If you need an accessible version of this item please contact JSTOR User Support

Thermoregulation in the Mouths of Feeding Gray Whales

John E. Heyning and James G. Mead
Science
New Series, Vol. 278, No. 5340 (Nov. 7, 1997), pp. 1138-1139
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2894257
Page Count: 2
  • Download PDF
  • Cite this Item

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If you need an accessible version of this item please contact JSTOR User Support
Preview not available
Preview not available

Abstract

Vascular structures for heat conservation in the tongue of the gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus) are reported here. Numerous individual countercurrent heat exchangers are found throughout the massive tongue. These converge at the base of the tongue to form a bilateral pair of retia. Temperature measurements from the oral cavity of a live gray whale indicate that more heat may be lost through the blubber layer over the body than through the tongue, despite the fact that the tongue is far more vascularized and has much less insulation. These heat exchangers substantially reduce heat loss when these whales feed in cold waters.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
1138
    1138
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1139
    1139