On October 11, WFTV news in Orlando reported a rattlesnake sighting at New Smyrna Beach. Witnesses saw surfers paddling quickly to avoid one rattler that approached the beach from the ocean.

Valah Levy’s young son was among the witnesses. “He said the coolest part was that the snake raised half of its body up and looked out towards the surf and a wave was coming and the snake turned towards the beach and kind of let the wave bump it on in.”

Photo by Natalie Glen

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Rattlesnakes are venomous and can strike as far away as 2/3 their body length.

The Eastern Diamondback rattler can be found throughout Florida, most commonly in palmetto thickets or other brush.  The snake at New Smyrna Beach made it’s way from the ocean to the dunes, seeking cover there.  Some experts have speculated that the snake might have been washed out to sea from Ponce Inlet.