Behavioural thermoregulation in the mopane worm (lepidoptera)

Sara L. Frears, Steven L. Chown, Peter I. Webb

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19 Citations (Scopus)


1. In the Wild Imbrasia belina larvae are unlikely to encounter temperatures low enough to inhibit activity (c8°C) but operative temperatures approaching upper critical (c43-48°C) are common. 2. We found no evidence for physiological elevation of body temperature in this species in the laboratory. 3. Based on observations of behaviour in the field and laboratory we suggest that there is little opportunity, need or evidence for the behavioural elevation of body temperature in I. belina larvae but note that hanging with the head and thorax separated from the substrate is a response to dangerously high body temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-330
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
Issue number4-5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Behavioural thermoregulation
  • Caterpillar
  • Imbrasia belina
  • Mopane worm

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