Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, The viper snake generally has a large, triangular-shaped head because of large venom glands located behind their eyes. This organ gives the snake the fantastic ability to sense infrared heat to track prey. Though the South American Bushmaster is longer, the Gaboon viper is heavier. Only a few regions do not contain Vipers, including Australia, Antarctica, and Siberia. Commonly known as the night adders, these snakes can grow to around 24 to 36 in long (60 – 90 cm). Some species require high temperatures and humidity, others live in temperate regions with low rainfall. CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. Venom travels down through the follow teeth to be injected into prey as the viper bites. Retrieved from https://biologydictionary.net/viper-snake/. Reproductive behaviors and rates vary drastically based on the species. Their jaws are white or yellow, presumably giving rise to their white-lipped name. Thank you for signing up to Live Science. Are you genetically more similar to your mom or your dad? Learn more about what makes these snakes unique below. The number of young in a clutch varies based on the species. Interesting Facts About the Viper. Vipers are usually camouflaged and blend in with their environment. Snake viral video: A video of a blue pit viper has gone viral on social media, with thousands of people commenting on its beauty. These snakes are not picky eaters and will readily eat mice, locusts, lizards and frogs in captivity. Savitzky noted that Gaboon vipers are of the adder lineage, so referring to them as Gaboon adders is also correct. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer. "Generally more venomous vipers are in tropical areas, particularly South America and Africa," said Alan Savitzky, a professor of biological sciences at Utah State University specializing in the biology of snakes. 10. When their victim is dead, the snakes swallow it whole. There are more than 150 species in this subfamily, which are mainly found across North and South Ameria, and in parts of East and Central Asia. There was a problem. These vipers lack the heat-sensing pit organ that is found in their sister family, Crotalinae. The various species live across different regions of the globe. The receptors detect warm blooded prey but also can detect cold blooded prey, though they're more responsive to warm.". In addition to killing prey and injuring predators, viper venom helps vipers digest their food, according to Sfetcu. "Vipers in general tend to have enzymetic venom that affects general tissues," Savitzky said. These vipers are different from the other vipers in appearance. Vipers engage in a hunting activity called prey relocation, according to an article in BMC Biology journal. [Photos: Vivid Images of New Snake Species]. The heaviest individuals reach 20 to 30 lbs. Blues grow to 36 to 60 inches in size and are easily identified by their metallic gray-green scales. Human interaction varies drastically based on the species. This genus is so different in appearance from the other viper snake species that it has previously been categorized as belonging to two different families of snakes entirely – the elapid and colubrid families. venom of viper snakes is predominantly hemotoxic, The smallest is 10 in (25 cm) the largest can reach 10 ft (3 m). Azemiopinae is a subfamily of viper that contains just one genus and two species; Azemiops feae and Azemiops kharini, also known as the Fea’s Viper or mountain viper. They are found in Southeast Asia, India and southern China, according to The University of Adelaide's Clinical Toxinology Resources. It also functions as an anticoagulant. Pit vipers are found throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. All vipers are venomous and have long, hinged fangs. They are found all over the world, with the exceptions of Antarctica, Australia, New Zealand, Madagascar, north of the Arctic Circle and island clusters such as Hawaii. The more you learn, the less you fear. Each species has its own unique habitat preferences. With such a wide variety of species, it should come as no surprise that these snakes inhabit an immense range of habitats. That means the eggs are fertilized and incubate inside the mother and she gives birth to live young. Humans have not domesticated these snakes in any way. The purpose of horns is uncertain. How to watch rare Halloween 'blue moon' tonight. “Viper Snake.”, Biologydictionary.net Editors. Some scientists have suggested they protect the vipers' eyes as they move through thick vegetation. New York, Most eat rats, mice, chicks, rabbits, and similar prey. Let’s take a closer look at three of them. The Causinae subfamily consists of one genus (Causus) and six species that are endemic to sub-Saharan Africa. These snakes are found throughout Africa, Asia, and Europe. Researchers recognize hundreds of different species of Vipers, and place them in three different subfamilies. Vipers can rotate their fangs together or independently, which allows them to wait until the last second to erect their fangs. Jessie Szalay - Live Science Contributor Though not all, some species do range into agricultural areas in search of rodent prey. Nevertheless, vipers have a speedy strike. Venom can travel down from these glands and through the hollow teeth to be injected into the prey animal when the viper bites. Visit our corporate site. This is because many vipers rely on their camouflage for protection rather than their ability to move quickly. Habitat destruction, purposeful killing, capture for the exotic pet trade, and pollution or climate change impacting their prey populations. or so. Gaboon vipers are the largest vipers in the world, reaching lengths of up to 7 feet (213 cm) and more than 22 lbs. Vipers are known for their extreme fangs, which are long, hollow, hinged and rotatable, according to an article in the journal Physiological and Biochemical Zoology. Generally, these snakes are heavy-bodied, though they range in length. Dry bites enable vipers to conserve their previous venom, which can run out and takes a while to replenish, according to an article in the journal Tropical and Geographical Medicine. They are becoming a very popular pet and now over 500,000 households own a pet snake in the United States. Some directly face extinction while others have stable populations. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Animals.NET aim to promote interest in nature and animals among children, as well as raise their awareness in conservation and environmental protection. Additionally, some species face extinction because their populations are captured for the pet trade. Pit vipers see the world in a combination of heat and light. Probably the most famous of the green vipers is Trimeresurus albolabris, also called green pit viper or white-lipped viper. These snakes have large venom glands but don’t always inject venom when hunting prey. They are more inclined to blend in with the surrounding brush, rocks or ground cover when being approached by a predator than to slither away. Some of the different prey items that these snakes hunt include rats, mice, rabbits, frogs, insects, lizards, other snakes, birds, bats, squirrels, and more. They average around 2 feet (61 cm) in length and are one of the smallest poisonous snakes in their range. Some of the more well-known members of this family include the rattlesnakes, puff adders, Gaboon Vipers, moccasins, bushmasters, copperheads, and more. Is this the funniest animal picture ever? All photos used are royalty-free, and credits are included in the Alt tag of each image. Additionally, most vipers have keeled scales, vertically elliptical pupils and coloring and patterns that serve as camouflage. NY 10036. Species from this large family are found all over the world, except for Antarctica, Australia, north of the Arctic Circle, New Zealand, Madagascar, and some island clusters such as Hawaii. All viper bites should be treated seriously and medical attention should be paid. They have an elliptical-shaped head that has enlarged scales. For some species, a habitat with virtually no humidity is best. Not all horned vipers have horns; sometimes the same clutch of eggs will yield animals with and without horns. Vipers are known for their long, hollow fangs which can fold up and lie against the roof of their mouth. The snakes lay about 24 eggs at a time, which hatch after four months. Males have a narrow white stripe running down the sides of their bodies. Vipers can extend their fangs and bite without injecting venom. Some nonvenomous species have evolved a similarly shaped head in order to potentially trick predators into thinking they are vipers. These snakes can open their mouths really wide, up to 180 degrees, which gives them the space to be able to rotate their fangs. By The Viperinae subfamily is known as the true vipers and is made up of 12 genera and approximately 66 species. The viper snake is one of over 200 species that belong to the family Viperidae. The purpose of the eyelashes is unknown, according to the ADW. Several types of snakes are referred to as horned vipers due to the presence of horn-shaped scales on their faces. Most species display ovoviviparity. These snakes are carnivores, which means that they eat other animals. Almost all vipers have a distinctive triangular head, according to Discover magazine. Savitzky pointed out that European vipers (adders) have relatively moderate venom that is not highly lethal, while Gaboon vipers, which are found in sub-Saharan Africa, have highly potent venom. Receive news and offers from our other brands? For example, Africa's puff adder can strike at a speed of a quarter of a second, according to Perry's Bridge Reptile Park in South Africa. Viper snakes are a diverse family of snakes that are found in a wide variety of habitats. The ruby-eyed green pit viper (Trimeresurus rubeus) was discovered in Vietnam in 2011. They live in pastures, near farms, in plantations, orchards, and more. Others speculate that the horns may help protect the snake's eyes from sand in some way. All horned vipers live in Africa and the Middle East but the nose-horned viper, which are found in Europe and Asia. This means that once they have identified their prey, they strike it and inject venom. People’s dread of snakes seems like a primordial one. During hibernation, large numbers can accumulate in the same den, some even congregate with other snake species. The other species have a horn over each eye. Stay up to date on the coronavirus outbreak by signing up to our newsletter today. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), 57 species of viper are considered near threatened, conservation-dependent, vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered, extinct or extinct in the wild. The turquoise blue-greenish striking skin color makes this species easier to be spotted. They then immediately release the prey so that it cannot bite back. The family Viperidae includes adders, pit vipers (like rattlesnakes, cottonmouths and copperheads), the Gaboon viper, green vipers and horned vipers. When not in use, vipers’ hinged fangs fold up and lie against the roof of the snake’s mouth. Their mouths can open nearly 180 degrees so the ability to rotate their fangs within that space is an advantage. This is because of a protein – TRPA1 – that is found in the organ. (10 kilograms), according to the ADW. A blue island pit viper strikes a pose in this National Geographic Your Shot Photo of the Day. They live throughout sub-Saharan Africa in rainforests and other tropical areas. You will receive a verification email shortly. Their diet ranges greatly, depending on the size of the snake and where it lives. Snakes are hard to spot; they are very fast in movement. Vipers found in colder, northern climates, such as the black or European adder have more moderate venom. Receive mail from us on behalf of our trusted partners or sponsors? One incredible feature of a vipers fangs is that they are rotatable, both together and independently. All vipers in the Americas are pit vipers, according to The University of Pittsburgh.