Common Garter Snake

COMMON GARTER

SNAKE

THAMNOPHIS SIRTALIS

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DESCRIPTION

As my name suggests, my main physical characteristic can easily help to identify me: three light stripes on a dark background. My stripes may be of different colors. Most often yellow, they may also be orange, red, bluish, greenish or white. However, one can easily confuse me with the Northern Ribbonsnake, which looks quite similar to me with its stripes! The most reliable way to differentiate us is to count the rows of scales: the Common Gartner Snake’s stripes are found on the 2nd and 3rd rows of scales from the stomach.

After hibernation is when the breeding season begins. There are many more males than females, so it is possible that 20 or so of us fight for the same female! We are ovoviviparous, meaning that the eggs incubate and hatch in the female’s womb.

We are the species of snake most common in Québec and in the Maritimes.

Caracteristics

dimension

Average of 70cm

Habitat

Forests and open areas such as fields and fallows

Diet

Worms, small fish, tadpoles, salamanders, toads and frogs

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