Black Adder: the differences, characteristics and habitat

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Black Adder has long been considered a kind of common viper.However, a closer study of the snake, she was singled out as a separate species and named after zoologist Nikolsky (Vipera nikolskii).

Black Adder has a slim body than ordinary.The body reaches a length of 765 mm, the tail - 80 mm.Males are slightly smaller than females.The head is broad, large, clearly demarcated from the neck and slightly flattened.Iris black.Adult snakes are always black, as seen in the photo.Viper on supralabials shields can sometimes have white spots.The bottom tip of the tail of the snake yellow-orange or yellow.Juveniles have a gray-brown color with a zigzag pattern on the back brown.By three years of life drawing disappears, color becomes dark.

Black Adder inhabits the forest-steppe and steppe regions of the European part of Russia and the Ukraine (left bank).Snake noted in Voronezh, Tambov, Penza, Saratov regions.It is found in the valley of the Don River and its basin.In the northeast, the habitat extends to the foothills of the Middle and South Urals.

Viper black usually adheres deciduous woodlands and oak forests.In the summer, it can be found in the meadows, glades and clearings.He prefers floodplain landscapes of the rivers Raven, Bear, Hopper, Don, Seversky Donets and Samara.Summer and wintering habitats, apparently the same.In wet areas on the 1 sq km has over 500 species.Black Adder begins to be active towards the middle of spring.Mating occurs in May, and in August there is a female juveniles (8-24 live specimens).Color young snake begins to darken after the first molt.

Viper Nikolsky is most active during the day.The main food of the snakes are small rodents, and (to a lesser extent), birds, frogs and lizards.In rare cases (likely at the extreme shortage of food) Black Adder can eat fish or carrion.Biology of this species still not well understood.

Black Adder compared with colubridae snakes moves more slowly, but very good swimmer.In dangerous situations, it takes s-shaped rack, hisses and makes lunges toward the offender.Viper Nikolsky poisonous.For a person it bites are very painful, but the victims recover in a few days.The venom is a mixture of proteins, enzymes and inorganic components.It is damaging to tissues, it paralyzes the nervous system and promotes blood clotting.Captured specimens recovered from the cloaca liquid repellent unpleasant odor.

a long time, this was considered a dark snake viper common form, based on the fact that all its population has a certain percentage of melanistic.However, after careful study of the morphology and ecology of the snake gave her the status of the species.This greatly increased the interest of specialists to study her.But opinions diverge so far.Some scientists continue to believe that the snake is just a subspecies of the main form.