Macrovipera schweizeri

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Macrovipera schweizeri
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Serpentes
Family: Viperidae
Subfamily: Viperinae
Genus: Macrovipera
Species: M. schweizeri
Binomial name
Macrovipera schweizeri
(Werner, 1935)
  • [Vipera lebetina] schweizeri - Werner, 1935
  • Vipera lebetina schweizeri - Mertens, 1951
  • Vipera lebetina siphnensis - Wettstein, 1952
  • Daboia (Daboia) lebetina schweizeri - Obst, 1983
  • D[aboia]. l[ebetina]. schweizeri - Engelmann et al., 1985
  • Vipera schweizeri - Nilson & Andrén, 1988
  • Vipera lebetina schweizeri - González, 1991
  • Macrovipera schweizeri - Herrmann, Joger & Nilson, 1992[1]

Common names: Milos viper.[2]

Macrovipera schweizeri is a venomous viper species found in Greece on the islands of the Cyclades Archipelago in the Aegean sea. No subspecies are currently recognized.[3]


Grows to an average length of 50-70 cm, with a maximum of 98.5 cm.[2]

Geographic range

The Grecian islands of the Cyclades Archipelago in the Aegean Sea: Milos and the three smaller, adjacent islands of Siphnos, Kimolos and Polinos.[1][2] The type locality is given as "Insel Milos."[1]

Conservation status

This species is classified as Endangered (EN) according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species with the following criteria: B1ab(iii,v) (v2.3, 1994).[4] This indicates that the extent of its occurrence within its geographic range is estimated to be less than 5,000 km², that its populations are severely fragmented or known to exist at no more than five locations. Furthermore, a continuing decline is observed, inferred or projected in the area, extent and/or quality of habitat, as well as the number of mature individuals.[5]

So listed because its extent of occurrence is, in fact, not much greater than 100 km² -- it is known from only four small islands. There is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat, and it is experiencing a decline in the number of mature individuals due to persecution and over-collecting. Year assessed: 2005.[4]

It is also listed as strictly protected (Appendix II) under the Berne Convention.[6]

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 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. Macrovipera schweizeri (TSN 634979). Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Accessed on 9 August 2006.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Macrovipera schweizeri at IUCN Red List. Accessed 7 October 2006.
  5. 1994 Categories & Criteria (version 2.3)IUCN Red List. Accessed 7 October 2006.
  6. Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats, Appendix II at Council of Europe. Accessed 9 October 2006.

External links