Intersexual chemo-sensation in a visually-oriented lizard, **Anolis sagrei**Intersexual chemo-sensation in a visually-oriented lizard, **Anolis sagrei**
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
Engineering sciences. Technology
4(2016), 13 p.
University of Antwerp
While the conspicuous visual displays of anoles have been studied in great depth, the possibility that these lizards may also interact through chemical signalling has received hardly any consideration. In this study, we observed the behaviour of male brown anoles (Anolis sagrei) when introduced into an environment previously inhabited by female conspecifics, and compared it to when they were introduced into an untreated environment. The males in our tests exhibited significantly more elaborate display behaviour (i.e., greater number of dewlap extensions and head-nods) and a significantly greater number of tongue extrusions while in the cage formerly occupied by females than when placed in the untreated, control cage. The absolute numbers of tongue extrusions, however, were relatively low in comparison to average tongue-flick rates of true chemically-oriented lizards. Our results strongly suggest that the males were capable of detecting chemical cues left behind by the females. These observations provide the first evidence of intersexual chemo-sensation in an anole lizard.