Lizards may scale back head bobbing to avoid predators

Mating signals get smaller with carnivores around

By Meghan Rosen, 13:01 PM May 19, 2014

Predators can really mess up a lizard’s mojo.

Male brown anoles, Anolis sagrei, tone down the swaggering head bob that says “come hither” to females and “get lost” to other males when threatening foes come along, reports biologist David Steinberg of Duke University and colleagues May 19 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Steinberg’s team measured the height of anoles’ head bobs, sharp up-and-down jerks of the head, on nine tiny Bahamian islands. On five of the islands, rese...

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