Adaptive thermoregulatory patterns in speciating mole rats.

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The thermoregulatory response to cold (6+ or -1oC) and warm (33.5+ or -0.5oC) environments was studied in adult mole rats, belonging to four chromosomal species (2n=52, 54, 58 and 60), of the Spalax ehrenbergi species complex in Israel. Results indicate that 2n=60 is significantly the best thermoregulator both in warm and cold environments. In the warm environment, a physiological cline in thermoregulation was apparent along the following order: 2n=60 > 58 > 52, 54; in the cold environment the order was 2n=60 > 54 > 52 and 58. Differences in thermoregulatory ability within a species were discovered only in 2n=54 when exposed to 33.5+ or -0.5oC. Results support the idea that in the speciation of the Spalax ehrenbergi complex in Israel, physiological correlates are moulded by natural selection as an adaptation to climatic conditions.-from Authors

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-140
Number of pages4
JournalActa Zoologica Fennica
StatePublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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