Skip to Main Content
Quadrupedal locomotor performance in two species of arboreal squirrels: predicting energy savings of glidingAuthor(s): Elizabeth A. Flaherty; Merav Ben-David; Winston P. Smith
Source: Journal of Comparative Physiology B. [Online]. DOI 10.1007/s00360-010-0470-1.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Pacific Northwest Research Station
View PDF (1.9 MB)
DescriptionGliding allows mammals to exploit canopy habitats of old-growth forests possibly as a means to save energy. To assess costs of quadrupedal locomotion for a gliding arboreal mammal, we used open-flow respirometry and a variable-speed treadmill to measure oxygen consumption and to calculate cost of transport, excess exercise oxygen consumption, and excess post-exercise oxygen consumption for nine northern flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus) and four fox squirrels (Sciurus niger). The observations suggest that unlike fox squirrels, flying squirrels are poorly adapted to prolonged bouts of quadrupedal locomotion. The evolution of skeletal adaptations to climbing, leaping, and landing and the development of a gliding membrane likely has increased the cost of quadrupedal locomotion by >50% while resulting in energy savings during gliding and reduction in travel time between foraging patches.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationFlaherty, Elizabeth A.; Ben-David, Merav; Smith, Winston P. 2010. Quadrupedal locomotor performance in two species of arboreal squirrels: predicting energy savings of gliding. Journal of Comparative Physiology B. [Online]. DOI 10.1007/s00360-010-0470-1.
Keywordscost of transport, dispersal, energetic, Glaucomys sabrinus, respirometry, Sciurus niger
- Locomotor performance and cost of transport in the northern flying squirrel Glaucomys sabrinus.
- Texas ratsnake predation on southern flying squirrels in red-cockaded woodpecker cavities
- Noninvasive and cost-effective trapping method for monitoring sensitive mammal populations
XML: View XML