Surviving the winter
Surviving the winter

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Surviving the winter

1.3.3 Summary of Section 1.3

  1. Coniferous trees are an example of plants that remain active during winter, with adaptations such as reduced water loss.

  2. Endothermy allows some birds and mammals to remain active during cold winters, but places physiological and energetic demands on the organism, e.g. the need to maintain a high metabolic rate and/or reduce heat loss.

  3. Bird plumage and mammal hair are highly effective insulators, reducing heat loss in winter. Heat loss is also controlled by heat exchange mechanisms and reduction in blood flow near the body surface.

  4. The energy needed to sustain a high metabolic rate may be stored through either physiological and biochemical processes (adipose tissue) or changes in behaviour (hoarding or caching of food).

  5. Some animals change their social behaviour during winter, becoming more gregarious.


Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus