As a result of global change, increased temperatures across the planet force species to acclimate or adapt to higher environmental temperatures or face population decline or extinction. Reptiles utilize a variety of strategies to control their body temperatures but are ectothermic, typically controlling their body temperatures behaviorally. This Figure Set guides students to examine field data about thermoregulatory strategies of an unusual group of lizards, allowing students to determine whether the lizards are thermoregulators or thermoconformers. Based on their interpretation of data, students make predictions about the fate of these species under climate warming scenarios. Then the Figure Set provides laboratory data about critical temperatures of these same species, allowing them to forecast the consequences of global warming for these species and consider the broader implications of such research.
thermal ecology, physiological ecology, climate change, global warming
experimental design, think-pair-share, drawing predicted results, guided class discussion, interpreting data and results
constructing a graph, answering questions on a worksheet, sharing responses with the class, designing an experimental setup, interpretating a graph, and completing an essay in which they assess their conclusions by considering the limitations and implications of the evidence
Tiffany M. Doan
Division of Natural Sciences, New College of Florida
I would like to thank the New College of Florida Provost Office Retention Initiative for funding to complete the field research and to support students. I also would like to thank my nine student coauthors on both papers. I would like to thank Liam Carrillo, teaching assistant, for testing out and giving feedback on this module before implementation with my class. I also thank Joshua R. King for providing feedback on the figure set.
Tiffany M. Doan. 2022. Thermal ecology and the fate of lizards on a warming planet. Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology, Vol. 18: Figure Set #1. https://tiee.esa.org/vol/v18/issues/figure_sets/doan/abstract.html
Proctoporus sucullucu in Ollantaytambo, Peru. Photograph by the author.
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