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Thamnophis gigas FITCH, 1940

IUCN Red List - Thamnophis gigas - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Natricinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)
Common NamesE: Giant Garter Snake
G: Riesen-Strumpfbandnatter 
SynonymThamnophis ordinoides gigas FITCH 1940: 69
Thamnophis couchii gigas — FITCH 1984
Thamnophis couchii gigas — STEBBINS 1985: 206
Thamnophis gigas — CROTHER 2000
Thamnophis gigas — WALLACH et al. 2014: 722 
DistributionUSA (California: Central VAlley from Delevan National Wildlife Refuge, Colus acounty, to Los Banos Creek and Mud Slough in San Joaquin Valley).

Type locality: Gadwall, Merced County, California.  
TypesHolotype: MVZ 5428, adult female 
CommentLargest member of the genus with a maximal total length of 163 cm. 
EtymologyNamed after the giant “Gigas” in Greek mythology, the child of Uranus and Gaea. The name is applied to taxa that are giants oftheir kind. 
  • Bourguignon, T. 2002. Strumpfbandnattern: Herkunft - Pflege - Arten. E. Ulmer Verlag, 125 pp.
  • 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.C. 1940. A biogeographical study of the ordinoides artenkreis of garter snakes (genus Thamnophis). Univ. California Publ. Zool. 44: 1-150
  • Fulton, A M & Muñoz, D A; 2018. Thamnophis gigas (Giant Gartersnake) Diet. Herpetological Review 49 (4): 764-765 - 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
  • Halstead, B.J., G.D. Wylie & M.L. Casazza 2010. Habitat Suitability and Conservation of the Giant Gartersnake (Thamnophis gigas) in the Sacramento Valley of California Copeia 2010 (4): 591-599. - get paper here
  • Hansen, Eric C., Rick D. Scherer, Gary C. White, Brett G. Dickson and Erica Fleishman. 2015. Estimates of Survival Probability from Two Populations of Giant Gartersnakes in California’s Great Central Valley. Copeia 103 (4): 1026-1036 - get paper here
  • Hansen, Eric C.; Rick D. Scherer, Erica Fleishman, Brett G. Dickson, and Dave Krolick 2017. Relations between Environmental Attributes and Contemporary Occupancy of Threatened Giant Gartersnakes (Thamnophis gigas). Journal of Herpetology 51 (2): 274-283. - get paper here
  • O’Shea, M. 2018. The Book of Snakes. Ivy Press / Quarto Publishing, London, - 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
  • Rose, Jonathan P.; Julia S.M. Ersan, Glenn D. Wylie, Michael L. Casazza, and Brian J. Halstead 2018. Reproductive Frequency and Size-dependence of Fecundity in the Giant Gartersnake (Thamnophis gigas). Herp. Cons. Biol. 13 (1): 80–90 - 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.
  • 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.
  • Wylie, Glenn D.; Michael L. Casazza, Christopher J. Gregory, and Brian J. Halstead 2010. Abundance and Sexual Size Dimorphism of the Giant Gartersnake (Thamnophis gigas) in the Sacramento Valley of California. Journal of Herpetology 44 (1): 94–103 - get paper here
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