There are approximately 36 known species of rattlesnakes, all native to the Americas, ranging from southern Alberta and southern British Columbia in Canada to Central Argentina.
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Rattlesnakes are found in almost every type of habitat, including prairies, marshes, deserts, and forests, but individual species can have extremely specific habitat requirements. Most rattlesnake species live near open, rocky areas, as the rocks offer cover from predators.
The western diamondback rattlesnake
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During the cooler parts of the year the rattlesnake is active during the day, when the sun can warm its body.
Throughout the summer the rattlesnake becomes increasingly night active, usually emerging after dusk.
When a snake is not active, it spends its time in holes in the ground, in rocky crevices or under dead cacti or large boulders. In the coldest winter weather, 30 or more snakes may hibernate together in an underground den.
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