Table of Contents
Advances in Biology
Volume 2015, Article ID 953045, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/953045
Research Article

Seasonal Changes in Ovarian Follicle Growth in Iran Viper (Vipera albicornuta)

1Azad Islamic University, Damghan Branch, Damghan 3671639998, Iran
2Venomous Animals & Antivenin Production Department, Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, Hesarak, Karaj 3197619751, Iran

Received 17 August 2015; Revised 28 October 2015; Accepted 1 November 2015

Academic Editor: Ida Sigueko Sano-Martins

Copyright © 2015 Nousha Afsharzadeh et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The Vipera albicornuta is an economically important snake of Iran, its venom is used for antivenin production, and we need to breed the snake in the captivity. In order to know about the viper’s reproductive biology, seasonal alterations in ovarian weight, morphology, and the follicles developmental stages in Vipera albicornuta were studied using macroscopic parameters and histological examination of reproductive tissues during a year. Twenty-four female vipers were collected from mountainous zone of Bostanabad, East Azerbaijan, and Tarom in Zanjan through years 2011-2012. Evaluation of the reproductive parameters of this viper is performed for the first time in Iran. Our observation revealed that vitellogenesis cycle begins in autumn and continues till early summer; ovaries and follicles are in previtellogenesis stage in autumn and vitellogenesis in winter and during spring. Weight of ovary is heaviest in spring, ovulation occurs in late spring till early summer, and copulation is prior to ovulation.