Changes in serum oestradiol and progesterone were measured to study their dynamics during ovulatory cycles in six female addax, an endangered antelope. Blood was collected three times per week, during chute restraint, for 3 months (November to February) before introduction of a male, and continued until pregnancy was diagnosed with ultrasound. Serum was analysed by enzymeimmunoassay. Mean luteal phase, interluteal phase, and cycle durations were 22.7 ± 2.0, 8.78 ± 0.5 and 32.3 ± 1.7 days, respectively. Ultrasonography revealed coiled uterine horns and maximum follicle and corpus luteum diameters of 15 and 27 mm, respectively. Each female experienced an anovulatory period, during which oestradiol continued to fluctuate, but progesterone remained below 2 ng ml−1. These periods ranged from 39 to 131 days and were not synchronous; ovulatory cycles resumed spontaneously in all females. All four females placed with a male conceived. Because addax give birth all year round, they are not considered seasonal breeders. The sporadic periods of anovulation that occurred during the winter months of this study suggest a possible seasonal effect. However, systematic sampling has not been conducted during summer and early autumn and will be necessary to address this question.
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