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 Great Basin Rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus lutosus)

Great Basin Rattlesnake | Crotalus oreganus-lutosus photo
Great Basin rattlesnake
Photograph by Marshal Hedin. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

The Great Basin Rattlesnake is a heavy-bodied, venomous snake with a thin neck and a large triangular head. It is buff, pale gray, pale brown, olive brown or yellowish brown ground color, with a series of 32-49 blotches on the back. The blotches are dark brown to black, with pale centers and pale borders, and are irregular in shape and wider than they are long. There is also a series of blotches on the sides that are indistinct towards the head, and more prominent towards the tail, and merge with the back markings to form crossbands. Older snakes may have a faded pattern, or uniformly black blotches.

length 65cm - 120cm, but rarely over 1m

Inhabits dry and barren areas of the Great Basin region. Found on hills, summits, rocky hillsides, open deserts, valley floors, grassy plains

Eats small mammals, including ground squirrels, mice, rats, rabbits. Also birds, lizards, snakes, frogs, and insects.


Found in the Great Basin region of the United States. Range includes parts of southern Idaho, western Utah, far north west Arizona, most of Nevada, north east California east of the Sierra Nevada, eastern Oregon.

The Great Basin Rattlesnake will not attack, but if disturbed will defend itself. The venom is potentially dangerous to humans.

Order:Squamata (Serpentes)
Species:oreganus lutosus
Common Name:Great Basin Rattlesnake

Relatives in same Genus
  Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake (C. adamanteus)
  Western Diamondback Rattlesnake (C. atrox)
  Sidewinder (C. cerastes)
  Baja California Rattlesnake (C. enyo)
  Timber Rattlesnake (C. horridus)
  Banded Rock Rattlesnake (C. lepidus klauberi)
  Rock Rattlesnake (C. lepidus lepidus)
  Southwestern Speckled Rattlesnake (C. mitchellii pyrrhus)
  Blacktail Rattlesnake (C. molossus molossus)
  Southern Pacific Rattlesnake (C. oreganus helleri)
  Northern Pacific Rattlenake (C. oreganus oreganus)
  Twin-spotted Rattlesnake (C. pricei)
  Red Diamond Rattlesnake (C. ruber)
  Mojave Rattlesnake (C. scutulatus)
  Tiger Rattlesnake (C. tigris)
  Hopi Rattlesnake (C. viridis nuntius)
  Arizona Ridgenose Rattlesnake (C. willardi willardi)

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