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Plasma corticosterone concentrations in males of the skink Egernia whitii during acute and chronic confinement, and over a diel period


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Jones, SM and Bell, K (2004) Plasma corticosterone concentrations in males of the skink Egernia whitii during acute and chronic confinement, and over a diel period. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A, 137 (1). pp. 105-113. ISSN 1095-6433/04/$

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This study examined adrenal and gonadal responses to capture and to longer term captivity in males of the scincid
lizard, Egernia whitii. Animals subjected to acute capture stress in the field exhibited a rapid rise in plasma corticosterone
concentrations that had not attenuated by 4 h after capture; plasma testosterone concentrations decreased significantly
over this period. Animals returned to captive conditions in the laboratory showed little change in plasma corticosterone
concentrations by 1 week, but concentrations were significantly lower at 4 weeks. Plasma testosterone did not vary
significantly during this period. Sampling over a diel period indicated that plasma corticosterone concentrations vary
little over the daylight hours; however, there was a significant decrease between the samples taken at 17:00 h and 21:00
h. These results suggest that, as in other species, the acute adrenal response to capture stress may confound assessment
of other physiological parameters, although if experiments are carried out during daylight hours, time of sampling should
have little influence on plasma corticosterone concentrations. The results also suggest that males of E. whitii require at
least a week to adapt to captivity, although further studies investigating different captive conditions are warranted for
this social species.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Adrenal; Capture; Captivity; Diurnal variation; Corticosterone; Reptile; Stress; Testosterone
Journal or Publication Title: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A
Page Range: pp. 105-113
ISSN: 1095-6433/04/$
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1016/S1095-6433(03)00267-8
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Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2008 05:19
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:46
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