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Die Bedeutung Der Tageslänge Für Die Ausbildung Des Geschlechts Bei Armadillidium Vulgare (Isopoda) (Experimentelle Verschiebung Des Geschlechtsverhältnisses)

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Two species of woodlice, namely Armadillidium nasatum and A. vulgare, were investigated. The broods were reared, one half for an artificial 8-hour-day, the other half for an artificial 16-hour-day, and thereafter the sexes were counted. In A. vulgare there were significantly more females (and correspondingly fewer males) in the 16-hour-day than in the 8-hour-day cultures. In A. nasatum, on the other hand, the difference between the sex ratios in the two differently reared broods is so slight that it can only be accounted for by chance. The results are statistically significant. These findings have been discussed in relation to the phototactic behaviour of the animals. In this way the older observations on the modificatory influence of food and climate assume a new meaning. The results may be explained on the basis of a balanced polygene mechanism of sex determination, which as the result of environmental factors, may permit a shifting of the sex-ratio.

Affiliations: 1: Zoologisches Staatsinstitut und Museum der Universität Hamburg, B.R. Deutschland

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