The non-poisonous and very rare Narrow-headed Gartersnake lives in the cool, clear waters of Oak Creek. Adults have a dark brown or grey, stripe-less back and recognizable “narrow” head. Juveniles are tan or red with dark spots. Their rapidly declining populations may be attributed to the introduction of non-native predators, including crayfish, fish, and bullfrogs; habitat alteration; high recreational use; and poor water quality.
Remember, do not pick up or touch these creatures, in addition to having federal protection, they are very sensitive and can overheat in direct sunlight.
A team of researchers at Northern Arizona University are conducting a citizen scientist campaign for reporting these sensitive species. Learn more about this research effort: HERE.
To become a citizen scientist, you can link in to the Project Noah Gartersnake App and report any sightings. http://www2.nau.edu/idealab-d/gartersnake/user/register
Learn more about the Narrow-headed Gartersnake in this Fact Sheet by the USGS HERE.