Monday, February 11, 2013

[Herpetology / Animal Behaviour • 2012] Notes on a Tail-assisted Foraging Behavior in Varanus (Odatria) kingorum

Long-tailed Monitor Varanus kingorum have extraordinarily long tails which they can use to extract prey from otherwise unreachable crevices.
near Timber Creek, Northern Territory, Australia
Photo: Dan. Lynch
This article describes a tail-assisted foraging behavior in Varanus kingorum, a small rock-dwelling varanid from Australia. Numerous captive specimens were observed skillfully using their tails to extract prey from tight crevices which were otherwise unreachable by the lizards. This behavior was displayed by individuals of both sexes and all age groups, and it is therefore hypothesized that it is, at least to some extent, genetically fixed.

Patanant, K. O., 2012. Notes on a Tail-assisted Foraging Behavior in Varanus (Odatria) kingorumBiawak. 6(2), pp. 74-77. 

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