Skip to main content
padlock icon - secure page this page is secure

Reproductive ecology and diet of the fossorial snake Phalotris lativittatus in the Brazilian Cerrado

Buy Article:

$18.46 + tax (Refund Policy)

Fossorial snakes have attracted little scientific attention in studies of natural history, despite their relevance to capture the range of evolutionary-ecological strategies of snakes. In this study, we examined 62 preserved specimens of Phalotris lativittatus (a member of the fossorial and poorly studied Elapomorphini tribe) to obtain information about sexual dimorphism, reproduction, seasonal activity and diet. Males were smaller than females but had longer tails, larger heads and were more heavy-bodied. Females attained sexual maturity at larger body sizes than males. Reproduction is seasonal in both sexes. Vitellogenesis started in mid-autumn, and peaked from late spring to summer. Oviductal eggs and oviposition were recorded from late spring to early summer, while hatchings occurred from late summer to autumn. Clutch size was low, a recurrent trait in fossorial snakes. Spermatogenesis began in autumn, peaked during spring and testicular quiescence occurred in summer. The ductus deferens contained sperm only in spring, when the sexual segment of the kidneys showed dense secretory granules and males were more active. Thus, we suggest that mating is likely to occur in spring. Diet is specialised in amphisbaenids, and no evidence of ontogenetic shift was detected. This is the first quantitative study on the ecology of an Elapomorphini species.
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics

Keywords: ACTIVITY PATTERNS; BODY SIZES; ELAPOMORPHINI; FOOD HABITS; REPRODUCTIVE CYCLES; SEXUAL DIMORPHISM

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2014

More about this publication?
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
X
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more