The development of lateral-line receptors in Eigenmannia (Teleostei, Gymnotiformes) . II. The electroreceptive lateral-line system

Vischer, H.A.

Brain Behavior and Evolution 33(4): 223-236


ISSN/ISBN: 0006-8977
PMID: 2758312
Accession: 021906862

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Weakly electric fish of the genus Eigenmannia were induced to spawn in conditions simulating the tropical rainy season. The skin of embryos of different ages was prepared for histological examination, and whole animals were examined by various histological methods and scanning electron microscopy. It was found that the electrosensory system develops after the first mechanoreceptive lines have formed. The tuberous and ampullary organs initially form adjacent to the lines of the lateral-line system. The tuberous organs develop at a rate 5 times higher than that of the ampullary organs. The rate of development for both classes of electroreceptors is 4 times higher on the head than on the trunk. The first tuberous organs develop on the head at day 7 and on the trunk at day 8. They increase in number and size during the growth of the fish. The ampullary organs begin to form on the head and on the most rostral part of the trunk at day 8. They are deeply sunk into the corium and have the same number of receptor cells as in adults. There are both ampullary and tuberous organs within fields of receptors that are innervated by a single nerve branch.