Fluctuations In Testicular Condition Of Cottontail Rabbits In Georgia

A total of 500 male cottontail rabbits were collected over a two year period from the Coastal Plain, Piedmont, and Mountain physiographic regions of Georgia. Adult testes weight, volume, length, and diameter were recorded, epididymides checked for convolutions and presence of viable sperm, and relative condition of the testes noted as to flaccidity or turgidity and ascended or descended. Regression analysis was performed on young of the year testes growth (volume and weight) and increasing age (eye lens weight). The data revealed that weight and volume were more sensitive indicators of testes condition than length and diameter. No significant seasonal differences were noted in weight and volume between regions and between Georgia and northern states. A close correlation existed between testes volume and percentage of females pregnant. Males in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont regions were apparently capable of breeding by January of 1966 and 1967. A notable decline in testicular activity was observed the last of June and first of July in 1966 and 1967. No significant relationship was found between increasing age of young of the year and increasing testes weight and volume.

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