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Table 2.

Energetics of digesting slugs, a specialized prey, by two populations of the garter snake Thamnophis elegans

NAssimilation efficiencySDA/assimilated energyNet assimilation efficiency
Intact slug     
Specialist snakes 13 0.653±0.047 0.235±0.038 0.498±0.047 
Generalist snakes NA NA NA 
Lyophilized slug     
Specialist snakes 15 0.780±0.045 0.312±0.070 0.547±0.070 
Generalist snakes 15 0.671±0.050 0.521±0.120 0.337±0.090 
Significance (P 0.003 0.002 <0.001 
NAssimilation efficiencySDA/assimilated energyNet assimilation efficiency
Intact slug     
Specialist snakes 13 0.653±0.047 0.235±0.038 0.498±0.047 
Generalist snakes NA NA NA 
Lyophilized slug     
Specialist snakes 15 0.780±0.045 0.312±0.070 0.547±0.070 
Generalist snakes 15 0.671±0.050 0.521±0.120 0.337±0.090 
Significance (P 0.003 0.002 <0.001 

Slugs were presented in both intact and lyophilized form; snakes from the generalist population would not consume intact slugs.

Efficiencies and ratios are defined in the text. Mean values (± 95%CL) are reported from single trial measurements on each individual NA, not applicable.

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