Yes I think we have four base colours. but I am not sure if the new "Ruby Eyed" are a new variety. I have never seen one and I don't know if anybody did test breedings to find out how this colour behaves in combination with others. German breeders do not have a common nomenclature for the colour varieties and their genes. We call the wild type (very dark, greyish-brown looking, black ticking, black ears and eyes) "Agouti".

The brightening/lightening (?) gene is mostly called "Cinnamon". I don't think the name fits but I don't know a better word.

For the two red-eyed varieties (Agouti + pink eyes and Cinnamon + pink eyes) I do not know any popular name. Most breeders and keepers do not differenciate between these colours. Looking at the british nomenclature of fancy mice breeds I propose the symbol b/b for for the Cinnamon Gene and the symbol p/p for Pink Eyed Gene. The fancy mice with the gene code p/p are in europe called "Argente". Fancy Rats with b/b p/p are in Europe often called "Silver Fawn". So I would propose Argente (p/p) and Silver Fawn (b/b p/p) as declaration for the two pink eyed colors of Mastomys.

10. What are the names of the H-W on the different colors? I have heard of Platinum to describe the H-W on the wild Agouti color, is it different for Cinnamon?

The first whites in Mastomys came from Agoutis and have black eyes and black ears. I think a German breeder called them "Platinum" (named after the black eared white variety of pet pygmy hedgehogs) and this name is common in Germany and the Netherlands. But only for the black eared variety.

I chose the name "High White" to label the dark eyed whites with white ears (b/b). There was no other name known before (in 2009)... We know the term "High White" from snake varieties.

Between breeders and keepers of ASF rats this name is not well known and there isn't agreement about the nomenclature of the different white combinations. I would propose the names:
      Platinum (for a White Agouti): white coat, black eyes and black ears
      High White (for a White Cinnamon): white coat, dark/ruby Eyes and white ears
      PEW (White Argente or Fawn): white coat, pink eyes and white ears.

I think there's no need to differenciate the PEW with b/b and the PEW with B/-. They look the same. Breeders of other species (fancy mice) also call white mice with red eyes "PEW" (and there are many combinations that produce PEW).

11. Do you have any advice for other breeders working towards the H-W rat?

My advice is very simple: Take time and be strict: The main criteria for a good selection are healthy and friendly mice. The color is coming on their own.
I am ready to help if there's any question. (I will answer much faster in German than in English).

There you have it! The high-white ASF should not seem so far fetched now ;). From Stefans explanations, it does appear that there is a European gene that can easily be bred for HW ASF. I'm always interested to know if anyone in the US has this variety, or what they believe may carry the gene. Perhaps we will be able to import this variety someday? Who knows!

Thanks again to Stefan for being so patient, since I took almost a full year to get this posted on our website!

Please feel free to comment or reply by email.

:: Connie

ASF Breeders

Monday, December 14th, 2009

If you haven't had the chance to check it out yet, here is a link to our ASF Breeders page.

ASF Breeders **NEW!**

And here is why to use this page. 🙂

I am pleased to announce that we will be hosting an ASF Breeders listing on our website. We are not in competition with any person or forum, but want to offer this for informational purposes. You are invited to be a part of this listing and I do hope you join.

Over the past year, our website has grown to be one of the top search engine results for African soft furred rats, with 58% of our new traffic coming through search engines alone. This is a globally reached site, with hits coming in from 38 different countries, and easily reaching between 600 and 800 visits per month. We are currently forecasting 630 views will be rolling in each of the comings months ahead to the end of the year.


Downsizing the African Soft Furreds

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

If you've never been bursting at the seams with rats, then I think I might envy you.

It seems so often that we rat breeders never have enough product to meet demands. Demands from our collection is certainly the highest, but there also comes from time to time, a request for a large number of rats for a customer. It always seems like I never can produce enough to feed my own group of animals, but then to turn around and supply someone else.

Then it gets to be time to make a decision. Take into account the needs of your own animals to feed. What is our goal?

Our goal here at MMX is to ultimately produce and sell ball pythons, blood pythons, and maybe down the line, corns and Brazilian rainbow boas.

To have an edge in the market, we need to make sure we can give our customers the best animal we can. Once aspect of this is having the animal imprinted on a readily available food type. African soft furs are not what I would consider "readily available". In some densly populated areas of the country, it can be easier to get African soft furs to begin breeding your own, but at the same time, it is very rare to see them in a Pet Food store, much less for sale as a feeder animal.


ASF Breeders

Friday, October 30th, 2009

This has been a long pondered issue. Should this site include any links to ASF owners and breeders? At first, I did not believe it was necessary or justified, but with the expansion of interest in the African soft furred rat and the sparce availability, I've decided I will begin to take admissions. 

I will not monitor this as a "board of inquiry" and any flammatory comments or inquiries will be deleted without notice. This listing will only serve as a list of contacts who are willing to sell ASF stock; and yes, I can and will censor this listing if I feel it is in the best interest of this site, it's owners and users.

This is a temporary project, and I will reserve the right to take it down if I feel it is for the best. But if it works, and if it provides people with ASF contacts or breeders, than it may stay up. Until then… Just leave a comment or send an email to mmx@metalmonkeyexotics.com. Please give me as much information as possible in your request and I will notify you once the listing has been approved.

I will begin accepting for the USA, Canada, Europe.

Remember me?!

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Hello my long lost blog friends, Connie returns after a long hiatus, and I finally have something in store for you rat people!

Remember these guys?

Used with permission of M. Richter ©
 M. Richter ©

Of course you do! Who wouldn't remember the pure white African soft furred rats found (so far) only in Europe? Well, I have been able to get in touch with one of these ASF breeders in Germany with the pure white ASF's, Stefan, and I am hoping to get some of his input (and beautiful photography ;)) on the breeding for the high white ASF rats.

Do we in America have the right gene's to attempt breeding? How white can the American lines get? We will find out soon enough. I have my own small bits of high white groups I am attempting to work with, we will see how far I can get, and what I may be lacking in my own colonies preventing me from getting to that summit of a pure snow white ASF rat.

Check back in a few weeks, see where I have gotten with the article, and hopefully enjoy some good pictures. 🙂


Monkey Mailbag #1 – ASF rat litter loss

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

Uploaded on April 27, 2008 by wwarby via Flickr.com
by wwarby via Flickr.com

Alright, I probably won't use that name for this new segment, but I thought it might be useful to post up a Q&A segment using real questions we've received.

Today's subject:

Unexplained ASF rat litter loss

I have a 1.5 group of ASFs that have started to breed. There are 2 females that are large enough, and have been breeding. As of yesterday, one female had a litter of 8 3-day-old babies. The other had a litter of 9 3-WEEK-old babies. I started to notice the female with the older babies has spent less time with her babies and hardly make any effort to "protect" them when I am around. This left the other mom to take care of the bad mom's babies.


Copyright © 2020 Metal Monkey Exotics. All Rights Reserved.
No part of this work or contents may be reproduced without the prior written permission of the author.
No computers were harmed in the 0.136 seconds it took to produce this page.

Designed/Developed by Metal Monkey Exotics :: Powered by Wordpress