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Reproductive biology of arvicola sapidus rodentia arvicolidae in the ebro delta spain



Reproductive biology of arvicola sapidus rodentia arvicolidae in the ebro delta spain



Zeitschrift fuer Saeugetierkunde 52(6): 364-371



Studied the reproductive cycle of the southwestern water vole, Arvicola sapidus in the Ebro delta (Tarragonia, Spain). 145 specimens (79 .male.male., 66 .female.female.) captured between 1981 and 1984 were analysed. To evaluate the maturity and sexual activity in males the cytological analysis of the testicular content, minor and major diameter of the testicle and length of the seminal vasicle were considered. In the females, the state of the vulva, development and vascularisation of uterus and ovaries, and embryos and placental scars were registered. The presence of spermatozoids is constant in adult individuals throughout the year. The seminal vesicles and the testicles vary considerably in size throughout the year. The minimum is reached in December and January, and the maximum in June. Between March and October all adult females are sexually active. The sexual activty is lowest in December-January with values arround 35-44%. The presence of pregnant females is limited to the February-October period. The average litter size is 3.31 .+-. 1.20, n=19. The continued sexual activity of some females during autumn and winter, the constant presence of spermatozoids in males throughout the whole year as well as the capture of juvenile individuals in January, suggest the possibility of reproductive activity in November and December. Extrinsic factors may regulate to a certain degree the increase or decrease of sexual activity in different years.

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Accession: 006316390

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