Dusky Pygmy Rattlesnake


ANIMAL:                            Dusky Pygmy Rattlesnake      Sistrurus barbouri
Type of Animal: Viper
Habitat: Canal banks running through marshes/prairies, swamps, marshes, flatwoods, prairies, areas near lakes/ponds/rivers, creeks, sandhills, scrub pinewoods, mixed forests, longleaf pine-wiregrass forests, xeric uplands, woodlands, floodplains, hardwood hammocks, palm hammocks, field edges, palmetto hammocks
Location(s): Extreme S South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, S Alabama, S Mississippi, Louisiana
Appearance: Rounded dorsal spots, heavily flecked or mottled w/ black/dark brown whitish belly, grayish ground color w/ dark spots & some red spots, young snakes lighter than adults
Food/Diet: Small mammals, birds, lizards, amphibians, smaller snakes (including members of own species), earthworms, insects, small fish, centipedes, spiders
Status in Wild: Stable
Conservation: Breeding in zoos and breeding centers
Lifestyle: Solitary
Additional Info:
Males: Females: Young: Group:
Called: Male Female Snakelet Solitary
Weight: 3.5 oz Same 0.35 oz Gestation:


Life Span:

3 months
Height: N/A N/A
Body Length: 1.5 ft Same 0.5 ft 15-20 years
Tail Length: N/A N/A
Main predators are crocodilians, snapping turtles, larger snakes, bobcats, foxes, coyotes, birds of prey, weasels, otters, bears, cats, dogs, mink, & raccoons.
While venomous, deaths very rare due to small size & lack of potency. These snakes can be fairly aggressive to make up for small size.
Their venom is hemotoxic, targeting red blood cells and disrupting blood clotting.
While only moderately venomous, these snakes tend to be one of most responsible for human snakebites in North America.
Like all pit vipers, they use facial bits between eyes & nostrils to locate prey.
Sexually mature at 2 years.
Sometimes killed out of fear by humans.
Play important role in keeping rodent populations down.
These snakes often killed in rattlesnake round-ups.
Fun Fact(s): Rattle sounds like buzzing insect, leading to them sometimes being called buzzworms.
Also known as Florida ground rattlesnake, southeastern ground rattlesnake, ground rattlesnake, hog-nosed rattler, pygmy rattler, pygmy ground rattlesnake, & small rattlesnake.
Second part of scientific name in honor of American herpetologist Thomas Barbour.

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