Where Do Rattlesnakes Live?

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Rattlesnakes are most commonly found living in the central and southern parts of the United States where climates are warmer. Look for rattle snakes hiding under rocks and bushes with tips from a science teacher in this free video on animal habitats.

Part of the Video Series: Animal Habitats
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Video Transcript

If you're watching an old western movie you're probably are waiting for that scene where the cowboy's wandering through the desert and all of a sudden he hears that familiar rattle, he turns around and oh, no, there's a rattle snake. Hi, I'm Janice Creneti. I've been teaching animal science and environmental science for twenty years and I'm here to answer the question, where do rattle snakes live. Well rattle snakes are one of the most common poisonous snakes that we have here in North America. Most rattle snakes are found in the more central and southern part of the United States, very popular in Texas, very common. But they're also found pretty much all over the United States. In Florida where I live the ones that we see most often are the pygmy rattle snake. Rattle snakes are a venomous species. Now the rattle is actually nature's way of the snake detracting it's prey while it's ready to shoot in for the kill. The prey will put it's eye on the rattle and that allows the rattle snake to catch the prey by surprise and give it a nasty bite. One of the ways you can recognize a venomous snake is it has a triangular shaped head. Rattle snakes are venomous and that means that they have venom glands back here and they actually have retractable fangs. So when they're about to bite, those fangs come out, they grab their prey, inject them with some venom and then when the prey dies, they actually swallow them whole. It can take a snake up to a week to digest one meal. They're not able to chew so they have to rely on their stomach to do the digesting work for them. Rattle snakes are commonly found hiding under rocks, hiding under bushes. Here in Florida anytime you're doing any work out in the brush, you always want to be careful if you're moving a log or something like that, that there's not a pygmy rattle snake waiting to give you a nasty bite. Rattle snakes need warmer weather so you don't tend to find them in very cold regions. They're cold blooded animals as all reptiles are, which means their body temperatures going to change as the environment changes. In sunny weather you might find them sunning themselves on a rock or even on the asphalt or the sidewalk. It's best to keep a healthy distance from this creature right here. I'm Janice Creneti and this is where do rattle snakes live.


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