Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Giant claw helps fiddler crabs stay cool in more ways than one

Date:
August 29, 2011
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
A male fiddler crab's oversized claw not only looks cool to the ladies, but new research suggests it literally helps crabs to stay cool. Researchers placed crabs under a hot light and took their temperatures. They found that the temperatures of crabs missing their large claw rose faster and reached a higher maximum than intact crabs.

A male Uca panacea performs the waving display.
Credit: M. Zachary Darnell

A male fiddler crab's oversized claw not only looks cool to the ladies, but new research suggests it literally helps crabs to stay cool. Researchers Zachary Darnell and Pablo Munguia of the University of Texas placed crabs under a hot light and took their temperatures. They found that the temperatures of crabs missing their large claw rose faster and reached a higher maximum than intact crabs.

The finding suggests that in addition to having a role in mating displays and in fighting off competitors, giant claws aid in thermoregulation.

"The major claw may function like a heat sink, transferring heat away from the body and, through convection, dissipating that heat into the air," Dr. Darnell said. The cooling action may help crabs to spend more time out of their burrows for foraging or sexual display. It might also help offset the energetic costs of such a giant appendage, the researchers say.

The research appears in the September 2011 issue of the The American Naturalist, published by The University of Chicago Press for The American Society of Naturalists.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Chicago Press Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. M. Zachary Darnell, Pablo Munguia. Thermoregulation as an Alternate Function of the Sexually Dimorphic Fiddler Crab Claw. The American Naturalist, 2011; 178 (3): 419 DOI: 10.1086/661239

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "Giant claw helps fiddler crabs stay cool in more ways than one." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110828210731.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2011, August 29). Giant claw helps fiddler crabs stay cool in more ways than one. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110828210731.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "Giant claw helps fiddler crabs stay cool in more ways than one." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110828210731.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

Howdini (July 24, 2014) Smoothies are a great way to get in lots of healthy ingredients, plus they taste great! Howdini has a trick for making the perfect single-size smoothie that will save you time on cleanup too! All you need is a blender and a mason jar. Video provided by Howdini
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Reuters - US Online Video (July 24, 2014) An 8-year-old boy is bitten in the leg by a shark while vacationing at a Florida beach. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A new study claims a set of prehistoric T-Rex footprints supports the theory that the giant predators hunted in packs instead of alone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins