Montivipera raddei 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Viperidae

Scientific Name: Montivipera raddei
Species Authority: (Boettger, 1890)
Common Name(s):
English Armenian Viper, Radde's Rock Viper
Vipera raddei Boettger, 1890
Vipera xanthina Gray, 1849
Taxonomic Notes: There are two subspecies, M. r. raddei Boettger, 1890, found in southern region of Armenia, Nakhichevan (Azerbaijan) and adjacent regions of Turkey and Iran, and M. r. kurdistanica Nilson and Andrén, 1986, recorded from northeastern Iran to the west of Lake Urmia.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2008-12-14
Assessor(s): Göran Nilson, Claus Andrén, Aziz Avci, Ferdi Akarsu
Reviewer(s): Neil Cox and Helen Temple
This species is listed Near Threatened because it has experienced significant and continuing declines as a result of habitat loss and overexploitation, but less than 30 percent over the past three generations (18 years).
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Indeterminate (I)
1990 Indeterminate (I)
1988 Indeterminate (I)
1986 Rare (R)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is present in Turkey (Vilayets Kars, Agri, Igdir, Van and Hakkari), Armenia, Nakhichevan (Azerbaijan), Iraq, and fragmented populations in the mountains northwestern Iran (Latifi, 1991; Baran and Atatür, 1998). It occurs up to 2,000m asl (Turkey and Armenia). Little is known about its range in Iraq.
Countries occurrence:
Armenia (Armenia); Azerbaijan; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Turkey
Lower elevation limit (metres): 1000
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species can have densities of up to 4 - 10 individuals per hectare.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is generally found in rocky montane areas with sparse scrubby vegetation at elevations above 1,000m asl. Animals may occasionally be found at rocky sites within woodlands (Latifi, 1991; Baran and Atatur, 1998). It is an ovoviparous species; the female gives birth to between three and nine young (Baran and Atatur, 1998).The duration of pregnancy is 140 - 160 days. This species forms congregations during the winter (Nilson, pers. comm. 2008).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): In Turkey, this species overcollected for the pet trade, most particularly in the Aras River Valley. This species is particularly vulnerable to overexploitation because of its congregatory habits which make it easy to collect. Like all snakes and particularly vipers, this species is subject to local persecution. This species is also threatened by general development and overgrazing of its habitat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is protected in the Khosrov Reserve in Armenia. It was included into the Red Data Books of the USSR (1984) and Armenia (1987) as a narrow-endemic species. This species is found in Egridagi National Park in Turkey. There is a need to effectively regulate the collection of this species and monitor populations.

Citation: Göran Nilson, Claus Andrén, Aziz Avci, Ferdi Akarsu. 2009. Montivipera raddei. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2009: e.T22993A9406370. . Downloaded on 01 December 2015.
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