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Diving Seals and Meditating YogisStrategic Metabolic Retreats$
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Robert Elsner

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780226246710

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226247045.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 15 October 2021

Hibernation and diving

Hibernation and diving

(p.105) 7 Hibernation and diving
Diving Seals and Meditating Yogis

Robert Elsner

University of Chicago Press

This chapter identifies the differences between diving and hibernation. The primary defining characteristics of both diving and hibernation rest in their profound reductions in metabolism, while their rates of onset and recovery are clearly very different. Most mammalian dives last a few minutes, though they can exceed an hour in some species, and the onset and end of their protective reactions usually occur abruptly at the beginning and termination of the dive. In contrast, hibernation in one form or another lasts hours, days, weeks, or months, varying among conditions and species, all involving a lowering of body temperature. This form of physiological depression induces metabolic conservation essential for survival by many mammals and birds in response to such conditions as food scarcity, dehydration, and seasonal climate change. However, these two hypometabolic states both involve an acidosis—an increased acidity in the blood and other body tissue.

Keywords:   diving, hibernation, reduced metabolism, physiological depression, metabolic conservation, acidosis

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