It is not often one gets to see the UK’s only venomous snake species out in the wild. Jo and I were walking in the North Downs, in Kent’s Trosley Country Park, when we stumbled upon this little beauty lying in the path, probably waiting for a small mouse or lizard. It didn’t bargain for my boot, and was hissing and striking at it much better.

Fortunately I had my Panasonic Lumix TZ20 available and was able to take a short video and a few photos. I have since looked up the snake and it’s a Vipera Berus or Adder or Viper. Males are grey, whereas females are brown in colour. They all have a distinct “V” or “X” shaped marking on the head.  These snakes have vertically slit pupils, dorsal surface and flanks are indented and have zigzag stripes on the back, and the flanks usually have a row of dark oval spots.


The females get to about 75cm in length. This one was roughly 30cm. Check out this website for more detail on this snake.