Feeding Behaviour and Food Selection of Dhab Uromastyx microlepis From Wild Vegetation
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The present study deals with the food selection and feeding behaviour of Uromastyx microlepis 'dhab' spiny tailed lizard during a period of one complete year inhabiting AL-Gassim desert area. Climatically the area can be classified as a hyper arid region. The behaviours of Dhab were studied under natural conditions, when left to roam freely and chose its food from wild vegetation. 54 plants species, belonging to 24 families were recorded, among which 37 plants species were recognized as preferred host plants for U. microlepis. Palatability of the vegetation may vary with the seasons. Dhab is a herbivorous animal preferring tender leaves, shoots, flowers, buds and fruits of shrubs widely spread in the area. Stomach contents revealed that Dhab may also take insects and stones (gravel) at times. There were significant differences in lizard body weight over the year. The maximum body weighs were recorded in the months of June and February respectively.