Librarian Files

Rattlesnake Bites--Arizona

Finding rattlesnake bite statistics is difficult--especially if you are trying to find the number of bites just in Tucson.   
 
 
March 9, 2010—By this date in 2010 one person in Tucson had already been bitten by a snake. ###
 
August 2007, more than 40 people suffered rattlesnake bites in Tucson.

Source:
KVOA News 4 web site: "Rattlesnake bites reach record high in Tucson."  (Accessed 09/04/2007)
 
January 1 - September 17, 2005 --there were 10 rattlesnake bites in Tucson.* September 1-15 2004 there were seven rattlesnake bites in Tucson. **
The week of September 18, 2006 a man was bitten in Tucson ****

Statistics estimate that there are approximately 8,000 venomous snakebites each year in the U.S.--these typically result in 8 to 15 deaths. Less than 1 percent of bites are fatal.*
(Venomous snakes mean all snakes not just rattlesnakes.)
 
 
The rattlesnake striking range is about one-half to two-thirds of the body length of the snake. Usually the best way to avoid a bite is to just stay still and let the snake move away from you. If you have to move, move slowly, quick movements might elicit a rattlesnake bite. ###


Snake-bite total *** (Covers all of Arizona EXCEPT Maricopa County--most of the bites are in Pima County.)

Year
Bites
2006
202
2005
188
2004
169
2003
214
2002
189

 
Rattlesnake bites are more common around Labor Day.  Snake season starts in March and ends in late October. 
 
2007-- In the past five years there have been four deaths from rattlesnake bites in Arizona: one in Pima County, one in Maricopa County and two in Cochise County. ***
 
In Arizona more than 200 people are bitten by rattlesnakes in the typical year. Only a small percentage of victims die. Out of 1,912 rattlesnake bites there were only four fatalities. The reason why there are few fatalities is that about 10 percent of rattlesnake bites are “dry bites.” A “dry bite” is when a rattlesnake strikes but delivers no venom in the bite. Also most bite victims are successfully treated by antivenin. ###
 
Most of the rattlesnake bites in Arizona are delivered by the Western diamondback rattlesnake. ###

Rattlesnakes are known as “buzzworms” because of their buzz-like rattle.
 
 
 
Sources:  
### “1 bite already reported, here are tips for safety. Arizona Daily Star. March 9, 2010. Page 1.
**** "Rattler's bite is UA prof's wake-up call." Tucson Citizen.  March 27, 2007. Page 1.
***"Rattlers in abundance; 3 people bitten of late." Tucson Citizen. September 8, 2006. Page A3.
**"Rattlers send 7 people to hospitals." Arizona Daily Star.  September 5, 2004. Page B1.
*"
Snakebite fatality prompts warning." Arizona Daily Star. September 17, 2005. Page 1.
 
 
 
 
 

Article tagged with: Snake Bites, Rattlesnake Bites, Arizona

Last Update: 12-11-2010 9:33am

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