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Reproduction biology of fresh water pulmonate mollusks

Reproduction biology of fresh water pulmonate mollusks

Zoologicheskii Zhurnal 59(7): 986-995

The biology of reproduction of 27 molluscan species from the families Lymnaeidae, Physidae, Bulinidae and Planorbidae was studied. The sexual maturation of the freshwater pulmonate mollusks has 2 phases: male sexual maturity and hermaphroditic sexual maturity. The spermatheca and copulation play an important role in the transition from 1 phase to another. The spermatheca is an organ in which excess allo- and autosperm are resorbed. The products of resorption switch on the endocrine system controlling sexual reproduction. An individual is always made at its 1st copulation, which is necessary for stimulation and activation of the female system. Subsequent copulations maintain the hermaphroditic sexual phase. The diversity of copulation types is considered a peculiar expression of a humoral mechanism which switches on the endocrine system controlling sexual reproduction in the pulmonate mollusks. Schemes of control over male and female sexual activites are given.

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