Social and photoperiod effects on reproduction in five species of Peromyscus

Brian C. Trainor, Lynn B. Martin, Kelly M. Greiwe, Joshua R. Kuhlman, Randy J. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

At temperate latitudes, mammals and birds use changes in day length to time their reproductive activities to coincide with seasonal fluctuations in the environment. Close to the equator, however, conditions permissive of breeding do not track changes in day length as well, so other cues may be more important than photoperiod. In a variety of vertebrates, social interactions regulate breeding condition. We hypothesized that individuals of different species of Peromyscus mice found closer to the equator would respond more strongly to housing with an opposite sex conspecific than they would to photoperiod. To test this hypothesis, we compared the effects of long and short day lengths versus 8 days of pair housing with a female on reproductive tissue weights and testosterone (T) concentrations in five species of Peromyscus (P. aztecus, P. eremicus, P. maniculatus, P. melanophrys, and P. polionotus). After 13 weeks of short days (8L:16D), P. maniculatus, P. melanophrys, and P. polionotus significantly reduced relative testes mass compared to long day (16L:8D) housed animals. Social housing, however, had no effect on tissue weights in any species. However, male P. polionotus paired with females for 8 days increased T concentrations compared to single-housed males, whereas paired P. maniculatus reduced T. These data suggest that mechanisms of photoperiodic and social regulation of reproductive function are mediated by different physiological mechanisms among closely-related species and that both phylogeny and environmental factors contribute to patterns of reproductive plasticity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-259
Number of pages8
JournalGeneral and Comparative Endocrinology
Volume148
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2006
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Peromyscus
Photoperiod
Reproduction
photoperiod
Breeding
Weights and Measures
tissue weight
Phylogeny
Interpersonal Relations
public housing
pair housing
Birds
Cues
Vertebrates
Testosterone
Testis
Mammals
Peromyscus maniculatus
breeding
testosterone

Keywords

  • Evolution
  • Peromyscus
  • Photoperiod
  • Social experience
  • Testes
  • Testosterone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology

Cite this

Trainor, B. C., Martin, L. B., Greiwe, K. M., Kuhlman, J. R., & Nelson, R. J. (2006). Social and photoperiod effects on reproduction in five species of Peromyscus. General and Comparative Endocrinology, 148(2), 252-259. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ygcen.2006.03.006

Social and photoperiod effects on reproduction in five species of Peromyscus. / Trainor, Brian C.; Martin, Lynn B.; Greiwe, Kelly M.; Kuhlman, Joshua R.; Nelson, Randy J.

In: General and Comparative Endocrinology, Vol. 148, No. 2, 01.09.2006, p. 252-259.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Trainor, BC, Martin, LB, Greiwe, KM, Kuhlman, JR & Nelson, RJ 2006, 'Social and photoperiod effects on reproduction in five species of Peromyscus', General and Comparative Endocrinology, vol. 148, no. 2, pp. 252-259. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ygcen.2006.03.006
Trainor, Brian C. ; Martin, Lynn B. ; Greiwe, Kelly M. ; Kuhlman, Joshua R. ; Nelson, Randy J. / Social and photoperiod effects on reproduction in five species of Peromyscus. In: General and Comparative Endocrinology. 2006 ; Vol. 148, No. 2. pp. 252-259.
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