Saturday, March 10, 2012

Pygmy Rattlesnakes 01

The media reports every now and than about people being bitten by venomous snakes in the garden department of Home Depot, Wal-Mart or similar shopping facilities with a large outdoor area to sale their plants. Responsible for such incidents is a small 14 to 22 inch rattlesnake, which belongs to the genus Sistrurus and is commonly referred to as pigmy rattler or ground rattler. Pigmy rattlesnakes spend most of their time well hidden among leaf litter and can be very hard to spot. From such hiding places they ambush a variety of prey including lizards, frogs, small mammals, and insects as well as centipedes. These snakes are most often encountered crossing roads on summer evenings but on occasions they hunt for lizards and insects in nurseries. That’s how some of these snakes end up in the garden department, where they will find enough food and cover between the flower pots. This tiny rattlesnake will avoid human contact in general but doesn’t hesitate to strike at anything that comes near. Just keep in mind to have a careful look before reaching for a plants is always a good idea in such location.

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