Vipera monticola

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Vipera monticola
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Genus: Vipera
Species: V. monticola
Binomial name
Vipera monticola
Saint-Girons, 1954
Vipera monticola distribution.png
Common names: Atlas mountain viper.[2]

Vipera monticola is a venomous viper species endemic to Morocco.[1] No subspecies are currently recognized.[3]


The Atlas mountain viper (Vipera monticola) is a very small species with a maximum total length (body + tail) of less than 40 cm (16 in).[4] Spawls and Branch (1995) describe it as the smallest member of the genus Vipera, reaching a total length of only 345 mm (13.6 in).[2]

Geographic range[edit]

It is found in the High Atlas Mountains, Morocco.

The type locality given is "Haut-Atlas, Massif du Toubkal, Maroc...qu'entre 2.500 et 3.900 m " [Toubkal Massif, High Atlas Mountains, southwestern Morocco, between 8,200 and 12,800 ft].[1]

Conservation status[edit]

This species is classified as Near Threatened (NT) according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (v3.1, 2001).[5] Listed as such because its extent of occurrence is likely not much more than 20,000 km², and the extent and quality of its habitat are probably declining, therefore making the species close to qualifying for Vulnerable. Year assessed: 2005.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, Volume 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. ^ a b Spawls S, Branch B. 1995. The Dangerous Snakes of Africa. Ralph Curtis Books. Dubai: Oriental Press. 192 pp. ISBN 0-88359-029-8.
  3. ^ "Vipera monticola". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 18 August 2006. 
  4. ^ Mallow D, Ludwig D, Nilson G. 2003. True Vipers: Natural History and Toxinology of Old World Vipers. Malabar, Florida: Krieger Publishing Company. 359 pp. ISBN 0-89464-877-2.
  5. ^ Vipera monticola at the IUCN Red List. Accessed 2 September 2007.
  6. ^ 2001 Categories & Criteria (version 3.1) at the IUCN Red List. Accessed 2 September 2007.

Further reading[edit]

  • Beerli P, Billing H, Schätti B. 1986. Taxonomisches Status von Vipera latasti monticola Saint Girons, 1953 (Serpentes, Viperidae). Salamandra 22: 101-104.
  • Klemmer K. 1963. Liste der rezenten Giftschlangen: Elapidae, Hydropheidae, Viperidae und Crotalidae. Marburg: N.G. Elwert. 210 pp.
  • Saint-Girons H. 1953. Une vipère naine: Vipera latastei montana. Bulletin de la Société Zoologique de France 78: 24-28.
  • Saint-Girons H. 1954. Note rectificative au sujet de Vipera latastei montana, n. subsp. Bulletin de la Société Zoologique de France 78: 475. (Vipera latastei monticola, replacement name.)

External links[edit]