An ethogram for adult male rainbow skinks, Carlia jarnoldae

Langkilde, Tracy, Schwarzkopf, Lin, and Alford, Ross A. (2003) An ethogram for adult male rainbow skinks, Carlia jarnoldae. Herpetological Journal, 13. pp. 141-148.

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Abstract

An ethogram for male rainbow skinks, Carlia jarnoldae (mean snout-to-vent length 44 mm), was derived from observations of captive individuals in large, semi-natural field enclosures during the summer. Males were observed in one of four treatments: solitary, socially with a male conspecific, socially with a female conspecific, or with a model of an avian predator. We identified 32 different types of behaviour, including postures and simple movements. Six of the behaviours (dorsolateral orientation, head bob, letisimulation, slow motion, throat flash and tail wave) are of particular interest because their functions are either controversial or unknown. We describe them in detail, and infer their functional significance from the contexts in which they occurred. Dorsolateral orientation and slow motion behaviours appear to function primarily in courtship; throat flashes may provide information to conspecifics; and letisimulation may function as an antipredator behaviour. The function of head bobs remains unresolved, and tail waves appear to signal residency, but need further investigation. Although the behaviours exhibited by C. jarnoldae males were generally similar to those reported in other skinks, two of the behaviours we observed (letisimulation and throat flash) have not previously been recorded in a skink. Carlia jarnoldae males were outside refugia for most of our observation periods, and appeared to defend areas of the enclosures from conspecific males. Both visual signals (dorsolateral orientations, slow-motion behaviour and throat flashes) and chemical cues were used to communicate with conspecifics.

Item ID: 8412
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: behaviour, lizard, social interactions, visual signals
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ISSN: 0268-0130
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2010 00:48
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 10%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060201 Behavioural Ecology @ 90%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960811 Sparseland, Permanent Grassland and Arid Zone Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 50%
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