Diet of Enyalius bilineatus (Duméril & Bibron, 1837) (Squamata: Leiosauridae) in a Cerrado remnant in southeastern Brazil

Priscila Lucas, Fernando Frieiro-Costa, Fabiano Vieira, Bernadete Sousa, Samuel Gomides, Iara Alves Novelli



Animals partition environmental resources along three basic dimensions: temporal, spatial, and trophic. Therefore, species differ in their amount of time and/or period of activity, the places in which they explore preferential microhabitats, and the type of prey they eat. These differences in resource use commonly separate niches, reduce competition, and allow the coexistence of a variety of species. We evaluated the diet of a population of Enyalius bilineatus (Duméril & Bibron, 1837) in the Cerrado biome of Brazil. We also tested the hypotheses of the existence of (1) variation in diet between males and females and (2) a relationship between prey and predator size. We captured lizards in pitfall traps and dissected them to assess the abundance, frequency and volume of prey items. The diet of males and females were similar with respect to abundance, frequency and volume of prey. Abundance, frequency, and volume of prey items were not related to morphological traits of females, although males with greater head heights ingested bulkier prey items. Individuals of Enyalius bilineatus feed on many taxa of terrestrial prey, indicating a semi-arboreal habit with some level of active foraging, which seems to be common behavior for the genus Enyalius. The results suggest that individuals of the studied population are generalists and opportunistic with regard to the items ingested. Research on feeding habitats, foraging strategies and habitat use may help to better understand how this species and its sexes utilize resources and coexist in a particular place.

Key-words: Feeding ecology, lizard, sexual dimorphism, Neotropics, resource use, trophic niche

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