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Thermal biology of the spotted snow skink, Niveoscincus ocellatus, along an altitudinal gradient

Citation

Yuni, LPEK and Jones, SM and Wapstra, E, Thermal biology of the spotted snow skink, Niveoscincus ocellatus, along an altitudinal gradient, Australian Journal of Zoology, 66, (4) pp. 235-246. ISSN 0004-959X (2019) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Journal compilation copyright CSIRO 2018

DOI: doi:10.1071/ZO18014

Abstract

Body temperatures in ectotherms are strongly affected by their thermal environment. Ectotherms respond to variation in the thermal environment either by modification of behavioural thermoregulation to maintain their optimal body temperature or by shifting their optimal body temperature. In this study, the body temperatures of males of three populations of spotted snow skinks, Niveoscincus ocellatus, living along an altitudinal gradient (low, mid, and high altitude) were studied in the field and laboratory in spring, summer, and autumn, representing the full activity period of this species. The environmental variation across both sites and seasons affected their field active body temperatures. At the low and mid altitude, N. ocellatus had a higher mean body temperature than at the high altitude. Animals achieved their thermal preference at the low and mid altitude sites in all seasons. At the high altitude, however, N. ocellatus struggled to reach its preferred body temperatures, especially in autumn. The lower body temperature at the high-altitude site is likely due to limited thermal opportunity and/or an effect of avoiding the costs associated with increased intensity of basking.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:body temperature, climate change, lizards, thermal preference, thermoregulation
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Evolutionary biology
Research Field:Evolutionary ecology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences
UTAS Author:Yuni, LPEK (Ms Luh Yuni)
UTAS Author:Jones, SM (Professor Susan Jones)
UTAS Author:Wapstra, E (Associate Professor Erik Wapstra)
ID Code:143761
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2021-03-31
Last Modified:2021-05-19
Downloads:0

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