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CZAAWE Resource Article
The quality and fertility of sperm collected from European common frog (Rana temporaria) carcasses refrigerated for up to 7 days
Year of publication
There is a catastrophic decrease in the biodiversity of amphibians coupled with the loss of genetic variation. The perpetuation of amphibian biodiversity demands a multifaceted approach, including the use of reproduction technologies (RTs), to enable efficient reproduction in captivity and to prevent the loss of genetic variation. Reproduction technologies for the storage of amphibian sperm for days to weeks, when refrigerated at 4°C, or for millennia when cryopreserved have recently undergone rapid development. Sperm from amphibians may be obtained through excision and maceration of testes; however, this is sometimes not possible with rare or endangered species. Alternate methods of obtaining sperm are through hormonal induction, or as spermatozoa from the carcasses of recently dead amphibians. The use of sperm from carcasses of recently dead amphibians is particularly valuable when sampled from genetically important founders in conservation breeding programs, or where catastrophic mortality is occurring in natural population. Sperm harvested over a period of 7 days from the testes of European common frog (Rana temporaria) carcasses stored in a refrigerator were assessed for percentage and progressive motility, cell membrane integrity, nuclear DNA fragmentation, and fertilizing ability. In addition, the survival of resulting embryos to hatch was recorded. Results indicated that some sperm of R. temporaria remain motile and fertile when harvested from frog carcasses refrigerated up to 7 days post-mortem, and resulting embryos can develop to hatch. Zoo Biol. 32:400–406, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals Inc.