Two-striped Garter Snake

Thamnophis hammondii (Kennicott, 1860)

Spanish Name Culebra de Agua Nómada de Dos-rayadas
Max. Recorded Length 84 cm / 33.1 inches
Range Baja California, Baja California Sur, California
Pet Trade Availability ★☆☆☆ rarely available
Captivity Rating ★★☆☆ fair

Note: These species pages are in various stages of completion. Some are basically finished; others are very much under construction. Please be patient while I work on this section.



Protected in California, the Two-striped Garter Snake was a candidate for listing as a federally threatened or endangered species in 1994.

Captive Care

The Two-striped Garter Snake is another of those large, temperamental aquatic species of garter snake found on the west coast. On their captive maintenance difficulty index, where 1 is the easiest and 5 the most difficult, Rossi and Rossi (2003) rate this species a 3. They appear to have a good appetite: they reportedly feed quite voraciously on fish and amphibians and have been converted to fish-scented mice.

If you have experience with this species and would like to share, please contact me.

For general information on keeping garter snakes in captivity, please see the Care Guide.

Articles and News


Bartlett, R. D. and Alan Tennant. 1997. Snakes of North America: Western Region. Houston: Gulf.

Brown, Philip R. 1997. A Field Guide to Snakes of California. Houston: Gulf.

Liner, Ernest A. 1994. Scientific and Common Names for the Amphibians and Reptiles of Mexico in English and Spanish. SSAR Herpetological Circular No. 23.

Perlowin, David. 1994. The General Care and Maintenance of Garter Snakes and Water Snakes. Lakeside CA: Advanced Vivarium Systems.

———. 2005. Garter and Water Snakes. Irvine CA: Advanced Vivarium Systems.

Rossi, John V. and Roxanne Rossi. 2003. Snakes of the United States and Canada: Natural History and Care in Captivity. Malabar FL: Krieger.

Rossman, Douglas A., Neil B. Ford and Richard A. Seigel. 1996. The Garter Snakes: Evolution and Ecology. Norman OK: University of Oklahoma Press.