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Feeding and Breeding

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will View Drop Down
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    Posted: 24 Apr 2018 at 5:37pm
Just a small observation that once again shows me there is still so much to learn about our reptiles...

I always agreed with the books that adders wouldn't feed til after breeding - in marked contrast with grass snakes that will happily eat and mate at the same time.

The poor quality photo shows a pair of adders taken a couple of days ago, with the female's mid-body massively distended (you can see the skin between the scales) by what I assume is an unlucky vole.  She evidently had feeding as well as breeding on her mind..


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Suzy View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Suzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Apr 2018 at 7:46pm
I'm into my third year of recording the bats around my garden (using a device that makes their echo locations audible). Apart from learning which species I have, I've discovered  behaviour that I've never read about in books. I also know which weather systems they are most active in, again all from observation. I found the same happened with badger watching here for 20 years. Watching wildlife you see things you don't expect and you can make predictions - not always correct, but often are. 
I don't mean any of this to sound boastful at all but I guess many people on here have found the same thing - that there is much still to learn as you say.
Suz
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will View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Apr 2018 at 8:00pm
Not boastful at all, Suz, it's what naturalists do!  Always amazes me that the animals themselves don't seem to read the booksWink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GemmaJF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Apr 2018 at 8:25pm
Will, after reading the first post was about to say the animals don't read the books and you beat me to it. So much that gets into the literature is based on one study site or one persons observations. While the 'fact' may have been true during the study, it does not necessarily extrapolate to all sites or all animals. Still, that's what makes it fun, I've always ended up with far more questions than answers when studying animals and seeing things that the books suggest do not happen, well always the best really!


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Omlette Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 May 2018 at 10:02pm
i reckon that's still pretty unusual will, especially given that most observing probably happens in spring. i remember tony phelps posting on here that breeding females will feed opportunistically if a prey item passes by but i assumed he was referring to post mating. 
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will View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 May 2018 at 6:53am
Thanks Tim, yes I remember him saying that too, and assumed the same thing. I guess this one must have woken up hungry.
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