Get a grip
The article “Pruney fingers get better grip” (SN: 2/9/13, p. 11) indicated that skin wrinkling in response to extended exposure to water was the result of constricting blood vessels. I was waiting to read about the possibility that this was the body’s response to prevent heat loss. Water has a high heat capacity, and therefore I might expect that blood vessel constriction is to minimize heat transfer from the body to the water. Perhaps the wrinkling is a secondary, albeit advantageous, effect.
Jim Marrone, Pinole, Calif.
As a conservation biologist, I am wary of claims extrapolated from a survey of previous studies “Cats claim billions of bird and small mammal victims annually,” (SN: 2/23/13, p. 14) — studies which themselves are