Korosov Andrey Viktorovich, Doctor of biological sciences, professor, sub-department of zoology and ecology, Petrozavodsk State University (33 Lenina avenue, Petrozavodsk, Russia), E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ganyushina Natal'ya Dmitrievna, Postgraduate student, Petrozavodsk State University (33 Lenina avenue, Petrozavodsk, Russia), E-mail: email@example.com
Background. The maximum voluntary body temperature of reptiles is considered one of the important indicators of species thermal needs of individuals. It is estimated by the totality of the maximum values of the body temperature of the animal in nature and has poor statistical properties, since it estimates the distribution edge. It is recommended to consider the maximum voluntary temperature as a physiological parameter of the regulation of body temperature, as a threshold value, the achievement of which includes the behavioral act of thermoregulation. This indicator will have the best statistical properties. To estimate the values of this parameter of thermoregulation, it was proposed to change the research technology: body temperature measurements should be performed at the moment of changing the nature of the behavior (when moving to the shade from the overheating zone).
Materials and methods. During May 2017, observations were carried out on two adult females of the common viper, who lived in an open-air cage (Karelia). Microloggers were implanted under the skin of the back, fixing the body temperature every 2 minutes. All movements of the viper were recorded on video.
Results. Interpretation of video and logger readings 29 and 25 cases of avoiding overheating. An analysis of the distributions showed left-sided asymmetry caused by external causes, as well as a symmetric peak of values in the right-hand side. For both vipers, the mean values for this region were 33,8 °С, the confidence interval was 33,1–34,5 °С.
Conclusions. The maximum voluntary temperature, as a physiological parameter of thermoregulation, is slightly lower than the maximum body temperature itself, since the viper often heats up a little on its way to the cooling zone (forced overheating).
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