Chemical-Cue Preferences of Inexperienced Snakes: Comparative Aspects

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Science  11 Aug 1967:
Vol. 157, Issue 3789, pp. 718-721
DOI: 10.1126/science.157.3789.718


Different species of new-born, previously unfed snakes will respond with tongue flicking and prey-attack behavior to water extracts of the skin substances of various small animals. However, there are clear species differences in the type of extract responded to by previously unfed snakes, even within the same genus. These differences correspond to the normal feeding preferences shown by the various species.