The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

 ISSN 0268-0130

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pdf 02. Reproduction of Chamaeleo chamaeleon under contrasting environmental conditions


Open Access


Authors: Carmen Díaz-paniagua, Mariano Cuadrado, Ma. Carmen Blázquez And José A. Mateo

Abstract: Reproductive characteristics of Chamaeleo chamaeleon are described and compared between a dry and a wet year. Nesting occurred in September and October, beginning later in the dry year when females also excavated their nests in longer (but not deeper) tunnels. Females were significantly smaller, with lower body mass, lower clutch mass and lower clutch size in the dry year. Relative clutch mass and body condition did not differ between the two years. Females laid a single clutch of 4-40 eggs, with a mean relative clutch mass of 60-70%. Clutch size was correlated with maternal size, being larger in the wet year, whereas egg variables were independent of maternal characteristics. Higher mortality rate was recorded in the dry than in the wet year. The observed variation in reproductive output may be explained as a consequence of lower availability of food resources in the dry year, resulting in lower fecundity and survival of females.

Keywords: chameleons, clutch size, environmental influence, maternal condition

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Please note that as from Volume 31 Number 1 (January 2021) on, the Herpetological Journal will be available as an online publication only - the last print edition will be Volume 30 Number 4.   

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