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1 December 2015 Reproductive Biology and Food Habits of the Blindsnake Liotyphlops beui (Scolecophidia: Anomalepididae)
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Abstract

The anomalepidid Liotyphlops beui is a small blindsnake that is abundant in the city of São Paulo, southeastern Brazil. Data on body size, sexual size dimorphism, reproductive cycles, and food habits of this snake were obtained from the dissection of 177 specimens from this locality. The present paper compares basic aspects of the natural history of this anomalepidid with those of other Scolecophidia from Leptotyphlopidae and Typhlopidae to detect similarities or differences between these snakes. Females attain larger body size than males, whereas males have longer tails. Reproductive cycle in females is seasonal, with vitellogenesis occurring at the onset of the rainy season. Data on the diameter of deferent ducts indicate that mating occurred during this period. Clutch size ranged from 4–24 eggs. Liotyphlops beui feeds almost entirely on larvae and pupae of small ants, occasionally adult ants, and rarely termites. This snake gorges itself and seems to be able to eat a dozen different-sized prey in a meal. The availability of its main prey, the fire ant (Solenopsis spp.), may explain the high abundance of this blindsnake in the city of São Paulo. The data obtained in this study for L. beui indicate that the ecological traits of the three families of Scolecophidia are highly conservative.

© 2015 Brazilian Society of Herpetology
Lilian Parpinelli and Otavio A.V. Marques "Reproductive Biology and Food Habits of the Blindsnake Liotyphlops beui (Scolecophidia: Anomalepididae)," South American Journal of Herpetology 10(3), 205-210, (1 December 2015). https://doi.org/10.2994/SAJH-D-15-00013.1
Received: 3 June 2015; Accepted: 1 November 2015; Published: 1 December 2015
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