California Red-Sided Garter Snake Type:SnakeLives In:North AmericaConservation Status:Least Concern
I was always reading wildlife books of all sorts when I was growing up and one thing I always remember is that brightly coloured animals are generally dangerous. These curly fellows, however, might be highly eye-catching but they're actually harmless to us pesky humans. Well that's unless they climb up inside your clothing, making you writhe and jiggle around in panic, straying in front of fast-moving traffic or something, obviously! There are quite a few of them about too. There are dozens of sub-species of garter snakes in general, ranging from Central America all the way up to Sub-Arctic Canada, but even this Californian variety is fairly common. They live on farmlands and grasslands, usually close to a water source such as a marsh or stream as they are also superb swimmers. Luckily for Californians though, despite their small size, examples like this one are also pretty easy to spot thanks to their almost fluorescent colouration, so death jiggles should be kept to a minimum.