Elapsoidea guentheri (GŁnther's garter snake)

GŁnther se kousbandslang [Afrikaans]

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Teleostomi (teleost fish) > Osteichthyes (bony fish) > Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) > Stegocephalia (terrestrial vertebrates) > Tetrapoda (four-legged vertebrates) > Reptiliomorpha > Amniota > Reptilia (reptiles) > Romeriida > Diapsida > Lepidosauromorpha > Lepidosauria > Squamata > Serpentes (snakes) > Family: Elapidae > Genus: Elapsoidea


GŁnther's garter snake can be identified by the following a black colour (in juveniles) which becomes grey- black with age, between 18 and 24 light crossbars down the length of the body and its secretive nocturnal life style. It grows to an average length of 50 cm but may reach 60 cm in length.

Distribution and habitat

This garter snake species is restricted to northern Zimbabwe. Its favoured habitat is moist savanna (particularly miombo woodland).


Eats other snakes, skinks, amphibians and termites.

Predators, parasites and disease



Oviparous (egg-laying), lays up to 10 eggs in summer.


The average lifespan of this snake is likely to be 10 years.

Medical importance

Although no bites from this species have been recorded its venom may be dangerous. Antivenom is likely to be ineffective and therefore should not be used.



  • Broadley, D.G. 1983. FitzSimons' Snakes of Southern Africa. Delta Books, Johannesburg.

  • Marais, J. 2004. A Complete Guide to Snakes of Southern Africa. Struik Publishing, Cape Town.


Contact us if you can contribute information or images to improve this page.

Reptiles home   Biodiversity Explorer home   Iziko home   Search