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Title: The importance of mammalian torpor for survival in a post-fire landscape
Contributor(s): Stawski, Clare  (author); Koertner, Gerhard  (author)orcid ; Nowack, Julia  (author); Geiser, Fritz  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2015
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2015.0134Open Access Link
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Abstract: Wildfires have increased in frequency and intensity worldwide with climate change as a main driving factor. While a number of studies have focused on population changes in regard to fires, there are essentially no quantitative data on behavioural and physiological adjustments that are vital for the persistence of individuals during and after fires. Here we show that brown antechinus, a small insectivorous marsupial mammal, (i) endured a prescribed fire in situ , (ii) remained in their scorched home range despite unburned areas nearby, and (iii) substantially increased post-fire torpor use and thus reduced foraging requirements and exposure to predators. Hence, torpor is a physiological adaptation that, although not quantified in this context previously, appears to play a key role in post-fire survival for this and other heterothermic species.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Grant Details: ARC/DP130101506
Source of Publication: Biology Letters, 11(6), p. 1-5
Publisher: The Royal Society Publishing
Place of Publication: London, United Kingdom
ISSN: 1744-957X
Field of Research (FOR): 060806 Animal Physiological Ecology
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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