NNTRC Snakes

Scientific Name

Crotalus Adamanteus

Common Name 

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake


Physical Characteristics

Length, 33-96 in. (84-243.8 cm). The Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake is a large robust snake that can reach impressive lengths. Ground color of the body can be olive, brown, or black. The back is patterned with large dark diamonds that are outlined with cream or yellow scales. The tail is usually gray or brown, and banded with dark rings. The head has a light bordered dark stripe running diagonally through the eye.

Geographic Range (USA)

Southeast North Carolina, eastern third of South Carolina, Florida and across southern parts of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi.
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Flatwoods, pine forest, and sand hills. Eastern Diamondbacks generally avoid marshes and swamps, but on occasion will live near the borders of wetlands. Occasionally they may venture into salt water, swimming to the outlying Keys off the coast of Florida.


Mammals (rodents, rabbits, squirrels, gophers) and birds.


Hemorrhagins are the predominant toxins, resulting in extensive tissue damage and edema.


Large Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes have produced over 750 mg of venom in a single extraction. The lethal dose for an adult human is approximately 125 mg. Because of its size and the large amount of venom it can deliver, this snake is considered very dangerous.

This page was last updated on: February 12, 2016