Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Aging gracefully: Diving seabirds shed light on declines with age

Date:
September 2, 2014
Source:
Wiley
Summary:
Scientists who studied long-lived diving birds, which represent valuable models to examine aging in the wild, found that blood oxygen stores, resting metabolism and thyroid hormone levels all declined with age, although diving performance did not. Apparently, physiological changes do occur with age in long-lived species, but they may have no detectable effect on behavioral performance.

Bird in study. Physiological changes do occur with age in long-lived species, but they may have no detectable effect on behavioral performance, scientists have found.
Credit: Image sourced from Kyle Elliott

Scientists who studied long-lived diving birds, which represent valuable models to examine aging in the wild, found that blood oxygen stores, resting metabolism and thyroid hormone levels all declined with age, although diving performance did not. Apparently, physiological changes do occur with age in long-lived species, but they may have no detectable effect on behavioral performance.

Related Articles


The Functional Ecology findings suggest that reductions in metabolism with age can be viewed as strategic restraint on the part of individuals who are likely to encounter energy-related senescence.

"As a graduate student, it was humbling to study seabirds older than me. Despite expending more energy for their body size when flying than any other animal, living in cold, harsh Arctic environments, diving over 100 meters in depth, and having to search for unpredictable food, even old birds return year after year to rear their chicks with no discernible change in their performance," said lead author Dr. Kyle Elliott. "By understanding how seabirds can cope with high metabolic demands with no effect on longevity, we may learn how old humans can reduce their chance of being impacted by metabolic diseases."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Kyle H. Elliott, James F. Hare, Maryline Le Vaillant, Anthony J. Gaston, Yan Ropert-Coudert, W. Gary Anderson. Ageing gracefully: physiology but not behaviour declines with age in a diving seabird. Functional Ecology, 2014; DOI: 10.1111/1365-2435.12316

Cite This Page:

Wiley. "Aging gracefully: Diving seabirds shed light on declines with age." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 September 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140902114719.htm>.
Wiley. (2014, September 2). Aging gracefully: Diving seabirds shed light on declines with age. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140902114719.htm
Wiley. "Aging gracefully: Diving seabirds shed light on declines with age." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140902114719.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 23, 2014) Price check on honey? Bear cub startles Oregon drugstore shoppers. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

AFP (Oct. 23, 2014) One man is on a mission to boost the population of wolves in China's violence-wracked far west. The animal - symbol of the Uighur minority there - is under threat with a massive human resettlement program in the region. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) Conflicting studies published in the same week re-ignited the debate over whether we should be eating breakfast. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weird-Looking Dinosaur Solves 50-Year-Old Mystery

Weird-Looking Dinosaur Solves 50-Year-Old Mystery

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) You've probably seen some weird-looking dinosaurs, but have you ever seen one this weird? It's worth a look. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

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