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Thamnophis atratus KENNICOTT, 1860

IUCN Red List - Thamnophis atratus - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Natricinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
SubspeciesThamnophis atratus atratus (KENNICOTT 1860)
Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus FITCH 1936
Thamnophis atratus zaxanthus BOUNDY 1999 
Common NamesE: Pacific Coast Aquatic Garter Snake, Santa Cruz Garter Snake
atratus: Santa Cruz Garter Snake
hydrophilus: Oregon (Gray) Garter Snake
zaxanthus: Diabolo Garter Snake
G: Santa-Cruz-Strumpfbandnatter 
SynonymThamnophis atratus (KENNICOTT 1860: 296)
Eutaenia atrata KENNICOTT in COOPER 1860
Thamnophis elegans aquaticus FOX 1951: 493
Thamnophis couchi atratus — STEBBINS 1985: 206
Thamnophis atratus — ROSSMAN & STEWART 1987
Thamnophis atratus — CROTHER 2000
Thamnophis atratus — CROTHER et al. 2012
Thamnophis atratus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 720

Thamnophis atratus atratus (KENNICOTT 1860)
Eutaenia atrata KENNICOTT in COOPER 1860: 296
Thamnophis elegans atratus — FOX 1951
Thamnophis atratus atratus — CROTHER 2000
Thamnophis atratus atratus — CROTHER et al. 2012

Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus FITCH 1936
Thamnophis ordinoides hydrophila FITCH 1936
Thamnophis couchii hydrophila — FOX & DESSAUER 1964: 266
Thamnophis elegans hydrophilus — ROSSMAN 1979
Thamnophis couchii hydrophilus — ROSSMAN 1979
Thamnophis couchii hydrophilus — FITCH 1984
Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus — ROSSMAN et al. 1996
Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus — CROTHER 2000
Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus — CROTHER et al. 2012

Thamnophis atratus zaxanthus BOUNDY 1999
Thamnophis atratus zaxanthus — CROTHER 2000
Thamnophis atratus zaxanthus — CROTHER et al. 2012 
DistributionUSA (coastal C California, SW Oregon)

atratus: USA (California); Type locality: "California." Listed as "San Francisco, California," by Fitch, 1940: 89, and Cochran, 1961: 181.

hydrophilus: USA (S Oregon, N California)

zaxanthus: USA (California: Inner Coast Range from Napa and Solano to Santa Barbara counties, and the Santa Lucia Range). Type locality: 2 miles S Gilroy Hot Springs, Santa Clara County, California.  
TypesLectotype: USNM 970, (R.D. Cutts, 1854), designated by Fitch, 1940: 89.
Holotype: MVZ 207940 (adult female) [zaxanthus]
Holotype: MVZ 48196 (adult male) [aquaticus]
Holotype: MVZ 18127 (adult male) [hydrophilus] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A short, somewhat stout garter snake with pointed snout and remarkably uniform head scales: almost always 8 upper labials, 10 lower labials, 1 preocular, and 3 postoculars on each side (table 2). Internasals usually longer than broad, pointed anteriorly, and in narrow contact with rostral; sixth and seventh upper labials relatively large and taller than long, resembling'those of terrestrial races rather than those of other aquatic races, in which rows of upper labials are * practically straight (Fox 1951: 489) 
CommentRossman and Stewart (1987) recommended against recognizing T. a. aquaticus. RODRIGUEZ-ROBLES e al. 2003 stated that aquaticus is a Thamnophis a. atratus x T. a. hydrophilus intergrade. 
  • Allen, W. L., R. Baddeley, N. E. Scott-Samuel, and I. C. Cuthill. 2013. The evolution and function of pattern diversity in snakes. Behav. Ecol. 24:1237– 1250
  • Bol, S. 2007. Verzorging en kweek van de Santa Cruz kousebandslang, Thamnophis atratus atratus. Lacerta 65 (5): 200-217 - get paper here
  • Boundy, J. 1999. Systematics of the garter snake Thamnophis atratus at the southern end of its range. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. 51 (6): 311-336 - get paper here
  • Bourguignon, T. 2002. Strumpfbandnattern: Herkunft - Pflege - Arten. E. Ulmer Verlag, 125 pp.
  • Bruchmann, H. 2006. Freilandbeobachtungen an Strumpfbandnattern in Nordamerika. Draco 6 (25): 86-93 - get paper here
  • Burbrink FT, Futterman I. 2019. Female‐ biased gape and body-size dimorphism in the New World watersnakes (tribe: Thamnophiini) oppose predictions from Rensch's rule. Ecol Evol. 00:1–10
  • Crother, B. I. (ed.) 2012. Standard Common and Current Scientific Names for North American Amphibians, Turtles, Reptiles, and Crocodilians, Seventh Edition. Herpetological Circular 39: 1-92
  • Fitch, H. S. 1936. Amphibians and reptiles of the Rouge River Basin, Oregon. American Midland Naturalist 17: 634-652 - get paper here
  • Fox, W. 1951. Relationships among the garter snakes of the Thamnophis elegans rassenkreis. Univ. California Publ. Zool. 50: 485-530
  • Grübner, D. 2006. Die seltener beobachteten Strumpfbandnattern. Draco 6 (25): 66-76 - get paper here
  • HALLAS, JOSHUA M.; THOMAS L. PARCHMAN & CHRIS R. FELDMAN. 2021. Phylogenomic analyses resolve relationships among garter snakes (Thamnophis: Natricinae: Colubridae) and elucidate biogeographic history and morphological evolution. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 107374. [2022 in print] - get paper here
  • Hallmen, M. & Chlebowy, J. 2001. Strumpfbandnattern. Natur und Tier Verlag (Münster), 192 pp. - get paper here
  • Kennicott, R. 1860. Zoological report. No. 4. Report upon the reptiles collected on the survey. In: Stevens, I.I. (Ed.), Reports of explorations and surveys, to ascertain the most practicable and economical route for a railroad from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, made under the direction of the Secretary of War, in 1853-5. Route ne - get paper here
  • Parker, Michael S. and Emma Rose Parker. 2011. Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus (Oregon gartersnake) diet. Herpetological Review 42 (3): 445 - get paper here
  • Preston, Daniel L. and Pieter T. J. Johnson 2012. Importance of Native Amphibians in the Diet and Distribution of the Aquatic Gartersnake (Thamnophis atratus) in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. Journal of Herpetology 46 (2): 221-227. - get paper here
  • Queiroz, Alan de; Robin Lawson and Julio A. Lemos-Espinal 2002. Phylogenetic Relationships of North American Garter Snakes (Thamnophis) Based on Four Mitochondrial Genes: How Much DNA Sequence Is Enough? Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 22: 315-329 - get paper here
  • Rodríguez-Robles, Javier A., Good, David A., Wake, David B. 2003. Brief History of Herpetology in the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, University of California, Berkeley, with a List of Type Specimens of Recent Amphibians and Reptiles. UC Publications in Zoology, 119 pp. - get paper here
  • Rossman, D.A. 1979. Morphological evidence for taxonomic partitioning of the Thamnophis elegans complex (Serpentes: Colubridae). Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Louisiana State Univ. (55): 1-12 - get paper here
  • Rossman, D.A. & Stewart,G.R. 1987. Taxonomic reevaluation of Thamnophis couchii (Serpentes: Colubridae). Occ. Pap. Mus. Zool. Louisiana Sata Univ. (63): 1-25 - get paper here
  • Rossman, Douglas A.; Ford, Neil B. & Seigel, Richard A. 1996. The Garter Snakes: Evolution and Ecology. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK, xx + 332 + pp.
  • Sleijpen, Fons 2013. Picture: Thamnophis atratus atratus, adult, female. Litteratura Serpentium 33 (4): 330 - get paper here
  • Stebbins,R.C. 1985. A Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians, 2nd ed. Houghton Mifflin, Boston
  • Wallach, Van; Kenneth L. Williams , Jeff Boundy 2014. Snakes of the World: A Catalogue of Living and Extinct Species. [type catalogue] Taylor and Francis, CRC Press, 1237 pp.
  • Welsh, H.H., Jr., C.A. Wheeler & A.J. Lind 2010. Spatial Ecology of the Oregon Gartersnake, Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus, in a Free-Flowing Stream Environment Copeia 2010 (1): 75-85. - get paper here
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