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Kinesis, like a taxis, is a movement or activity of a cell or an organism in response to a stimulus. However, unlike taxis, the response to the stimulus provided (such as humidity, light intensity or ambient temperature) is non-directional.
The two main types of kineses include:
Orthokinesis: in which the speed of movement of the individual is dependent upon the intensity of the stimulus. Take, for example, the locomotor activity of a woodlouse in relation to temperature. With increased humidity there is an increase in the percentage time that the woodlouse will remain stationary.
Klinokinesis: in which the the frequency or rate of turning is proportional to stimulus intensity.
Both orthokinesis and klinokineses result in aggregations. However, it must be noted that the stimulus does not act to attract or repel individuals.
The same prefixes used with "taxis" can be applied to kineses; see also -kinesis.
- Kendeigh, S. Charles. 1961. Animal Ecology. Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, N.J., 468 p.
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