Six young red deer stags were placed on a photoperiod of 5 alternating periods of 2 months of 16 hours light: 8 hours dark each day (16 L:8 D) followed by 2 months of 8 L:16 D for 20 months. Food intake, whether the antlers were present, and if present, whether growing, cleaning or hard and testis diameter were recorded. Each stag showed 5 peaks and 5 troughs of food intake in response to the manipulated photoperiod. There were 4 cycles of gonadal development and regression as the testes did not descend from the inguinal canal during Period 1; testes grew in short day periods and diminished in size in long day periods. There were 4 cycles of antler growth and casting; antler cleaning occurred on short days and casting on long days. Male red deer are capable of responding to a square wave daylength pattern as a sinusoidal pattern.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 44, , 159-162, 1984
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