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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Biophysical Modeling of Water Economy Can Explain Geographic Gradient of Body Size in Anurans

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Gouveia, Sidney F. [1] ; Bovo, Rafael P. [2] ; Rubalcaba, Juan G. [3] ; Da Silva, Fernando Rodrigues [4] ; Maciel, Natan M. [5] ; Andrade, Denis V. [6] ; Martinez, Pablo Ariel [7]
Total Authors: 7
[1] Univ Fed Sergipe, Dept Ecol, BR-49100000 Sao Cristovao, Sergipe - Brazil
[2] Univ Sao Paulo, Inst Biosci, Dept Physiol, BR-05508090 Sao Paulo - Brazil
[3] Rey Juan Carlos Univ, Dept Biol & Geol, Phys & Inorgan Chem, Madrid 28933 - Spain
[4] Univ Fed Sao Carlos, Dept Environm Sci, BR-18052780 Sorocaba, SP - Brazil
[5] Univ Fed Goias, Dept Ecol, BR-74001970 Goiania, Go - Brazil
[6] Sao Paulo State Univ, Dept Zool, BR-13506900 Rio Claro, SP - Brazil
[7] Univ Fed Sergipe, Dept Biol, BR-49100000 Sao Cristovao, Sergipe - Brazil
Total Affiliations: 7
Document type: Journal article
Source: American Naturalist; v. 193, n. 1, p. 51-58, JAN 1 2019.
Web of Science Citations: 6

Geographical gradients of body size express climate-driven constraints on animals, but whether they exist and what causes them in ectotherms remains contentious. For amphibians, the water conservation hypothesis posits that larger bodies reduce evaporative water loss (EWL) along dehydrating gradients. To address this hypothesis mechanistically, we build on well-established biophysical equations of water exchange in anurans to propose a state-transition model that predicts an increase of either body size or resistance to EWL as alternative specialization along dehydrating gradients. The model predicts that species whose water economy is more sensitive to variation in body size than to variation in resistance to EWL should increase in size in response to increasing potential evapotranspiration (PET). To evaluate the model predictions, we combine physiological measurements of resistance to EWL with geographic data of body size for four different anuran species. Only one species, Dendropsophus minutus, was predicted to exhibit a positive body size-PET relationship. Results were as predicted for all cases, with one species-Boana faber-showing a negative relationship. Based on an empirically verified mathematical model, we show that clines of body size among anurans depend on the current values of those traits and emerge as an advantage for water conservation. Our model offers a mechanistic and compelling explanation for the cause and variation of gradients of body size in anurans. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 14/05624-5 - Ecological physiology of amphibians: a modeling approach
Grantee:Rafael Parelli Bovo
Support type: Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
FAPESP's process: 13/04190-9 - Thermal physiology and water balance in anurans along an altitudinal gradient in the Atlantic Rainforest
Grantee:Denis Otavio Vieira de Andrade
Support type: Regular Research Grants
FAPESP's process: 10/20061-6 - Thermal physiology and water balance at different altitudinal gradients in Atlantic rainforest anurans
Grantee:Rafael Parelli Bovo
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
FAPESP's process: 17/10338-0 - Integrating physiological, ecological and evolutionary processes for comprehension of populational and species' responses to environmental changes
Grantee:Rafael Parelli Bovo
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Grantee:André Zuffo Boaratti
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
FAPESP's process: 13/50714-0 - Influence of ecological and evolutionary processes in structuring amphibian communities at different spatial and temporal scales
Grantee:Fernando Rodrigues da Silva
Support type: BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Young Investigators Grants