Types of animal Adaptations

Biology Doubts

Types of animal Adaptations

In animal following types of adaptation are seen

1) Migration

It is a movement of an animal group from one place to other places mainly for food and climate. Migration is of three types –

(i) Daily (ii) Seasonal (iii) Periodic

The longest distance traveled by an animal is that of sea bird Arctic Tern (Sterna parasissaea). It nests in North pole during summer but flies to Antarctica during autumn to return to north pole during spring. The distance traveled is 17,600 km.

Golden plover (Pluvialis dominica) is a winter visitor in India. It flies nonstop for 3600 km and uses only 2 ounces of high octane fuel. Birds use position of sun, moon, stars and magnetic field for direction and navigation.

Caribou, ElK and whales migrate during winter to warmer placed for search of food.

In Africa wild beasts travel long distances along the geographical pattern of seasonal rainfall and hence availability of fresh vegetation.

Periodic migration occurs in locusts when their number increases beyond the feeding capacity of the home land.

Sea Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) migrated from sea to ascend rivers for spawning (anadromous).

Eel (Anguilla bengalensis) migrates to sea for spawning (Catadromous).

Camouflage (Cryptic Apperance)

It is the ability to blend with the surrounding or background. It is the most common type of adaptation by animals to remain unnoticed for protection or aggression.

e.g. many insects, reptiles and mammals.

It is difficult to distinguish leaf like grasshopper (Arantia rectifolia) or praying Mantis (Mantis religiosa) from the surrounding foliage.

Dead leaf butterfly (Phyllocrania paradoxa) cannot be noticed unless and until they show movement.

Camouflage is protective to animals which are preyed upon by others.

2) Mimicry

It is resemblance of one species with another in order to obtain advantage, especially, against predation.

The species which is imited is called model while the animal which imitates is known as mimic or Model is either ferocious or distasteful to predator.

Mimicry is of two types (i) Batesian (ii) Mullerian

3) Batesian Mimicry

The mimic is defense less. It has however resemblance to a dangerous or unpalatable model so that the predator usually does not prey upon it e.g. Viceroy butterfly mimics unpalatable toxic monarch butterfly.

4) Mullerian Mimicry

It is resemblance to two animal species, especially insects, both unpalatable or ferocious, to their mutual benefit e.g. Monarch Butterfly and Queen Butterfly.

5) Warning ​Colouration

Dart frog (Phyllobates bicolor, Dendrobates pumilio) found in tropical rain forests of South America are highly poisonous as well as brightly coloured to be easily noticed. Predators usually avoid them.

6) Ech​olocation

Bats are nocturnal flying mammals which do not employ eye sight for location of their path, food, place or rest etc. They produce high frequency sound which produces echoes after striking various objects on the principle of sonar. Echos are analysed by the bats to know their path.

7) Hiberna​tion and Aestivation

Hibernation or winter sleep and aestivation or summer torpor are quite common in ectothermal (cold blodded) animals. They however, also occur in those warm blooded or endothermal animals which do not migrate from area of intense cold or heat.

Frog an ectothermal animal, shows both hibernation and aestivation.

Northern Ground squirrels, endothermal mammals, undergo hibernation during winter in comparatively warm places. During hibernation their body temperature drops but remains above the outside atmosphere. Breathing and heart beat become slow to reduce consumption of stored food.

Endothermal Ground squirrels of south-western deserts undergo aestivation and lie in torpid or listless state inside the burrows during hot dry periods.

8) Adaptat​ion to Excessive Cold (Cold Hardening)

Sea animals cannot undergo hibernation. Sessile animals cannot migrate. These and some other animals protect themselves from excessive cold by developing cold hardiness e.g. barnacles and molluscs of intertidal zones of cold areas, several insects and spiders.

9) Adaptati​on to Water Scarcity

Animals faced with water scarcity as found in arid or desert areas, show two types of adaptations-reducing water loss and ability to tolerate arid conditions.

Kangroo or Desert Rat seldom drinks water. It has a thick coat to minimize evaporative desiccation. The animal seldom comes out of its comparatively humid and cool burrow during the day time. 90% of its water requirement is met from metabolic water (water produced by respiratory breakdown) while 10% is got from food.

Loss of water is minimized by producing nearly solid urine and faeces.

Camel has a number of adjustments to desert conditions – economical in water consumption, minimizing surface exposure, tolerance to fluctuations of temperature, no sweating, till body temperature rises to , maintenance of blood stream moisture with body cells capable of tolerating upto 40% dehydration. The animal produces dry faces and concentrated urine. During period of nonavailability of water the animal stores urea and does not produce urine. For More Biology Doubts check out Physics Wallah Biology Doubts sections

Types of animal Adaptations pdf 


Types of animal Adaptations

Types of animal Adaptations

Types of animal Adaptations

Types of animal Adaptations

Types of animal Adaptations

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