Free «Biological Impact of Climate Change» Essay Sample

In the present day, the major concern of ecologists is to determine the ecological effects of global changes that result from human and natural activities. Ecologists employ a significant approach, namely macrophysiology, to provide a thorough explanation regarding the effects of environmental changes on physiological traits of human beings and animals (RodrÍguez-Serrano & Bozinovic, 2009). This observational study determines the differences that exist between individuals, who live in separate geographical positions, based on the physiological features. Ecologists have made few critical analyzes on the physiological mechanisms and responses that animals employ to cope with geographical and global changes in the environment and climate. Therefore, it has been evident that physiological mechanism against changes in climate underlies biodiversity of organisms in space and time. Placental mammals rely on shivering thermogenesis and non-shivering thermogenesis (NST) to produce heat during a cold weather. Research has depicted that the release of metabolic heat will reduce when the capacity for NST is high. Researchers hypothesized that the species living in warmer geographical areas will have lower NST rates than is the case with the species in cold areas (RodrÍguez-Serrano & Bozinovic, 2009).

Researchers collected the data for thirty-nine rodent species from the available literature to determine the capacity for NST. They selected a number of values of NST that earlier researchers obtained in various seasons apart from winter. The researchers analyzed the data and found that NST did not have a significant phylogenetic signal. Lack of this signal depicted the absence of evolutionary, physiological adaptation of the NST physiological trait. The researchers predicted that the animal species in cold habitats portrayed high mass-independent NST as compared to their counterparts in warm habitats (RodrÍguez-Serrano & Bozinovic, 2009). The negative correlations of -0.411 and -0.443 supported their predictions significantly. Therefore, it is true that climatic changes influence the physiological adaptation of organisms.

It is evident that thermal, environmental factors are extremely significant to biological hierarchies. Organisms undergo dynamic adaptation as a result of continual variations in the environmental temperature (RodrÍguez-Serrano & Bozinovic, 2009). Thermal physiology underlies the evolutionary and ecological success of organisms. Advances are necessary in the field of biology because of the need to predict and explain biological effects of climatic variations. However, the taxonomic database that the researchers used a small selection that represented the entire diversity of rodents. Therefore, future studies are necessary to estimate both the generality of the results and the mechanistic approach, which could account for the enormous database of habitats and species diversity.


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