Western Ribbonsnake (Formerly Western Ribbon Snake)

Western Ribbonsnake (Formerly Western Ribbon Snake)

Scientific Name: Thamnophis proximus

Family: Natricidae



Description & Size

  • Legless
  • No eyelids
  • Lacks external ears
  • Scales on the back have a ridge in the middle (keeled)
  • Single anal scale
  • Lightly colored stripe on each side of the snake that runs head to tail on the 3rd and 4th  scale rows above the belly scales (ventral scales)
  • Lacks black stripes on the lip scales (labial scales)
  • Total length:  46.0-123.0 cm (18.1-48.4 in)
  • Back color:  black or dark brown
  • Belly color:  white
  • Thin orange stripe extending from the head to the tail down the middle of the back


  • Wet prairies
  • Wet meadows
  • Edges of permanent bodies of water
  • Roadside and agricultural ditches if they hold water for extended periods


  • Amphibians
  • Fish
  • Insects
  • Occasionally small lizards

Life History

  • Diurnal
  • Active season:  Mid-March – October
  • Breeding season:  Mid-March – June
  • Gives live birth
  • 4-36 young per female
  • Range

    Western Ribbonsnake (Formerly Western Ribbon Snake) Range