Mojave Rattlesnake

(Crotalus scutellatus)

back up!

Found August of 2001, 10 miles South of Sierra Blanca, Texas on FM 1111

Size: Up to 51"

Range in Texas: Only the extreme portions of Western Texas (east to Culberson County) and isolated populations in the Big Bend Region

Comments:  Keep your distance! This is the bad boy of the Desert. The Mojave Rattle Snake is a common snake in Hudspeth County. It is a VERY dangerous Rattle Snake as it is VERY irritable and has a highly potent Neurotoxin. It causes more respiratory distress than that of any other North American Rattler. The venom of this species is so well know amongst herpetologist that it has even been given its own name; "mojavetoxin". Some studies have indicated that the toxins in the Texas Mojaves aren't as Neurotoxic as the ones in the western populations. Other studies have found little difference. They are difficult to distinguish from the Western Diamondback Rattler (C. Atrox) if not familiar with both species. Although I have found Mojave's that have been somewhat docile, the majority of them have been very excitable. Whereas some rattlers will lie completely still when first located in the hopes of not being seen, it seems to me that Mojave Rattlers rely more on pure attitude to deter would be predators. Like most Mojave rattlers that I have found, this one was very aggressive and did not hesitate to strike.  As you can see in the first thumbnail, when they are laying under a bush in the shade, their camouflage works well. Click on any of the thumbnails below for an enlarged version.

cooler in the shade (click to enlarge) click to enlarge click to enlarge Mojavecloseup.jpg (166571 bytes)