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Snake (Eastern Ribbon)

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Thamnophis sauritus
Snake (Eastern Ribbon)


They are found in southeastern Canada and the eastern U.S. south to Florida and west to the Great Lakes.


They live near streams, lakes, ponds, and marshes, always close to water near forests. When startled, it takes to water. Unlike water snakes, which dive, ribbon snakes glide swiftly across the water's surface.

Body Traits

They are thin snakes and about 1.5 – 3 feet long, ending in a long tin tail that can be 1/3 of its length. The have 3 light stripes on their dark body. Each side stripe has a brown stripe below it. They have a light patch in the front of each eye.


When they are scared, they slide into the water and swim away. In the winter, they sleep (hibernate) underground.


They stalk and eat frogs and salamanders and sometimes insects, spiders, small mammals, tadpoles, and fish.


They are eaten by hawks and herons.

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Females have 3-26 live young.

Snake (Eastern Ribbon)


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Colubridae
Genus: Thamnophis
Species: T. sauritus

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