IUCN Red List status:


For more info on classifications visit www.iucnredlist.org

Animal vulnerability index Animal vulnerability index

The Gaboon viper is one of the most distinctive looking snakes in the world!

Like other vipers, the Gaboon viper has strong thick muscles, rough scales and a triangular head. The biggest individuals have heads that measure nearly 15cm across at their widest point. These vipers can have a combination of light and dark brown, pink and purple arranged in diamonds and stripes along its back.

They are excellent at camouflage, their symmetrical, leaf like pattern and triangular head helps them blend into the rainforest floor by mimicking a fallen leaf.

Gaboon vipers are passive hunters, they will lie in wait ready to strike at any small creatures who pass. They will rarely bite humans, and will only strike if they feel threatened and don’t have a chance to get away.

They can reach lengths of 6 feet when fully grown!
They have the longest fangs of any venomous snake. They're about 5cm long!
Their jaws can almost stretch to 180° when striking prey!
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