We compared movement and space use patterns of foraging adult and juvenile Colorado checkered whiptails (Aspidoscelis neotesselatus) in pinyon pine–juniper woodland. Through focal observations, we characterized (1) movement paths as a series of step lengths and turn angles at 30-s intervals, and (2) habitat use reflected by the proportion of time spent in different vegetation types and in the open. Adults and juveniles differed in both movement and habitat use. Adults spent more time in the open and in association with mountain mahogany (Cercocarpus montanus), while juveniles were more frequently found in association with dead wood, grass, and juniper (Juniperus monosperma). Adults also moved greater distances than juveniles and made use of larger areas. Movement patterns differed between age classes, with adults having longer step lengths. Adults and juveniles also engaged in different step length–turn angle sequences. For both classes, movement characteristics differed with habitat type.
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15 December 2021
Age-Dependent Search Behavior in the Colorado Checkered Whiptail (Aspidoscelis neotesselatus)
Maria A. Eifler,
Douglas A. Eifler