Anole Predation by a Snake

A photo from my previous post has spurred a description of this predation event over at Anole Annals

Snake feeding on a female Anolis sagrei
Snake feeding on a female Anolis sagrei

“I’m a big fan of predation events,  and after two and a half months of working with Sitana in a site bizarrely devoid of predators, I had high hopes for Miami. I was not disappointed, and on my second day, had the chance to watch this snake capture and eat a female Anolis sagrei. This happened in the grounds of the Florida International University, Biscayne Bay Campus, where I was collecting some preliminary data on A. sagrei territory overlap. The photo is from relatively early in the lizard consumption process, before the snake (a Southern Black Racer, Coluber constrictor priapus) turned the lizard around and swallowed it head first.

I initially thought the anole was A. distichus, which are abundant in the area where I saw the snake. On seeing that it was in fact A. sagrei, I realised that I might have unwittingly played a role in the lizard’s demise. I had in fact been trying to catch a female A. sagrei in the vicinity myself, and must have chased her right into the grasp of this snake! I like to think of the situation as my having facilitated the snake’s successful capture, and not as being out-lizarded by a baby snake, but I know I’m just deluding myself…

Thanks to Gabe Gartner and James Stroud for identifying the snake.”

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