Ecological and environmental physiology of birds
Oxford University Press, May 26, 2010 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 317 pages
Birds have colonized almost every terrestrial habitat on the planet - from the poles to the tropics, and from deserts to high mountain tops. Ecological and Environmental Physiology of Birds focuses on our current understanding of the unique physiological characteristics of birds that are of particular interest to ornithologists, but also have a wider biological relevance. An introductory chapter covers the basic avian body plan and their still-enigmatic evolutionary history. The focus then shifts to a consideration of the essential components of that most fundamental of avian attributes: the ability to fly. The emphasis here is on feather evolution and development, flight energetics and aerodynamics, migration, and as a counterpoint, the curious secondary evolution of flightlessness that has occurred in several lineages. This sets the stage for subsequent chapters, which present specific physiological topics within a strongly ecological and environmental framework. These include gas exchange, thermal and osmotic balance, 'classical' life history parameters (male and female reproductive costs, parental care and investment in offspring, and fecundity versus longevity tradeoffs), feeding and digestive physiology, adaptations to challenging environments (high altitude, deserts, marine habitats, cold), and neural specializations (notably those important in foraging, long-distance navigation, and song production). Throughout the book classical studies are integrated with the latest research findings. Numerous important and intriguing questions await further work, and the book concludes with a discussion of methods (emphasizing cutting-edge technology), approaches, and future research directions.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
General Physiological Principles
Physiological Bases of FecundityLongevity Tradeoffs
Obtaining and Processing Food
6 other sections not shown
absorption acids activity adaptations adult altricial ambient temperatures animals antioxidant avian Bar-headed Geese basal metabolic rate behavior birds body mass body temperature breeding changes chicks clutch concentration cormorants costs decrease density desert diet digestive dives ecological effects efficiency elevated Emperor Penguins energy expenditure environment environmental equation etal evaporation evolutionary feathers feeding females flight flightless foraging function Galliformes gradient hatching heat production higher homeothermy House Sparrows hummingbirds hyperthermia hypothesis immune increase incubation intake intestinal isotopes Karasov levels lipid male mammals Martinez del Rio measurements membrane metabolic rate Microraptor migration migratory MLSP muscle neonates nest Nevitt nutrient oxidative parental passerines Penguins period phenotypic phenotypic plasticity physiological potential predators predicted prey Procellariiformes protein Red Knots reduced reproductive requirements respiratory response Ricklefs seabirds Sparrows species speed studies surface swimming taxa thermal thermoregulation tion traits vocal water loss wing Zebra Finches