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Crotalus viridis facts for kids

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Crotalus viridis
Crotalus viridis nuntius.jpg
Hopi rattlesnake, C. v. nuntius
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Crotalus viridis distribution.png
  • Crotalinus viridis
    Rafinesque, 1818
  • Crotalurus viridis
    — Rafinesque, 1820
  • Crotalus confluentus
    Say In James, 1823
  • Crotalus Lecontei
    Hallowell, 1852
  • C[audisona]. confluenta
    Cope, 1867
  • [Caudisona confluenta] Var. confluenta
    — Cope, 1867
  • [Caudisona confluenta] Var. lecontei
    — Cope, 1867
  • Crotalus confluentus var. pulverulentus
    Cope, 1883
  • Crotalus confluentus var. confluentus
    — Cope, 1883
  • Crotalus confluentus confluentus
    — Cope, 1892
  • Crotalus confluentus lecontei
    — Cope, 1892
  • Crotalus viridis viridis
    — Klauber, 1936

Crotalus viridis (commonly known as the prairie rattlesnake) is a species of venomous Pit vipers. There is currently only one subspecies recognized, not including the nominate subspecies.


The Prairie Rattlesnake usually grows up to the length of around 100 centimeters (3.3 ft). Prairie Rattlesnakes in Montana can sometimes grow up to the length of 120 centimeters (3.9 ft), but the longest ever found was 151.5 centimeters (4.97 ft) long. They are usually light brown in color with some patches of dark brown.


Prairie Rattlesnakes eat mainly small mammals like ground squirrels, mice, rats, small rabbits, and prairie dogs. Young Prairie Rattlesnakes eat amphibians, and small reptiles.


Prairie Rattlesnakes are viviparous, and can give birth to around 3-25 young at a time. The young are born around between August and October.


Prairie Rattlesnake are diurnal in cool weathers, and nocturnal in hot weathers. They have a very powerful venom which they only use if attacked. Like other rattlesnakes they shake their tail to make a rasping sound which warns enemies.

Common names

The Prairie Rattlesnake is also called the "Western Rattlesnake", the "Plains Rattlesnake", the "Black Rattler", the "Confluent Rattlesnake", the "Missouri Rattlesnake", the "Spotted Rattlesnake", and the "Western Pacific Rattlesnake".

Where they live

It is also found in southwestern Canada, south to the United States of America, and northern Mexico. In Canada it is found in Alberta, and Saskatchewan, in the United States of America it is found in eastern Oregon, eastern Washington, southern Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and eastern Arizona, in Mexico it is found in northern Coahuila, and northwestern Chihuahua.


Not including the nominate subspecies, Crotalus Viridis Viridis, the Prairie Rattlesnake only has one subspecies: the "Hopi Rattlesnake" (Crotalus Viridis Nuntius) which is found in northeastern and north-central Arizona, and New Mexico.

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