The subtropical climate of central Florida provides ideal habitat for dusky pygmy rattlesnakes due to the region’s relatively warm temperatures year-round and seasonal rains that support dense ground vegetation.
Average annual temperatures range from the mid-60s°F (18°C) in the north to the low 70s°F (22°C) in southern areas. Summer brings highs in the 90s°F (32-35°C). Central Florida receives over 50 inches (127 cm) of rainfall yearly, with frequent summer thunderstorms.
These warmer and wetter conditions allow saw palmettos, scrub oaks, pine flatwoods and sandhill ecosystems to flourish, creating optimum dusky pygmy rattlesnake environs. Rural areas adjacent to human development offer suitable habitat that can lead to dangerous snake encounters if preventive measures aren’t taken.