Bothriechis schlegelii — Eyelash Viper
Some other names for this species:
Eyelash Pit Viper
After Basiliscus plumifrons, this was the species that I second-most wanted to see in Costa Rica. It's a common species, but I had missed them on my previous visits. Our excellent guide Jonathan Sequeira spotted this small snake from at least twenty yards away. Like many vipers, they tend to hold their ground when confronted, so they're generally good photographic subjects. But the trail was narrow, it was raining pretty hard, and there was a line of people waiting to see this li'l guy, so I just got a couple of quick shots.
When Lorrie Smith and I decided to spend a couple of days in Panama before heading to Peru, Bothriechis schlegelii was one of the species we particularly wanted to see. So we were thrilled when Lorrie spotted this eye-catching snake hanging from a thin branch, as shown in the first photo. I took some photos there, and then we maneuvered the snake down lower for its close-ups.
The snake's appearance is confusing. The top is beautifully camouflaged, and the bottom screams out in bright colors and contrast. Make up your mind, silly viper!
- Guyer, C., Donnelly, M. A. 2005. Amphibians and Reptiles of La Selva, Costa Rica, and the Caribbean Slope
- Leenders, T. 2001. A Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica
- Savage, J. M. 2002. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica