The locomotion and burrowing of meso-fauna (i.e., small rodents, lizards, etc.) are strongly influenced by the fabric of the soils they inhabit. Micro-sized animals (e.g. ants) can precisely manipulate individual grains to ensure structural integrity. However, meso-scale animals are somehow capable of shaping networks of soil grains for desired results, despite being incapable of precisely manipulating individual grains. Understanding how meso-scale animals locomote and burrow in a variety of soils can help us model and predict how soils will behave during novel explorations in challenging terrains.
Funding: $30K (2022)
Goal: We will perform experiments with live jerboas (bipedal desert rodents) to observe their locomotion and burrowing behaviors on sands of various hydration levels, then impregnate the sand with a resin and determine the spatial pattern of grains using XRCT.
Token Investors: Talia Moore, F. Estéfan T. Garcia
Project ID: 1008