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Venomous Snakes

Not kept as pets, Information and Pictures

An Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake is coiled and ready to strike. It is covered by tall grass.

Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus)

A very large thick tan with brown spotted snake on a sandy rocky ground.

A Rattlesnake spotted in Central Pennsylvania, PA

The Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake is one of two rattlesnakes that is native to Ohio and can be found along most of the eastern coast. It is also known as the "swamp rattler" or "black snapper." As an adult, the massasauga is usually two to three feet in length. Breeding takes place in the spring and the fall. In late August eight to 20 young are born. Massasaugas are ovoviviparous, which means that the young are not born from an external egg, but rather born live. Newborn snakes are about the thickness of a standard pen. These snakes are usually are born beneath wood piles, logs or in abandoned mammal burrows. Babies stay inside the nest for about 4 or 5 days while they shed their first skin. Massasaugas mature in 2-3 years and can live up to 14 years. This rattlesnake is now on the Endangered Species list.

A very large thick tan with brown spotted snake on a sandy rocky ground showing its rattle off.

A Rattlesnake spotted in Central Pennsylvania, PA