One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A common large North American rattlesnake with diamond-shaped markings.
Genus Crotalus, family Viperidae: two speciesAlso called diamond rattlesnake
- ‘The whirring rattle of a diamondback poised to strike Maj.’
- ‘At 35 deg C, not atypical of a sunny, summer day in the southwestern U.S. deserts, the western diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus atrox, shakes its rattle at frequencies up to 90 Hz.’
- ‘It's a showdown between two of the world's most dangerous desert hunters: a red-tailed hawk and a diamondback rattlesnake.’
- ‘I was asked to pick up a western diamondback rattlesnake bare-handed.’
- ‘We walked on through the fragile valley watching for diamondbacks and indigo snakes, maybe even for a serpent.’
2another term for terrapin (sense 2 of the noun)
- ‘Volunteers found 21 diamondback terrapins in abandoned crab traps pulled from the edge of the bay.’
- ‘The periwinkle in turn is preyed upon by blue crabs and diamondback terrapins.’
- ‘This suggests that all could provide food for diamondback terrapins.’
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