Rattlesnakes Popping Up Early This Year - Palm Springs News, Weather, Traffic, Breaking News

Rattlesnakes Popping Up Early This Year

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Whitewater, CA -

A hiker's encounter with a rattlesnake has some wondering if the serpent population is showing up early this year.

"I think I almost stepped on him, and then I turned and I screamed. It scared me. I screamed three times after. I actually screamed twice more thinking I was happy I didn't get bit," said avid hiker Jill Hayes of Coachellavalley.com.   

Hayes posted the video on the Palm Springs Neighborhood Facebook page. She was by the Snow Creek area just south of Whitewater when she ran into the rattlesnake. 

"I jumped down and instantly knew he was right there by my feet. I mean, I don't know if he was a foot away, I shocked him he went total...he rattled, I've never heard the sound this loud," Hayes said.

Experts at the Living Desert said that although it is a little early for snakes to be showing up, it's not a total surprise. 

"It's not unusual because we've had a string of warm days and as it gets into the summer or it gets too hot to be out  in the day, the snakes will be out at night as opposed to the day," said Living Desert Conservation Director Peter Siminski.  

Gopher and rattlesnakes are among the most common snakes you might find in the desert. The non-venomous gopher is often mistaken for a rattle snake but there is a way to tell them apart.

"The best way to tell a rattlesnake is look at it's tail because only rattle snakes have rattles."

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