15 Foot Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake Caught in Florida-Fiction!

Summary of the eRumor:
A forwarded email with photos of a captured snake saying that a gigantic Eastern diamondback rattlesnake measuring 15 feet in length was caught in St. Augusta, Florida.  Other versions of this eRumor with the same photos allege that this is the deadly Western diamondbacked rattlesnake and was caught near Meza, Arizona.
 

The Truth:  
This tale is fiction.   A public information officer with the St. Johns County Sheriff's department told TruthOrFiction.com that there was an incident involving a large Eastern diamondback rattlesnake in July 2009 but the snake was 7'3" in length. 

The photos, taken by an unidentified civilian, were an unintentional trick of camera perspective.   The captured snake was closer to the photographer than the law enforcement officer shown in the background.   This made the venomous reptile appear larger than life.

Eastern diamondback rattlesnakes in the wild have been known to grow up to 8' in length.

The Western diamondbacked rattlesnake is indigenous to Arizona but they have been known to live 15 to 20 years in captivity and are 3 to 5 feet in average length but have a few of these rattlers have been known to grow up to 7 feet in length.

update 08/26/12

A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:

Version 1 (submitted 1/28/10) :
How would you like to take that call? 

 

…near the St. Augustine outlet, in a new KB homes subdivision.

15 foot Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake.

Largest ever caught on record.

At least it wasn't found in a Wal-Mart garden shop.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Version 2 (submitted August 2012) :

FOUND ON A GOLF COURSE IN Arizona
This is why you shouldn't go looking for the golf balls hit 'Out of Bounds' in Arizona !!!

THIS IS NOT A PYTHON!

This is a 15 foot Western Diamondback rattlesnake - the largest ever caught on record,

This snake was found Near the St. Augustine outlet, in a new KB homes subdivision just south of Mesa Az.

A little research revealed the following:

One bite from a snake of this size would contain enough venom to kill over 40 full grown men.

The head of this snake alone is larger than the hand of a normal sized man.
A bite from those fangs would be comparable to being stabbed by two curved, 1/4 inch diameter screwdrivers.
The knife being used to draw out the fangs for the bottom picture has a blade around 6 inche long.
This snake is estimated to have weighed over 170 pounds. (How much do you weigh?)

Notice the girth of this snake as compared to the cop's leg in the first picture (and he is not a small man).

A snake of this size could easily swallow a 2 year-old child and dogs, pigs, etc).

A snake this size has an approximately 5 1/2 foot accurate striking distance.
(The distance for an average size rattlesnake is about 2 feet . )

This snake has probably been alive since George Bush Sr. was President.

Now just ask yourself these questions:

What has this snake been feeding on and where are its offspring?