Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Ph.D. Defense | Comparative Ecology and Physiology of Critically Endangered Madagascar Tortoises

Andrea Currylow
Ph.D. Candidate
Integrative & Evolutionary Biology Graduate Program

Tuesday, November 29
1-2 PM
RRI 321

Abstract: For ectotherms, physiology and behavior are critically tied to environmental conditions. Feeding, metabolism, reproduction, and even movement are strongly influenced by temperature, cover availability, and resource quality.  The underlying mechanisms of these interactions are, however, poorly understood.  The use of seasonal baseline hormone concentrations and data on ranging behavior can be used to determining the potential reproductive output in both wild and captive populations.  Using three closely related, critically endangered Malagasy tortoise species as models, I assessed the tempo and mode of reproductive potential, activity, and health (stress and body condition) by measuring circulating stress and sex steroid hormones in conjunction with environmental, physical, activity, and behavioral data.

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