SOCIAL ETHOGRAM OF ANOLIS CAROLINENSIS
to accompany
Sociality, Stress, and the Corpus Striatum of the Green Anolis Lizard
Neil Greenberg

PHYSIOLOGY & BEHVIOR (2003) 79(3):429-440


ALWAYS

last revised: 1/2006


ETHOGRAM of Social Behavior of the green anole, Anolis carolinensis*

BEHAVIORAL PATTERN
    DESCRIPTION (CONTEXTS SEEN) [synonyms] [additional reference]
1.
DEWLAP
    extension of gular flap produced by the erection of the retrobasal process of the hyoid apparatus upon the fulcrum of the basi-hyal component. (TCM) [fan] [picture] see Table 2 (below)
2.
PUSHUP
    a raising and lowering of the forebody by rhythmic flexion and extension of the forelimbs; typically coordinated with HEAD NODs in a stereotyped sequence; often coordinated with DEWLAP. (TCM) [bobbing] [stereotyped sequence = display action pattern (DAP), e.g. in Jenssen et al. 2000] see Table 2 (below)
3.
FOUR-LEG PUSHUP
    performed with all four limbs (T)
4.
HEAD NOD
    vertical movements of the head, [submission], often coordinated with PUSHUPs and DEWLAP extension (TCM) [assertion] see Table 2 (below); See comments on head nods and exemplary display action patterns on Jenssen's web page
5.
RAPID NOD
    rapid vertical movement of the head, often following stereotyped display of HEAD NODs + PUSHUPs, occasionally appearing without preceding display. (C) [shudder-bob; jiggling; "courtship"] see Table 2 (below); typically of lesser amplitude than HEAD NOD and of more variable duration. See comments on head nods and exemplary display action patterns on Jenssen's web page
6.
SAGITTAL EXPANSION
    enlargement of the sagittal profile of the animal by lateral compression of the body. (T) [lateral flattening, lateral compression; often with four-leg pushup = challenge] see Table 2 (below)
7.
EXTENDED THROAT
    enlarged profile of throat produced by erection of the basi-hyal component of the hyoid apparatus. (T) [engorged throat] see Table 2 (below)
8.
NUCHAL CREST
    elevated ridge of tissue along the back of the neck. (T)
9.
DORSAL CREST
    elevated ridge of tissue, slightly narrower than the nuchal crest, extending along the spine from the posterior margin of the nuchal crest to the base of the tail. Occurs shortly after nuchal crest in prolonged interactions (T)
10.
GAPE
    wide sustained opening of jaws, often accompanied by tongue-gorge. (TD)
11.
TONGUE-GORGE
    tongue apparently enlarged and pushed forward along the floor of the mouth creating a ridge near the front of the mouth. (TDM)
12.
TONGUE-OUT
    tip of tongue appears between loosely closed jaws. (TM)
13.
TONGUE-TOUCH
    apparent touching ofsubstrate or specific target with tongue. (Greenberg 1985)(TM)
14.
AIR-LICK
    tongue extruded but never contacts surface (Greenberg 1985)(TM)
15.
TAIL-WRITHE
    slow sinuous lashing movements of the distal tail. (T) [tail waggling]
16.
TAIL-LASH
    Wide side-to-side sweeping movements of the tail from the base. (TCDM)
17.
HEAD-UP-HIGH
    head tipped upward from the neck at a right angle to the body axis; suggestive of arousal and active surveillance. (T)
18.
BROWN
    body color, sometimes combined or blending into bilaterally symmetrical areas of GREEN. (TCMD)
19.
GREEN
    body color, sometimes combined or blending into bilaterally symmetrical areas of BROWN. (TCMD)
20
DARK BROWN
    body color. (TD)
21.
BLOTCHY
    green and brown coloration simultaneously but in asmmetrical patches; generally includes EYESPOT (TD)
22.
EYESPOT
    darkening of post-orbital patch of temporal scales. (TD)
23.
DEFECATE
    extrusion of fecal material. (TDM)
24.
CLOACAL DISCHARGE
    contents of cloaca discharged; may be fluid or feces (TD)
25.
LATERAL ORIENTATION
    sagittal plane of lizard is made to face ("aimed" at) stimulus point, generally an adversary, by postural adjustment.(T)
26
FACE-OFF
    two lizards in mutual LATERAL ORIENTATION, generally facing opposite directions with their heads at right angles to their body axes. (T) [often with mutual circling = parallel advance and retreat]
27.
STALK
    slow cautious approach to stimulus. (TM)
28.
LIMP- STALK
    slow cautious approach to stimulus, rear legs appear limp or stiff and are often dragged. (T)
29
LUNGE
    rapid short range movement of body towards stimulus; typically combined with BITE. (TDM)
30.
BITE
    sustained gripping with teeth, frequently follows LUNGE. (TCDM)
31.
CIRCLING
    mutual stalking during a FACE-OFF. (T)
32.
JAW SPAR
    mutual attempts to orient gaping jaws in order to bite the jaw of the antagonist. (T)
33.
JAW-LOCK
    mutual sustained bite of two antagonists’ jaws; accompanied by twisting. (T) [interlocking bite]
34.
NECK-BEND
    raising neck while nose tipped down; only seen in females (CM)
35.
NECK-GRIP
    gripping the skin around the neck or shoulders of another lizard. (C)
36.
STRADDLE
    while maintaining neck-grip, one lizard (usually male) rests parallel next to and partly upon another lizard (usually female). (C)
37.
TAIL-TUCK
    the base of the tail of a STRADDLING lizard is tucked under the base of the tail of an adjacent lizard bringing cloacae into apposition. (C)
38.
INSERTION
    insertion of hemipenis into the vent of TAIL-TUCKED lizard during apposition of cloacae. (C)
39.
NEGATIVE PERPENDICULAR ORIENTATION
    body axis perpendicular to stimulus point, head facing away.
40.
POSITIVE PERPENDICULAR ORIENTATION
    body axis perpendicular to stimulus point, head facing point. (CM)
41.
REAR LEGS-BACK
    rear legs extended back alongside tail. (TDM) (contributes to crypsis)
42.
SQUIRREL
    abrupt lateral movement around perch, effectively avoiding stimulus by moving out of line-of-sight. (TDM)
43.
POSTURE CHANGE
    adjustments in body posture not associated with locomotion, predominantly head movement [visual surveillance, scanning] (Greenberg 1993)(TCDM)
44.
SITE CHANGE
    displacement of the body’s center of gravity; slow, deliberate movements of entire animal in habitat; may be positive, negative, or indifferent [exploration, foraging]. (Greenberg 1993)(TCDM)
45.
CHARGE
    rapid approach towards stimulus. (TD)
46.
ESCAPE
    rapid movement away from stimulus. (TCD) [flee]
47.
ALLOGROOM
    BITE and pull at loose slough on another lizard; slough usually ingested. (M)
48.
AUTOGROOM
    BITE and pull at loose slough which is usually ingested. (M)
49.
FOOD-STEAL
    LUNGE and BITE at object held in the jaws of another lizard; object or part of object pulled or broken off ingested if possible (M)
*adapted and updated from Greenberg (1977, 2003); supplemented by collegia contributions. Behavioral units delineated from observations of lizard interactions. Letters in parentheses indicate the context(s) in which a behavioral unit has been observed: T = territorial defense and fighting; C = courtship and mating; D = nonspecific defensive behavior; M = maintenance behavior. Terms in brackets are synonyms in the literature.

Postures adopted might be affected by substrate: The habitat preferences of subordinated A. carolinensis differ from those of dominants when they cohabit a vivarium: they are often found in the litter (sphagnum, leaves). In nature, Stand Rand told me that Stephen Ayala told jhim that A. auratus slept in litter or down in tussocks


TABLE 2 Shared Elements of Social Displays in the Green Anole
Display Components
Display Context
HEAD-NOD
PUSHUP
DEWLAP
EXTENDED THROAT
SAGITTAL EXPANSION
RAPID NODDING
“Subordination”
T
“Assertion”
T
T
T
“Threat”
T
T
T
T
“Challenge”
T
T
T
T
T
“Courtship”
T
T
T
T


anolis refs from Korzan & Summers 1994


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10/2010