Date of Award

2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Department

Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Erik Lindquist

Abstract

This study aimed to determine the relationship between parental phenotypes and egg clutch size and quality in the Panamanian golden frog, Atelopus zeteki. This species has not been seen in the wild since 2009, but is maintained through captive breeding programs.Determining factors correlated with egg clutch size and fertility will improve reintroduction models as well as captive breeding programs. Frogs of known lengths and weights were paired and encouraged to mate.However, many of the pairs did not lay eggs even after hormone treatment. Once clutches were laid, they were allowed to develop for five days at which point they were preserved in 10% buffered formalin.For examination, clutches were moved to 70% ethanol and stained with methylene blue solution. Adissection microscope was used to determine and record developmental status of each egg. Independently, female SUL and female pre-lay weight were found to be positively correlated (R2: 0.2992 and 0.2532 respectively) with egg clutch size. In captivity, clutches are far larger (2,570 eggs) than the literature records for in the wild (370 eggs). With the males, phenotypes did not correlate with either egg quantity or fertilization. Non-laying females were found to be significantly younger, shorter (SUL), and lighter-weight suggesting that captive breeding programs should wait until females are at least 4 years old before breeding.Qualitative observations suggest that the eggs may be light-sensitive with light protection positively correlated successful embryo development.

Included in

Biology Commons

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