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Vipera eriwanensis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA REPTILIA SQUAMATA VIPERIDAE

Scientific Name: Vipera eriwanensis
Species Authority: (Reuss, 1933)
Common Name/s:
English Alburzi Viper, Armenian Steppe Viper
Synonym/s:
Acridophaga renardi subspecies eriwanensis Reuss, 1933
Vipera renadri (Christoph, 1861)
Vipera ursini subspecies ebneri Knopfler & Sochurek, 1955
Vipera ursini subspecies erewanensis (Reuss, 1933)
Vipera ursini subspecies renardi (Cristoph, 1861)
Taxonomic Notes: This species is sometimes included in the synonymy of V. ursinii (see McDiarmid et al., 1999). This species is within the subgenus Pelias (Nilson et al. 1999).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable B1ab(iii,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2008-12-14
Assessor/s: Boris Tuniyev, Goren Nilson, Aram Agasyan, Nikolai Orlov, and Sako Tuniyev
Reviewer/s: Neil Cox and Helen Temple
Justification:
Listed as Vulnerable because its Extent of Occurrence is less than 20,000 km2, its distribution is severely fragmented, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its mountain steppe habitat due to overgrazing and agricultural conversion.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species has been recorded from Armenia, Azerbaijan (Nachitschevan) and northeastern Turkey (Kars and Erzerum provinces) at the altitude of 1,000 to 3,000m asl.
Countries:
Native:
Armenia (Armenia); Azerbaijan; Turkey
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population density is generally low, but as many as eight to ten animals can be found per hectare in foothill areas.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This is a mountain-steppe species that is almost always found around rocky outcrops in short grass steppe. It inhabits slopes of mountains, rocky outcrops and talus slopes, rocky-mountain steppes, humid steppe meadows, and banks of canyons that are overgrown with bush vegetation. It has been recorded from rural areas. In hot part of the summer it changes from diurnal activity to being active in the morning and evening hours. The species is viviparous, with litters of up to 10 young are born (Latifi, 1991). The period of activity before hibernation lasts from April - May to October.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is threatened by the overgrazing of its habitat by domestic livestock (sheep). It is more generally threatened by the overall degradation of mountain habitats. An additional threat is the conversion of suitable habitat to intensive agricultural use at lower elevations.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Populations are present within the grasslands of the Khosrov and Dilijan Reserve (Armenia).
Citation: Boris Tuniyev, Goren Nilson, Aram Agasyan, Nikolai Orlov, and Sako Tuniyev 2009. Vipera eriwanensis. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 21 April 2014.
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