- Reptile Conservation Resources, Inc

Perhaps its appropriate that garter snakes are emerging after wintering in their den this Easter weekend which symbolizes Spring, re-birth and regeneration throughout the world. A fascinating book, “The Dance of Time, The Origins of the Calendar” by Micahael Judge describes origins of the word “Easter:”

“The Venerable Bede, in his “History of the Anglo-Saxons, derives the word “Easter” from the Saxon goddess Eostre…Eostre was the goddess of the spring and her consort was none other than the hare, a figure show still appears at EAster. Now called the Easter Bunny, he brings with him the oldest symbol of the season, the egg. Eggs are universal symbols of life and the colsmos and the custom of giging them away, hiding them, decorating them, and eating them is as ancient as it is widespread…{dating back to the ancient Egyptians, among others}…

This is a Western wandering terrestrial garter snake (Thamnophis elegans vagrans) taking advantage of the Spring sunlight near its den. The snakes will return to the den at night but will come out with increasing frequency as the days and nights warm…

Posted by Frank - March 22, 2008

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