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Volume 65, Issue 2


Temperature dependence and ontogenetic changes of metabolic rate of an endemic earthworm Dendrobaena mrazeki

Vladimír Šustr
  • Biology Centre Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, v.v.i., Institute of Soil Biology, Na Sádkách 7, CZ-37005, České Budějovice, Czech Republic
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/ Václav Pižl
  • Biology Centre Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, v.v.i., Institute of Soil Biology, Na Sádkách 7, CZ-37005, České Budějovice, Czech Republic
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Published Online: 2010-02-21 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-010-0019-5


Ontogenetic changes and temperature dependency of respiration rate were studied in Dendrobaena mrazeki, an earthworm species inhabiting relatively warm and dry habitats in Central Europe. D. mrazeki showed respiration rate lower than in other earthworm species, < 70 μl O2 g−1 h−1, within the temperature range of 5–35°C. The difference of respiration rate between juveniles and adults was insignificant at 20°C. The response of oxygen consumption to sudden temperature changes was compared with the temperature dependence of respiratory activity in animals pre-acclimated to temperature of measurement. No significant impact of acclimation on the temperature response of oxygen consumption was found. The body mass-adjusted respiration rate increased slowly with increasing temperature from 5 to 25°C (Q10 from 1.2 to 1.7) independently on acclimation history of earthworms. Oxygen consumption decreased above 25°C up to upper lethal limit (about 35°C). Temperature dependence of metabolic rate is smaller than in other earthworm species. The relationships between low metabolic sensitivity to temperature, slow locomotion and reactivity to touching as observed in this species are discussed.

Keywords: earthworm; Lumbricidae; Dendrobaena; oxygen consumption; acclimation; metabolic rate; temperature

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About the article

Published Online: 2010-02-21

Published in Print: 2010-04-01

Citation Information: Biologia, Volume 65, Issue 2, Pages 289–293, ISSN (Online) 1336-9563, ISSN (Print) 0006-3088, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-010-0019-5.

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© 2010 Slovak Academy of Sciences. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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