AbstractThe lizard Lophognathus temporalis is a conspicuous inhabitant of urban and natural bush habitats in and around Darwin. Given that urban and bush habitats are quite different, I hypothesized that differences may have also arisen between urban and bush dwelling populations of this lizard. To test this, I compared their size, shape and many important aspects of their physiology (such as metabolism, evaporative water loss and digestion).
I found that L. temporalis from urban habitats were on average much larger than their bush dwelling counterparts. However, although the physiology of both groups was highly variable with respect to season (wet vs. dry), with respect to habitat, the physiology of urban and bush lizards was very similar. My results demonstrate that human influence can have a dramatic effect on the rate of change in animals and also provides important insights into our understanding of how animals change in response to changes in their environment.
|Date of Award||2009|
|Supervisor||Keith Christian (Supervisor) & Gavin Shane Bedford (Supervisor)|