|Gloydius halys in Central Mongolia|
Gloydius halys is a venomous pitviper species found within a wide range that stretches across Asia, from Russia, east of the Urals, eastwards through China, and also includes the southern Ryukyu Islands. Five subspecies are currently recognized, including the nominotypical form described here.
Grows to a maximum total length of 59 cm (23 in), which was for a female, with an included tail length of 68 mm (2.7 in). The largest male on record measured 53 cm (21 in) in total length, which included a tail length of 80 mm (3.1 in). The body build is described as moderately stout with a snout that is slightly upturned when viewed from the side.
Dorsally grayish, pale brown, reddish, or yellowish, with large dark spots or crossbars, the borders of which are serrated. One or two lateral series of smaller dark spots. A wide dark stripe behind the eye, bordered by light stripes both above and below. Ventrally whitish, speckled with gray or brown.
The strongly keeled dorsal scales are arranged in 23 rows at midbody. Ventrals 149-174; anal plate entire; subcaudals 31-44, divided (paired).
Siberian pit viper, Halys viper, Halys pit viper, Pallas' pit viper, Asiatic pit viper, Asiatic moccasin, shchitomordnik, Pallas' viper, Pallas pit viper, Korean pit viper, Mongolian pit viper.
Found in Russia, east of the Ural Mountains through Siberia, Iran, Mongolia to northern and central China, as well as the southern Ryukyu Islands of Japan. According to Gloyd and Conant (1990), the type locality given is "Salt Lake near the Lugaskoi Sawod (factory) on the Upper Yenisey" (Siberia, Russia). Redefined by Bour (1993) as "Naryn or Ryn Peski desert, near the Russia-Kazakhstan border."
|Subspecies||Taxon author||Common name||Geographic range|
|G. h. boehmei||Nilson, 1983||Boehme's pitviper||Known only from the type locality: Andarab valley, province of Baghlan, at 2,500 m altitude, eastern Afghanistan.|
|G. h. caraganus||(Eichwald, 1831)||Karaganda pitviper||From southeastern Europe, in the Ural and Emba River valleys, and (at least formerly) in the Volga River valley, through much of Kazakhstan, including northern Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kirgistan, into northwestern China.|
|G. h. cognatus||(Gloyd, 1977)||Alashan pitviper||North-central China, from eastern Qinghai across southern Gansu, probably also in Qinghai, and possibly eastwards into Hebei and northwards into Inner Mongolia.|
|G. h. halys||(Pallas, 1776)||Siberian pitviper||Southern Siberia and Mongolia, from the Zeya River west to longitude 74° E.|
|G. h. mogoi||Bour, 1993||Western Mongolia.|
- List of crotaline species and subspecies
- Crotalinae by common name
- Crotalinae by taxonomic synonyms
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