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German Journal of Herpetology

Mario-da-Rosa, C., A. D. Abegg, L. Malta-Borges, A. F. Righi, P. S. Bernarde, S. Z. Cechin, T. G. Santos

In Issues 2020

A fisherman’s tale: Activity, habitat use and the first evidence of lingual lure behavior in a South American snake. pp. 39-47 plus Supplementary document 1, Supplementary document 2, Supplementary document 3

Abstract. Literature data suggests that Thamnodynastes strigatus (Serpentes, Dipsadidae) is a snake that actively forages for anurans near waterbodies, using several microhabitats for this activity (e.g., shrubs, soil, and water). However, herein we present dissonant data previously known to the species, both concerning type of prey and foraging strategy. A total of 72 observations were performed exclusively at night, when snakes were in vegetation near streams in 93% of the cases. Among these observations, 41 were active snakes, and most of them (97%) were in an ambush position on the vegetation, peering at fishes. On two occasions, the snakes used a lingual lure behavior in order to attract fishes. This is only the sixth species in which this behavior has been observed, and the first in South America. Therefore, we provide additional data on T. strigatus habitat activity and habitat use, as well as unpublished data on ambush and lingual lure behavior for the Neotropical genus Thamnodynastes.

Key words. Thamnodynastes strigatus, nocturnal activity, ambush behavior, sub-arboreal, Uruguayan savannah.

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