Black Viper is a rare kind of viper, also called melanistic and reaches about 55 cm in length. The color varies from black to dark blue depending of the angle you watches the snake.
I met this snake just before the Stevrek village. Driving my car noticed something black and long on the road and naturally thought this was a hose fell from a vehicle. Once approached, I noticed that this "hose" is quite peculiar and rather reminds me of a snake. I passed and stopped slightly down, then go out of the car with the photocamera in hand and after I approached, I was sure it was a snake. I never imagined that in Bulgaria there may be purely black snakes, but my greatest surprise was when I noticed that the snake has red eyes. However, I am not well acquainted with the reptiles in Bulgaria.
I noticed that the black viper is very relaxed and not cowardly snake after at least 15 minutes circling it and took pictures and it just followed me with his head.
Here are some details of Vipers family:
In our registered these subspecies - Ordinary viper (Vipera berus), Bosnian viper (Vipera bosniensis) and steppe viper (Vipera ursinii).
The Viper lives from Western Europe to the Far East and the Mediterranean to the Arctic Circle.
The Balkans viper is found in isolated areas, mainly in dank places, hence the name, and in the mountains to an altitude of 2700m. Personally, I have seen Viper 400 meters beneath Botev peak in early May, and around there is still a lot of snow. Viper is one of the cold hardy reptiles in the world. Can be met locally in the scree, rocky slopes along the edges of woods and in damp areas, such as wetlands, streams, lakes and ponds.
Its main food are small mammals, such as mice, voles and shrews, lizards, moles and amphibians - frogs, newts and salamanders. There are cases in which viper eating birds and their eggs.
The Viper birth 7 to 20 snakes in late August and early September.
Viper and other poisonous snakes among Bulgaria are not deadly. Not that there were such cases, but this applies to people with allergies and poor or frail health, and for which a bee sting can have the same effect.
The venom of the viper is highly toxic, but because it injected too little of it (10-18mg for specimens in length 48-62 cm), the bite is rarely deadly.
Symptoms of viper bites include immediate and intense pain followed after a few minutes (in some cases up to half an hour) by swelling and tingling. After a few hours the pain can spread, along with increased sensitivity. May appear reddish spots and the whole limb to swell to 24 hours. Swelling can spread around the torso and in children - throughout the body.