Viper Israel news photo: Flash 90

Michael Itzkovich, 57, from the community of Lapid in central Israel, died Friday after being bitten by a snake on the shore of the Sea of Galilee (Kinneret). He had gone there with his wife and 17-year-old daughter, for a weekend of rest and relaxation.

The family struck camp at a beach that serves the Ministry of Agriculture's Fishing Authority, and is formally off-limits to private citizens.

Itzkovich was bitten at around 9:00 p.m. Friday, and lost his consciousness. His death was pronounced after prolonged efforts to resuscitate him.

Magen David Adom said he was bitten by a viper of the only poisonous type that makes its habitat in the area. The emergency medical service said that it has been dealing with numerous cases of snake and scorpion bites in the last few weeks, as the summer began, and called on citizens to take special precautions to avoid being bitten.