The relationship among ovarian condition, steroid hormones, and estrous behavior in Anolis carolinensis

Richard E. Jones, Louis J. Guillette, Cliff H. Summers, Richard R. Tokarz, David Crews

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


The lizard Anolis carolinensis ovulates a single egg alternately from each ovary every 14 days. The ovulated egg enters the ipsilateral oviduct, acquires a shell, and is oviposited 18 or 19 days later. Thus, there is only a single egg in one of the oviducts (one-egg condition) during most of the estrous cycle, but there is a 4-5 day period when a mature, shelled egg is in one oviduct while a recently ovulated egg is in the contralateral oviduct (two-egg condition). Analysis of ovarian follicular diameters indicates that the largest follicle in a single ovary exhibits a growth spurt about halfway through its 28-day vitellogenic growth phase. The corpus luteum, once formed from the ovulated follicle, exhibits a linear decrease in weight, becoming fully regressed just before oviposition of the egg in the ipsilateral oviduct. Plasma concentrations of estradiol-17 beta and progesterone are high in two-egg animals. After oviposition, plasma concentrations of progesterone are still high in one-egg animals whereas those of estradiol-17 beta are much lower. These ovarian and hormonal changes during the estrous cycle are discussed in relation to the probable sources of estradiol-17 beta and progesterone, the control of the alternating pattern of ovulation and oviposition, and the role of steroid hormones in female sexual receptivity in this species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-154
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Experimental Zoology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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