Adult male Hawaiian monk seals were administered a gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist to determine its effectiveness in reducing the testicular production of testosterone. Blood samples were collected from four treated seals and two control seals at weekly intervals for 10 weeks and again at the beginning of the following breeding season. The GnRH-agonist had an initial, brief, stimulating effect on circulating testosterone, but this was followed by an inhibitory effect that lasted for 7 to 8 weeks. The plasma concentrations of testosterone were within normal ranges by the following spring. These results demonstrate a reversible form of long-term androgen suppression, which may have applicability in a variety of wildlife management programmes.
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