Highlighted Article: Investigation of a highly modified and previously undescribed fast-start of a larval coral-reef fish, which captures evasive copepod prey as early as 1 day after hatching.
METHODS & TECHNIQUES
Summary: A new, practicable, low-cost cage system for effectively housing small bee colonies to enable investigation of physical conditions, biological factors and environmental contaminants on honey bee responses.
Selection for longer limbs in mice increases bone stiffness and brittleness, but does not alter bending strength
Summary: Fifteen generations of artificial selection for long limb bones in mice substantially increased bone stiffness and brittleness, suggesting bone growth rates can significantly impact bone material properties.
Summary: Investigation of cranial kinesis in the miniaturised lizard Ablepharus kitaibelii provides the first experimental evidence for mesokinesis in a member of the Scincidae.
Summary: Honey bee workers raised in small social groups have higher sucrose responsiveness, worse discrimination performance and lower levels of dopamine than bees raised with more con-specifics.
Fatigue and recovery measured with dynamic properties versus isometric force: effects of exercise intensity
Summary: Novel evidence that isometric and dynamic measures of neuromuscular fatigue following cycling at different intensities are not interchangeable because they do not share the same physiological mechanisms.
Renal acid excretion contributes to acid–base regulation during hypercapnia in air-exposed swamp eel (Monopterus albus)
Summary: The swamp eel – an obligate air-breathing fish from South East Asia – can completely restore extracellular pH within days of exposure to hypercapnia and the kidneys play an important role in this response.
Ammonia-N exposure alters neurohormone levels in the hemolymph and mRNA abundance of neurohormone receptors and associated downstream factors in the gills of Litopenaeus vannamei
Summary: Some neuroendocrine hormones and biogenic amines may regulate the mRNA abundance of ammonia transporter in shrimp gills under ammonia-N stress, and 20 mg l−1 ammonia-N causes severe damage to the hepatopancreas.
Avian surface reconstruction in free flight with application to flight stability analysis of a barn owl and peregrine falcon
Summary: A novel photogrammetry method to reconstruct the surface geometry of flying birds is presented and used to analyse the gliding flight of a barn owl and peregrine falcon.
Highlighted Article: Cottonmouth snakes residing on islands without a permanent source of fresh water are frequently dehydrated, depend on fresh water from rainfall and express drinking responses different from those of mainland conspecifics.
Summary: Evaluation of the visual identification of rivals and prey by two salticid spider species under progressively lower light levels reveals a visual capacity comparable to that of nocturnal spiders.
Phenotypic plasticity in locomotor performance of a monophyletic group of weevils accords with the ‘warmer is better’ hypothesis
Summary: Among nine weevil populations representing five species from the sub-Antarctic, acclimation responses of locomotion thermal performance curves typically accord with the warmer is better (or thermodynamic effects) hypothesis.
Getting older, getting smarter: ontogeny of foraging behaviour in the tropical social wasp Ropalidia marginata
Highlighted Article: Unlike insects inhabiting less-complex landscapes, paper wasps invest more time in familiarising themselves with the landscape before they begin foraging for food, enabling them to increase foraging gain with reduced effort.
Summary: Stiffness gradients measured along the elements of a parasitic wasp ovipositor elucidate a possible steering mechanism used during probing.
Autonomic cardiac regulation facilitates acute heat tolerance in rainbow trout: in situ and in vivo support
Summary: Autonomic regulation allows rainbow trout to achieve their maximal cardiac and whole-organism thermal tolerance during acute warming to extreme temperatures.
Cost of transport is a repeatable trait but is not determined by mitochondrial efficiency in zebrafish (Danio rerio)
Summary: The metabolic cost of movement is fixed within individuals, but differences between individuals mean that movement affects energy budgets differentially, and fish with a high cost may alter dispersal patterns.
Joint angular excursions during cyclical behaviors differ between tetrapod feeding and locomotor systems
Summary: Comparisons between feeding and locomotor systems reveal how selection deploys similar musculoskeletal components to meet differing performance criteria. Across tetrapods, excursions in limb joints are greater and more evolutionarily labile compared with jaw-joint movements.
How does the water springtail optically locate suitable habitats? Spectral sensitivity of phototaxis and polarotaxis in Podura aquatica
Summary: The hexapod Podura aquatica possesses at least two visual pigments and its polarization sensitivity functions in the shorter, blue spectral range following the tendency of polarotactic aquatic insects.
Summary: Mice with a small deletion in the titin gene TTN exhibit severe thermoregulatory deficiencies and have lower metabolic rates than other size-matched rodents.
Is conservation of center of mass mechanics a priority in human walking? Insights from leg-length asymmetry experiments
Summary: Induced leg-length asymmetry demonstrates that peripheral musculoskeletal structures, represented here by stance-phase joint mechanics, are likely targets of control during human walking as opposed to the center of mass.
Highlighted Article: On rough terrain, humans do not choose their walking speed based solely on metabolic energy minimization.
Respiratory sinus arrhythmia is a major component of heart rate variability in undisturbed, remotely monitored rattlesnakes, Crotalus durissus
Summary: Respiratory sinus arrhythmia constitutes a major component of heart rate variability (HRV) in remotely monitored rattlesnakes. Detection of HRV is posited as a reliable indicator of recovery from trauma in animals.