Printer Friendly

Lizards bask for more than warmth.

A lounging lizard might not bask just for warmth--it may be getting a much-needed hit of vitamin D. A new study reports that panther chameleons (one shown) set their sunbathing schedule depending on how much vitamin D they need. The new work, published in the May/June Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, has implications for how zoos and pet owners care for reptiles. Scientists once thought that basking was for regulating body temperature alone, says study leader Kristopher Karsten of Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. But sunbathing is also important for modifying a vitamin D precursor found in skin. Chameleons fed a diet low in vitamin D spent more time basking in the sun than their counterparts, the researchers report. The study "calls attention to the fact that providing ample opportunity for basking is important," says Mark Acierno of Louisiana State University's School of Veterinary Medicine in Baton Rouge.


COPYRIGHT 2009 Science Service, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2009 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Ehrenberg, Rachel
Publication:Science News
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 9, 2009
Previous Article:Oddities in rod cells may help with night sight: nocturnal mammals invert retinal DNA arrangement.
Next Article:Other, friendly fat present in adult humans: brown fat could help keep people warm and slender.

Related Articles
Record a Jaws dropper.
Lizards sunbathe for a vitamin D boost.
Catching some rays.
Slow-motion footage reveals lizards 'walking on water'.
Slow-motion footage reveals lizards 'walking on water'.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters