Food habits of the sea snake, Laticauda semifasciata

Yeng Su, Sun Chio Fong, Ming Chung Tu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We collected specimens of Laticauda semifasciata, a dominant species of sea snake at Orchid I., and dissected them to investigate their food habits. In total, 219 snakes were dissected. Most of them (67%) had no food in their stomachs. We found more individuals with empty stomachs in a snake cave than from any other place. This was probably because the snake cave was a place used for reproduction. We found that 73 (33%) snakes had food in their stomachs, and identified 16 fish families among the food items. Hatchling snakes ate only the Mugiloididae, while subadult and mature snakes fed mainly on the Emmelichthyidae, Acanthuridae, and Pomacentridae. We found a greater variety of fish families in the stomachs of mature males (15 families) than in those of adult females (6 families). Male snakes ate more frequently on the Emmelichthyidae (35%) and Acanthuridae (19%). Females preyed more frequently on the Acanthuridae (25%) and Pomacentridae (25%).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-408
Number of pages6
JournalZoological Studies
Volume44
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jul

Keywords

  • Diet
  • Feeding
  • Reptile
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

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