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Behavioural ecology and foraging behaviour of the lizard Platysaurus broadleyi

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dc.contributor.advisor Van Wyk JH en
dc.contributor.advisor Cooper WE en
dc.contributor.author Whiting MJ en
dc.date.accessioned 2016-09-22T08:32:18Z
dc.date.available 2016-09-22T08:32:18Z
dc.date.submitted 1999 en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11892/28807
dc.description.abstract Predation is examined as a possible selective force on the evolution of sexual dichromatism in Platysaurus broadleyi, an Augrabies flat lizard, where males are vividly coloured and females are drab. The colouration is, however, restricted to less conspicuous areas of its body. Field test scores are conducted to determine whether more predatory strikes are made on males and if they employ different escape tactics to compensate. The predicted male mortality is not upheld, and the behavioural compensation expected is absent from the test. The males' colouring is also used to flash at rivals in territorial disputes. Males with manipulated colouring won more contests for females than those with obscured colouring, but not contests for territory. Testosterone levels were not affected by altering the colouring. The "dear enemy" phenomenon of differential treatment of neighbours and strangers is also tested and residents are found to be more aggressive to non-neighbours than to neighbours. As in all lizard taxa with a fixed clutch, egg size is positively correlated with body size and a hypothesis that males prefer larger females, which produce larger eggs, is upheld in field tests. The eating habit of adults compared to juveniles is also studied, the Namaqua fig being the chosen diet. en
dc.language English en
dc.subject Zoology en
dc.title Behavioural ecology and foraging behaviour of the lizard Platysaurus broadleyi en
dc.type Doctoral degree en
dc.description.degree DPhil en


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