The Tiny Marsupial The Red Kaluta Is Revealing Secrets Of Water Conservation

Red desert sand. Mark Kolbe/Getty Images

The little red kaluta, a marsupial found in dry regions of Western Australia, doesn’t lose as much liquid to evaporation as you’d expect when conditions get tough.

Professor Philip Withers of the University of Western Australia says the researchers have found there’s tight internal control of evaporative water loss with the red kaluta.

According to a study published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society, the resuts suggest that mammals and birds can regulate evaporative water loss independent of humidity.

This independence would conserve water at low humidity and avoid adjustments to changes in evaporative heat loss.

Physiological independence of evaporative water loss is probably not just an unusual capacity of a few species, such as the little kaluta, but a more general capability of many species.

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