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1 March 2016 MALE REPRODUCTIVE PHYSIOLOGY AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION IN THE MAGELLANIC PENGUIN (SPHENISCUS MAGELLANICUS) USING CHILLED-STORED SEMEN
Justine K. O'Brien, Hendrik H. Nollens, Todd L. Schmitt, Karen J. Steinman, Jean M. Dubach, Todd R. Robeck
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Abstract

Research was performed to increase our understanding of male Magellanic penguin (Spheniscus magellanicus) reproductive biology and to develop artificial insemination (AI) technology to assist with maintaining the species' genetic diversity. Seminal traits were characterized from seven males with noncontaminated ejaculates (n = 123) displaying high in vitro motion parameters, membrane integrity, and morphology. Seven females were maintained in nest sites that permitted visual, auditory, and tactile contact with their paired male but not copulation for 18.3 ± 2.4 days before egg lay. After cloacal AI (2.6 ± 0.4 inseminations/female) with semen chilled for up to 20.5 hr at 5°C, all females produced one to two fertile eggs, with the first oviposition occurring within 7 days of plasma progesterone concentrations exceeding 0.8 ng/ml. Overall fertility was 91.7%, hatchability was 63.6%, and genetic analyses confirmed that all embryos and hatchlings were sired by AI males. The heterospermic AI design demonstrated that eggs were fertilized by spermatozoa chilled for 1.5–19.8 hr before AI and were laid 4.5–11.5 days post AI. These results contribute new data on Magellanic penguin sperm biology and demonstrate that high fertility rates after AI of chilled semen can be achieved with females remaining in proximity to their paired mate.

Copyright 2016 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Justine K. O'Brien, Hendrik H. Nollens, Todd L. Schmitt, Karen J. Steinman, Jean M. Dubach, and Todd R. Robeck "MALE REPRODUCTIVE PHYSIOLOGY AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION IN THE MAGELLANIC PENGUIN (SPHENISCUS MAGELLANICUS) USING CHILLED-STORED SEMEN," Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 47(1), 206-222, (1 March 2016). https://doi.org/10.1638/2015-0209.1
Received: 11 September 2015; Published: 1 March 2016
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KEYWORDS
Artificial insemination
Avian
CASA. conservation
penguin
sperm biology
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