pit viper

noun

Definition of pit viper

: any of various mostly New World vipers (subfamily Crotalinae of the family Viperidae) with a sensory pit on each side of the head and hollow perforated retractable fangs

Examples of pit viper in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But Salazar’s pit viper seems to be set apart from the rest by an orange-reddish stripe found on the sides of the heads of males, according to Annie Lord at the Independent. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Meet the New Species of Snake Named After Salazar Slytherin of the Harry Potter Franchise," 28 Apr. 2020 Now, the tables have turned, with scientists in India lending the fictional name to a new species of snake: Trimeresurus salazar, or Salazar’s pit viper, reports Rahul Karmakar for The Hindu. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Meet the New Species of Snake Named After Salazar Slytherin of the Harry Potter Franchise," 28 Apr. 2020 Salazar’s pit viper now joins a small, exclusive club of animals whose species names contain homages to the Harry Potter franchise, according to Forbes. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Meet the New Species of Snake Named After Salazar Slytherin of the Harry Potter Franchise," 28 Apr. 2020 The pit vipers in the genus Trimeresurus are venomous, and found throughout East and Southeast Asia. Leah Asmelash, CNN, "Scientists discover a new snake and name it after Salazar Slytherin," 21 Apr. 2020 Only a few other animals, such as vampire bats and pit vipers, are known to have this ability. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "May We All Praise the Amazing Dog Nose, and May We Then Boop It," 28 Feb. 2020 Andueza was heading out for a slog through a swamp where pit vipers patrol the undergrowth and carnivorous caimans, hidden in dark pools, eye passersby. Daniel Grossman, Scientific American, "Peru’s Peatlands Could Greatly Accelerate Global Warming," 5 Feb. 2020 Captopril, the first of a class of drugs for high blood pressure known as angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors was developed from a small protein in the venom of a Brazilian pit viper. Mitch Leslie, Science | AAAS, "New universe of miniproteins is upending cell biology and genetics," 17 Oct. 2019 The other two species, also part of the pit viper family, are the timber rattlesnake and eastern massasauga. Fox News, "Pennsylvania woman bitten by venomous snake while doing laundry," 19 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pit viper.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pit viper

1874, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of pit viper was in 1874

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Last Updated

6 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Pit viper.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pit%20viper. Accessed 21 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for pit viper

pit viper

noun

Medical Definition of pit viper

: any of various mostly New World highly specialized venomous snakes (as the rattlesnake, copperhead, water moccasin, and fer-de-lance) that belong to a subfamily (Crotalinae) of the family Viperidae, that have a small depression on each side of the head between the eye and the nostril, and that have hollow perforated fangs usually folded back in the upper part of the mouth but erected in striking

More from Merriam-Webster on pit viper

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Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pit viper

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