December 22, 2021

098 Kingsnake Squeeze

Renowned for their habit of eating other snakes, just how do colourful kingsnakes manage to tackle prey almost their own size? We delve into this mystery, and find out just how much these snakes can eat. To top it off, there is a serpentine Species of the Bi-Week

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Penning DA, Moon BR. (2017). The king of snakes: performance and morphology of intraguild predators (Lampropeltis) and their prey (Pantherophis). Journal of Experimental Biology 220:1154–1161. DOI: 10.1242/jeb.147082.

Penning DA. 2017. The gluttonous king: the effects of prey size and repeated feeding on predatory performance in kingsnakes. Journal of Zoology 302:119–125. DOI: 10.1111/jzo.12437.

Species of the Bi-Week:

Entiauspe-Neto, O. M., Abegg, A. D., Koch, C., Nuñez, L. P., Azevedo, W. D. S., Moraes, L. J., Tiutenko, A., Bialves, T. S., & Loebmann, D. (2021). A new species of Erythrolamprus (Serpentes: Dipsadidae: Xenodontini) from the savannas of northern South America. Salamandra, 57(2), 196-218.

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

December 1, 2021

097 Picky Pink Panthers

Chameleons! Specifically Panther Chameleons. We look at the decisions made by female chameleons, what are they looking for in a male chameleon, are they capable of forward planning? And a double-species Species of the Bi-week.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Dollion, A. Y., Herrel, A., Marquis, O., Leroux-Coyau, M., & Meylan, S. (2020). The colour of success: Does female mate choice rely on male colour change in the chameleon Furcifer pardalis ? Journal of Experimental Biology, jeb.224550. doi: 10.1242/jeb.224550

Eppley, T. M. (2019). Evidence of spatiotemporal planning in a panther chameleon (Furcifer pardalis) on the Masoala Peninsula, Madagascar. Herpetology Notes, 12.

Species of the Bi-Week:

Shi, J.-S., Liu, J.-C., Giri, R., Owens, J. B., Santra, V., Kuttalam, S., … Malhotra, A. (2021). Molecular phylogenetic analysis of the genus Gloydius (Squamata, Viperidae, Crotalinae), with description of two new alpine species from Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China. ZooKeys, 1061, 87–108. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.1061.70420

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Gol, S., Pena, R. N., Rothschild, M. F., Tor, M., & Estany, J. (2018). A polymorphism in the fatty acid desaturase-2 gene is associated with the arachidonic acid metabolism in pigs. Scientific reports, 8(1), 1-9. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-19070-7

Other Links/Mentions:

Ross McGibbon Calendar: https://rmrphotography.com.au/2022-calendar-1/

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

October 27, 2021

096 Livid Lizards

This time we chat about the mighty Australian dragons of genus Ctenophorus. These little dragons have some serious personality, but how does it affect their lives, and can their colour give us clues about how aggro they can be? There's also a brand new dragon species.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Johnstone, K. C., McArthur, C., & Banks, P. B. (2021). Catch me if you can: Personality drives technique-specific biases during live-capture trapping. Wildlife Research. https://doi.org/10.1071/WR20121

Yewers, M. S. C., Pryke, S., & Stuart-Fox, D. (2016). Behavioural differences across contexts may indicate morph-specific strategies in the lizard Ctenophorus decresii. Animal Behaviour, 111, 329–339. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2015.10.029

Species of the Bi-Week:

Sadlier, R. A., Colgan, D., Beatson, C. A., & Cogger, H. G. (2019). Ctenophorus spinodomus sp. nov., a new species of dragon lizard (Squamata: Agamidae) from Triodia mallee habitat of southeast Australia. Records of the Australian Museum, 71(5), 199–215. https://doi.org/10.3853/j.2201-4349.71.2019.1700 

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

October 22, 2021

095 Imps of Darkness

Spraying salt while chilling next to the shoreline –the M.O. of marine iguanas. But how do they cope with the harsh reality of life in 2021, like dramatic climate fluctuations and the increased pressures from humans? We also check out a tiny new Species of the Bi-week.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

French SS, Neuman-Lee LA, Terletzky PA, Kiriazis NM, Taylor EN, DeNardo DF. 2017. Too much of a good thing? Human disturbance linked to ecotourism has a “dose-dependent” impact on innate immunity and oxidative stress in marine iguanas, Amblyrhynchus cristatus. Biological Conservation 210:37–47. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2017.04.006.

Wikelski M, Thom C. 2000. Marine iguanas shrink to survive El Niño. Nature 403:37–38. DOI: 10.1038/47396.

Species of the Bi-Week:

Torres-Carvajal O, Parra V, Sales Nunes PM, Koch C. 2021. A New Species of Microtegu Lizard (Gymnophthalmidae: Cercosaurinae) from Amazonian Ecuador. Journal of Herpetology 55. DOI: 10.1670/20-142.

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

D’souza A, Gale GA, Marshall BM, Khamcha D, Waengsothorn S, Strine CT. 2021. Space use and activity of Boiga cyanea – a major songbird nest predator in a seasonal tropical forest in Thailand. Global Ecology and Conservation:e01875. DOI: 10.1016/j.gecco.2021.e01875.

Moravec, J., Šmíd, J., Štundl, J., & Lehr, E. (2018). Systematics of Neotropical microteiid lizards (Gymnophthalmidae, Cercosaurinae), with the description of a new genus and species from the Andean montane forests. ZooKeys, (774), 105.

Wikelski, M. and P.H. Wrege. 2000. Niche expansion, body size, and survival in Galápagos marine iguanas. Oecologia 124: 107–115

Other Links/Mentions:

Cassella, C. 2021. Injecting Algae Into Suffocated Tadpoles Brings Their Brain Cells Back to Life: https://www.sciencealert.com/injecting-algae-into-the-brains-of-suffocating-tadpoles-keeps-their-neurons-alive 

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

September 30, 2021

094 Hognose Hodgepodge

Hognose snakes - famous for their funny expressions and death-feigning, but why do Eastern hognoses come in different colours, and are some populations smaller than others? We find out, followed up by a brand new species of amphibian.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Lattanzio, M. S., & Buontempo, M. J. (2021). Ecogeographic Divergence Linked to Dorsal Coloration in Eastern Hog-Nosed Snakes (Heterodon platirhinos). Herpetologica, 77(2), 134–145. https://doi.org/10.1655/Herpetologica-D-19-00031.1

Vanek, J. P., & Burke, R. L. (2020). Insular dwarfism in female eastern hog-nosed snakes (Heterodon platirhinos; dipsadidae) on a barrier island. Canadian Journal of Zoology, 98(3), 157–164. https://doi.org/10.1139/cjz-2019-0137

Species of the Bi-Week:

De Oliveira, R. F., de Medeiros Magalhães, F., da Veiga Teixeira, B. F., de Moura, G. J. B., Porto, C. R., Guimarães, F. P. B. B., Giaretta, A. A., & Tinoco, M. S. (2021). A new species of the Dendropsophus decipiens Group (Anura: Hylidae) from Northeastern Brazil. PLoS ONE, 16(7 July), 1–23. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0248112

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Malayan krait spatial ecology pre-print: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.09.08.459477v1.full.pdf 

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

September 4, 2021

093 Tortoise Talk

How social are tortoises? This episode we look at a paper investigating tortoises’ preference for faces, and a second on whether they stick together. While neither provide definitive answers, they both pose questions about how tortoises interact. 

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Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

Main Paper References:

Versace E, Damini S, Stancher G. 2020. Early preference for face-like stimuli in solitary species as revealed by tortoise hatchlings. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 117:24047–24049. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2011453117.

Ward M, Marshall BM, Hodges CW, Montano Y, Artchawakom T, Waengsothorn S, Strine CT. 2021. Nonchalant neighbors: Space use and overlap of the critically endangered Elongated Tortoise. Biotropica:btp.12981. DOI: 10.1111/btp.12981.

Species of the Bi-Week:

David P, Vogel G, Nguyen TQ, Orlov NL, Pauwels OSG, Teynié A, Ziegler T. 2021. A revision of the dark-bellied, stream-dwelling snakes of the genus Hebius (Reptilia: Squamata: Natricidae) with the description of a new species from China, Vietnam and Thailand. Zootaxa 4911:1–61. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4911.1.1.

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Crane M, Silva I, Marshall BM, Strine CT. 2021. Lots of movement, little progress: a review of reptile home range literature. PeerJ 9:e11742. DOI: 10.7717/peerj.11742.

Montano, Y, Marshall, BM, Ward, M., Silva, I., Artchawakom, T., Waengsothorn, S., & Strine, C. 2021. A stable home: Autocorrelated Kernel Density Estimated home ranges of the critically endangered Elongated Tortoise. OSF Preprints. DOI: 10.31219/osf.io/ka5t6

Rai TP. 2020. An Elongated Tortoise Attempting to Prey on a Buff-striped Keelback the Turtle Rescue and Conservation Centre in Eastern Nepal. IRCF Reptiles & Amphibians 27:297–299.

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

In this episode we are talking about the life and times of one of the world’s largest snakes - the Burmese python. We compare their movements in their native and introduced range, and talk a bit about what they get up to. Our Species of the Bi-Week is a colourful mimic.

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Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

Main Paper References:

Smith, S. N., Jones, M. D., Marshall, B. M., Waengsothorn, S., Gale, G. A., & Strine, C. T. (2021). Native Burmese pythons exhibit site fidelity and preference for aquatic habitats in an agricultural mosaic. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-86640-1

Bartoszek, I. A., Smith, B. J., Reed, R. N., & Hart, K. M. (2021). Spatial ecology of invasive Burmese pythons in southwestern Florida. Ecosphere, 12(6). https://doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.3564

Species of the Bi-Week:

Qi, S., Shi, J.-S., Ma, Y.-B., Gao, Y.-F., Bu, S.-H., Grismer, L. L., Li, P.-P., & Wang, Y.-Y. (2021). A sheep in wolf’s clothing: Elaphe xiphodonta sp. nov. (Squamata, Colubridae) and its possible mimicry to Protobothrops jerdonii. ZooKeys, 1048, 23–47. https://doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.1048.65650

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

In the forests of the night, What immortal pit or eye, Could frame thy venomous symmetry? This episode we look at the biting behaviour, and glowing tails of vipers. Species of the Bi-week is a green treat from Southeast Asia.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Mendyk, R. W., & Laurence, P. (2021). Glow and Behold : Biofluorescence and New Insights on the Tails of Pitvipers (Viperidae: Crotalinae) and Other Snakes. Herpetological Review, 52(2), 221-237.

Piao, Y., Yao, G., Jiang, H., Huang, S., Huang, F., Tang, Y., Liu, Y., & Qin, C. (2021). Do pit vipers assess their venom? Defensive tactics of Deinagkistrodon acutus shift with changed venom reserve. Toxicon, 199, 101–108. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.toxicon.2021.06.003

Species of the Bi-Week:

Liu, S., Hou, M., Lwin, Y. H., Wang, Q., & Rao, D. (2021). A new species of Gonyosoma Wagler, 1828 (Serpentes, Colubridae), previously confused with G. prasinum (Blyth, 1854). Evolutionary Systematics, 5(1), 129–139. https://doi.org/10.3897/evolsyst.5.66574

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Paul, L., & Mendyk, R. W. (2021). Glow and Behold: Biofluorescence and New Insights on the Tails of Pitvipers (Viperidae: Crotalinae) and Other Snakes. Herpetological Review, 52(2), 221-237.

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

Urban snakes - are they more hip than their rural cousins, or do they suffer worse from parasites? We delve into some unexpected outcomes of urban life, followed by a brand new species of amphibian for our Species of the Bi-Week.

Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

T-shirts and other swag: https://www.redbubble.com/people/herphighlights/shop 

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Lettoof, D., von Takach, B., Bateman, P. W., Gagnon, M. M., & Aubret, F. (2020). Investigating the role of urbanisation, wetlands and climatic conditions in nematode parasitism in a large Australian elapid snake. International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife, 11, 32–39. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijppaw.2019.11.006

Bury, S., & ZajĄc, B. (2020). The loss of sexual size dimorphism in urban populations of a widespread reptile, the European grass snake Natrix natrix. Current Zoology, 66(2), 217–218. https://doi.org/10.1093/cz/zoz034

Species of the Bi-Week:

Chávez, G., García-Ayachi, L. A., & Catenazzi, A. (2021). Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: Cruciform eye reveals new species of direct-developing frog (Strabomantidae, Pristimantis) in the Amazonian Andes. Evolutionary Systematics, 5, 81–92. https://doi.org/10.3897/evolsyst.5.63674

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Sprent, J. F. A. (1988). Ascaridoid nematodes of amphibians and reptiles: Ophidascaris Baylis, 1920. Systematic Parasitology, 11(3), 165-213.

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

Fluorescing frogs (toadlets) and glowing geckos are topics of discussion this episode. We dig into the whys and ecological context of glowing, but really there remains a lot to learn. Carrying over from last episode is a wonderful Bungarus for the Species of the Bi-week. Become a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/herphighlights

FULL REFERENCE LIST AVAILABLE AT: herphighlights.podbean.com

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Main Paper References:

Prötzel D, Heß M, Schwager M, Glaw F, Scherz MD. 2021. Neon-green fluorescence in the desert gecko Pachydactylus rangei caused by iridophores. Scientific Reports 11:297. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-79706-z.

Rebouças R, Carollo AB, Freitas M de O, Lambertini C. 2019. Is the conspicuous dorsal coloration of the Atlantic forest pumpkin toadlets aposematic? Salamandra 55:39–47.

Species of the Bi-Week:

Chen Z-N, Shi S-C, Vogel G, Ding L, Shi J-S. 2021. Multiple lines of evidence reveal a new species of Krait (Squamata, Elapidae, Bungarus) from Southwestern China and Northern Myanmar. ZooKeys 1025:35–71. DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.1025.62305.

Other Mentioned Papers/Studies:

Taboada, C., Brunetti, A.E., Pedron, F.N., Neto, F.C., Estrin, D.A., Bari, S.E., Chemes, L.B., Lopes, N.P., Lagorio, M.G. and Faivovich, J., (2017). Naturally occurring fluorescence in frogs. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(14), 3672-3677.

Other Links/Mentions:

Supplementary video for Prötzel et al., 2021: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-79706-z#Sec18

Mark Scherz blog about geckos: http://www.markscherz.com/archives/4715  

Music:

Intro/outro – Treehouse by Ed Nelson

Species Bi-week theme – Mike Mooney

Other Music – The Passion HiFi, www.thepassionhifi.com

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