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Investigation on Oxygen and Carbon Dioxide Fluctuations in Lasiopodomys mandarinus Burrows

Investigation on Oxygen and Carbon Dioxide Fluctuations in Lasiopodomys mandarinus Burrows

Sun Hong1, Zhang Yifeng1, Wang Baishi2, Li Yangwei1, Xu Wenbo1, Mao Runkun1 and Wang Zhenglong1,*

1School of Life Sciences, Zhengzhou University, No. 100 Science Avenue, Zhengzhou, Henan Province 450001, P.R. China
2Institute of Forensic Science, Ministry of Public Security, No.17, South Muxidi Lane, Xicheng District, Beijing 100038, P.R. China

Sun Hong and Zhang Yifeng have contributed equally in this article.

*      Corresponding author: wzl@zzu.edu.cn

 

ABSTRACT

The mandarin voles (Lasiopodomys mandarinus) is a subterranean rodent that spends its entire life underground in burrow systems, having to endure a hypoxic environment. In this study, we used the embedded artificial tunnel method in a natural burrow system to measure oxygen (O2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations and the temperature and humidity in the underground burrows of mandarin voles in Xinzheng, Henan Province, China during the spring and summer of 2015. Our results show that 1) the depth and complexity of the burrow were higher during summer than during spring; 2) maximal CO2 levels (2.55%) and minimal O2 levels (16.04%) were recorded in the underground burrows during summer; and 3) the temperature and humidity in the underground burrows were relatively stable during spring and summer. In conclusion, mandarin voles face hypoxic/hypercapnic stress predominantly during summer. The humidity and temperature of the burrows were relatively stable and were not affected by seasonal variation. The burrow system of mandarin voles was more complex and deeper during the rainy summer season. Our study provides a basis for further investigations regarding the evolutionary, physiological, and molecular basis of hypoxia-hypercapnia inmandarin voles.
 

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Pakistan Journal of Zoology

August

Vol. 51, Iss. 4, Pages 1203-1598

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