Life Lines by Dr. Dolittle

Sponsored by the American Physiological Society

Why shrews don’t need sweaters

Research presented by Dr. Tobias Fromme (Technical University of Munich) and colleagues at the 2021 Experimental Biology conference shows that Etruscan shrews (pictured above) have a rather large amount of fat located between their kidneys, which is close to their major blood vessels. This fat depot is a mixture of both brown and beige adipose tissue and is thought to help generate metabolic heat to keep these tiny mammals warm in cold weather. Considering their tiny stature, they have a serious need to produce their own heat to stay warm. Although they would look rather cute in a sweater.  

Categories: Environment, Extreme Animals, Nature's Solutions

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