Knight Anole Eating a Bird!

Knight anole eating a bird! Photo courtesy of Paul Richards.

In their recent paper on home range of A. equestris, Nicholson and Richards reported on a knight anole consuming a migrating blue-gray gnatcatcher. Here are the full details, in the words of Paul Richards:

“Kirsten Nicholson and I were attempting to resight one of our radio transmitter equipped A. equestris. Resighting transmitted individuals was difficult as they are hard to see even when we have a clear signal. We would regularly spend 15-20min search, and have a 50% change of resighting a transmitted individual (or less, I cannot remember – but we can probably estimate this from our notes). I saw a Blue-gray gnatcatcher land on a branch right in our general search area that was about a 2m diameter zone of the canopy of a small tree at about 3-5m height. I looked away continuing the search and seconds later I heard an alarm call, looked back to the spot and saw the A. equestris in the picture with the bird in its mouth. This A. equestris was unmarked, and I do not recall ever resighting the transmitted individual that we detected in the area. We can check our notes but I think it took at least 20min for this A. equestris to finish eating the gnatcatcher. I recall in using the branch to wipe/swipe its jaw across, one side the the other, repeatedly, to help get the bird in its mouth.”

About Jonathan Losos

Professor and Curator of Herpetology at the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University. I've spent my entire professional career studying anoles and have discovered that the more I learn about anoles, the more I realize I don't know.

6 thoughts on “Knight Anole Eating a Bird!

  1. Anoles have ended up into too many bird beaks for me to have any sympathy. But seeing as how A. equestris is the non-native species here, I think I should actually be siding with the poor little bird.

  2. I’ve seen green anoles commit canibalism here in Georgia two of them of the same size trying to swallow each other is a common sight around here

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