Seasonal changes in testicular morphology and blood plasma concentrations of LH, testosterone, and prolactin are described for captive male emus in southwestern Australia. Testicular mass and testicular testosterone did not differ between the non-breeding (spring-summer) and the breeding (autumn-winter) seasons. Nevertheless, the testes obtained in the breeding season (May and August) were nearly two fold…

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The sensory hair cells of the inner ear receive both afferent and efferent innervation. The efferent supply to the auditory organ has evolved in birds and mammals into a separate complex system, with several types of neurons of largely unknown function. In this study, the efferent axons in four different species of birds (chicken, starling,…

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This study generates data concerning the genome of a flightless species of bird, the emu. We examined and ultimately rejected the following hypotheses: Microsatellites are randomly distributed throughout the emu genome. The relative order of abundance of dinucleotides will be constant across genomes. Interspersion distances for a given dinucleotide will be equal across vertebrate genomes.…

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The ratites have stimulated much debate as to how such large flightless birds came to be distributed across the southern continents, and whether they are a monophyletic group or are composed of unrelated lineages that independently lost the power of flight. Hypotheses regarding the relationships among taxa differ for morphological and molecular data sets, thus…

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Existing animal models of femoral head osteonecrosis, while displaying varying levels of concordance with early histopathologic features of the human disorder, generally fail to progress to end-stage mechanical collapse. A new animal model of osteonecrosis is here introduced, utilizing the emu (Dromaius novaehollandie). These animals’ bipedality and their high activity level represent a much more…

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