Mating snakes

May 9, 2012 | General | 9 comments

One would expect this to be a rare sight, but it really is not!

mating snakes in Umbria

Almost every year I see mating snakes. Would you think they like to be looked at?
Not that it is not lovely to see … ehm, if I may say so (yes, I am actually blushing)!
The snakes curl around each other and bite (see picture above). They are continually moving and occasionally they rise rather high in the air. Unfortunately I did not manege to make a picture of that and neither a video. Here is a short video of the mating snakes.


  1. Wanda France

    I’ll be staying at Villa Susanna in Preci in mid-September. Will there be a lot of snaklings around by then???

    • villainumbria

      Hi Wanda,
      there will certainly be snakes also around Preci, but I usually see them in spring and after that not. These snakes are not harmful, they do not bite. They always leave long before you could step on them, so no worries here!
      Have fun in Preci, it is a very beautiful area.

  2. Anita

    We just saw two snakes mating on the terrace of the house we are renting in the hills around Todi. I am now afraid to go sit on terrace…as I was sitting there reading and looked up and saw them. Are all snakes in that area safe to be around? Should we steer clear of the terrace??

    • villainumbria

      No worries, snakes are never after humans … when they are mating apparently they loose their natural shyness. Only adders are poisonous and I have never seen them mate, so really don’t worry! Enjoy your stay!

      • Anita

        Thank you for your prompt and reassuring reply. The owners of the house said something similar.

  3. Mark Vaughan

    I chanced upon this page while looking for pictures of our snake (also in Umbria). Do you happen to know the name of this specie? It is the spitting image of ours.

    • villainumbria

      Hi Mark, I think these are called “bisce”. A quite common snake. They are not poisonous. The “vipera” is poisonous but very recognizable because of their triangle and flat head with long eyes, like a cat. Not round eyes. If you live in Umbria and are able to read italian, have a read though this: I live in Umbria since 2000 and often saw a snake, but never a viper. Where do you live in Umbria?

      • Barbara

        There is a viper in our woodshed- I got quite a scare but couldn’t see the head- only a black-and- white zigzagged body squirming away. So maybe it was something else? How do I politely ask him to leave our shed? We leaved near the Tradimeno lake, thanks, Barbsra

        • Villa in Umbria

          Hi Barbara, I honoustly have no idea. I think snakes go in hibernation, so this one may have found your shed a cosy place to pass the winter. You may ask your Italian neighbours what is the best thing to do. Buona fortuna, Saskia


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