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Cuad. herpetol.

, 23
23 (2):
(2): 93 – 96, 2009
93–96, 2009 93

NOTA loured juvenile female C. annulatus


(270 mm TL / 180 mm SVL) was dis-
PREDATION BY CORALLUS
covered in the roofing rafters at Caño
ANNULATUS (BOIDAE) ON Palma’s boat dock (Fig. 1.0). Rhyncho-
RHYNCHONYCTERIS NASO nycteris naso were regularly observed
(EMBALLONURIDAE) IN A roosting beneath the dock in groups of
LOWLAND TROPICAL WET between three and eight individuals (Fig
FOREST, COSTA RICA 1.1) several nights before we found the
snake. We discovered, without the need
for regurgitation by palpation, typical
TODD R. LEWIS shapes of bat morphology and deduced
Westfield, 4 Worgret Road, Wareham, Dorset, that it was possible that the snake had
BH20 4PJ, United Kingdom. eaten a R. naso. On the second occa-
ecolewis@gmail.com sion we observed an orange / taupe co-
loured adult male C. annulatus (584
DARRYN J. NASH mm TL / 512 mm SVL) swallowing a
60 West Road, Spondon, Derby DE21 7AB. Unit- R. naso in the crown of a Manicaria
ed Kingdom. saccifera palm, approximately 200 m
darrynnash@hotmail.com along a riparian section of the Biologi-
cal Station’s forest. Rhynchonycteris
PAUL B. C. GRANT naso are an abundant insectivorous bat
4901 Cherry Tree Bend, Victoria, British Colom- found throughout most tropical lowlands
bia, V8Y 1S1, Canada. from southern Mexico through to the
northern half of South America (Sorin,
Corallus annulatus (Northern Annu- 1999). They are a small bat ranging
lated Tree-boa) is a little-studied tropical from 35 to 41 mm in forearm length
Boid occurring disjunctively throughout and typically weigh around 4 g. Both C.
Central America and tropical South annulatus and R. naso are closely asso-
America in mostly lowland tropical ciated with trees near rivers and
moist and wet forests (Holdridge, 1967; streams and single species roost sites
Stafford & Henderson, 1996; Smith & for R. naso are almost exclusively found
Acevedo, 1997; Henderson et al., 2001). close to water (Goodwin, 1946; Goodwin
Prior to this report and to the best of & Greenhall, 1961; Carter et al., 1966;
our knowledge, small rodents were the Plumpton & Jones, 1992; Stafford &
only documented prey for wild speci- Henderson, 1996).
mens of C. annulatus (Henderson et To the best of our knowledge these
al., 1995). are the first recorded instances of C. an-
Caño Palma Biological Station is sit- nulatus predating on R. naso. Previous
uated on the northeast coast of Costa studies have identified hawks (Buteo
Rica approximately 8 km north of Tor- spp.), falcons (Falco spp.) and egrets
tuguero. C. annulatus has previously (Leucophoyx spp.) as significant preda-
been recorded from Manicaria forest at tors of R. naso (Husson, 1962; Sander-
Caño Palma (Myers, 1990; Burger, son, 1941). The Orb spider Argiope savig-
2001). nyi (Araneidae) has also been recorded
On 12th January 2002 and 15th July as a predator (Timm & Losilla, 2007).
2003 we found two separate C. annula- Predation on bats by Boids is well re-
tus specimens with Rhynchonycteris corded in the tropics, most of which are
naso (Proboscis bat) in their stomachs. recorded at the bats’ roosting site; Epi-
In the first instance an anerythristic co- crates cenchris cenchris (Boidae) (Rain-

R e c i b i d o : 0 1 / 0 3 / 2 0 0 9 — A c e p t a d o : 1 2 / 1 1 / 0 9
E d . a s o c . : F . C r u z
94 T. R. L E W I S et al.: Predation by Corallus annulatus on Rhynchonycteris naso

Fig. 1.0. Anerythristic Corallus annulatus with (possible) Rhynchonycteris naso meal (Photo:
Paul B. C. Grant).

Fig. 1.1. Rhynchonycteris naso roosting under Caño Palma Biological Station boat dock (Photo:
Paul B. C. Grant).
Cuad. herpetol., 23 (2): 93 – 96, 2009 95

bow Boa) fed on Carollia perspicillata Trinidad and Tobago. Bulletin of


(Phyllostomidae) (Lemke, 1978), Epi- the American Museum of Natural
crates anguilifer (Boidae) (Cuban Boa) History 122: 187-302.
predated Phyllonycteris poeyi (Phyllosto- HARDY, J. D. 1957. Bat predation by
midae) (Hardy, 1957) and Epicrates inor- the Cuban Boa, Epicrates anguili-
natus (Boidae) (Puerta Rican Boa) ate fer Bibron. Copeia 1957: 151-152.
Monophyllus redmani (Phyllostomidae) HENDERSON, R. W.; T. W. P. MICUCCI;
and Brachyphylla cavernarum (Phyllosto- G. P UORTO & R. W. BOURGEOIS.
midae) (Rodriguez, 1984). The more thor- 1995. Ecological correlates and
oughly studied Corallus hortulanus patterns in the distribution of neo-
(Boidae) (Amazon Tree Boa) is known to tropical boines (Serpentes:
adopt a sit-and-wait strategy as well as Boidae): a preliminary assess-
actively snatching bats from the air ment. Herpetological Natural His-
(Henderson, 2002; Barnett et al., 2007). tory 3: 15-27.
Given that both the C. annulatus and HENDERSON , R. W.; M. HÖGGREN ; W.
the R. naso are primarily nocturnal it is W. LAMAR & L. W. PORRAS.
suggested that, on both occasions, the 2001. Distribution and variation
tree-boas adopted a snatching strategy. in the treeboa Corallus annulatus
We thank The Canadian Organiza- (Serpentes: Boidae). Studies on
tion for Tropical Education and Rainfor- Neotropical Fauna and Environ-
est Conservation (COTERC) for permis- ment 36: 39-47.
sion to study at Caño Palma Biological HENDERSON, R. W. 2002. Neotropical
Station and Xavier Guevara of The Min- Tree-boas: natural history of the
isterio de Recursos Naturales Energia y Corallus hortulanus complex.
Minas (MINAE) for permits to study the Krieger Publishing Company, Mal-
forest. abar.
HOLDRIDGE, L. R. 1967. Life zone ecol-
ogy (2nd Edition). Tropical Science
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SMITH, E. N. & M. E. ACEVEDO. 1997. STAFFORD, P. J. & R. W. HENDERSON .


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Accessed February 23, 2009 at boscis bat Rhynchonycteris naso
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