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Rewarming rates and thermogenesis in hibernating echidnas


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Nicol, SC and Andersen, NA 2008 , 'Rewarming rates and thermogenesis in hibernating echidnas' , Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology, vol. 150, no. 2 , pp. 189-195 , doi: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2006.08.039.

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We measured body temperatures (Tb) in 14 free-ranging echidnas (Tachyglossus aculeatus) using implanted data-loggers. An average of 1020 +/- 744 days of Tb data was recorded from each animal. The average maximum Tb was 35.3 +/- 0.7[no-break space][deg]C (n = 14), and the lowest Tb was 4.7[no-break space][deg]C. Detailed analysis of rewarming events from four echidnas showed rewarming time to be dependent on initial Tb (rewarming time in hours = 15.6 - 0.41Tinitial, n = 31) with an average rewarming rate of 1.9 +/- 0.4[no-break space][deg]C h- 1. Based on an hourly sampling rate, the peak rewarming rate was found to be 7.2 +/- 0.8[no-break space][deg]C h- 1 (n = 12), which was measured at a mean Tb of 26.2 +/- 2.4[no-break space][deg]C. This rate of heating was calculated to be equivalent to a peak oxygen consumption rate of 1.4 +/- 0.2[no-break space]ml O2 g h- 1, approximately 9 times the basal metabolic rate. We found that a plot of rate of change of Tb against Tb for the entire data set from an individual echidna provided a useful summary and analytical tool.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Nicol, SC and Andersen, NA
Keywords: Tachyglossus aculeatus Echidna Monotreme Hibernation Thermoregulation Rewarming Maximal metabolic rate Non-shivering thermogenesis
Journal or Publication Title: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology
ISSN: 1095-6433
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2006.08.039
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