Wax On, Waxworms: Waxworm Metabolic Rate Dependent on Environmental Temperature

Mitchell Brigden, Londyn Cole, Karley Brock, Caleb Alexander, Meelyn Pandit


How does environmental temperature affect waxworm metabolism? Through determining the respiration rates by measuring carbon dioxide output, we can determine the effect of temperature on the metabolism of ectotherms and their larvae.  We hypothesized that if the environmental temperature changes then the waxworms’ respiration will change, which will cause the metabolic rate to change. We determined this to be our hypothesis because ectotherms’ metabolic rates are dependent on the environmental surrounding and temperature. Therefore, we can assume that larvae thermoregulate similar to grown insects. For this experiment, we utilized respiration chambers to measure the carbon dioxide output (in ppm/g) at temperatures ranging from cool, room, and warm temperatures. We discovered that there is no significant correlation between the respiration rates and the temperature. Therefore, our conclusion is that temperature may not affect the wax worms’ respiration unlike thermoregulation of most ectotherms and grown insects. 


Metabolism, Ectotherm, Waxworm

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