Main content area

Successful use of artificial insemination in the production of red-legged partridges (Alectoris rufa)

Abouelezz, F. M. K., Castaño, C., Toledano-Díaz, A., Esteso, M. C., López-Sebastián, A., Dávila, S. G., Gil, M. G., Cuenca, O. Torres, Campo, J. L., Blesbois, E., Santiago-Moreno, J.
European journal of wildlife research 2015 v.61 no.4 pp. 645-647
Alectoris rufa, artificial insemination, blastoderm, chicks, eggs, females, males, massage, oviducts, partridges, semen, spermatozoa
This paper reports the first successful artificial insemination (AI) of red-legged partridges (Alectoris rufa), the fertility rate achieved, and the length of time sperm cells can survive inside the oviduct (i.e., the post-AI fertile period). Semen from 20 mature males was collected by massage and pooled for use in single intravaginal inseminations (20 μL of fresh, undiluted semen) of eight females (15 × 10⁶ sperm/female). The latter’s eggs were then collected for 4 weeks, and the fertilizing capacity of the sperm used in the preceding AIs was determined by observing the development of the blastoderm. The duration of the post-AI fertile period was determined by subjecting fertilized eggs to the SP-holes assay. A second experiment was then performed to measure the percentage of viable embryos at 20 days of incubation (30 %) and hatchability (40 %). The mean fertility rate was 34.5 ± 11.7 % and the SP-holes value 17.3 ± 4.3. The mean duration of the post-AI fertile period was 3 weeks. In conclusion, the present work reports the first ever birth of partridge chicks following AI and shows that this procedure may be of use in the conservation of this species.