Thermoregulation in the Brown Noddy (Anous Stolidus)

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Publication Date

Fall 9-3-1994

Journal Title

Journal of Thermal Biology

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Biology | Ecology and Evolutionary Biology | Ornithology | Physiology


1. Oxygen consumption (VO2), body temperature (Tb). respiratory frequency (f) and total evaporative water loss were measured in Brown Noddies exposed to air temperatures (Ta) between -0.2 and 41.9”C, in a climatic chamber.

2. The thermoneutral zone of Ta was approx. 22-37°C and the VO2 in the thermoneutral zone (1.031 ml/g h) was 7740% of predicted values.

3. The body temperature was characterized by its lability: even within the thermoneutral zone, there was a significant correlation with Ta.

4. Exposure to low Ta, resulted in shivering and a maximal increase in pti of 129%. The minimal thermal conductance of the tissues and plumage below the lower critical Ta was 86% of the predicted value.

5. At high Ta, thermal polypnea and open-beak panting were observed but the birds did not gular flutter. In some birds evaporative heat loss exceeded concurrent metabolic heat production.

6. The features of thermoregulation in adult Brown Noddies are compared with those of the hatchling and also with thermoregulation in the related Sooty Tern.


Original publication information:

Ellis, H.I., M. Maskrey, T.N. Pettit, and G.C. Whittow. 1995. Thermoregulation in the Brown Noddy (Anous stolidus). J. therm. Biol. 20:307-313.

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