Thamnophis sirtalis fitchi
Valley garter snake (common garter snake)
Key ID features:
- Typically 3 dorsal stripes,
- Red blotches on sides of body above the lateral stripes.
- Red cheek blotch usually present.
- Good swimmers.
- COLOR: dorsal black body with yellow stripes, ventral body yellow or buff. 7 upper labial scales
- Almost always found near water
- One of few vertebrates that can prey successfully on rough-skinned newts- active toxin found in their livers after predation.