The Measurement of Reproductive Effort in Amphibians

V. G. Ishchenko


Relationships between dry and wet body weight, weight of ovaries and oviducts and egg diameters in the moor frog, Rana arvalis, were investigated in Middle Urals. Age of specimens was determined by skeletochronology. Relative wet clutch weight poorly correlates with eggs diameter, dry egg weight and fecundity, but it is essential more correlated with wet eggs weight and with water content in eggs. Relative dry weight of clutch is connected by a weak negative correlation with water content in an ovum and it considerably depends on total dry weight of clutch and average dry weight of ovum. There is no correlation of relative dry clutch weight with relative wet clutch weight (r = 0.134, p = 0.436, n = 36), and there is small negative correlation with egg diameter (r = –0.190, p = 0.038, n = 119). The correlation between egg diameter and dry egg weight is very small. Water content in ova before ovulation is essentially smaller compared with water content before spawning. The final egg diameter is determined by absorption of water during ovulation from oviducts. It is believed diameter of egg is insufficient character for evaluation of reproductive effort.


amphibians; frogs; Rana arvalis; growth; age; reproductive effort

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