The moth - a small poisonous reptile. At length, his body, given the tail, rarely outgrows eighty-five centimeters. The upper part of the body is painted in a dark brown color, broken by light stripes, vaguely resembling zigzags. The belly is the lightest part of the body. The head is large. If you look at it from above, it seems somewhat flattened. On the upper part of the muzzle are the plates. It is because of them that the snake got its name - the common mongrel.

Snake's habitat

Ordinary, or Pallas, shield-mord, as it is called differently, has a fairly wide range of residence. The snake lives in the distant Caucasus, in mysterious Mongolia, in the north of Iran. She was seen in the middle part of Asia, as well as in Korea and China. In Russia, an ordinary shchitomordnik lives in large numbers in the Lower Volga region, right up to the borders of the Far East.

The dotted living environment of reptiles is very diverse. This type of vertebrate can not be called one hundred percent steppe or only mountain. He does not live exclusively in the forests. Shchitomordnik equally found in the green massifs, and in the vast expanses of the steppes, in semi-deserts. Reptiles live in regions rich in swamps, as well as in meadows near the beautiful Alps. It has a weakness for the river banks. If you look at the mountains, then there you can meet the Shtekomordnika at an altitude of three thousand meters.


The common shchitomordnik reaches the peak of an active lifestyle immediately after the wintering stops, that is, in the first months of spring. It is at that time of year that they behave extremely aggressively. This behavior in spring can be explained by the start of the marriage period. Prior to the beginning of summer, the moccasin clings to the daytime lifestyle. You can catch him swimming in the rays of the heavenly body.

With the onset of summer, the regime changes dramatically. The snake begins to crawl out on the hunt after twilight falls to the ground. During the day, she prefers to hide from the sun in dark places, for example, in the burrows of field mice, dense thickets of bushes, and gaps between the stones. With the onset of the first cold weather, the shield-mord begins to actively look for a place where he will spend the winter. The time when the snake stops active livelihoods depends directly on the region in which it lives. In the Russian Federation, as a rule, the Shtichomordnik hibernates somewhere in early October.

What does a snake eat?

With the approach of night, the common moccasin is selected from the shelter and proceeds to search for prey. These snakes eat all the animals that they can conquer and swallow. A significant part of their diet is occupied by various rodents: field mice, shrews and others. Quite often, the reptile ravages the nest of small birds that build houses on the ground or not high. The moth swallows both the bird itself and the eggs with chicks. In addition, he catches lizards, frogs or toads. Attacking snakes, which have a smaller size, is a common thing for a shchitomordnik. Newborn individuals feed on insects.

This reptile does not necessarily have to fight a potential victim. As a rule, their hunting is carried out according to the following principle. The snake creeps up to the prey, gets to it with a sharp throw, after which it bites, injecting a dose of poison into the body. Frightened victim tries to escape, but the poison kills her faster than she manages to retire. On the head of the shtitkomordnik there is a special heat-sensitive fossa. With its help, the snake and finds the dead victim, capturing the heat emanating from her body.


Females of this species of reptiles, as well as a significant proportion of other viper snakes, are viviparous. Newborn snakes are born in thin translucent sacks, which they immediately dispose of. One female can bring from two to twelve cubs. The color of the little minkers exactly repeats the coloring of the parent. In the first period of life, babies eat small invertebrate animals. Growing up, they go to the victims of larger sizes. A large enough can be an adult Pallas moccasin. The body length can be up to eighty centimeters.

Common moth is a poisonous snake. Its poison in its effects on the body resembles a viper bite. The first poison affects the condition of the blood. However, in the constituent components of the poison are neurotoxins. They have a direct negative effect on the state of the nervous system, and also cause paralysis of the respiratory system. For a person, the bite of the shitomordnik is in most cases not fatal. But the fatal incidents were still recorded. The poison of this snake is a danger to people suffering from respiratory diseases.

Characteristics of the rattlesnake

Rattlesnake differently calledyamkogolovoywhich belongs to the family of vipers and, moreover, poisonous. The reptile got its name thanks to a rattle on the tail, besides, these snakes are the only ones with sensitive fossa between the eyes and nostrils. But the size of a snake varies greatly from 50 cm to 3.5 m! Like many snakes, it has two sharp teeth, a triangular head, and vertical pupils. The skin color is gray-brown, with peculiar patterns on the body, as shown in the photo.

In nature, counted 21 genus and about 224 rattlesnake species: Chinese shchitomordnik, smooth shchitomordnik, dwarf gremuchnik, bushmeister, Ceylon, keffiyeh and many others.

Habitat of rattlesnakes

Rattlesnakes well spread in many places, because they inhabit and Russia. But Habitat falls on America, Southeast Asia.

Rattlesnake lifestyle

You understand that the snake is primarily a predator, and the rattlesnake always tries to wait for its prey in a secluded place, and just as it will be close, jump sharply, which is called a throw. Yes, she may prefer the jungle or high mountains, but this does not prevent her from always being full and satisfied. By the way, some prefer to always leave the same place for an ambush, than they can lose, because the animals already understand the alleged dangerous place, even if not all. These reptiles are not loners at all, but on the contrary, they prefer to spend the winter closer to each other, transferring their heat. Maybe that's why in one clutch there can be from 2 to 80 eggs?

Description of the species

Determine the mink, as a rather dangerous kind of snake, you can, looking into the eyes of this creeping reptile. The latter have characteristic narrow and vertically arranged pupils. Representatives of this species have relatively small size - the maximum indicators of body length do not exceed 70 cm. The surface of the body of a shtitomordnik is dotted with scales, arranged in several rows. The head of the reptile has a slightly oblate shape, especially noticeable when looking at the snake from above. Also, a characteristic “collar” separates the neck from the body. Under the eye sockets of the reptile there are unobtrusive holes, the main function of which is to capture thermal radiation.

The snake's upper body has a dark brown or brownish color, while the light color of the zigzag pattern contrasts with the main color. The belly of the shieldtail is light (more dirty yellow with small dark specks).


Many natural birds of prey, as well as forest dwellers such as badgers and raccoon dogs, can be attributed to the natural enemies of the data of the viper family. Also, many hunters often hunt for this type of snake, which is explained by the fact that the meat of a shtitomordnik is highly valued in Eastern cuisine, and is also used for pharmacological purposes (like venom of the snake, and previously dried meat).

I would like to draw attention to the fact that the activity of such a type of reptile as a shield-mord directly depends on its habitat, as well as time and season. Most often, these snakes show aggression in the spring and autumn (in the summer - only at night).

Often, this type of vipers finds shelter in burrows dug by rodents, in dense shrub vegetation, on wetlands. One of the favorite activities of this reptile - a rest under the warm sunshine, as well as swimming in a pond.

On the hunt in search of prey, the shield-mord is sent, as a rule, with the onset of dusk. In order to catch his victim, reptiles need only one bite, after which the animal tries to escape. The poison that has entered the body paralyzes the latter, after which the shtekomordnik quickly finds its supper through thermal radiation.

Power Features

The diet of such a snake as a common mongrel is all inhabitants of the range, which by their size can fit this reptile as food. Each individual of this family of vipers has its own feeding territory, beyond which, as a rule, it does not go for hunting. To determine the desired production, the heat radiation catchers described above are used.

The very process of hunting itself is quite simple - at the beginning of the snake, it tracks down its prey, followed by a quick short throw and the bite of the victim. The poison of the shchitomordnik almost immediately kills the victim, after which the reptile begins to eat. In most cases, the prey of snakes of this species is rodents. Also often the mounts hunt for birds building their nests on the ground. A special delicacy for snakes are bird eggs, or recently hatched offspring of birds. Those representatives of the species who live in the immediate vicinity of reservoirs, eat frogs, lizards and even a small fish.

Breeding features

After the end of the mating season, the first serpent offspring is born, like most members of the viper family, the shtorkomordniki are viviparous reptiles. Young shchitomordnik are born in a translucent and rather thin shell that does not prevent the release of small snakes to the light. In one litter can be more than a dozen babies. Newborn individuals have a color that fully coincides with the parent.

The average length of individuals born into the world does not exceed 20 cm, while the mass of the newborn shchitomordnik is only about 10 grams.

The first days after birth, young snakes feed on extremely small insects and amphibians, and after some time they switch to the nutrition inherent to this species of reptiles. Young individuals of shchitomordnik reach maturity after reaching a sufficient length of body - 400 mm, as a rule, this time corresponds to two or three winters. The average lifespan of snakes of this species is from 10 to 15 years. In conditions of detention in captivity - much more.

It is worth remembering that a person’s communication with this type of viper representatives can be absolutely safe, the main condition for this is the absence of situations that are hopeless for a snake.

Area of ​​common minker

These snakes have a fairly large habitat. The common moccasin is found in the Caucasus, Mongolia, northern Iran, Central Asia, Korea and China. In our country, they are common in the Lower Volga region to the Far East.

The habitat of the Common Mouth is very diverse. This species can not be called mountain, steppe or forest, because these snakes are found in the steppes, and forests, and deserts, and semi-deserts, and in swampy areas, and subalpine meadows, and along the banks of rivers. In the mountains, they can live at an altitude of 3000 meters.

Moths belong to the vipers.

These snakes are active during day or night hours depending on their habitat and climatic conditions.

What feeds ordinary shchitomordnik?

Moths hunt any animals that can be swallowed. These are mainly various mammals, lizards and birds. But spiders, scorpions, insects, frogs, fish, and other reptiles were found in the stomachs of these snakes.

Moths feed on frogs, lizards and other animals.

Snakes that adapt to different habitats, feed on different types of food, are active at any time of day and carry a variety of climatic conditions, are called ecologically plastic. Most likely, due to its ecological plasticity, ordinary shchitomordniki are so widespread.

Reproduction of common shchitomordnikov

Female shchitomordnika, like most snake snakes, give birth to living babies. Cubs appear in translucent shells, from which they are instantly released. One female brings from 2 to 12 cubs, which reach a length of 15-20 centimeters. The color of babies is completely identical to the color of adults. At first, babies feed on invertebrate creatures, and as they mature, they switch to larger victims.

The bite of a shchitomordnik causes a serious condition in people, but it most often ends, in 5-7 days, with full recovery. The poison of the shield-mordons, like many snake snakes, is used in pharmacology.