Maximum metabolic rate, relative lift, wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude during tethered flight in the adult locust Locusta migratoria

Snelling, Edward P., Seymour, Roger S., Matthews, Philip G. D. and White, Craig R. (2012) Maximum metabolic rate, relative lift, wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude during tethered flight in the adult locust Locusta migratoria. Journal of Experimental Biology, 215 18: 3317-3323. doi:10.1242/jeb.069799

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Author Snelling, Edward P.
Seymour, Roger S.
Matthews, Philip G. D.
White, Craig R.
Title Maximum metabolic rate, relative lift, wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude during tethered flight in the adult locust Locusta migratoria
Formatted title
Maximum metabolic rate, relative lift, wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude during tethered flight in the adult locust Locusta migratoria
Journal name Journal of Experimental Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-0949
1477-9145
Publication date 2012-09-15
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1242/jeb.069799
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 215
Issue 18
Start page 3317
End page 3323
Total pages 7
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher The Company of Biologists
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Flying insects achieve the highest mass-specific aerobic metabolic rates of all animals. However, few studies attempt to maximise the metabolic cost of flight and so many estimates could be sub-maximal, especially where insects have been tethered. To address this issue, oxygen consumption was measured during tethered flight in adult locusts Locusta migratoria, some of which had a weight attached to each wing (totalling 30–45% of body mass). Mass-specific metabolic rate increased from 28±2 μmol O2 g−1 h−1 at rest to 896±101 μmol O2g−1 h−1 during flight in weighted locusts, and to 1032±69 μmol O2 g−1 h−1 in unweighted locusts. Maximum metabolic rate of locusts during tethered flight (mO2; μmol O2 h−1) increased with body mass (Mb; g) according to the allometric equation mO2=994Mb0.75±0.19, whereas published metabolic rates of moths and orchid bees during hovering free flight (HO2) are approximately 2.8-fold higher, HO2=2767Mb0.72±0.08. The modest flight metabolic rate of locusts is unlikely to be an artefact of individuals failing to exert themselves, because mean maximum lift was not significantly different from that required to support body mass (95±8%), mean wingbeat frequency was 23.7±0.6 Hz, and mean stroke amplitude was 105±5 deg in the forewing and 96±5 deg in the hindwing – all of which are close to free-flight values. Instead, the low cost of flight could reflect the relatively small size and relatively modest anatomical power density of the locust flight motor, which is a likely evolutionary trade-off between flight muscle maintenance costs and aerial performance.
Keyword Insect
Lift
Locust
Maximum metabolic rate
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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