Graham's crayfish snake (Regina grahamii) is a medium-sized nonvenomous North American snake measuring an average of 18 to 32 inches in length, but can grow up to 4 feet long in some cases. It is usually a brown or gray color with an occasional faint mid-dorsal stripe. It's lateral stripes are typically cream, white tan, or light yellow and located from the belly up to the fourth scale row. The belly is typically the same color as the lateral stripes and is unmarked, with the exception of a row of dark dots down the center (rare in specimens).
There are no subspecies of Graham's crayfish snake, Regina grahamii, recognized.
Regina grahamii occurs along the margins of mud-bottom marshes, oxbow lakes, rivers and streams; particularly likes roadside ditches abundant with crayfish. They typically hide under rocks, logs, and other debris at the waters edge and also spend much time in crayfish burrows.
Graham's crayfish snake feeds chiefly upon crayfish, especially recently molted crayfish. They are also reported to eat fish and amphibians.
Temperament and DefenseEdit
The primary defense for this species is camouflage and nocturnal behaviors. When alarmed, especially while basking, it will make a quick escape into the water and hide. This species is relatively docile, but it may flatten out and musk if captured.
They are difficult to keep; specimens usually refuse all food and develop skin lesions easily. Only experienced snake owners should attempt to raise them.
Crayfish Snake - Regina grahamii Species account from the Iowa Reptile and Amphibian Field Guide