Poisonous snakes of Europe

Venomous snakes of Europe

September 4th, 2009


Europe does not have the range or potency of the venomous snakes of other continents, but there are still a number of species which can cause human deaths. I’ve not included all the numerous species occurring in Russia and Turkey. This article here claims 30,000 people are bitten by snakes every year in Europe but these are responsible for only 30 fatalities. The only truly venomous snakes in Europe all belong to the Viper family

  • Vipera ammodytes – Nose-horned viper. Occurs in south-eastern Europe, from Hungary and Austria to Italy, Romania, former Yugoslavia, and northern Albania.
  • Vipera aspis – Asp viper. south-western Europe: northeastern Spain, Andorra, most of France- inckuding in the Ile de Re and Oleron islands -, Monaco, Italy, the islands of Elba, Montecristo and Sicily, San Marino, Switzerland; northwestern,  Slovenia and extreme southwestern Germany
  • Vipera barani – Turkish viper
  • Vipera berus – European viper or the adder – extends from Western Britain all the way to the Pacific coast of Russia.
  • Vipera latastei – Lataste’s viper, snub-nosed viper – Iberian Peninsula  and northwestern Africa-
  • Vipera seoanei – Seoane’s viper. Extreme southwestern France and Cantabrian mountains in Spain
  • Vipera ursinii – Ursini’s Viper. South-eastern France, Central Italy, western Balkans, northern Greece, Albania, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, and Germany.
  • Akistrodon halys- Pallas’ Viper. Southeastern Europe
  • Vipera nikolskii – Nikolsky’s Adder or Forest-steppe Adder. Endemic to central Ukraine.
  • Macrovipera schweizeri – Milos viper Macrovipera schweizeri- limited to the Greek islands of Milos, Kimolos, Polyaigos, and Sifnos.
  • Malpolon monspessulanus – Montpellier snake – Not a viper and unlikely to inject venom as fangs are at the back