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Influence of age, nutritional status and season on the reproductive system in wild male mink (Neovison vison)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Organismal Biology, Environmental Toxicology.
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2011 (English)In: European Journal of Wildlife Research, ISSN 1612-4642, E-ISSN 1439-0574, Vol. 57, no 5, 1057-1063 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The objectives of this study on the reproductive system of wild male mink (Neovison vison) were to determine the influence of age, nutritional status and season on reproductive traits and to produce baseline data that may be used in environmental monitoring programmes. The 117 male mink included in the study were killed by hunters all over Sweden (from latitude 56 degrees N to 67 degrees N) during August to the end of April from 2005 to 2008. The weights of penis, testes, and epididymides were lower, the anogenital distance was shorter and the diameter of seminiferous tubules was less in juveniles compared with adult mink (p<0.0001-p=0.0024). There was a positive effect (p<0.05) of nutritional status on the baculum length and on the anogenital distance, but not on any of the other reproductive traits. The season of sampling influenced the penis, testes and epididymes weights and the diameter of seminiferous tubules (p=0.008-p<0.0001). During spring, 86% of the mink had sperm in their epididymides, whereas the corresponding figure for autumn was 3%; in addition, when the average diameter of the tubules reached 138 mu m, sperm were present in the epididymides. Sperm morphology was analysed in 29 of the mink, and the percentage of morphologically defect sperm were generally low. Taken together, this study suggests that when assessing male reproductive data in wild mink populations, season must be taken into account as well as whether the individuals are juvenile or adult. In contrast, the nutritional status seems not to be of any major significance.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 57, no 5, 1057-1063 p.
Keyword [en]
Mink, Reproduction, Season, Age, Nutrition
National Category
Biological Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-160381DOI: 10.1007/s10344-011-0519-9ISI: 000295437400008OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-160381DiVA: diva2:451010
Available from: 2011-10-24 Created: 2011-10-24 Last updated: 2011-10-24Bibliographically approved

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