Animal of the Week: Eyelash Viper, Costa Rica
Eyelash viper (Bothriechis schlegelii)
Great place to see the eyelash viper: Costa Rica, Central America
A moving bright yellow spectacle against a still, wet green backdrop of a cloudforest… We are talking about this beautiful snake called the eyelash viper found in the wilderness of Costa Rica. It exists in a wide range of colour variations, and here’s the yellow eyelash viper, with its superciliary scales above its eyes earning it its name from us humans.
The eyelashes of this venomous pit viper species are known to help it in camouflage, breaking its outline while in hiding in the foliage. This snake dwells in humid, tropical areas in low altitudes with dense foliage. It prefers to live close to a permanent water source.
Interestingly, males engage in hours-long courtship sometimes — a ritual known as ‘dance of the adders’ — intimidating each other in an upright stance until one falls to the ground! The eyelash vipers are known to mate usually at night.
Mostly nocturnal, this viper feeds on frogs, rodents, small birds and lizards. It is an aggressive snake which doesn’t at all hesitate if it feels harassed! It is an ambush predator, and waits with that ominous patience for the wandering and unsuspecting prey to yield to its ambush, and for this breathtaking natural ability, the eyelash viper is our Animal of the Week!
See this stunning snake on our Photo Tour to Costa Rica!