Natural Resources, School of

 

Date of this Version

2008

Citation

Herpetological Review 39:4 (2008), p. 464.

Comments

Copyright © 2008 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles. Used by permission.

Abstract

During a 25-year study of Cliff Swallows (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) in southwestern Nebraska, we observed Terrapene ornata prey, or attempt to prey, on swallows. On one occasion as large numbers of birds flushed and hit the net, the weight of the birds pulled the net down to ground level. One T. ornata, which was seen regularly at the colony, approached one adult Cliff Swallow that was very low in the net and killed it by biting and eating its head. After killing the bird, the turtle walked away carrying the head.