'In the blistering Australian heat, a certain spiky critter performs some
out-of-the-ordinary behaviours to avoid overheating.
Echidnas blow snot bubbles to cool a pool of blood at the top of their
elongated beaks, researchers from Curtin University have discovered.
They also perform belly flops on cool surfaces, according to the findings which
were published in Biology Letters.
Sweating is out of the question because they don't have the right glands.
Nor do they pant or lick themselves, according to lead author, Dr Christine
Cooper from Curtin University's School of Molecular and Life Sciences.
"Echidnas can't pant, sweat or lick to lose heat, so they could be impacted by
increasing temperature," Dr Cooper says.
"Our work shows alternative ways that echidnas can lose heat, explaining how
they can be active under hotter conditions than previously thought."
Dr Cooper has used thermal vision of wild echidnas, taken southwest of Perth,
to unpack how they exchange heat with their environment.'
Via Clarice Boomshakala Bouvier.
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics