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Author Topic: How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?  (Read 4421 times)

Offline neilep

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Dearest Wonderfun Peeps,

In David Attenboroughs latest series he shows how, as a form of protection, a baby lizard mimics the walk of a poisonous beetle. It also has the same colorings as the beetle too unlike the adult lizard.

The gait was quite peculiar but mimicked the beetle in every way.

How does such behavior evolve ?...how can a baby lizard know to do this ?




« Last Edit: 20/02/2008 23:33:27 by neilep »


 

Offline Karen W.

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #1 on: 20/02/2008 22:17:21 »
Hey Neil, did the baby lizard walk like that from birth or is this something that developed later..? Does he walk like this always or in different circumstances?

I am assuming it is a learned behavior because you say, "as a form of protection"unless he was born that way and walked that way at birth.. wouldn't that just conclude it was its natural behavior if it was born that way and only a coincidence?

It is interesting and the camouflage thing too well like colors of a beetle.

It is very odd if it is a developed behavior begs to ask who taught it that behavior indeed ? It is a good Question.
 

Offline neilep

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #2 on: 20/02/2008 23:38:13 »
Hey Karen

I'm afraid David never answered all of those questions. What I can say is that this particular type of walk is only done by the youngsters.....As they grow bigger, their gait becomes the way the adults walk, as does the colouration.

I am accepting it as a natural instinct....hence the question what kind of circumstances would have led to such a thing.......If it learned then how could a baby lizard learn such a thing so quickly ?...no...it must be an evolutionary tactic because of the colouration !!
 

another_someone

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #3 on: 21/02/2008 01:11:30 »
As you say, I doubt it would be learned behaviour (although it cannot be ruled out).

I suspect all that happened is that some time, purely by accident, a lizard was born with an instinct to walk that way - that lizard survived, and had offspring that walked that way.  Those offspring survived better then their cousins who did not walk that way, and eventually most of the lizards ended up walking that way, because if they didn't, they died.
 

Offline neilep

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #4 on: 21/02/2008 02:36:39 »
As you say, I doubt it would be learned behaviour (although it cannot be ruled out).

I suspect all that happened is that some time, purely by accident, a lizard was born with an instinct to walk that way - that lizard survived, and had offspring that walked that way.  Those offspring survived better then their cousins who did not walk that way, and eventually most of the lizards ended up walking that way, because if they didn't, they died.

THANKS GEORGE.....the thing is.....this behaviour is only seen in the juveniles....as they grow...they lose their similar colouration to the beetle and there gait becomes " normal"

 

Offline Karen W.

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #5 on: 21/02/2008 02:49:40 »





Hey Karen

I'm afraid David never answered all of those questions. What I can say is that this particular type of walk is only done by the youngsters.....As they grow bigger, their gait becomes the way the adults walk, as does the colouration.

I am accepting it as a natural instinct....hence the question what kind of circumstances would have led to such a thing.......If it learned then how could a baby lizard learn such a thing so quickly ?...no...it must be an evolutionary tactic because of the colouration !!

Thanks Neily,

That is odd but maybe just as a human toddler learning to walk his gait develops and becomes more adult in stature step etc..
 

another_someone

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #6 on: 21/02/2008 04:07:12 »
THANKS GEORGE.....the thing is.....this behaviour is only seen in the juveniles....as they grow...they lose their similar colouration to the beetle and there gait becomes " normal"

I am totally guessing, but I would think the gait is less than optimal for the lizard, but does help to protect the feeble juveniles, but once they get bigger, the are strong enough to look after themselves without the extra subterfuge.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #7 on: 21/02/2008 09:01:51 »
Subterfuge? Why would a baby lizard want to spin things very fast?  ???
 

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How Does The Baby Lizard Know To Mimic A Poisonous Beetle ?
« Reply #7 on: 21/02/2008 09:01:51 »

 

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