Close-Up of a Rattlesnake's Rattle

Here's a picture Tim sent of a timber rattlesnake's rattle somewhere near Peachtree City.

Most herpetologists believe that a rattlesnake's rattle is primarily intended as a warning device to alert and scare away would-be predators. The rattle segments are hollow, so they can make quite a loud sound.

Rattlesnakes produce one rattle segment every time that they molt. However, because they may molt more than once in a year, the number of segments is not a good indicator of the snake's age. They also lose end segments from time to time in the course of their everyday activities.

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