Summary details for Bitis arietans arietans


If you are unsure of the identification of a snake you have observed, you can ask an expert for snake identification by uploading a photo to the Snakes of Namibia facebook page.

You can also get help from their amazing album of infographics of the common snake species in Namibia.

The facebook page also has contact details for snake catchers - people who are experienced in catching and removing snakes - throughout the country.

In the case of a snake bite, email "snakebite" to snakebitedoc@gmail.com. Namibia's snakebite expert - Dr Buys - will respond immediately.


 

Puff Adder

Bitis arietans arietans

Found through out Namibia except for the arid coastal deserts.

Puff adders are mainly nocturnal (active at night) animals, but are often found early mornings and late afternoons basking.

Puff adders are short stubby snakes with triangular shaped heads distinct from the rest of the body. When threatened puff adders will hiss curl up in an S shaped position indicating the snake is ready to strike. Puff adders have a cytotoxic venom (cell and tissue destroying). This snake is considered to be one thee most medically import snakes in Africa. Reason is: A. due its wide range through out Africa. B. Because it is responsible 60% of serious snake bite In Africa. (World Health Organization). Puff adder bites are rarely fatal.

Basic First Aid: Keep victim calm, elevate affected limb, transport victim to nearest hospital A.S.A.P. do not cut or suck at the bite site.

Left alone these snakes pose no real threat.

Puff Adder
Puff Adder © Photo: Francois Theart
Puff Adder, neonate
Puff Adder, neonate © Photo: Francois Theart
Puff Adder
Puff Adder © Photo: Francois Theart
Puff Adder
Puff Adder © Photo: Francois Theart