The Metabolic Changes from Warm to Cold: Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches

Zoe Fox, Peyton Borel, Kristen Conrad, Gloria Alonso, Elizabeth Mendoza


The purpose of the experiment is to distinguish the rate of metabolic change in different temperatures for Madagascar Hissing cockroaches through their carbon dioxide output. Madagascar Hissing cockroaches are acclimated to a wet and humid environment compared to the ones that we have subjected them to. Their ectothermic nature means that their environment dictates their metabolic rates. The rate of change in the metabolism could be used to explain behavioral patterns in ectotherms. We placed designated cockroaches into respiration chambers either in room temperature, on a heating pad, or a cold pack for five minutes and measured the changes in CO2 production. We hypothesized that as the temperature increased, the CO2 output would increase, and as the temperature decreased, the CO2 output would also decrease. We found that the respiration rate did increase as the temperature increased but, as the temperature decreased, the respiration rate increased once again which did not support our hypothesis.

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