We have studied the connections of the tectum of the rattlesnake by tectal application of horseradish peroxidase. The tectum receives bilateral input from nucleus lentiformis mesencephali, posterolateral tegmental nuclei, anterior tegmental nuclei and periventricular nuclei; ipsilateral input from nucleus geniculatus pretectalis, and lateral geniculate nucleus pars dorsalis; and contralateral input from dorso‐lateral posterior tegmental nucleus and the previously undescribed nucleus reticularis caloris (RC). RC is located on the ventro‐lateral surface of the medulla and consists of large cells 25–45 μm in diameter. Efferent projections from the tectum can be traced to the ipsilateral nucleus lentiformis mesencephali, the ipsilateral lateral geniculate region, anterior tegmental region and a wide bilateral area of the neuropil of the ventral tegmentum and ventral medulla. We have not found any direct tectal projections from the sensory trigeminal nuclei including the nucleus of the lateral descending trigeminal tract (LTTD). We suggest that in the rattlesnake, RC is the intermediate link connecting LTTD to the tectum.