Cerastes vipera

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Cerastes vipera
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Subfamily: Viperinae
Genus: Cerastes
Species: C. vipera
Binomial name
Cerastes vipera
(Linnaeus, 1758)
  • [Coluber] vipera - Linnaeus, 1758
  • Aspis Cleopatrae - Laurenti, 1768
  • Vipera Aegyptia - Latreille In Sonnini & Latreille, 1801
  • Vipera aegyptiaca - Daudin, 1803
  • Aspis Cleopatra - Gray, 1842
  • Cerastes Richiei - Gray, 1842
  • Echidna atricauda - Duméril, Bibron & Duméril, 1854
  • Vipera Avicennae - Jan, 1859
  • V[ipera]. (Echidna) Avicennae - Jan, 1863
  • Vipera avizennae - Strauch, 1869
  • Cerastes vipera - Boulenger, 1891
  • Cerastes vipera - Boulenger, 1896
  • Cerastes vipera inornatus - Werner, 1929
  • Aspis vipera - Kramer & Schnurrenberger, 1959
  • Cerastes vipera - Joger, 1984[1]

Common names: Sahara sand viper, Avicenna viper.[2]  
Cerastes vipera is a venomous viper species found in the deserts of North Africa and the Sinai Peninsula. Small and stout, it has a broad, triangular head with small eyes set well forward and situated on the junction of the side and the top of the head. A true desert species.[2][3] No subspecies are currently recognized.[4]


Averages 20-35 cm in length, with a maximum of 50 cm. Females are larger than males.[2]

Geographic range

Found in arid North Africa in Mauritania, Western Sahara, Morocco, Algeria, Mali, Tunisia, Libya, Niger, Chad and Egypt. In the Sinai Peninsula they occur in Egypt and Israel. The type locality given is "AEgypto" (Egypt).[1]

See also

Cited references

  1. 1.0 1.1 McDiarmid RW, Campbell JA, Touré T. 1999. Snake Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, vol. 1. Herpetologists' League. 511 pp. ISBN 1-893777-00-6 (series). ISBN 1-893777-01-4 (volume).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Mallow D, Ludwig D, Nilson G. 2003. True Vipers: Natural History and Toxinology of Old World Vipers. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar, Florida. 359 pp. ISBN 0-89464-877-2.
  3. Spawls S, Branch B. 1995. The Dangerous Snakes of Africa. Ralph Curtis Books. Dubai: Oriental Press. 192 pp. ISBN 0-88359-029-8.
  4. Cerastes vipera (TSN 634965) at Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Accessed 6 April 2007.

External links