• A bull elk bugles in Yellowstone National Park

    Yellowstone

    National Park ID,MT,WY

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  • Craig Pass Closed for the Season; Mammoth to Norris, Expect 30-minute Delays

    The road linking West Thumb and Old Faithful is closed for the season—traffic should detour through West Thumb, Lake, and Canyon. More »

Wandering garter snake

Wandering garter snake
Wandering garter snake
NPS/Peaco
 
Scientific name: Thamnophis elegans vagrans

Identification

  • Most common reptile in the park.
  • 6 to 30 inches long.
  • Brown, brownish green, or gray with three light stripes: one running the length of the back and a stripe on each side.
Habitat

  • Usually found near water in all areas of the park.
  • Eats small rodents, fish, frogs, tadpoles, salamanders, earthworms, slugs, snails, and leeches.
Behavior

  • May discharge musk from glands at the base of the tale when threatened.
  • Gives birth to as many as 20 live young in late summer or fall.

Did You Know?

Lake Trout Illustration

Lake trout are an invasive species of fish that is decimating the native cutthroat trout population in Yellowstone Lake.