Oxygen uptake by the aquatic eggs of the Australian frog Crinia georgiana

R.S. Seymour, Dale Roberts

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We studied embryonic respiration in Crinia georgiana, an Australian frog that oviposits clutches of up to 70 separate eggs in small depressions of shallow water We measured oxygen consumption (VO2), oxygen conductance of the capsule (GO(2)), and oxygen partial pressure difference across the capsule (Delta PO2) throughout development at 15 degrees C. All variables increased during incubation and at hatching were VO2 = 1.85 mu L h(-1), GO(2) = 0.24 mu L h(-1) kPa(-1), and Delta PO2 = 7.7 kPa. The effect of ambient PO2 on VO2 indicated that late-stage embryos experienced oxygen limitation, especially in field sites where ambient PO2 averaged 14.9 kPa. Nevertheless, the embryos from moderately sized ova (diameter 2.38 mm) developed relatively quickly and produced mature hatchlings (Gosner stage 26-27) after only 12 d. We speculate that rapid development may, be associated with oviposition in small ephemeral sites and that the quality of the sites in terms of temperature and PO2 may affect development time and hatching success.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-222
JournalPhysiological Zoology
Publication statusPublished - 1995


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