What does "Het" mean?
Het is thrown around a lot when discussing various axolotls, what exactly does it refer to? It is describing the genetic possibilities the individual axolotl holds. Het is short for Heterozygous. When an animal is Het for a genetic color, this means it has the potential genetics for it, but not both sets of the genes which would allow the phenotype to be shown. Genes for albino are shown as A(dominant) or a(recessive) in pairs. If an animal has two of the same alleles, it is homozygous and if both are recessive it shows as an albino phenotype (a/a). However, if it has an odd set, either A/a or a/A, it carries the genetics for albino, while not being an albino. This is what is known as heterozygous for albino, or as we often shorten it, Het. The axolotl gets these mix matched alleles from its parents. One way to hint at a babies hets are to look at the siblings in the clutch. If there are golds, albinos, lucies, mels, and wilds in a batch of babies, then the parents carried the genetics for golds, albinos, lucies, and mels. Let's look closer at one of these babies in the clutch, a mel for example: the mel is showing the phenotype for being Melenistic, so it is Homozygous for Mel (m/m since its recessive). These Mels also carry the genetics for lucy, gold, and albinos, so we call it a Mel that is het for lucy, gold and albino. In genetic terms it would look like: m/m A/a D/d. In an unbreed or baby animal, you can never truly know what genes it carries, but we can make educated guesses about wh
at phenotypes they might produce, if we know the parents and grandparents colors and the babies they have produced.