Biology Tutorials > Regulation of Biological Systems > Temperature Regulation in Animals

Temperature Regulation in Animals

Body temperature regulation by the hypothalamus

Body temperature regulation by the hypothalamus, such as by causing constriction or dilation of skin capillaries and by sweat production

Control of Temperature in Homeotherms

Animals capable of temperature regulation within a given range are deemed homeotherms (alternatively homiotherms or homotherms). They have the ability to regulate temperature via negative feedback control.

Temperature is controlled in a variety of ways in these animals.

The hypothalamus once again acts as a receptor in regulation, by detecting fluctuations in temperature. These receptors are better known as thermoreceptors.

Skin also possesses thermoreceptors which can detect the temperature of the external environment. This information is relayed to the hypothalamus which can, in turn, transmit nerve impulses for corrective mechanisms to occur

Corrective Mechanisms in Temperature Control

Increased sweating is a corrective response aimed to reduce the temperature of the organism.

Vasodilation is a corrective response where the blood vessels close to the skin surface become more dilated, meaning there is a larger surface area for heat to be lost of the external environment from the blood vessel carrying over-heated blood.

Vasoconstriction is the opposite of this and occurs when temperatures in an organism drop. The blood vessels become constricted so that minimal heat loss occurs.

The hairs on your body also play an important role in temperature regulation. A corrective response can occur where the hairs ‘stand on end’, and trap a layer of air between the hair and the skin. This insulation of warmer air next to the skin reduces heat loss, while a thin layer of insulation would increase heat loss.

Other corrective mechanisms are involved, such as a drop in metabolic rate and shivering when temperatures drop.

The next tutorial looks at special species, such as indicator species and endangered species.

 

Credit: FuseSchool – Global Education

Quiz

Choose the best answer from the box. 

Homeotherm
Thermoreceptor
Vasodilation
Vasoconstriction
Hypothalamus
1. Receives temperature information from the receptors and then transmits nerve impulses to the effector
2. A response wherein the blood vessels close to the skin surface become more dilated
3. It is when the blood vessels become constricted so that minimal heat loss will occur.
4. A receptor that detects fluctuations in temperature
5. An animal that can regulate body temperature within a given range

Send Your Results (Optional)

Your Name
To Email
Biology Tutorials > Regulation of Biological Systems > Temperature Regulation in Animals

You will also like...

Birth Control and Contraception
Birth Control and Contraception

Different pregnancy and birth control and contraception strategies are described. Read this tutorial to learn each of th..

Water Cycle
The Water Cycle

The water cycle (also referred to as the hydrological cycle) is a system of continuous transfer of water from the air, s..

Biological Cell Defense
Biological Cell Defense

Organisms employ different strategies to boost its defenses against antigens. Humans have an immune system to combat pat..

temperature - abiotic factor
Abiotic and Biotic Factors

This tutorial deals with the abiotic factors of the freshwater environment that determine what sort of life would be sui..

Cell Respiration
Cell Respiration

Cell respiration is the process of creating ATP. It is "respiration" because it utilizes oxygen. Know the different stag..

Types and Causes of Brain Damage
Types and Causes of Brain Damage

This tutorial describes the different types and causes of brain damage. Find out how genetics, physical injury, lack of ..