Vipera berus, the common European Adder

The Adder is a relatively small, stocky snake which prefers woodland, heathland and moorland. It hunts lizards and small mammals, as well as ground-nesting birds such as Skylark and Meadow Pipit.

The Adder is Britain’s only venomous snake and is extremely widespread and can be found throughout most of Western Europe and as far as East Asia. Adders are protected in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and classified as a Priority Species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan.

Adders are secretive animals and prefer to slither off into the undergrowth than confront humans. They can be found basking from March – October in suitable habitat.

Stewart Parsons