Grass snakes are non-venomous and are normally found near water.  They feed on a wide-ranging diet, but prefer amphibians when they can catch them.



Order: Squamata

Family: Colubridae

Species: Natrix natrix

IUCN Red List Status:  Least concern.

Distribution:  Widespread in England and Wales. Not found in Northern Ireland, Scotland the Channel Islands and the Isles of Scilly.  Found in most of Europe, except Ireland, northern Scandinavia, southeastern Spain, the Balearic Islands and Crete.  From Russia eastwards to Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, China and Mongolia. Isolated populations in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.

Habitat:  Grassland, moorland, heathland, woodland, wetland, farmland and freshwater.

Life-span:  Up to 25 years.

Size:  Adults up to 150cm long.  Weight: up to 240g.

Description:  Usually greenish in colour, with dark markings down the sides, yellow and black ‘collar’ near head and a pale belly.  Females are larger than males.

Food:  Amphibians, fish, small mammals and birds.

Photo by Iain Leach.

Read More: Grass snake habits

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