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Home > Snakes > Southern Pacific Rattlesnake

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake

Southern pacific rattlesnake is a highly venomous subspecies of snake occurring in the United States and Mexico. The subspecies is a pit viper and like all pit vipers it contains heat-sensing organ on each side of the face between the nostrils and the eyes.

    Kingdom Animalia
    Phylum Chordata
    Subphylum Vertebrata
    Class Reptilia
    Order Squamata
    Suborder Serpentes
    Family Viperidae
    Subfamily Crotalinae
    Genus Crotalus
    Species Crotalus oreganus
    Scientific Name Crotalus oreganus helleri

    Other Names Black Diamond Rattlesnake, Black (diamond) Rattler, Mountain Rattler, Pacific Rattler, Gray Diamond-back, Green Rattlesnake, San Diegan Rattler
    Length 24-55 in
    Color Pale brown, yellowish brown or gray-brown ground color covered with a series of large dark brown diamond shaped patches on the outer surface that may be with or without pale centers
    Distribution Southern California (United States), Baja California (Mexico)
    Habitat Prairies, grasslands, scrub particularly near rock outcroppings
    Diet Lizards, frogs, small mammals, birds, snakes
    Hibernation Fact Hibernate during winter
    Predators Coyotes, hawks, roadrunners
    Venom Fact Highly toxic – venom consists of myotoxins and hemotoxins
    Breeding Season Spring
    Mode of Reproduction Ovoviviparous (producing young by means of eggs hatched inside the body of the parent)
    Litter Size 8 to 10 young
    Gestation Period Around 3 months
    Average Lifespan Up to 21 years

    Southern Pacific Rattlesnake Pictures Gallery

    Published on January 6th 2017 by under Snakes. Article was last reviewed on 13th June 2019.

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