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Fleshy fruits in the diet of Canarian lizards Gallotia galloti (Lacertidae) in a xeric habitat of the Island of Tenerife

AuthorsValido, Alfredo ; Nogales, Manuel ; Medina, Félix M.
Issue Date2003
PublisherSociety for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles
CitationJournal of Herpetology 37(4): pp. 741-747 (2003)
AbstractWe analyzed the frugi vorous diet of the lizard Gallotia galloti, a Canary Island endemic, in relation to season and fruit availability in a xeric habitat from Tenerife. Gallotia galloti was omnivorous throughout the year (including>59% of plant material by volume in fecal pellets); only in the winter months (December and January) did invertebrates dominate the diet (>73% in volume). The most remarkable aspect of the diet was the high level of consuption of fleshy fruits, showing pronounced seasonal variation (from 30% in January to 95% in April in frecuency of ocurrence). Variation in fleshy fruit consumption was associated with seasonal patterns of fruits availability. A total of 4710 seeds were found in 1120 droppings analyzed during the entire year corresponding the majority to Rubia fruticosa and Plocama pendula (Rubiaceae). The extensive consumption of fleshy fruits during seven months of the year (>50% by volume) suggests G. galloti is an important seed dispersee in the Canary Islands. These results contrast with the majority of continental lacertids that are insectivorous.
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