Advanced

Body condition and head size in snakes

Madsen, Thomas LU (2011) In Amphibia-Reptilia 32(4). p.565-567
Abstract
On several occasions during my many years of working with various snake species, I observed a significant positive relationship between body condition and head size (the former calculated from residual scores from a general linear regression of In-transformed mass on In-transformed snout-vent length). Based on results from my long-term study of water pythons (basis fuscus) this relationship is, however, most likely caused by a condition-dependent bias when recording snake snout-vent length (SVL). Water pythons in good condition were recorded as being "shorter" and hence having relatively larger head size, whereas snakes in poor condition were recorded as being "longer" with concomitant smaller head relative head size. Such a systematic... (More)
On several occasions during my many years of working with various snake species, I observed a significant positive relationship between body condition and head size (the former calculated from residual scores from a general linear regression of In-transformed mass on In-transformed snout-vent length). Based on results from my long-term study of water pythons (basis fuscus) this relationship is, however, most likely caused by a condition-dependent bias when recording snake snout-vent length (SVL). Water pythons in good condition were recorded as being "shorter" and hence having relatively larger head size, whereas snakes in poor condition were recorded as being "longer" with concomitant smaller head relative head size. Such a systematic bias may lead to spurious conclusions concerning the adaptive significance of the relationship between snake body condition and head size. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
body condition, head size, snake
in
Amphibia-Reptilia
volume
32
issue
4
pages
565 - 567
publisher
Brill Academic Publishers
external identifiers
  • wos:000298618000016
  • scopus:84855615735
ISSN
0173-5373
DOI
10.1163/156853811X610339
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
a9e50fe0-9f7d-4505-a8ca-613c78ab03b6 (old id 2306996)
date added to LUP
2012-02-07 10:28:14
date last changed
2017-01-01 06:03:21
@article{a9e50fe0-9f7d-4505-a8ca-613c78ab03b6,
  abstract     = {On several occasions during my many years of working with various snake species, I observed a significant positive relationship between body condition and head size (the former calculated from residual scores from a general linear regression of In-transformed mass on In-transformed snout-vent length). Based on results from my long-term study of water pythons (basis fuscus) this relationship is, however, most likely caused by a condition-dependent bias when recording snake snout-vent length (SVL). Water pythons in good condition were recorded as being "shorter" and hence having relatively larger head size, whereas snakes in poor condition were recorded as being "longer" with concomitant smaller head relative head size. Such a systematic bias may lead to spurious conclusions concerning the adaptive significance of the relationship between snake body condition and head size.},
  author       = {Madsen, Thomas},
  issn         = {0173-5373},
  keyword      = {body condition,head size,snake},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {565--567},
  publisher    = {Brill Academic Publishers},
  series       = {Amphibia-Reptilia},
  title        = {Body condition and head size in snakes},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/156853811X610339},
  volume       = {32},
  year         = {2011},
}