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.

The 2017/18  impact factor of The Herpetological Journal is 1.268

ISSN 0268-0130


pdf 06. Reproductive biology and food habits of the swamp racer Mastigodryas bifossatus from southeastern South America

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pp. 104-109
Authors: Marques, Otavio A.V. & Muriel, Ana Paula

Abstract: The swamp racer Mastigodryas bifossatus is a large colubrid snake distributed mainly in open areas in South America. Dissection of 242 specimens provided data on body sizes, sexual size dimorphism, reproductive cycles and food habits of this species. Adult M. bifossatus average approximately 1100 mm in snout–vent length, with males and females attaining similar sizes. Reproductive cycles in females seem to be continuous, although oviductal eggs occur mainly from the beginning to the middle of the rainy season with peak recruitment at the end of the rainy season. Clutch size ranges from four to 24 and each newborn individual is about 300 mm SVL. Mastigodryas bifossatus is euryphagic, feeding mainly on frogs (44%) and mammals (32%). Lizards (16%), birds (4%) and snakes (4%) form the remaining prey. Relatively small prey (0.05–0.019) are ingested by adults, and juveniles eat mammals, which suggests that there is no ontogenetic shift in the diet of this snake. Swamp racers forage by day on the ground in open areas but may use arboreal substrates for sleeping or basking.

Keywords: SEXUAL DIMORPHISM, BRAZIL, DIET, REPRODUCTIVE CYCLES, COLUBRINAE

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IMPORTANT NOTE - JUNE 2020

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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