The effects of temperature, body mass and feeding on metabolic rate in the tsetse fly Glossina morsitans centralis: Short communication

John S. Terblanche, Steven L. Chown

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Metabolic rate variation with temperature, body mass, gender and feeding status is documented for Glossina morsitans centralis. Metabolic rate [mean ± SE; VCO2 = 19.78 ± 3.11 μL CO2 h -1 in males (mean mass = 22.72 ± 1.41 mg) and 27.34 ± 3.86 μL CO2 h-1 in females (mean mass = 29.28 ± 1.96 mg) at 24°C in fasted individuals] is strongly influenced by temperature, body mass and feeding status, but not by gender once the effects of body mass have been accounted for. A significant interaction between gender and feeding status is seen, similar to patterns of metabolic rate variation documented in Glossina morsitans morsitans. Synthesis of metabolic rate-temperature relationships in G. m. centralis, G. m. morsitans and Glossina pallidipes indicate that biting frequency as well as mortality risks associated with foraging will probably increase with temperature as a consequence of increasing metabolic demands, although there is little evidence for variation among species at present. Furthermore, metabolic rate-body mass relationships appear to be similarly invariant among these species. These data provide important physiological information for bottom-up modelling of tsetse fly population dynamics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-180
Number of pages6
JournalPhysiological Entomology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Insect vector
  • Q10 effect
  • Respiration rate
  • Sex-related variation
  • Temperature effects

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