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Data from: Tracheal compression in pupae of the beetle Zophobas morio


Pendar, Hodjat; Melissa, Kenny C.; Socha, John J. (2015), Data from: Tracheal compression in pupae of the beetle Zophobas morio, Dryad, Dataset,


Insects that are small or exhibit low metabolic rates are considered to not require active ventilation to augment diffusive gas exchange. Some pupae with low metabolic rates exhibit abdominal pumping, a behaviour that is known to drive tracheal ventilation in the adults of many species. However, previous work on pupae suggests that abdominal pumping may serve a non-respiratory role. To study the role of abdominal pumping in pupa of the beetle Zophobas morio, we visualized tracheal dynamics with X-rays while simultaneously measuring haemolymph pressure, abdominal movement, and CO2 emission. Pupae exhibited frequent tracheal compressions that were coincident with both abdominal pumping and pulsation of pressure in the haemolymph. However, more than 63% of abdominal pumping events occurred without any tracheal collapse and hence ventilation, suggesting that the major function of the abdominal pump is not respiratory. In addition, this study shows that the kinematics of abdominal pumping can be used to infer the status of the spiracles and internal behaviour of the tracheal system.

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