Bath City

New warning as poisonous snake spotted at South West beauty spot Bath City News

A warning has been issued to holidaymakers visiting Devon after a resident encountered a viper at a beauty spot near Exeter. The walker, who did not wish to be named, came across a viper – Britain’s only poisonous snake – earlier this week on Woodbury Common near Woodbury Castle.

Other sightings have also been confirmed at Woodbury Common. Adders can be fatal to humans and dogs if the bites are not treated. They have a distinctive zig-zag pattern.

The resident said: “Watch out for adders when walking on Woodbury Common at this time. They are not aggressive but will bite if stepped on.”

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Adders normally hibernate underground from October to March, a strategy designed to enable them to survive a cold winter, but with warmer weather they have now been seen throughout the year.

The pit viper is a relatively small, stocky snake that prefers woodland, heathland, and moorland habitats. It hunts lizards and small mammals, as well as ground-nesting birds, such as skylarks and meadow pipits. In the spring, male adders perform a “dance” in which they duel to fend off competition to mate.

The spotted viper at Woodbury Common

The females incubate the eggs inside, “giving birth” to three to 20 live young. Adders hibernate from October, emerging in the first warm days of March, which is the easiest time of year to find them basking on a log or under a warm rock. Males tend to be more silver gray in color, while females are lighter or reddish brown.

Adders are found throughout the country except for the Isles of Scilly, the Channel Islands, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man.

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This notice was published: 2022-04-24 10:13:32

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