[1].Tail Autotomy Does Not Increase Locomotor Costs in the Oriental Leaf-toed Gecko Hemidactylus bowringii[J].Asian Herpetological Research,2012,3(2):141-146.[doi:10.3724/SP.J.1245.2012.00141]
 Guohua DING,Tianbao FU,Zongshi ZHOU and Xiang JI*.Tail Autotomy Does Not Increase Locomotor Costs in the Oriental Leaf-toed Gecko Hemidactylus bowringii[J].Asian Herpetological Research(AHR),2012,3(2):141-146.[doi:10.3724/SP.J.1245.2012.00141]

Tail Autotomy Does Not Increase Locomotor Costs in the Oriental Leaf-toed Gecko Hemidactylus bowringii()

Asian Herpetological Research[ISSN:2095-0357/CN:51-1735/Q]

Original Article


Tail Autotomy Does Not Increase Locomotor Costs in the Oriental Leaf-toed Gecko Hemidactylus bowringii
Guohua DING Tianbao FU Zongshi ZHOU and Xiang JI*
Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Biodiversity and Biotechnology, College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210046, Jiangsu, China
Gekkonidae Hemidactylus bowringii tail autotomy locomotor performance cost of tail autotomy
Tail autotomy is a defense mechanism used by many lizards to evade predators, but it entails costs. We used the oriental leaf-toed gecko Hemidactylus bowringii as a model animal to evaluate locomotor costs of tail autotomy. We removed the tail about 5 mm from the tail base from each of the experimental geckos (adult males) initially having intact tails. Tailless experimental geckos and tailed control geckos were measured for overall speed and sprint speed in both vertical and horizontal directions. Overall speed and sprint speed did not differ between tailless and tailed geckos. The influence of locomotor direction on both overall speed and sprint speed was significant, with horizontal speed being greater than vertical speed. The interaction between tail condition and locomotor direction was not significant in overall speed, but was significant in sprint speed. Tailless geckos had faster vertical sprint speed than the tailed individuals. Of the 130 field-caught adults, 59 had previously lost their tails, with most (about 61%) of them shedding their tails near the tail base. Neither the proportion of geckos with tail autotomy nor the frequency distribution of locations of the tail break differed between the sexes. Our data show that tail loss of H. bowringii occurs frequently in nature. However, tail loss does not incur locomotor costs in this gecko.


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更新日期/Last Update: 2016-03-15