MadSci Network: General Biology

Re: How and why is the ventilation rate of locusts affected by temperature?

Area: General Biology
Posted By: Neala MacDonald, Grad Student, MSc in Zoology, University of Western Ontario
Date: Wed Oct 8 08:57:09 1997
Area of science: General Biology
ID: 874755529.Gb

1) The basic answer is that temperature affects metabolic rates of grasshoppers. This occurs in all organisms, incidentally; the relationship is more obvious in 'cold-blooded' organisms such as insects, than in 'warm-blooded' organisms, because the relationship is based on body temperature, which varies more in the former group.

2) Developmental rates of grasshoppers increase with body temperature approximately linearly from 0 at about 14 C to a maximum rate at about 40C (depends on species of course), then decreases to 0 again at about 45C. Development is a manifestation of metabolism; this means that metabolic rate is also increasing. Feeding rates change in the same way. (see Lactin and Johnson. 1996. Behavioural optimization of body temperature by nymphal grasshoppers...... Journal of Thermal Biology 21: 231-238. and references in it.)

3) O2 is required to fuel metabolism. Therefore O2 consumption increases with temperature.

4) I can't find the paper at the moment, but I recall that it reports measurements only between about 15 and 30 C, coincident with the linear part of the development curve. Rate increased linearly, approximately parallel to the developmental curve; above 40C, i imagine this parallelism might break down.

5) As for ventilation, this is not an imporant component of respiration in the hoppers i deal with. it seems to occur only when the hopper is too hot; it may be cooling by respiratory evaporation.

c/o Derek Lactin
Agriculture Canada

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