Compose a 1250 words assignment on foraging behavior among the chameleon species. Needs to be plagiarism free! There are more than 200 known species with varying morphological and behavioral characteristics though most are considered to be under threat of extinction or endangered. Chameleons are predominantly omnivorous though some species exhibit more preference for carnivorous diet while others are more herbivorous. Some smaller species are preyed upon by some predators like birds and snake making them. Chameleons have a unique feeding strategy due to the wide variety of diets and foraging habits. Aerts Herrel, Meyers, and Nishikawa observed that the retraction of the chameleon tongue pad creates suction on the prey and enhances adhesion of the tongue (3262). This report focuses on the foraging behavior of the chameleon.
Foraging mode is one of the most crucial aspects of animal life. Foraging mode is used to describe the manner in which animals obtain food within their ecological habitat. Foraging is usually associated with other natural and behavioral traits like locomotive ability, energy utilization, and reproduction among others. More importantly, foraging mode plays a critical role in determining prey-predator interactions among animal species. The chameleon’s feeding behavior is often defined in terms of foraging mode which has been mainly classified as either active or ambush (sit-and-wait) type (Hagey, Harmon, and Losos 1).
With regard to behavior, there are observable differences between active and ambush foragers. Active foragers exhibit a high frequency of movement, tend to prey on sedentary prey, use more energy, and possess small clutch size (Butler 797). As a result of their highly motile behavior, active foraging chameleon species are likely to obtain their prey through the encounter. On the other hand, the sit-and-wait foraging chameleons exhibit fewer movements, tend to remain still for long periods, and often run to the prey as they spot it.
Active and ambush foraging is largely determined by other factors including morphological and behavioral characteristics, the type of prey, and habitat use among others. It has been found that variations exist among active and ambush foragers in terms of activity levels, body temperatures, and intake of calories.
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