Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras

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Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras. / Horváth, Gábor; Pereszlényi, Ádám; Száz, Dénes; Barta, András; Jánosi, Imre M.; Gerics, Balázs; Åkesson, Susanne.

In: Scientific Reports, Vol. 8, No. 1, 9351, 01.12.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Harvard

Horváth, G, Pereszlényi, Á, Száz, D, Barta, A, Jánosi, IM, Gerics, B & Åkesson, S 2018, 'Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras', Scientific Reports, vol. 8, no. 1, 9351. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

APA

Horváth, G., Pereszlényi, Á., Száz, D., Barta, A., Jánosi, I. M., Gerics, B., & Åkesson, S. (2018). Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras. Scientific Reports, 8(1), [9351]. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

CBE

Horváth G, Pereszlényi Á, Száz D, Barta A, Jánosi IM, Gerics B, Åkesson S. 2018. Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras. Scientific Reports. 8(1). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

MLA

Vancouver

Horváth G, Pereszlényi Á, Száz D, Barta A, Jánosi IM, Gerics B et al. Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras. Scientific Reports. 2018 Dec 1;8(1). 9351. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

Author

Horváth, Gábor ; Pereszlényi, Ádám ; Száz, Dénes ; Barta, András ; Jánosi, Imre M. ; Gerics, Balázs ; Åkesson, Susanne. / Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras. In: Scientific Reports. 2018 ; Vol. 8, No. 1.

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras

AU - Horváth, Gábor

AU - Pereszlényi, Ádám

AU - Száz, Dénes

AU - Barta, András

AU - Jánosi, Imre M.

AU - Gerics, Balázs

AU - Åkesson, Susanne

PY - 2018/12/1

Y1 - 2018/12/1

N2 - There are as many as 18 theories for the possible functions of the stripes of zebras, one of which is to cool the animal. We performed field experiments and thermographic measurements to investigate whether thermoregulation might work for zebra-striped bodies. A zebra body was modelled by water-filled metal barrels covered with horse, cattle and zebra hides and with various black, white, grey and striped patterns. The barrels were installed in the open air for four months while their core temperature was measured continuously. Using thermography, the temperature distributions of the barrel surfaces were compared to those of living zebras. The sunlit zebra-striped barrels reproduced well the surface temperature characteristics of sunlit zebras. We found that there were no significant core temperature differences between the striped and grey barrels, even on many hot days, independent of the air temperature and wind speed. The average core temperature of the barrels increased as follows: White cattle, grey cattle, real zebra, artificial zebra, grey horse, black cattle. Consequently, we demonstrate that zebra-striped coats do not keep the body cooler than grey coats challenging the hypothesis of a thermoregulatory role of zebra stripes.

AB - There are as many as 18 theories for the possible functions of the stripes of zebras, one of which is to cool the animal. We performed field experiments and thermographic measurements to investigate whether thermoregulation might work for zebra-striped bodies. A zebra body was modelled by water-filled metal barrels covered with horse, cattle and zebra hides and with various black, white, grey and striped patterns. The barrels were installed in the open air for four months while their core temperature was measured continuously. Using thermography, the temperature distributions of the barrel surfaces were compared to those of living zebras. The sunlit zebra-striped barrels reproduced well the surface temperature characteristics of sunlit zebras. We found that there were no significant core temperature differences between the striped and grey barrels, even on many hot days, independent of the air temperature and wind speed. The average core temperature of the barrels increased as follows: White cattle, grey cattle, real zebra, artificial zebra, grey horse, black cattle. Consequently, we demonstrate that zebra-striped coats do not keep the body cooler than grey coats challenging the hypothesis of a thermoregulatory role of zebra stripes.

U2 - 10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

DO - 10.1038/s41598-018-27637-1

M3 - Article

VL - 8

JO - Scientific Reports

T2 - Scientific Reports

JF - Scientific Reports

SN - 2045-2322

IS - 1

M1 - 9351

ER -