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Table of Contents
Vol. 78, No. 2, 2011
Issue release date: September 2011
Section title: Original Paper
Brain Behav Evol 2011;78:139–149
(DOI:10.1159/000329515)

Sensory Systems in Sawfishes. 1. The Ampullae of Lorenzini

Wueringer B.E.a, e · Peverell S.C.b · Seymour J.c · Squire, Jr. L.d · Kajiura S.M.f · Collin S.P.a, e
aThe University of Queensland, School of Biomedical Sciences, Sensory Neurobiology Group, Brisbane, Qld., bDPI&F Northern Fisheries Office, Cairns, Qld., cSchool of Tropical and Marine Sciences, James Cook University, Smithfield, Qld., dCairns Marine, Stratford, Qld., and eUniversity of Western Australia, School of Animal Biology and the UWA Oceans Institute, Crawley, W.A., Australia; fBiological Sciences, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Fla., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: January 31, 2011
Accepted: May 19, 2011
Published online: August 05, 2011
Issue release date: September 2011

Number of Print Pages: 11
Number of Figures: 5
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0006-8977 (Print)
eISSN: 1421-9743 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/BBE

Abstract

The distribution and density of the ampullary electroreceptors in the skin of elasmobranchs are influenced by the phylogeny and ecology of a species. Sensory maps were created for 4 species of pristid sawfish. Their ampullary pores were separated into pore fields based on their innervation and cluster formation. Ventrally, ampullary pores are located in 6 areas (5 in Pristis microdon), covering the rostrum and head to the gills. Dorsally, pores are located in 4 areas (3 in P. microdon), which cover the rostrum, head and may extend slightly onto the pectoral fins. In all species, the highest number of pores is found on the dorsal and ventral sides of the rostrum. The high densities of pores along the rostrum combined with the low densities around the mouth could indicate that sawfish use their rostrum to stun their prey before ingesting it, but this hypothesis remains to be tested. The directions of ampullary canals on the ventral side of the rostrum are species specific. P. microdon possesses the highest number of ampullary pores, which indicates that amongst the study species this species is an electroreception specialist. As such, juvenile P. microdon inhabit low-visibility freshwater habitats.

© 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: January 31, 2011
Accepted: May 19, 2011
Published online: August 05, 2011
Issue release date: September 2011

Number of Print Pages: 11
Number of Figures: 5
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0006-8977 (Print)
eISSN: 1421-9743 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/BBE


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