Is being smaller really all that: Core body temperature in relation to thermoregulation with SA:V ratio in comparison to each other.

Shelby Preece, Danci Johnston, Cameron Rowe, Jeremy Kaplan


The question we are asking ourselves is whether or not SA:V (SA:V) ratio actually plays a part in an animal’s ability to thermoregulate. In other research, some scientists have stated that SA:V ratio does not actually play a role in thermoregulation (Mortola, 2012), in comparison other scientists have stated that surface area plays a large role in thermoregulation (Phillips, 1994). We noticed that the smaller badgers dissipated heat faster than the larger animal; which had the larger SA:V ratio; were seen in the warmer climates and the larger badgers; which had the smaller SA:V ratio; were seen in the cooler climates (French, 2014). The SA:V ratio plays a vital role in the badger’s ability to thermoregulate. We tested this idea in the lab with two sizes of clay submerged in ice. Animals that survive in colder climates tend to be larger and have a smaller SA:V ratio compared to those in warmer climates, by having a smaller SA:V ratio thermoregulation allows the animal to retain heat longer and dissipate heat slower. Our results support our hypothesis by showing that the SA:V ratio does play a part in retaining heat.

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