Grass Snake (Natrix helvetica)
Newton and Lovelace are our pair of barred grass snakes, Natrix helvetica. Grass snakes are one of three native species of snake to Britain, and can be identified by their olive green colouration often with black barring on their sides and a yellow and black collar.
Barred grass snakes are our largest native snake in the UK, with the potential to grow up to 1m long! They are often found near water, and some lucky people even get them in their gardens or allotments. Unfortunately they are currently in decline and are listed as a UK BAP species, meaning their decline is of enough concern that they are now a priority of conservation efforts.
Newton and Lovelace were hatched in captivity in 2021 by captive bred parents of British locality belonging to a breeder in the UK, and came to us at just several weeks old. Newton is our little male, being substantially smaller than females. Lovelace is our larger female. Unfortunately Lovelace does have a deformity along her spine, although this is not affecting her quality of life and she remains healthy and comfortable.
Newton and Lovelace live in an outdoor enclosure, meaning they have access to natural British weather which is perfect for them to thrive. They have a varied diet of fish, amphibian and rodents. Wild grass snakes often musk as a defence mechanism when picked up, however Newton and Lovelace both do very well with handling due to being bred in captivity.