Latifi’s viper hibernates for five months out of the year, high in the mountains of Iran. This sleeping beauty specifically digs an altitude between 7,150-9,500 ft., as it is highly adapted to the cold, rocky terrain of the Upper Lar Valley in the Alborz mountain range. As temperatures rise from climate change, Latifi’s vipers must relocate to higher altitudes to maintain access to its chilly sweet spot. Already in decline due to illegal venom collection, this viper is in danger of running out of mountains to climb. Population estimates predict these vipers could be extinct by 2100.
Art by Rahul Mitra