European Venomous Snake Named Germany’s Reptile of the YearAlso known as the common European adder, this species is widespread throughout Western Europe and East Asia, including North Korea, northern Mongolia, and northern China.

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European Venomous Snake Named Germany’s Reptile of the Year

The venomous snake thrives in colder climates.

Vipera berus, also known as the common adder, is threatened in Germany due to climate change.

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Germany has named one of its two venomous snakes as the country’s “Reptile of the Year,” for 2024. The common European adder called the common European viper (Vipera berus), is a “snake of superlatives” in that it occupies much of Europe, from England to Russia’s Sakhalin Island in the Far East, according to the The German Association for Herpetology and Terrarium Science, which named it “Reptile of the Year.” The association also noted that the cold weather snake is the only snake found beyond the Arctic Circle.


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While the snake is listed as a species of lest concern in most areas in which it can be found, in Germany, the association says that the venomous snake is at risk due to the effects of climate change. It has since recommended conservation measures to ensure the species survives, including linking and optimizing habitats where it is known to exist as well as rewilding captive specimens, according to DNYUZ.com.

About the European Viper (Vipera berus)

Also known as the common European adder, this species is widespread throughout Western Europe and East Asia, including North Korea, northern Mongolia, and northern China. Their venom is not regarded as especially dangerous and the snake is not aggressive, though those bitten should seek professional medical assistance. Female snakes grow to about 24 to 36 inches in length depending on their locality, with some specimens growing to 41 inches in length. Males are smaller, growing to about 24 inches in length. They are protected in England and it is illegal to kill, injure, harm or sell them. They feed on small mammals such as mice, shrews and also eat lizards and small amphibians and birds. There are three known subspecies, the common adder (V.b. berus), the Balkan cross adder (V.b. bosniensis), and the Sakhalin Island adder (V.b. sachalinensis).