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Mojave Green Rattlesnake
Mojave Green Rattlesnake Description
Mojave Green Rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus) – Found in Arizona, Nevada, and Texas.
Scientifically referred to as “Crotalus scutulatus”, the Mojave Green Rattlesnake is a fairly large species ranging from dark-greenish to olive-green in color.
The back of this rattlesnake features a well-defined array of dark diamonds descending towards the center of its back. This pattern is further ameliorated with light borders, clearly offsetting the dark tone in the middle.
Coming further down, the Mojave Green’s tail has a pattern of white and black bands on it, with the white bands being prominently broader as compared to the black bands.
This species is often confused with the Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes.
To distinguish Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes from the Mojave Rattlesnake species, it must be noted that the latter has relatively narrower black bands on its tail, with its upper white eye stripe extending beyond its mouth corner.
The adult Mojave Rattlesnakes range from 2 to 4 feet in length and usually do not attack unless provoked.
Mojave Green Rattlesnake Range
As the name suggests, the Mojave Desert is the prime habitat of this rattlesnake species. However, significant populations of the Mojave Green Rattlesnake are also found all over Arizona, Nevada, Southwestern Utah, Southern New Mexico and even some parts of Texas.
The members of this species usually prefer lower mountain slopes and high desert habitats. It is found between 500 to 5000 feet in elevation, with a strong preference for desert flats over rocky habitats or thick vegetation areas.
Mojave rattlesnake is the most active from early April to mid-September and is the most venomous rattlesnake in North America.
Mojave Green Rattlesnake Diet
This rattlesnake species is an active nocturnal predator, which means that they usually search for prey during the night time.
The Mojave Greens have a fairly broad food choice, which starts from kangaroo rats and lizards and escalates all the way up to rabbits, toads, other snakes, some insect species, and even bird eggs in some habitats. However, a University of Texas research claims that the kangaroo rat is the favorite prey choice of Mojave Green Rattlesnake.
The Mojave Green hunts while moving or by setting up an ambush while resting. The unsuspecting prey is swallowed as a whole once it gets attacked by the snake.
Mojave Green Rattlesnake Reproduction
The Mojave Green Rattlesnake give birth to 2-17 young ones during mid-summer, with some activity in early-autumn. Since it is an ovoviviparous species, the Mojave Green’s give birth to their young after the egg hatches within the female’s body.
The reproduction usually starts in late July and continues until early September. The Mojave Green reproduction cycles also often coincide with summer monsoons.
The species makes active use of abandoned rodent burrows as its birth sites.
Although the number may vary between 2 to 17 hatchlings per cycle, the average figure comes around to 8.
The newly hatched Mojave Greens may measure up to 25 centimeters or 10 inches from head to tail end.