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1 December 2008 Rattlesnake Preference for Envenomated Prey: Species Specificity
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Abstract

Ten Prairie Rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis viridis) and 10 Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes (Crotalus atrox) were offered choices between envenomated (E) and nonenvenomated (NE) mice. Both species preferred E over NE mice when envenomation was accomplished by a conspecific but not when envenomation was accomplished by the other species. However, when envenomation was accomplished by Crotalus oreganus oreganus, E mice were preferred by C. v. viridis but not by C. atrox. Accordingly, we conclude that rattlesnakes of closely related species recognize each other's E prey, whereas rattlesnakes of distantly related species do not.

David Chiszar, Adam Walters, and Hobart M. Smith "Rattlesnake Preference for Envenomated Prey: Species Specificity," Journal of Herpetology 42(4), 764-767, (1 December 2008). https://doi.org/10.1670/148-03R.1
Accepted: 1 March 2008; Published: 1 December 2008
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