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Gewählte Publikation:

Valencak, TG; Hackländer, K; Ruf, T.
(2010): Peak energy turnover in lactating European hares: a test of the heat dissipation limitation hypothesis.
J Exp Biol. 2010; 213(Pt 16):2832-2839 FullText FullText_BOKU

It has been suggested that maximum sustained metabolic rate (SusMR) in mammals as reached, for instance, during lactation, is due to a limited capacity for heat dissipation. Here, we experimentally tested whether heat dissipation limitation (HDL) also constrains energy turnover in lactating European hares. Experimentally, we made use of the fact that hares nurse their young only once per day, which allowed us to keep females and young either at the same or at different ambient temperatures. During the last lactation week (week 4) females kept at thermoneutrality (22 degrees C), irrespective of the cold load of their young, had significantly lower rates of metabolisable energy intake (MEI) than cold-exposed mothers (5 degrees C), as predicted by the HDL hypothesis. However, in week 2 of lactation females at thermoneutrality rearing cold-exposed young were able to increase MEI to levels indistinguishable from those of cold-exposed females. Thus, even at thermoneutral temperature females reached maximum rates of energy turnover, which was inconsistent with the HDL hypothesis. We conclude that SusMR in lactating European hares typically results not from physiological constraints but from an active restriction of their energy turnover in order to maximise lifetime reproductive success.
Autor*innen der BOKU Wien:
Hackländer Klaus

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
sustained metabolic rate
maternal investment
heat dissipation limit
Lepus europaeus
metabolisable energy intake
milk production

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