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Title: Avian Mobbing of the Puerto Rican Boa (Epicrates inornatus)


Date: 2002

Source: Caribbean Journal of Science, Vol. 38, No. 1-2, 125-126,

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: Mobbing, defined as an intense collective behavior in which birds of one or more species scold or even physically attack a predator, is known from a variety of bird species (Campbell and Lack, 1985; Gill, 1995). Targets commonly include hawks, owls, and snakes. In the West Indies, observations have documented avian mobbing towards various hawk species (e.g., Jeffrey-Smith, 1972; Van Barneveld, 1993); mongoose, Herpestes auropunctatus (Downer, 1977); and even anole lizards, Anolis garmani (Salmon, 1976), but not towards snakes. The absence of such observations may be due to the difficulty of detecting the actual target of the mobbing birds, particularly when obscured by dense canopy vegetation. We have frequently observed mobbing birds without locating their target, although we have often suspected it could be a snake. Here we document four incidences of avian mobbing directed at Puerto Rican boas (Epicrates inornatus), which we observed during a four-year radio telemetry study of the boa in the Luquillo Experimental Forest (LEF) in eastern Puerto Rico.

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MERCADO, JAVIER E.; TERRANOVA, ESTEBAN; WUNDERLE, JR., JOSEPH M. 2002. Avian Mobbing of the Puerto Rican Boa (Epicrates inornatus). Caribbean Journal of Science, Vol. 38, No. 1-2, 125-126,


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