Generally when talking about ecological corridors we take in account mostly large animals - deer, large carnivores, etc. However, migration corridors are inevitable for all kinds of life, from microscopic beings to large creatures - including snakes. That is why we in the D2C project focus also on small species. How many of use have ever seen snakes and other reptiles killed by cars in the middle of road...?
The European viper (Vipera berus) is the only venomous snake in Central Europe and the viper with the largest and most north-reaching habitat in Europe. Yes, the snake is poisonous, a bite is painful but seldom fatal. Moreover it is very unlikely to be bitten, as the snake is very shy and only bites if provoked or stepped on.
The viper is highly endangered outside of the Alpine region. At the European Green Belt, especially in the D2C's Pilot Region 1 (Bavarian Forest-Mühlviertel-Sumava) it still finds its habitat. The viper needs cooler areas, where there are also warmer, sunny spots like wetlands or forests with dynamic rejuvenation.
A major threat for the endangered snake is the fragmentation and the generally shrinking complexity of its habitat. By identifying suitable corridors between Natura 2000 areas in our project we contribute to maintain and enhance this needs.
Vipera berus; (C) Juergen Starck