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Like humans animals are largely made up of water and must maintainn their water intake.
Osmoregulation in animals
Kidneys play a very large role in human osmoregulation by regulating the amount of water reabsorbed from glomerular filtrate in kidney tubules, which is controlled by hormones such as antidiuretic hormone (ADH), aldosterone, and angiotensin II. For example, a decrease in water potential of blood is detected by osmoreceptors in hypothalamus, which stimulates ADH release from pituitary gland to increase the permeability of the wall of the collecting ducts in the kidneys. Therefore a large proportion of water is reabsorbed from fluid to prevent a fair proportion of water from being excreted.
A major way animals have evolved to osmoregulate is by controlling the amount of water lost through the excretory system.
Osmoregulation in protists
Amoeba make use of contractile vacuoles to collect excretory waste, such as ammonia, from the intracellular fluid by diffusion and active transport. As osmotic action pushes water from the environment into the cytoplasm, the vacuole moves to the surface and disposes the contents into the environment.
Osmoregulation in bacteria
Vertebrate excretory systems
Waste products of the nitrogen metabolism
Ammonia is a toxic by-product of protein metabolism and is generally converted to less toxic substances after it is produced then excreted; mammals convert ammonia to urea, whereas birds and reptiles form uric acid to be excreted with other wastes via their cloacas.
Achieving osmoregulation in vertebrates
Four processes occur:
- filtration — fluid portion of blood (plasma) is filtered from a nephron (functional unit of vertebrate kidney) structure known as the glomerulus into. Bowman's capsule or glomerular capsule (in the kidney's cortex) and flows down the proximal convoluted tubule to a "u-turn" called the Loop of Henle (loop of the nephron) in the medulla portion of the kidney.
- reabsorption — most of the viscous glomerular filtrate is returned to blood vessels that surround the convoluted tubules.
- secretion — the remaining fluid becomes urine, which travels down collecting ducts to the medullary region of the kidney.
- excretion — the urine (in mammals) is stored in the urinary bladder and exits via the urethra; in other vertebrates, the urine mixes with other wastes in the cloaca before leaving the body (frogs also have a urinary bladder).
Water is needed by many birds although their mode of excretion and lack of sweat glands reduces the physiological demands. Some desert birds can obtain their water needs entirely from moisture in their food. They may also have other adaptations such as allowing their body temperature to rise, saving on moisture loss from evaporative cooling or panting. Seabirds can drink seawater and have salt glands inside the head that eliminate excess salt out of the nostrils.
- Animal drinking behavior
- Drinking behavior
- Osmotic concentration
- Salt gland
- Tissue hydration
- Water deprivation
- ↑ Engel, Sophia Barbara (2005). Racing the wind: Water economy and energy expenditure in avian endurance flight, University of Groningen.
- ↑ Tieleman, B.I. (January 1999). The role of hyperthermia in the water economy of desert birds. Physiol. Biochem. Zool. 72 (1): 87–100.
- ↑ Schmidt-Nielsen, Knut (1 May 1960). The Salt-Secreting Gland of Marine Birds. Circulation 21 (5): 955–967.
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Salt and water balance in animals
Animal water intake - Hypertonicity - Isotonicity - Osmoreceptors - Osmoregulation - Homeostasis - Halotolerance (Halophile) - Osmoconformer - Osmoregulation - Renal medulla - Renin-angiotensin system - Salt gland - Supraorbital gland - Thirst - Water intake -