If you are fortunate you may catch a quick glimpse or more of one of the many snakes situated on the island. One of the largest in number is the distinct black Cyprus Whip Snake. The snake can grow beyond three meters long which makes it the largest in Europe. Whilst Limassol hiking I fortunately caught sight of this reptile. In spiritual circles it is considered good luck to see such a creature on a walk or hike.
Synonymous with healing, change and good health. The snake most connected to the Caduceus as symbolized on countless hospital and ambulance doors and relates directly to the lower chakra (the perineum) for healing, stability, grounding and the material plane of existence. The creature darted like lightning across my path more frightened of my giants trail shoes than anything else.
Amazingly it is said the Black Whip snake can climb trees where it can hunt for young birds and steal eggs. The snake is harmless but can be considered aggressive when threatened. It lifts its body for a non-poisonous bite. In days gone by Cypriot farmers would place the snake on their land to remove rodents and other poisonous snakes. Like the Cat Snake also found on the island, it is largely harmless.
The beige Cyprus Whip Snake is also not poisonous and is found at higher altitude in the Troodos. A number of trekkers have come across these animals. It likes wet areas near streams or damns.
The Montpelier snake, like the beige Whip Snake is also rare. It has poisonous teeth but is not aggressive in nature. You would be lucky to spot one of these animals whilst on a walk or hike. The venom of the Montpelier is not so dangerous for humans and just causes swelling. Unlike the Viper which is the most dangerous snake on the island. You would be extremely lucky or unlucky depending on perception on a walk to catch such a reptile whilst out and about. In truth as a walker you would need to provoke the animal for it to attack and I have never ever heard of anyone on the island suffering from its bite.
Team member at Rejuvenation Hiking, Limassol Cyprus.
Nature Rejuvenation Limassol
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Limassol Running Club incorporated with Rejuvenation Hiking membership