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|Tipo de documento:||Artículo|
|Todos autores / colaboradores:||Lowell V Diller; Donald R Johnson|
|Nota del idioma:||English|
Food habits, consumption rates, and predation rates of western rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis) and gopher snakes (Pituophis melanoleucus) were determined during a 5-yr study in southwestern Idaho. Juvenile ground squirrels comprised 81% of the ingested biomass of rattlesnakes. Juvenile ground squirrels and cottontail rabbits comprised 60% of the diet of gopher snakes. Consumption rates (expressed as percent of body mass) of first-year snakes exceeded that of older age classes in both species. Production efficiencies (proportion of prey mass consumed used for growth) of rattlesnakes (0.28) exceeded gopher snakes (0.21). Density, as determined by drift fence captures in nine habitats, ranged from 0-2.5/ha for rattlesnakes and from 0.1-1.9/ha for gopher snakes. Annual predation rates by rattlesnakes were estimated to be 14% and 5-11% of the populations of juvenile ground squirrels and cottontail rabbits, respectively. We estimated that gopher snakes took 4% of the juvenile ground squirrels and 22-43% of the juvenile cottontail rabbits.