Wandering garter snake
Thamnophis elegans arizonae
Thamnophis elegans elegans
Thamnophis elegans terrestris
Thamnophis elegans vagrans
Thamnophis elegans vascotanneri
Thamnophis elegans hueyi
Thamnophis elegans arizonae – Navajo County and Apache County in Arizona, as well as the neighboring areas in Mexico.
Thamnophis elegans elegans – Mountain areas in southern Oregon and northern California; also in the mountains of San Bernardino (California).
Thamnophis elegans terrestris – a narrow area along the California coast, from Santa Barbara County via the east side of the San Francisco Bay into Oregon.
Thamnophis elegans vagrans – from British Columbia and Alberta, via Washington, Montana, Idaho, Oregon, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, California, Utah, Colorado and Arizona into Mexico.
Thamnophis elegans vascotanneri – Eastern Utah, near the Colorado River and the Green River.
Thamnophis elegans hueyi – Sierra San Pedro Mártir in Baja California, Mexico.
This species is found in many different habitats . This is also somewhat dependent on the subspecies and range.
It inhabits, among others, various types of forest, areas with lots of bushes, open grassland and dry sandy areas.
Fish, amphibians, invertebrates, birds, mammals, lizards and snakes.
Specific food preferences are subject to subspecies, population, availability and season.
For example, in T. e. elegans was observed that they also eat spiders, ants and beetles.
The young are usually born in July and September.
A litter will include ten to twenty young with a maximum of about forty.
The bigger te female, the more young she gets.
Sometimes gravid females form groups.
Besides the normal spring matings there are also autumn matings known.
Given the size of this species is a large terrarium is in place.
The subspecies that is held the most in a terrarium is T. e. vagrans.
A decoration with some climbing branches, hiding places and a not overly large water bowl seems the most obvious.
A brumation of two to three months at a temperature between 5 and 10 degrees Celsius is required this species.
Known as a good maintainable species.
All matters listed below are “general” for the species. This may be different for each subspecies.
Length between 50 and 100 cm, with a maximum measured length of 107 cm.
Occurs at altitudes between 0 and 4000 meters.
Is massively present in some places. Overwinters sometimes in large groups. They leave the hibernation sites in March, April or May. Normally they return to the dens in September.
Some populations are not as dependent on water in the vicinity, while others lead a pretty aqua valve life.
This species is known to sometimes eat their own kind/or other snake species. Something to keep in mind!
For more detailed info per subspecies you best can take a look at the following books:
Strumpfbandnattern – Hallmen & Chlebowy
The Garter Snakes – Rossman e.a.
Strumpfbandnattern – Thomas Bourguignon
Die Strumpfbandnattern – Frank Mutschmann