The adaptive significance of ontogenetic colour change in a tropical python
Wilson, David, Heinsohn, Robert, and Endler, John A. (2007) The adaptive significance of ontogenetic colour change in a tropical python. Biology Letters, 3 (1). pp. 40-43.
|PDF (Published Version) - Repository staff only - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader|
View at Publisher Website: http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2006.0574
Ontogenetic colour change is typically associated with changes in size, vulnerability or habitat, but assessment of its functional significance requires quantification of the colour signals from the receivers' perspective. The tropical python, Morelia viridis, is an ideal species to establish the functional significance of ontogenetic colour change. Neonates hatch either yellow or red and both the morphs change to green with age. Here, we show that colour change from red or yellow to green provides camouflage from visually oriented avian predators in the different habitats used by juveniles and adults. This reflects changes in foraging behaviour and vulnerability as individuals mature and provides a rare demonstration of the adaptive value of ontogenetic colour change.
|Item Type:||Article (Refereed Research - C1)|
|Keywords:||colour polymorphism; ontogenetic colour change; crypsis; Morelia viridis; python|
|FoR Codes:||06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060899 Zoology not elsewhere classified @ 100%|
|SEO Codes:||97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%|
|Deposited On:||28 Aug 2009 16:42|
|Last Modified:||18 Oct 2013 00:29|
Last 12 Months: 0
|Citation Counts with External Providers:|
Repository Staff Only: item control page