Whooping Crane Eats Anolis Lizard

Egret and maybe anole

We’ve come to realize, sadly, that just about everything will eat anoles. Birds are particular culprits and we’ve seen some horrifying examples of egrets downing the little green and brown fellows. Now comes a report that a whooping crane, of all things, will also indulge.

Vladimir Dinets–he of crocodilian behavior fame (check out his awesome book, Dragon Songs )–reported on dietary observations a reintroduced population of cranes in Louisiana. The anolivory represents the first instance of whooping crane predation on a lizard (but not on a squamate, as the photo above attests).


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.

4 thoughts on “Whooping Crane Eats Anolis Lizard

  1. Thank you.
    Anoliviry is sufficiently heinous to warrant removal of the Whooping Crane from Endangered Species protection. I’ll write my Senators.

    1. That’s correct. Other than the other photo–the authenticity of which is questionable–I could find no other photo on the internet of an egret eating an anole. A snake was the closest thing I found, as the last sentence of the post indicates.

  2. If that egret eating an anole (looks to me like an anole) is faked then that is brilliant photo-shopping: looks real to me…. Not surprised these birds eat anoles whenever possible, just think their different habitats make encounters most unlikely!

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