Prey-processing in the Bornean Keeled Pit Viper, Tropidolaemus subannulatus

Veronica, Martin and Indraneil, Das (2022) Prey-processing in the Bornean Keeled Pit Viper, Tropidolaemus subannulatus. Malayan Nature Journal, 74 (2). pp. 337-346. ISSN 251291

[img] PDF
Prey-handling in the.pdf

Download (141kB)
Official URL:


The plasticity of feeding behaviour of predators is strongly influenced by foraging mode, depending on whether they are active foragers, sit-and-wait predators or opportunist feeders. In this study, we conducted ex-situ feeding experiments on the Bornean Keeled Pit-viper, Tropidolaemus subannulatus, a lowland rainforest species distributed on Borneo, Sulawesi and the Philippines. Observations were based on four wild-collected females maintained under laboratory conditions. A total of eight common predatory behaviours were observed that can be classified into three discrete phases, namely, precapture, feeding, and post-feeding phases, during experiments with new-born and live young Rattus norvegicus. In the pre-capture phase, which is temporally the shortest, there were head shifts, eye fixation and head movement towards prey. During the long feeding phase, actions involved strikes, awaiting to ensure prey death, and swallowing of prey. Post-feeding phase is a process of muscular recovery, followed by high-rate of tongue flicks, that can last for up to 15 min. Understanding foraging and prey-handling behaviour has the potential to provide deeper understanding on evolutionary fitness, as well as the biotic and abiotic factors which interacts with the concerned species.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Biodiversity and Environmental Conservation
Uncontrolled Keywords: snake, ethogram, feeding, prey predator, behaviour
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Academic Faculties, Institutes and Centres > Institute of Biodiversity and Environmental Conservation
Faculties, Institutes, Centres > Institute of Biodiversity and Environmental Conservation
Depositing User: Das
Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2022 07:51
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2023 02:11

Actions (For repository members only: login required)

View Item View Item