For ectothermic organisms, environmental temperatures can influence a number of biological processes such as metabolic rate, immune function and locomotor performance. Thus, the body temperatures selected by pregnant females can also affect the health and viability of offspring. In this study, Drs. Javier A. Rodriguez-Robles, Allen G. Gibbs and I tested the thermal preferences of pregnant and non-pregnant female Arizona Bark Scorpions. We also compared rates of water loss between pregnant and non-pregnant female scorpions. By conducting this study, we hoped to find out more about possible tradeoffs experienced by pregnant females in which the selection of higher preferred body temperatures may lead to higher rates of water loss, which may ultimately compromise their survival in arid environments. The interesting results of our study can be found here! PDF
Webber, M.M., Gibbs, A.G. and J.A. Rodríguez-Robles. 2015. Hot and not-so-hot females: reproductive state and thermal preferences of female Arizona Bark Scorpions (Centruroides sculpturatus). Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 28(2): 368-375.