The Crotalinae, commonly known as pit vipers, crotaline snakes, or pit adders, are a subfamily of venomous vipers found in Asia and the Americas. They are distinguished by the presence of a heat-sensing pit organ located between the eye and the nostril on either side of the head. Currently, 18 genera and 151 species are recognized: 7 genera and 54 species in the Old World, against a greater diversity of 11 genera and 97 species in the New World. These are also the only viperids found in the Americas. The groups of snakes represented here include rattlesnakes, lanceheads and Asian pitvipers. The type genus for this subfamily is Crotalus, of which the type species is the timber rattlesnake, C. horridus.
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If God who holds you to the pit of hell,
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—Robert Lowell (19171977)