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 02. Regional differences in growth rates of Orinoco crocodiles (Crocodylus intermedius) from the Venezuelan Llanos

58 downloads

Open Access

pp. 263-269

Authors: Andrés E. Seijas Y.

Abstract: Populations of the Orinoco crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius) have not recovered from past exploitation, and current abundances cannot be used for assessing the suitability of habitats they occupy. Growth constitutes an alternative way of assessing habitat quality. Since 1990, more than 9000 captive-reared Orinoco crocodiles have been released into the Venezuelan Llanos. In the present study, the growth rates of 127 recaptured crocodiles from different regions were compared. All individuals from Middle Cojedes and the Aeolian savannahs grew slower than expected by the von Bertalanffy model, whereas individuals from Caños in the Apure floodplains grew faster than expected. These inferences are corroborated with growth rate measurements for crocodiles under four years of age, which were lowest in Middle Cojedes (average of 14.1 cm/ year) and highest at Caños (43.3 cm/year). Low growth rates can be explained by habitat deterioration due to human activities, and high growth rates in the Caños support that the lower reaches of whitewater rivers offer favourable conditions for the species. Crocodiles in high quality habitats may reach sexual maturity in six years, whereas more than a decade is required in poor-quality habitats.

Key words:  growth models, habitat quality, Orinoco crocodile, reintroduction

Download Access:

The latest 8 issues can be downloaded when logged in with a Herpetological Journal subscription membership.

Individual articles can be purchased for download.

Older issues and occasional Open Access articles are available for public download

Submissions:

For further information and submission guidelines please see our Journal Instructions to Authors

pdfBHS Ethics Policy

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.   

Aligning with this change, it is now no longer possible to purchase a subscription that includes a print copy of the HJ.  All members who have existing HJ print subscriptions that remain active as at end June 2020 will receive the full four 2020 print editions.  New subscribers or renewals after this time will only have option to subscribe to the online only subscription package.  Subscription pricing has been amended to reflect the content changes.