Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake
Southeastern United States, west to Louisiana.
Abandoned farmland, longleaf pine and turkey oak covered areas; also palmetto flatwoods
Heavy, gray body, numerous diamonds on back, black and white-banded tail. Fangs are 3/4 of an inch. Its venom is prey specific - kills its habitual prey (cotton rabbits) rapidly while larger quantities of its venom are required for killing a rat even smaller than the rabbit.
Rather sluggish, but stands its ground, sometimes ferociously. Potent venom.
Seven to 21 young, 12 to 14 inches long, born late summer or early fall.
These snakes are thought to be the longest/largest species of rattlesnakes. They will inhabit a gopher tortoise burrow along with the resident tortoise and a variety of other animals. Snake hunters habits of \\\\\\\'gassing\\\\\\\' tortoise burrows to collect Eastern diamondback rattlesnakes has impacted both species of reptiles negatively.
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Eastern diamondbacks are rapidly disappearing due to suburban housing and agriculture, especially "rattlesnake roundups".