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Animal Locomotion$
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Andrew Biewener and Sheila Patek

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198743156

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198743156.001.0001

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Energetics of Locomotion

Energetics of Locomotion

(p.34) Chapter 3 Energetics of Locomotion
Animal Locomotion
Andrew A. Biewener, Shelia N. Patek
Oxford University Press

The energetic costs of terrestrial locomotion are placed in the context of the fuel sources that animals use for generating adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and how these fuel sources affect an animal’s capacity for sustainable aerobic metabolism. Aerobic capacity and energy use are closely linked to an animal’s thermoregulatory strategy. Patterns of energy use across terrestrial gaits, sloped substrates and level ground are examined alongside explanatory models. The energetics of terrestrial locomotion is compared with the energetics of swimming and flight. Whereas the support of an animal’s weight against gravity dominates the cost of moving on land and through air, overcoming resistive forces of drag strongly affects the energy cost of movement through water and air. The physical properties of land, water and air influence how energy use changes with the speed of movement. Given these energetic considerations, animals use different locomotor strategies and mechanisms to avoid fatigue and increase endurance capacity.

Keywords:   adenosine triphosphate (ATP), energetics, aerobic metabolism, anaerobic metabolism, aerobic capacity, endurance, fatigue, transport cost

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