Macrovipera deserti

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Macrovipera deserti
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Subfamily: Viperinae
Genus: Macrovipera
Species: M. deserti
Binomial name
Macrovipera deserti
(Anderson, 1892)
  • Vipera lebetina var. deserti - Anderson, 1892
  • Vipera mauritanica deserti - Kramer & Schnurrenberger, 1959
  • Daboia (Daboia) lebetina deserti - Obst, 1983
  • Macrovipera deserti - Herrmann, Joger & Nilson, 1992[1]

Common names: desert viper.[2][3]  
Macrovipera deserti is a venomous viper species found in North Africa.[1] No subspecies are currently recognized.[4]


Grows to a length of 1.6 m.[2] Others say 1.3 m.[3]

Geographic range

Found in North Africa: Libya, Tunisia and possibly Algeria. The type locality is listed as "Duriat, South Tunisia."[1] Mallow et al. (2003) mention that it does occur in the southern foothills of the Atlas Mountains in Algeria.[3]

Conservation status

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


Occurs in rocky, mountainous areas that are semiarid, but well-vegetated.[2]


This species lays eggs (oviparous).[2]


Little is known. Antivenins meant for M. lebetina and Daboia russelii show the strongest cross-reactivity with this venom.[3]

See also

Cited references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 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 2.3 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. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Spawls S, Branch B. 1995. The Dangerous Snakes of Africa. Ralph Curtis Books. Dubai: Oriental Press. 192 pp. ISBN 0-88359-029-8.
  4. Macrovipera deserti (TSN 634952) at Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Accessed 26 April 2007.
  5. Daboia deserti at IUCN Red List. Accessed 7 October 2006.
  6. 2001 Categories & Criteria (version 3.1)IUCN Red List. Accessed 7 October 2006.

External links