How melanism affects the sensitivity of lizards to climate change

Jonathan Goldenberg, Sebastian Mader, Federico Massetti, Karen Bisschop, Liliana D'Alba, Rampal S. Etienne, Susana Clusella Trullas & Matthew Shawkey
The impact of climate change on global biodiversity is firmly established, but the differential effect of climate change on populations within the same species is rarely considered. In ectotherms, melanism (i.e. darker integument due to heavier deposition of melanin) can significantly influence thermoregulation, as dark individuals generally heat more and faster than bright ones. Therefore, darker ectotherms might be more susceptible to climate change. Using the color-polyphenic lizard Karusasaurus polyzonus (Squamata: Cordylidae), we hypothesized that,...
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