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Zoology

Eastern Illinois University

Ophidiology

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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

The Hold-Release Mechanism In The Family Crotalidae, Ronald K. Easter Jan 1986

The Hold-Release Mechanism In The Family Crotalidae, Ronald K. Easter

Masters Theses

Strike/release vs. strike/hold feeding behavior was observed for 5 Crotalus atrox and 5 Agkistrodon piscivorous. Two sizes of warm blooded prey were offered to the rattlesnakes on alternate weeks. Cottonmouths were offered, alternately, fish or mice of equal size. Although data varied among individual subjects, cottonmouths offered fish demonstrated the strike/hold behavior significantly more often than the strike/release behavior; cottonmouths offered mice struck and released significantly more often than they struck and held. It is concluded that the strike/hold strategy in sreponse to fish is adventageous because the danger of holding such prey is minimal ...


Operant Conditioning In The Water Snake (Nerodia Sipedon), Angela R. Deitz Jan 1984

Operant Conditioning In The Water Snake (Nerodia Sipedon), Angela R. Deitz

Masters Theses

Six subjects of Nerodia sipedon were tested for runway acquisition. Five of six subjects met criterion for runway learning, demonstrating a significant decrease over the 25 day testing period in mean latency and running times. Four subjects completed 170 trials in a T-maze to test two-choice discrimination and reversal learning. All subjects met criterion for the initial discrimination and one reversal while two subjects completed four reversals and one subject met criterion for six reversals. Results are similar or superior to those previously reported for reptiles and other non-human vertebrates.


Utilization Of Heat Sensitivity In Crotalidae, James Cordrey Miller Jan 1978

Utilization Of Heat Sensitivity In Crotalidae, James Cordrey Miller

Masters Theses

Specimens of five genera of snakes (Crotalus, Agkistrodon, Bitis, Epicrates, and Elaphe) were tested for use of thermal cues in food selection. Results indicate that pit vipers (Crotalus and Agkistrodon) and boas (Epicrates) utilize thermal radiation in selection of food. It was also indicated that Crotalus (rattlesnakes) do not invariably show a reflexive strike before food is investigated or ingested.


Defensive Behavior Of The Hognose Snake (Heterodon Platyrhinos), Brenda S. Hemken Jan 1974

Defensive Behavior Of The Hognose Snake (Heterodon Platyrhinos), Brenda S. Hemken

Masters Theses

Fourteen out of sixteen Heterodon platyrhinos eggs were hatched in late August, 1973. The immature snakes were manually stimulated and the resultant bluffing and death-feigning behaviors were observed. All of the experimental snakes bluffed, but only three out of ten feigned death. The major components of the bluffing behavior are spreading the neck, hissing, and striking. Death-feigning is preceded by contortions and shows variations in the positions of the mouth and tongue. The newly-hatched snakes exhibited both bluffing and death-feigning, indicating that the behaviors are innate.


Operant Conditioning In The Garter Snake (Thamnophis), William A. Schmitz Jan 1972

Operant Conditioning In The Garter Snake (Thamnophis), William A. Schmitz

Masters Theses

Ten garter snakes were tested for runway acquisition, correct turn response in a simple T-maze, or both, for food reinforcement. Seven of seven subjects met criterion for learning to run a 23 inch long alleyway. Mean latency times showed a general decrease over a 23 day period. Five of nine subjects met criterion for learning a correct turn response in a simple T-maze. Subjects mastering the task required from 14-157 trials. One of two subjects met criterion for learning the reverse response of the T-maze exercise, requiring 35 trials. Results are similar to those previously reported for reptiles and other ...