2.2 Constraints and Diversity
- There are also mathematically describable physical constraints that explain diversity.
- Metabolic rate refers to the amount of energy an animal uses.
- According to physicist Geoffrey West, vascular systems in organisms scale like a fractal. Thus metabolic rate is a result of the network distribution of vessels constrained to body mass.
- All animals live the same amount of metabolic time. Longevity increases with decreasing metabolic rate, meaning animals who use energy more slowly tend to live longer lives.