Kentucky has two varieties of a rattlesnake - the Timber rattlesnake and the Western Pygmy rattlesnake. Both varieties of rattlesnakes are venomous with the Timber rattlesnake being the largest venomous snake in Kentucky.
On the other hand, the Western Pygmy rattlesnake is the smallest venomous snake in Kentucky.
According to Kentucky herpetologist John McGregor, there are an average of 5-10 snakebites in Kentucky each year.
The easiest way to detect hidden rattlesnakes and consequently avoid being bitten is to listen for the sounds of their rattle.
Scientists believe that rattlesnakes use their rattle to warn of threats from humans and animals. When they feel that they are threatened, the snakes shake the tips of their tails rapidly.
The snake's rattle is made of interlocking sections of hollow keratin which is the same protein found in human hair and nails.
The Western Pygmy rattlesnake is the smallest species of rattlesnake in the U.S. It measures about 15 to 20 inches in length. Due to its small size, it makes a tiny rattle that sounds like insects buzzing.
It is important to note that while the rattle sound may be a warning, it might not always be possible to hear the sound of the Pygmy rattlesnake as it can be quite faint.