Jon Loman's research:
Reptile social ecology

My interest in this subject probably comes from a combined interest in unusual animals and a desire to observe and know individuals, something that is easily done with a combination of reptile skin and leather paint.

The rest of this page contains information on the listed subjects. You can scroll or click to read it. Highlighted scientific names link to photos and further information on the species.


  • Rainbow lizard, Agama agama
    My study of the rainbow lizard was undertaken in Kora game reserve, Kenya, together with Thomas Madsen. The main purpose was to describe the social organization of the population. It appears that males that exhibit display colours defend exclusive territories. In these are other males, that never exhibit display colours, tolerated. A report (1) is available.
  • Hardun, Agama stellio
    The importance of colours for the social life of rainbow lizards have directed my interest to the hardun. In this species males of some populations are reported to exhibit bright yellow heads that seem to have a role in the defence of territories. In other populations this feature seems to lack. So, does this influence the social organization of the respective populations? So far I have only studied one population, for two weeks on the island of Rhodes with Torbjörn Helin and Mats Olsson. In this population, the males do not exhibit bright yellow heads. A manus (7) has been produced from this study.
  • The Common Chameleon, Chameleon chamaeleon
    My interest in chameleons began when I met Mariano Cuadrado, at that time a bird Ph. D. student at out department in Lund. He had a previous interest in chameleons and offered me to join him in a study of a populations, conveniently located close to his home in southern Spain. Our main interest is in describing the social organization of the population. Three publications (6-8) are available. Mariano has since continued to experimentally study different aspects of social signalling in this species. His long term field work, the population has been monitored since 1992, has also yielded data on growth and survival, the analysis of which I am taking part in.
  • The common viper, Vipera berus
    I and another of our friends, Thomas Håkansson, have occasionally worked with Thomas Madsen, studying vipers in southern Sweden. My main interest in this work has been to study multiple mating and contemplate why females (and males) should engage in this risky business. My contributions to this project are reported in four publications (2-5).

Publications, reports, and manuscripts

  1. 1987. The role of colour display in the social and spatial organization of male rainbow lizards (Agama agama). Amphibia - Reptilia 8:365-372. With Thomas Madsen.
  2. 1988. Increased fitness from multiple matings and genetic heterogeneity - a model of a possible mechanism. Oikos 52:69-72. With Thomas Madsen and Thomas Håansson.
  3. 1989. A better title: "Female benefits from multiple matings - a model. Oikos 54:250-251. With Thomas Madsen and Thomas Håkansson.
  4. 1992. Why do female adders copulate so frequently? Nature 355:440-441. With T. Madsen, R. Shine, and T. Håkansson.
  5. 1993. Determinants of male reproductive success in male adders. Anim. Behav. 45: 491-499. With T. Madsen, R. Shine, and T. Håkansson.
  6. 1997. Mate choice behaviour in a chameleon Chamaeleo chamaeleon population in southern Spain. Herp. Bonnensis. With Mariano Cuadrado.
  7. 1998. La poblacion de Camaleones Chamaeleo chamaeleon del Real instituto y observatoria de la armada (San Fernando, Cadiz): Composicion relativa según la edad y sexo y supervivencia de als crias. Rev. Sociedad Gaditana Hist. Nat. 1:17-22. With Mariano Cuadrado.
  8. 1999. The effects of age and size on reproductive timing in female Chamaeleo chamaeleon. J. Herp. 33:6-11. With Mariaono Cuadrado.
  9. Manus. Spatial relations in a population of harduns (Agama stellio) on Rhodes. With Torbjörn Helin and Mats Olsson.

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Last update: 20020707