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Reproduction, seasonal activity and growth of the coral snake, Micrurus corallinus (Elapidae), in the southeastern Atlantic forest in Brazil

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Dissection of 360 specimens of the coral snake Micrurus corallinus, combined with data on captive individuals and field observations, provided information on the reproductive ecology of this elapid snake. Clutch size ranged from 2 to 12 eggs, and was correlated with maternal body size. Reproduction seems to be highly seasonal, with mating and vitellogenesis occurring at the onset of the rainy season, oviposition in mid rainy season, and hatching at the end of the rainy season and early dry season. Incubation in the laboratory ranged from 78 to 93 days. Neonates measured 177-197 mm snout-vent length and weighed 2.02-2.76 g. Growth of juveniles is quick, with both males and females attaining sexual maturity at an age of about 18 months. Seasonal patterns of surface activity seem to be related to age and sex.

Affiliations: 1: Laboratório de Herpetologia, Instituto Butantan, Av. Vital Brasil, 1500, 05503-900, São Paulo-SP, Brasil


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