EASTERN DIAMONDBACK RATTLE SNAKE. Class Reptilia, Order Squamata, Family Viperidae, Genus species Crotalus adamanteus . .
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SIZELength averages between 2.5 and 6 feet with record length 8 feet. With a triangular shaped head with bones of jaw loosely connected so that snake can swallow animals larger than its head
Habitats Coastal lowlands of southeast US including North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and eastern Louisiana. Also in the palmetto flatwoods, pinelands and sand hills. Sometimes enters salt water and swims to Florida Keys.
BEHAVIOR OF SNAKESThe two male diamondbacks initiated a behavior pattern sometimes refered to as a "combat dance". "the two snakes stood nose to nose. They turned their heads sideways to each other, and then, strangely, turned their heads so that they faced in opposite directions.
REPRODUCTIONUsually a dozen eggs are laid in rotting logs or stumps. The eggs are smooth, shiny and elongate in shape. They are laid in late June or July and hatch at 7-8 inches in late August of September. Newborns are grayish green.
Most females do not reproduce until they are nine years old. In addition to delayed sexual maturity, another
factor that Contributes to their relatively low reproductive potential is that most females only reproduce every three years.
ReproductionDepending on the species, snakesmaybe egg-layers or give birth to live young. They generally mate in the spring, or are born in late summer.
Snake tracks can be wavy or straight lines. They are usually furrows in the ground that can be 1/2 or more wide.
HOW MANY ARE LEFTNot formally listed, but is considered Endangered in North and South Carolina. Its numbers have been reduced considerably by hunting and development of the land.