Fun Eyelash Viper Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Eyelash Viper Facts For Kids

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If you are mesmerized by vipers like the pit viper, then you are in the perfect place as we present to you the eyelash pit viper. Located in Central America and northern South America, these snakes are known by a wide variety of names like an eyelash pit viper, eyelash palm pitviper, eyelash palm viper, eyelash mountain viper, horned palm viper, eyelash palm pit viper, Schlegel's pit viper, Schlegel's viper or Schlegel's palm viper. The Schlegel's pit viper has a wide triangular-shaped head, and underneath the eyes, they have the pits which are responsible for heat imaging.

The horned palm viper or the eyelash mountain viper is a poisonous snake and contains a hemotoxic venom that causes internal hemorrhaging and can often be fatal for humans. Mainly found in Costa Rica, the eyelash snake lives in the trees, and thus they are considered arboreal animals. The eyelash palm pitviper is a polygynous animal and thus has many mating partners throughout the year. These snakes do have the habit of returning to their old ambush site and camouflage themselves so that they can get into the striking range of their prey.

For more relatable content, check out these anaconda snake facts and black rat snake facts for kids.

Fun Eyelash Viper Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Small mammals, frogs, lizards

What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?

10-15 lb (4.5-7 kg)

How long are they?

14-32 in (35-82 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Yellow, brown

Skin Type


What were their main threats?


What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them?

Tropical Forests, Moist Lowlands


Central And South America









Eyelash Viper Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an eyelash viper?

The eyelash viper (Bothriechis schlegelii) or Schlegel's palm viper is a small species of snake belonging to the Viperidae family. Another type of viper is the pit viper.

What class of animal does an eyelash viper belong to?

Just like all other snakes on the globe, the eyelash viper belongs to the class of Reptilia of the Animalia Kingdom.

How many eyelash vipers are there in the world?

The exact number of individual eyelash vipers that are present on Earth is undetermined as of this moment. However, we can make a guess on their number based on certain factors. Based on their habitat and geographical range, these snakes are found in plenty. The International Union for Conservation of Nature of the IUCN Red List has placed this species in the category of Least Concern, with its population trend currently stable. Thus there is no imminent harm that can befall these species any time soon.

Where does an eyelash viper live? 

The eyelash palm pit vipers (Bothriechis schlegelii) have their range distribution all across Central America and northern South America, involving countries like Mexico, Panama, Columbia, Costa Rica, Peru. These snakes can be found in abundance in montane forests and dense humid, moist lowlands of Costa Rica.

What is an eyelash viper's habitat? 

The eyelash viper habitat covers a wide range of geographical landforms. Though these snakes are mostly found in tropical forests, they can also be found in moist lowlands where there is an abundance of streamside vegetation, mostly near the sea level. These snakes tend to stay near water bodies as it provides them with a favorable hunting ground. These snakes prefer spending more time in trees, hangings, and branches because there is a greater chance of perfect camouflaging than on the forest floor.

Who do eyelash vipers live with?

The eyelash vipers lead a solitary lifestyle, and thus, they are never found in any groups. These snakes are polygynous when they mature, and thus they have more than one mating partner during the breeding season.

How long does an eyelash viper live?

Since these snakes are arboreal animals, i.e. they predominantly live in trees, the exact lifespan of these snakes has not been properly studied. Thus the exact lifespan of these species of snakes cannot be determined out in the wild. However, the average lifespan of these viper snakes in captivity is around 10 years. With utmost care and the abundance of food found in zoos, these snakes are known to survive up to 20 years as eyelash viper care is easy.

How do they reproduce?

In just two years of age, these snakes are known to attain sexual maturity. With a highly evolved sense of smell, they can easily locate potential mating partners. Like most snakes, a courtship ritual takes place between two males that take the cobra-like stance, standing upright and threatening one another, till the other becomes subdued. The eyelash vipers are polygynous animals and thus have many mates during the breeding season. The mating season takes place throughout the year when the habitat is warm. The gestation period for these snakes is of six months, and as these are ovoviviparous animals, the snakelings hatch inside their mother's body and develop fully before coming out. A total of 2-20 snakelings are born in every brood. The male snakes leave after the breeding while the females spend a little more time. Once the little snakes come out, the mothers too leave, and the little snakes grow on their own.

What is their conservation status?

The International Union for Conservation of Nature of the IUCN Red List has placed the eyelash viper as a species of Least Concern. Moreover, the population of these species of snakes is known to be stable for quite some time; thus, there are no immediate threats for the species. However, human activities like habitat loss, climate change, and other similar factors are still the threats that these species suffer. If these activities are not controlled, then these magnificent snake species could well be staring at the jaws of extinction.

Eyelash Viper Fun Facts

What do eyelash vipers look like?

The eyelash viper is a medium-shaped snake that has a triangular-shaped head. In between their vertical pupils and nostrils, there lie the heat-sensitive pits that help in their sense of perceptiveness. These snakes can be found in a wide range of colors, but the most abundant colors are yellow-brown. These different colors help in camouflaging the surrounding habitat. The females are longer than the males. These snakes also contain small tails, unlike other snakes. They have small scales over both their eyes that look like eyelashes, thereby giving them the iconic name. The scales on the body are hard and rough, while they have long fangs that heps in injecting venom on their prey.

Eyelash viper morphs of numerous colors are fascinating.

How cute are they?

Snakes are often feared by most people, and thus they are not considered cute animals. However, zoologists and an ophiophilist can find this eyelash snake to be extremely adorable.

How do they communicate?

As in the case of all pit vipers, the eyelash vipers, too, have heat-sensitive pits placed between the eyes and nostrils, which plays a vital role in their communication and movements. The highly developed eyes provide a binocular vision that can easily help them to spot their prey. These snakes rely on heat imaging to perceive and understand their surroundings and often flip their long tongues to observed and sense changes in air pressure around them, thereby giving them a perfect vision of their surroundings. These snakes also have ear structures that help them in sensing vibrations.

How big is an eyelash viper? 

The eyelash viper size is in the range of 14-32 in or 35-82 cm in length. In comparison to the gaboon viper (47-87 in or 120-220 cm), we can say that the palm pitviper is almost half the size of the latter.

How fast can an eyelash viper move?

The exact speed at which the eyelash viper snake or the Schlegel's viper moves is not determined yet. These snakes use their tails to climb trees. They also move their prehensile tail in a special manner, just like a worm to attack their prey.

How much does an eyelash viper weigh?

The weight of the eyelash pit viper or the palm pit viper is 10-15 lb or 4.5-7 kg. In comparison to the European viper (0.1-0.4 lb or 0.05-0.17 kg), we can say that the palm pitviper is almost 100 times heavier than the latter.

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no such distinction of sex when it comes to snakes. Therefore the males of the eyelash palm pit viper are known as males while their counterparts are known as females.

What would you call a baby eyelash viper?

Baby snakes are known as snakelings, and thus, in the case of a baby eyelash pit viper snake, it will be known as eyelash viper snakeling.

What do they eat? 

The eyelash viper diet consists of a wide variety of insects and smaller animals like frogs, rodents, and other similar animals. These animals wait patiently for their prey and strike when no one expects them, thereby effectively hunting down birds, rodents and marsupials.

Are they poisonous?

Yes, the eyelash tree viper is a poisonous snake. Though not an aggressive snake, these snakes can bite humans if they get too close to these snakes.

Would they make a good pet?

Though these are venomous snakes, people are known to keep them as pets. Humans tend to keep these snakes owing to the lovely eyelash viper color hues. These snakes can be of a wide range of colors that can be found in Central America, like the yellow eyelash viper, pink eyelash viper, green eyelash viper, blue eyelash viper, golden eyelash viper, and red eyelash viper.

Did you know...

The eyelash viper strike causes a considerable amount of pain, swellings, and necrosis. If proper treatment is not administered, then the necrosis becomes deadly, and thus amputation remains the only choice.

The eyelash viper venom toxicity can prove fatal to humans as it contains procoagulants and numerous hemorrhagic chemicals. If bitten, then immediate care should be taken to neutralize the hemotoxic venom.

How much does an eyelash viper cost?

These are quite costly snakes, and they can cost up to $500-$1000 USD. Pet trade of these snakes is quite common, and thus, they are often kept by collectors.

Why is it called an eyelash viper?

These snakes have pair of scales over their vertical pupils that look like eyelashes, thereby giving them the name.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other animals from our bog turtle facts and flying squirrel facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable snake coloring pages.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

<p>A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.</p>

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