Animal Learning & Behavior

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 121–125 | Cite as

Strike-induced chemosensory searching in Old World vipers and New World pit vipers

  • David Chiszar
  • Claes Andren
  • Göran Nilson
  • Barbara O’Connell
  • Joseph S. Mestas
  • Hobart M. Smith
  • Charles W. Radcliffe
Article

Abstract

It is known that striking rodent prey induces a sustained, high rate of tongue flicking in rattlesnakes. The present study shows this phenomenon (called strike-induced chemosensory searching, SICS) to occur in species of rattlesnakes not previously investigated and in two species ofAgkistrodon. SICS occurs in Old World vipers (Eristocophis, Vipera, Bitis), including species which normally hold their prey after striking. A hypothesis is offered which (1) accounts for the occurrence of SICS in these latter species and (2) suggests that SICS in some viperids may have arisen through paedomorphic evolution. More generally, it is concluded that SICS is probably a homologous trait in vipers and pit vipers and that the trait may have first appeared in elapid ancestors of the viperidae.

Reference Notes

  1. Golan, L., Radcliffe, C. W., Militer, T., O’Connell, B., & Chiszar, D. Trailing behavior in prairie rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis). Manuscript submitted for publication.Google Scholar
  2. O’Connell, B., & Chiszar, D. Chemosensory searching after predatory and defensive strikes by rattlesnakes. Paper presented at the meeting of the Animal Behavior Society, Knoxville, Tennessee, June 22–26, 1981.Google Scholar
  3. Scudder, K. M. Mechanisms mediating the sequential aspects of predatory episodes in crotalid snakes. Doctoral dissertation in preparation, University of Colorado, Department of E.P.O. Biology.Google Scholar
  4. Chiszar, D., Stimac, K., Poole, T., Miller, T., Radcliffe, C. W., & Smith, H. M. Strike-induced chemosensory searching in cobras (Naja naja kaouthia, N. mossambica pallida). Manuscript in preparation.Google Scholar

References

  1. Baumann, F. Experimente über den Geruchssinn der Viper.Revue Suisse de Zoologie, 1927,34, 173–184.Google Scholar
  2. Baumann, F. Über der Bedeutung des bisses und des Geruchssinnes für den Nahrungserwerb den Viper.Revue Suisse de Zoologie, 1928,35, 233–239.Google Scholar
  3. Baumann, F. Experimente über den Geruchssinn und der Beuterwerb der Viper (Vipera aspis L.).Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Physiologie, 1929,10, 36–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brock, O. G. Predatory behavior of eastern diamondback rattlesnakes (Crotalus adamanteus):Field enclosure and Y-maze laboratory studies, emphasizing prey trailing behavior. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Florida State University, 1980.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, J. H. Toxicology and pharmacology of venoms from poisonous snakes. Springfield, Ill: Thomas, 1973.Google Scholar
  6. Burghardt, G. M. Chemical perception in reptiles. In J. W. Johnston, D. G. Moulton, & A. Turk (Eds.),Communication by chemical signals. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1970.Google Scholar
  7. Chiszar, D., Duvall, D., Scudder, K., &Radcliffe, C. W. Simultaneous and successive discriminations between enven-omated and nonenvenomated mice by rattlesnakes (Crotalus durissus and C.viridis).Behavioral and Neural Biology, 1980,29, 518–521.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Chiszar, D., Radcliffe, C. W., &O’Connell, B., &Smith, H. M. Strike-induced chemosensory searching in rattlesnakes (Crotalus enyo) as a function of disturbance prior to presentation of prey.Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Sciences, 1980,83, 230–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chiszar, D., Radcliffe, C. W., O’Connell, B., &Smith, H. M. Strike-induced chemosensory searching in rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis) as a function of disturbance prior to presentation of rodent prey.Psychological Record, 1981,32, 57–62.Google Scholar
  10. Chiszar, D., Radcliffe, C. W., &Scudder, K. M. Analysis of the behavioral sequence emitted by rattlesnakes during feeding episodes. I. Striking and chemosensory searching.Behavioral Biology, 1977,21, 418–425.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Chiszar, D., Radcliffe, C. W., &Smith, H. M. Chemosensory searching for wounded prey by rattlesnakes is released by striking: A replication report.Herpetological Review, 1978,9, 54–56.Google Scholar
  12. Chiszar, D., &Scudder, K. M. In D. Müller-Schwarze & R. M. Silverstein (Eds.),Chemical signals: Vertebrates and aquatic invertebrates. New York: Plenum Press, 1980.Google Scholar
  13. Chiszar, D., Simonsen, L., Radcliffe, C., &Smith, H. M. Rate of tongue flicking by cottonmouths (Agkistrodon piscivorous) during prolonged exposure to various food odors, and strike-induced chemosensory searching by the cantil (Agkistrodon bilineatus).Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Sciences, 1979,82, 49–54.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chiszar, D., Taylor, S. V., Radcliffe, C. W., &Smith, H. M. Effects of chemical and visual stimuli upon chemosensory searching by garter snakes and rattlesnakes.Journal of Herpetology, 1981,15, 415–424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cope, E. D. The classification of the Ophidia.Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, 1896,18, 186–219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dowling, H. G. Classification of the Serpentes: A critical review.Copeia, 1959, 38–52.Google Scholar
  17. Dullemeijer, P. Some remarks on the feeding behavior of rattlesnakes.Koninklijke Nederlandische Academie van Wetenschappen, 1961, Series C,64, 383–396.Google Scholar
  18. Duvall, D., Chiszar, D., Trupiano, J., &Radcliffe, C. W. Preference for envenomated rodent prey by rattlesnakes.Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1978,11, 7–8.Google Scholar
  19. Duvall, D., Scudder, K. M., &Chiszar, D. Rattlesnake predatory behavior: Mediation of prey discrimination, and release of swallowing by odors associated with envenomated mice.Animal Behaviour, 1980,28, 674–683.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Estep, K., Poole, T., Radcliffe, C. W., O’Connell, B., &Chiszar, D. Distance traveled by mice (Mus musculus) after envenomation by prairie rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis).Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1981,18, 108–110.Google Scholar
  21. Ferguson, G. S. Statistical analysis in psychology and education. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1976.Google Scholar
  22. Gans, C. The biting behavior of solenoglyph snakes—its bearing on the pattern of envenomation.Proceedings of the International Symposium on Venomous Animals. Sao Paulo, Brazil: Instituto Butantan, 1966.Google Scholar
  23. Gillinoham, J. C., &Baker, R. R. Evidence of scavenging behavior in the western diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox).Zeitschrift für Tierpsychologie, 1981,55, 217–227.Google Scholar
  24. Gillinoham, J. C., &Clark, D. L. An analysis of prey searching behavior in the western diamondback rattlesnake,Crotalus atrox.Behavioral and Neural Biology, 1981,32, 235–240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Halpern, M., &Kubie, J. L. Chemical access to the vomeronasal organs of garter snakes.Physiology & Behavior, 1980,24, 367–371.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Iglehart, F., &Chiszar, D. Covariation among elements of rattlesnake posture: Potential interspecific signals.Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1977,9, 294–296.Google Scholar
  27. Jimenez-Porras, J. M. Intraspecific variations in composition of venom of the jumping viper,Bothrops nummifer.Toxicon, 1964,2, 187–195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Johnson, R. G. The origin and evolution of the venomous snakes.Evolution, 1956,10, 56–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kahmann, H. Sinnesphysiologische Studien an Reptilien—I. Experimentalle Untersuchungen über das Jacobsonische Organ der Eidechsen und Schlangen.Zoologische Jahrbücher, Abteilung für Allgemeine Zoologie und Physiologie der Tiere, 1932,51, 173–238.Google Scholar
  30. Klauber, L. M. Rattlesnakes (2 vols.). Berkeley: University of California Press, 1956.Google Scholar
  31. Liem, K. F., Marx, H., &Rabb, G. B. The viperid snakeAzemiops: Its comparative cephalic anatomy and phylogenetic position in relation to Viperinae and Crotalinae.Fieldiana-Zoology, 1971,59, 65–126.Google Scholar
  32. Marx, H., &Rabb, G. B. Relationships and zoogeography of the viperine snakes (family Viperidae).Fieldiana-Zoology, 1965,44, 161–206.Google Scholar
  33. Minton, S. A. Some properties of North American pit viper venoms and their correlation with phylogeny. In E. E. Buckley & N. Porges (Eds.),Venoms (Publication No. 44). Washington, D.C: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1956, 145–151.Google Scholar
  34. Minton, S. A. Observations on toxicity and antigenic makeup of venoms from juvenile snakes. In F. E. Russell & P. R. Saunders (Eds.),Animal toxins. New York: Pergamon Press, 1967.Google Scholar
  35. Minton, S. A. Venom diseases. Springfield, Ill: Thomas, 1974.Google Scholar
  36. Naulleau, G. La biologie et le comportement predateur deVipera aspis au laboratoire et dans la nature.Bulletin Biologique de la France et de la Belgique, 1965,99, 395–524.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. O’Connell, B., Chiszar, D., &Smith, H. M. Effect of post-strike disturbance on strike-induced chemosensory searching in the prairie rattlesnake (Crotalus v.viridis).Behavioral and Neural Biology, 1981,32, 343–349.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Radcliffe, C. W., Chiszar, D., &O’Connell, B. Effects of prey size on post-strike behavior in rattlesnakes (Crotalus durissus, C. enyo, and C.viridis).Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1980,16, 449–450.Google Scholar
  39. Radcliffe, C. W., Stimac, K., Smith, H. M., & Chiszar, D. Effects of prey-size on post-strike behavior of juvenile red spitting cobras (Naja mossambica pallida). Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science, 1982, in press.Google Scholar
  40. Wiedemann, E. Zur biologie der Nahrunge-aufnahme der Kreuzotter,Vipera berus L.Zoologischer Anzeiger, 1932,97, 278–286.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Chiszar
    • 1
  • Claes Andren
    • 2
  • Göran Nilson
    • 2
  • Barbara O’Connell
    • 1
  • Joseph S. Mestas
    • 1
  • Hobart M. Smith
    • 1
  • Charles W. Radcliffe
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ColoradoBoulder
  2. 2.Department of ZoologyUniversity of GöteborgGöteborgSweden
  3. 3.Denver Zoological GardensDenver

Personalised recommendations