Garter Snakes by Steven Bol

Thamnophis (Garter Snake) Caresheets and availabilty

Thamnophis eques insperatus

Thamnophis eques insperatus

On this website you can find information about the care in captivity of the different Species of Garter Snakes (Thamnophis ssp.) and Watersnakes (Nerodia ssp. and Natrix ssp.) I am currently breeding or that I have bred in the past.

Under Available you can check what offspring I currently have available.

Color morphs

In general my focus is on breeding species and subspecies from specific locations and not on breeding color morphs. But for some species breeding programs for special color morphs have been set up, but each of those color morphs can also be found in the wild.

  • Melanistic (mostly black) animals are available from Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis.
  • With Thamnophis elegans terrestris the focus is on the “red morph”, although the amount of red varies greatly.
  • With Thamnophis sirtalis pickeringii I have set up a breeding program for the “blue morph”.
  • Thamnophis eques obscurus is usually bluish-grey“ in coloration, probably the entire population could be called axantic (missing yellow pigment) or hypoxantic (very low amounts of yellow pigment) but very recently albinos have been born.
    These are the first albino’s ever reported of the Mexican Garter Snake, and no albino’s have ever been reported of the other subspecies of Thamnophis eques.
  • With Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis I am also focussing on the original “flame” morph as they occur in the wild in southwestern Quebec, Canada. I do not have red or “erythristic morphs“ from other locations, so all my flames are from the “southwestern Quebec gene pool”.

Caresheets and terrarium

On this website you can find under Publications the different articles that I have written in the past years.

The article about Thamnophis atratus atratus could serve as my general guideline (care-sheet) for most species of american- and canadian gartersnakes.

For the different subspecies of Thamnophis eques and for Thamnophis melanogaster canescens my article about Thamnophis eques scotti is more relevant.

My articles about T.scaliger  and T.scalaris  are more applicable for my species form the Mexican highlands like  T.conanti & T. pulchrilatus.

In these articles you can find recommendations how to keep and breed these species in captivity.

“Certificate of origin”

Certificate of origin

Certificate of origin

Each snake is accompanied by a “certificate of origin” on which several facts are mentioned like: date of birthcorrect name of the (sub) species, information about the family tree and the exact locationon “County” -level where they come from (when this information is available).

This provides relevant back ground information on number of generations in captivity, to what degree the snakes are related, the natural habitat, the climate and hibernation. This can be taken in consideration in the way one takes care of the snakes: decoration of the terrariumyearly fluctuations in temperatureduration of (and temperatures during) hibernation.

Observations in the wild

T.a.atratus x hydrophilus during the swallow of a huge tadpole. Marin County, California.

T.a.atratus x hydrophilus during the swallow of a huge tadpole. Marin County, California.

On this website you can also find observations done by the author in the wild (mostly North-America).

Observing these fantastic snakes in their natural habitat adds an extra dimension to this hobby.

I have been able to observe many of the species I breed in the wild. Interesting facts on the biology of these fascinating snakes (partly based on own observations) can be found under PublicationsSpecies and News.

Genetic diversity

Inbreeding is prevented as much as possible by selective breeding programs using unrelated snakes of the same (sub)species, if possible originating from the same area. My offspring is hence very suitable to set up breeding programs. Information about origin and heritage are always provided by means of the “certificate of origin”.

Outdoor terrarium

My outdoor terrarium

My outdoor terrarium

Keeping gartersnakes and watersnakes outdoors is a very interesting and natural way to keep (at least some species of) gartersnakes and watersnakes.

On this website you can find under News some observations done in my Outdoor terrarium.