Sugar and water handling by honeyeaters and sunbirds [ 2006 - 2008 ]

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers Dr PA Fleming; Prof S Nicolson; Dr TJ McWhorter

Brief description Honeyeaters are the major vertebrate pollinators in Australia, playing a vital role in maintenance of healthy ecosystems. These birds are faced with extreme physiological challenges due to their diet, ingesting 2-5 times their body mass in nectar to obtain their daily sugar requirement. Nectarivores are, consequently, masters at processing and assimilating sugars and water; comparative physiology of these charismatic birds will provide deep understanding of sugar and water handling mechanisms. Understanding gut and renal physiology and morphology contributes to the broad base of knowledge required to address pathological and clinical conditions in man, and will enhance our ability to predict effects of environmental change on these birds.

Funding Amount $290,000

Funding Scheme Discovery Projects

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