By Thomas F. Tyning
With this 'Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles', you could detect and comprehend the lives of universal frogs, salamanders, alligators, snakes, turtles, and lizards to an volume that hasn't ever been attainable, throughout the exact behavior-watching technique of the Stokes Nature courses.
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Additional info for A Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles (Stokes Nature Guides)
The situation becomes very serious when the lizard has been detected by a predator and escape is impossible. At least two species, Bose's monitor and the rough-necked monitor, are reported to feign death with eyes wide open (Schmidt 1919; Horn & Petters 1982). However not one of over 250 Bosc's monitors that we have caught in Ghana has attempted to use this ruse, suggesting that the behaviour occurs only in certain populations or amongst certain age groups. Perhaps playing dead is used only in response to attack by certain predators, most would be as happy to eat a dead lizard as a living one.
Other large monitors produce small clutches of eggs that may require longer incubation and hatch into much larger offspring. Even among dwarf monitors clutch size varies by several magnitudes. Females may accumulate the energy used for egg production as fat whilst food is abundant and make the eggs during periods of relative inactivity. In other species egg production does not appear to rely on large fat reserves. Whether a monitor can make a full clutch of eggs depends on the amount of energy she can afford to invest in them.
The pads may be an aid to climbing or they may secrete chemicals of an odoriferous nature (Mitchell 1955; Horn & Schurer 197X; Greene 19~6). TAIL The tail of a monitor lizard is truly a mUlti-purpose organ. The base can hold an enormous amount of fat which may be utilised when food is scarce. It is a very efficient weapon when used as a whip and can be deployed with great force. In aquatic monitors the tail is used to propel the animal through the water, in burrowing species it is often used to block the burrow entrance, whilst in arboreal species it aids balance and in several species it is able to grip like an extra limb.
A Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles (Stokes Nature Guides) by Thomas F. Tyning