A body temperature model for lizards as estimated from the thermal environment

Teng Fei*, Andrew K. Skidmore, Valentijn Venus, Tiejun Wang, Martin Schlerf, Bert Toxopeus, Sjef van Overjijk, Meng Bian, Yaolin Liu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A physically based model was built to predict the transient body temperature of lizards in a thermally heterogeneous environment. Six heat transfer terms were taken into account in this model: solar radiation, convective heat flow, longwave radiation, conductive heat flow, metabolic heat gain and respiratory energy loss. In order to enhance the model predictive power, a Monte Carlo simulation was employed to calibrate the bio-physical parameters of the target animal. Animal experiments were conducted to evaluate the calibrated body temperature model in a terrarium under a controlled thermal environment. To avoid disturbances of the animal, thermal infrared imagers were used to measure the land surface temperature and the body temperature. The results showed that the prediction accuracy of lizard's transient temperature was substantially increased by the use of Monte Carlo techniques (RMSE=0.59 °C) compared to standard model parameterization (RMSE=1.35 °C). Because the model calibration technique presented here is based on physical principles, it should be also useful in more complex, field situations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-64
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
Volume37
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Lizard
  • Transient body temperature modeling
  • Thermal environment
  • Timon lepidus

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