Navigation Links
Lizard hunting styles impact ability to walk, run
Date:4/21/2008

ATHENS, Ohio (April 21, 2008) The technique lizards use to grab their grub influences how they move, according to researchers at Ohio University.

A research team led by doctoral student Eric McElroy tracked 18 different species of lizards as they walked or ran in order to understand how their foraging styles impact their biomechanics. The study, funded by the National Science Foundation, was featured in the April 1 edition of the Journal of Experimental Biology.

Lizards use two basic foraging techniques. In the first approach, aptly dubbed sit-and-wait, lizards spend most of their time perched in one location waiting for their prey to pass. Then, with a quick burst of speed, they run after their prey, snatching it up with their tongues.

In the other form of foraging, known as wide or active foraging, lizards move constantly but very slowly in their environment, using their chemosensory system to stalk their prey, according to the research team, which included McElroys adviser Stephen Reilly, professor of biological sciences, and undergraduate honors thesis student Kristin Hickey.

Although wide foraging evolved from the sit-and-wait technique, these two styles are almost opposites. Some wide foragers are on the move about 80 percent of the time while sit-and-wait foragers may move only about 10 percent of the time, said Reilly, co-author of a recent book on the topic, Lizard Ecology, published by the Cambridge University Press.

While all lizards have the ability to run, a predatory defense mechanism, the study found that sit-and-wait lizards wont walk. Lizards that use the sit-and-wait method of foraging use running mechanics even when moving at slower speeds.

Wide foragers, however, evolved a walking gait and mechanics. They must move at slower speeds in order to use their advanced chemosensory system to locate their prey.

Foraging and locomotion are so closely linked, in fact, that three groups of wide foragers that had reverted to using the sit-and-wait technique actually lost the ability to walk, the researchers reported.

The most interesting aspect of this research is that it demonstrates a clear link between animal behavior and functional morphology. Its quite amazing and surprising that the behavioral diversity that everyone knows about and is inspired by is grounded in form, function and physiology, McElroy said.

The researchers used a race track with a built-in force plate to record the forces generated by the lizards and a high-speed video camera to record each critter moving at various speeds. The scientists collected data from the force plate and analyzed the video to determine whether the lizard was using running or walking mechanics.

The study used a large, representative sample of lizards made up of 18 different species, such as skinks, iguanas and monitor lizards. This extensive study uses one of the largest data sets for center of mass mechanics, McElroy said, and is one of the few that focuses on reptiles instead of mammals.

Everybody works with people, dogs or horses. But theyre all freaks, Reilly said. Theyve gone erect, they have extra joints. They are the kings of bouncing vaulting and running fast. We are working on the sprawlers.


'/>"/>

Contact: Andrea Gibson
gibsona@ohio.edu
740-597-2166
Ohio University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Three-way mating game of North American lizard found in distant European relative
2. Wolves find happy hunting grounds in Yellowstone National Park
3. Tufts University biologists link Huntingtons disease to health benefits in young
4. Key impact hunters catalyze hunting among male chimpanzees
5. Promising new drug targets identified for Huntingtons disease
6. Tropical crab invades Georgia oyster reefs -- but the long-term impact cant be predicted
7. Acid rain has a disproportionate impact on coastal waters
8. NASA celebrates a decade observing climate impacts on health of worlds oceans
9. NASA celebrates a decade observing climate impacts on health of worlds oceans
10. Research team says extraterrestrial impact to blame for Ice Age extinctions
11. A greenhouse in order to study the impact of climate change on plants
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Lizard hunting styles impact ability to walk, run
(Date:11/17/2016)... Nov. 17, 2016  AIC announces that it has just released a new white ... require high-performance scale-out plus high speed data transfer storage solutions. Photo - ... ... ... Setting up a high performance computing or ...
(Date:11/15/2016)... , Nov. 15, 2016  Synthetic Biologics, ... developing therapeutics focused on the gut microbiome, today ... of 25,000,000 shares of its common stock and ... stock at a price to the public of ... to Synthetic Biologics from the offering, excluding the ...
(Date:11/14/2016)... Inc. ("xG" or the "Company") (Nasdaq: XGTI, XGTIW), a ... challenging operating environments, announced its results for the third ... conference call to discuss these results on November 15, ... Key Recent Accomplishments The ... Vislink Communication Systems. The purchase is expected to close ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 01, 2016 , ... DrugDev believes the only way to ... technology experience. All three tenets were on display at the 2nd Annual DrugDev User ... 40 sponsor, CRO and site organizations to discuss innovation and the future of clinical ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... The immunohistochemistry (IHC) market is projected to reach ... during the forecast period of 2016 to 2021 dominated by immunohistochemistry ... the largest share of immunohistochemistry (IHC) market, by end user.   ... , , ... across 225 pages, profiling 10 companies and supported with 181 tables ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Portage Biotech Inc. ("Portage" or "the ... excited to announce the formation of EyGen, Ltd. ... ophthalmology assets through proof of concept. EyGen,s lead ... Portage Pharmaceuticals Limited and being developed for topical ... anterior segment diseases. This agent has the potential ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... BEIJING , Nov. 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... of genomic services and solutions with cutting edge next-generation ... has completed a USD $75 Million [515 Million RMB] ... CMB International Capital Management ( Shenzhen ) ... Ltd. ("SDIC Innovation") and Shanghai Sigma Square Investment Center ...
Breaking Biology Technology: