On July 16 – World Snake Day – Saint Louis Zoo celebrated the birth of six Armenian vipers, a threatened species found only in the mountains of Armenia, St. Loui Patch reports.
The vipers were born at the Charles H. Hoessle Herpetarium on June 13 and 14 to two different females and weighed around 6 to 11 grams each at birth. The baby vipers are being cared for in a private area of the Herpetarium, zoo officials said.
“The animal care team at the Herpetarium created a special temperature-controlled room for our Western Asian vipers, which has been key to breeding this species,” said Mark Wanner, zoological manager of herpetology and aquatics, and director of the Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute Center for Conservation in Western Asia.
These births are a result of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Armenian Viper Species Survival Plan, a program to manage a genetically healthy Armenian viper population. The Saint Louis Zoo has been reproducing this species since 2002.