Queen’s Balmoral estate on high alert for venomous snakes

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The Queen will need to be careful when she’s out and about on her Balmoral estate this summer.

The UK’s only venomous snake is widespread on the 50,000 acre site .

The one pictured is a full-grown adder that was ­photographed yesterday as it crossed the road beside Crathie Kirk, where the Queen worships while on her annual break north of the Border.

The adder is a ­protected species under the 1981 Wildlife and ­Countryside Act.

A Balmoral ranger said: “Adders are fairly common here. They’re regularly seen all over the estate.

“If you come across one, give it a wide berth and let it move away”.

Adders grow up to 2.5ft long. Their bites are very painful but not lethal, except to people with underlying medical ­conditions.

The last recorded death in the UK was in 1975. Some 50 to 80 people are bitten each year.