Animal Reproduction (AR)
Animal Reproduction (AR)

Understanding how environmental factors influence reproductive aspects of wild myomorphic and hystricomorphic rodents

Maiko Roberto Tavares Dantas; João Batista Freire Souza-Junior; Thibério de Souza Castelo; Arthur Emannuel de Araújo Lago; Alexandre Rodrigues Silva

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Abstract: Myomorphic and hystricomorphic rodents are vital for maintaining various ecosystems around the planet. This review enables a better understanding of how these rodents respond to environmental factors and adapt to climate adversities. Innumerable factors, such as photoperiod, rainfall, and temperature, can impair or contribute to the quality of rodent reproductive parameters. Prolonged animal exposure to high ambient temperatures alters thermoregulation mechanisms and causes testicular and ovarian tissue degeneration and hormonal deregulation. Photoperiod influences the biological circannual rhythm and reproductive cycles of rodents because it strongly regulates melatonin secretion by the pineal gland, which modulates gonadotropic hormone secretion. Rainfall quantity directly regulates the abundance of fruits in an ecosystem, which modulates the reproductive seasonality of species which are most dependent on a seasonal fruit-based diet. Species with a more diversified fruit diet have smaller reproductive seasonality. As such, habitats are chosen by animals for various reasons, including the availability of food, sexual partners, intra-and inter-specific competition, and predation. This knowledge allows us to monitor and establish management plans to aid in conservation strategies for wild rodent species.


climate, seasonality, reproductive physiology, Rodentia, wildlife


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