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Warmer Arizona Weather Means More Rattlesnake Bite Risk

Published: Friday, April 24, 2020 - 5:49pm
Updated: Friday, April 24, 2020 - 9:10pm
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When temperatures warm up, rattlesnakes start coming out of hibernation. The Arizona Game and Fish Department is reminding Arizonans that means more chances for snake bites. 

Rattlesnakes won’t usually attack unprovoked, so if you see one, back away and don’t disturb it.

“The most important thing is not to mess with the snake, don’t try to move it yourself, don’t throw rocks at it, don’t throw sticks at it, don’t antagonize it in any way,” said Tom Jones, amphibians and reptiles program manager with the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

Jones said it’s also important to think about snakes that might not be visible.

“Look before reaching under a bush or a tree, because as the weather gets warmer, snakes are going to be sitting in the shade," Jones said.

Arizona has 13 rattlesnake species, more than any other state. Most bites occur between April and October in Arizona.

Thirty-nine venomous snake bites have been reported in Arizona so far this spring. If you are bitten, call 911, remove tight-fitting clothing or jewelry, and try not to move around.

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