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Photo credit:

Rick C. West

Common name

Venezuelan Rattlesnake

Scientific name

Crotalus durissus cumanensis

Conservation Status

Least Concern

Federal and State Protections

Range Map

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Countries of Occurrence

Venezuela, Colombia

Adult size

Up to 175cm (68.9in), possibly larger

States or Providence 

La Guarija (CO), Cesar (CO), Magdelena (CO), Atlántico (CO), Bolívar (CO), Anitoquia (CO), Córdoba (CO), Santander (CO), Boyacá (CO), Caldas (CO), Cundinamarca (CO), Sucre (CO), Arauca (CO), Casanare (CO), Norte de Santander (CO), Tolima (CO), Vichada (CO), Meta (CO)
Anzoátegui (VE), Aragua (VE), Apure (VE), Barinas (VE), Bolívar (VE), Carabobo (VE), Cojedes (VE), Falcón (VE), Guárico (VE), Vargas (VE), La Guaira (VE), Lara (VE), Mérida (VE), Miranda (VE), Monagas (VE), Nueva Esparta (VE), Portuguesa (VE), Sucre (VE), Táchira (VE), Trujillo (VE), Yaracuy (VE), Zulia (VE),

Counties

Species Description

The Venezuelan Rattlesnake can be found in Colombia and Venezuela. It occurs in dry or semi-dry forests, savannas, the fringes of wetland praires and valleys, but can also occur as high as 6600 ft elevation.

The Venezuelan rattlesnake has a high level of regional variance in venom depending on where the individuals are found. Overall, this subspecies' venom contains crotoxin, a neurotoxic venom component, in addition to nephrotoxins and myotoxins, with quantities of each varying across its distribution in Venezuela and Colombia. Some regions also contain procoagulant (hemotoxic) venoms.

The venom of the Venezuelan rattlesnake has been shown to effective in inhibiting the growth of Candida, a fungus that causes yeast infections, and Sporothrix, a fungus that causes rose handler's disease. This can lead to the development of new antifungal medications as fungal diseases become resistant to our current treatments!