129 and the extent of their reliance on aerobiosis and anaerobiosis will be examined. Hormonal effects and the enzymatic bases of metabolism in reptiles will also be discussed. Some of these aspects have been reviewed previously. Benedict (1932) summarized early determinations of metabolic rates and respiratory quotients in his comprehensive monograph on the physiology of large reptiles. Dawson (1967) and Templeton (1970) considered measurements of oxygen consumption in resting and active animals and the effect of temperature on metabolic rate.
list of metabolic determinations for reptiles under various conditions has been compiled by Bennett and Dawson (1971).
General Considerations of Reptilian Metabolic Rates
Regnault and Reiset (1849) were the first to report metabolic measurements on a reptile. Subsequently, their work has been followed by many studies concerning a large number of species (see Table I). The initial metabolic measurements on reptiles involved determination of rates of production of heat or carbon dioxide. Later estimates have generally depended on determina- tion of rates of oxygen consumption, through use of manometric techniques or, more recently, paramagnetic oxygen analysis. The data amassed on metabolic rates have thus far permitted few generalizations because of variability in the results of different investigators, even on the same species. This variability must partially reflect such things as differences in activity level and sex among the experimental subjects. However, differences in other factors more amenable to experimental manipulation, e.g., season, nutritional state, state of acclimation, and time of observation, also are involved. The influence of each of these factors will be examined in later sections of this review. We feel that the variability thus far encountered in studies of reptilian metabolism would be reduced with better standardization of experimental conditions. Metabolism within a single organism is not necessarily highly variable, judging by Roberts' (1968a) results on the lizard
Measurements of standard metabolic rate on individuals of this species were repeatable within 10 on successive nights. Standard metabolic rate, which requires use of fasting animals resting in the dark in the inactive phase of their diurnal cycle, represents a highly reproducible function indicative of maintenance cost. Consequently, standard metabolic rate is the most meaning- ful measurement for comparison of fundamental metabolic levels between different animals. Unfortunately, very few studies have been conducted on reptiles under truly standard conditions (see Table I), and diurnal observa- tions on animals resting in the dark have generally been used as the compara- tive base. The question posed by an investigator should, of course, determine the type of data required. However, any study should specify as much as