SWEETWATER, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Sweetwater police are warning of an increase in rattlesnakes within city limits.

Police Chief Bryan Sheridan made a social media post Friday that reads, “We have had a big increase in rattlesnake calls within the city. Please be mindful that they are on the move and looking for food and water.”

The Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife provided the following information about different snake species and their identification:


There are 10 species of rattlesnakes in Texas. The Western diamondback (Crotalus atrox), has brown, diamond-shaped markings along the middle of the back and alternating black and white rings on the tail. Averages 3 1/2 to 4-1/2 feet in length, and can reach seven feet. This is the most common and widespread venomous snake in Texas, found in all but the easternmost part of the state.

Timber rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus) also known as Canebreak rattlesnake is a large, heavy-bodied snake averaging 4-1/2 feet. Brown or tan with wide, dark crossbands. Tail is entirely black. Found in the eastern third of the state in wooded areas in wet bottomlands.
Mottled Rock rattlesnake (Crotalus lepidus) is light cream or pink background with widely spaced, dark crossbands and mottled areas between the crossbands. Small and slender with an average length of about two feet. Found in the mountainous areas of West Texas.
Banded Rock rattlesnake (C.l. klauberi) Similar to the mottled rock rattlesnake, but darker greenish-gray in color. Found only in the extreme western tip of Texas.
Blacktail rattlesnake (Crotalus molossus) is gray to olive green with dark blotches along the back and a black tail. Averaging a length of 3-1/2 feet, it is found from Central Texas throughout most of West Texas in bushes and on rocky ledges.

Mojave rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus) is similar to the western diamondback in markings, but smaller and more slender and found only in extreme West Texas.
Prairie rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis viridis) is a slender rattler that is greenish or grayish, with rounded blotches down the middle of its back. Average length is about three feet andisfound in the grassy plains of the western third of the state.

Western massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus tergeminus), light gray, with brown oval blotches along the middle of the back and smaller blotches along each side. They are two feet in length and found through the middle of the state in grasslands, marshy and swampy areas.
Desert massasauga (S.c. edwardsii), lighter in color than the western massasauga, smaller and more slender. Found in the Trans-Pecos, western Panhandle and the lower Rio Grande Valley.