The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 05. Seasonal and diel cycles of activity in the ruin lizard, Podarcis sicula

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pp.86-89

Authors: AUGUSTO FOA1 , GIANLUCA TOSINI2 AND ROGER AVERY

Abstract: Adult ruin lizards, Podarcis sicula, at a study site near Pisa, Italy, were seen during all months of 1988, but in significantly reduced numbers in January, February, November and December. The length of the diel period during which individuals were observed varied from 2-3 h in mid-winter to 14 h in July and August. High activity, defined as any one-hour period of the day during which the total number of lizards observed over three days of observation in any month was greater than the 95% confidence limits for the overall mean, was bimodal from April to October inclusive. Bimodality in the activity pattern was particularly pronounced in the hottest months, as low activity, when numbers observed were lower than the C.L. for the overall mean, occurred during the central hours of the day ( 1200- 1400 h) in July and August. Low activity was also recorded at the beginning and end of the active period in all months from February to November. The diel cycles of juveniles (lizards less than 6 months old) appeared to be less structured than those of adults.

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