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Author Topic: Thermoregulation  (Read 293 times)

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Do Zebra 🦓 Stripes Serve a Practical Purpose?
« on: July 24, 2019, 12:31:18 pm »

Do Zebra 🦓 Stripes Serve a Practical Purpose?

Scientists may never understand exactly why zebras have stripes, but 2019 research published in the Journal of Natural History suggests a plausible answer. The alternating black and white markings on zebras may be part of a cooling system that creates a current of air -- the result of convection -- that acts like a fan, helping their frothy sweat to evaporate and keeping the animals cooler. Alison and Stephen Cobb measured the temperature of the different color stripes on two zebras during a hot and sunny day in Kenya. They found that the black stripes absorbed more heat, causing a small-scale convective air movement that cooled the animals through the evaporative process.

Why zebras earned their stripes:

► The researchers also discovered that zebras can raise the hair on their black stripes, while the white ones remain flat, helping trigger the evaporation.

► The researchers concluded that the three components -- convective air movements, frothy sweat, and hair raising -- combine to wick the sweat away from their skin and help them cool down.

► Previous studies have suggested that the stripes are a form of camouflage, even though zebras spend large periods of time out in the open. Another study posited that the alternating colors disorient 🙃 blood-sucking horse flies.

Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23


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