The Influence of Environmental Temperature on the Metabolic Rate of Laboratory Mice

Bailey Mcmullen, Tess Maxfield, Aaron Patterson, Jayne Rowles, Lindsey Worcester


Endotherms are organisms that regulate their body temperature internally. While some heat can be lost to the environment, endotherms can maintain a constant body temperature through heat generated by metabolism. Some external factors can influence the metabolic rate of endotherms. Endotherms will consume more oxygen when above or below their thermal neutral zone. In the thermal neutral zone, endotherms do not have to significantly increase their metabolic rate to maintain their body temperature. To test this, we measured the carbon dioxide production of a mouse in three different temperature settings – cool, warm, and room temperature. After recording the carbon dioxide levels in all three environments, we found that the mouse respired more carbon dioxide in temperature settings higher and lower than room temperature. The results suggest that endotherms respire more in warm and cool temperatures, meaning that the environmental temperature influences its metabolic rate.

Full Text:



  • There are currently no refbacks.