Category Archives: Uncategorized

New Study on Range-Edge Lizard Energetics Published in Collaboration with the Powers Lab

Today a study was published in the journal Copeia detailing how lizards at the cool northern edge of their range energetically manage in an excessively cool climate. The results of this study could provide useful information regarding lizard range shifts resulting from climate change. Lead author of the study was Sean Powers (yes, a Powers lab progeny) who is currently a Ph.D, student at Virginia Commonwealth University. Click here to download the paper.

Lab Heads to the Southwestern Research Station in Arizona

The Powers lab collected data on hummingbirds for nearly a month at the Southwestern Research Station (SWRS) from the latter part of May to late June. Collectively we gathered data on nighttime body temperature management, daytime body mass management, and evaporative heat dissipation during hovering. Collaborator Anusha Shankar (Stony Brook University) and Sarah arrived two weeks before the rest of us to finish up measurements showing use of shallow torpor by hummingbirds. Once Don and Natalie arrived measurements of daytime body mass management and evaporative heat dissipation began. While the evaporation measurements were less successful than we hoped, we still ended our time at SWRS with tons of good data.

Day off from work for a mine tour!

Uncommon Lucifer hummingbird being weighed!

Natalie getting ready to remove a hummingbird from the trap.

Blue-throated hummingbird in the flight chamber.

Blue-throated hummingbird taking a drink after being weighed.

Natalie and Sarah changing out feeders at their trapping station.

Sarah setting up her hummingbird weighing system at SWRS.

Natalie minding her open-flow respirometry system.

Sarah trapping a hummingbird!

The infrared video camera ready to measure hummingbird nighttime surface temperature.

Anusha and Sarah arrived two weeks before the rest of us to collect torpor data.

Off to the University of Montana and Collaboration with the Tobalske Lab

Don Powers and Natalie Amodei traveled to Missoula, MT for the lab’s annual trip to work with Dr. Bret Tobalske. Over the years this has been a fruitful collaboration resulting in several publications relating to hummingbird physiology and biomechanics. This year we continued efforts to gather measurements of total evaporative heat dissipation in hovering calliope hummingbirds (Selasphorus calliope) before hopefully expanding these measurements to other species in Arizona next month.

Dinner at the Tobalske's!

GoPro and high-speed video ready to go!

Natalie setting up open-flow respirometry.

Bret Tobalske building the flight chamber.

Calliope hummingbird in the flight chamber.

Undergraduate Researcher Natalie Amodei Awarded Sigma Xi Grant-in-Aid-of-Research

Congratulations to the Powers Lab’s own Natalie Amodei who was awarded a Sigma Xi Grant-in-Aid-of-Research for her proposal entitled “Can hummingbirds upregulate evaporative heat dissipation during hovering to compensate for loss of passive heat transfer at high temperatures?” Natalie will use the grant to help fund her research in Arizona this summer.

Natalie assembling an open-flow respirometry system.

Powers Lab Part of New Study on Hummingbird Hovering Allometry and Efficiency

Today the Royal Society Proceedings B published a study on hovering metabolic rate allometry and efficiency in hummingbirds that was done in collaboration with the Powers Lab. lead author on the study was Dr. Derrick Groom, who at the time was a graduate student in the laboratory of Dr. Ken Welch. Full text of the paper can be found at: