Females are around 3ft long depending on species and males are usually 2ft or less in length. They are a fairly slim bodied snake, males more so than females. Babies are very small, average size at birth is 6-8 inches.
The average life span in the wild may only be 4-5 years however they can live twice as long in captivity. Captives reaching over 10 years old have been documented.
Garters can be kept in rack systems, but are best suited for aquarium or terrarium style cages. Acrylic or screen style terrariums make ideal cages and can be decorated with wood and vines for the snake to climb around on, which provides beneficial exercise. Minimum size for and adult is a 28 quart plastic tube or a 29 gallon aquarium/terrarium. Males could be kept in slightly smaller cages than females due to their size difference. Multiple garter snakes can be kept together with more space however they should be separated for feeding to avoid incidental cannibalism. A pair of garter snakes can live comfortably in a 55 gallon size. The more space the better as garters are very active and like to climb.
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