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The standard energetics of mammalian carnivores: Felidae and Hyaenidae

Publication: Canadian Journal of Zoology
December 2000


Data concerning the energy expenditure of nine species in the family Felidae and one species in the family Hyaenidae are presented, all of which were obtained under standard conditions. An examination of basal rates of metabolism in these felids and in two species reported in the literature indicates that basal rate is primarily correlated with body mass; of these species, nine have a high basal metabolic rate by general mammalian standards, the two exceptions being the margay and jaguarundi. The low basal metabolic rate of the margay may be related to its arboreal habit in association with small muscle mass, but the reason for the low rate in the jaguarundi is unknown. The omnivorous striped hyaena and termitivorous aardwolf have typical mammalian basal rates. Felids that weigh less than 7 kg have slightly low minimal thermal conductances relative to mammals generally; larger species have high conductances. Felids have slightly high body temperatures.


On trouvera ici des données recueillies dans des conditions classiques sur la dépense énergétique chez neuf espèces de Felidae et une espèce d'Hyaenidae. L'examen du taux de métabolisme de base chez ces félidés et chez deux espèces mentionnées dans la littérature a révélé que le taux de base est surtout relié à la masse totale; parmi ces espèces, neuf ont un taux de métabolisme de base élevé comparativement aux mammifères en général, à l'exception du margay et du jaguarundi. Le taux de métabolisme peu élevé du margay est probablement attribuable à ses moeurs arboricoles et à sa masse musculaire réduite, mais le taux de métabolisme de base peu élevé du jaguarundi n'a pu être expliqué. La Hyène rayée, animal omnivore, et le Protèle, un termitivore, ont des métabolismes de base typiques de mammifères. Les Felidae dont la masse est inférieure à 7 kg ont une conductance thermique minimale légèrement faible; les espèces plus grandes ont une conductance élevée. Chez les Felidae, la température du corps est légèrement élevée.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

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cover image Canadian Journal of Zoology
Canadian Journal of Zoology
Volume 78Number 12December 2000
Pages: 2227 - 2239


Version of record online: 15 February 2011


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