Photoperiodism in Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) with special reference to relative refractoriness.Indian J Exp Biol. 1993 May; 31(5):417-21.IJ
Cloacal gland (an androgen dependent sex accessory) of Japanese quail exhibits full breeding condition as long as these were maintained under long days (LD 16:8). When shifted to short daylength (LD 6:18), scotosensitivity (cloacal gland regression) was observed up to 5 weeks, followed by scotorefractoriness (cloacal gland development). There was a regression in cloacal gland volume of the birds when shifted to intermediate daylength (LD 13.5:10.5 and 13:11) after 12 weeks of exposure to long days (relative refractoriness) but no regression when shifted to relatively short days (< 14 hr) after 3 weeks of exposure to long daylength. Birds maintained under constant short photoperiod (LD 6:18) exhibited cyclicity. Shift experiments (quail reared and maintained under continuous light; LL, were shifted to LD 16:8, 13:11 and 8:16, similarly quail maintained under LD 16:8 were shifted to rest three photoperiods and so on) made to compare the cloacal gland responses indicated that if the difference between two photoperiods (previous and shifted one) was more the percentage of difference in cloacal gland response was also high. Short daylength (LD 8:16) was always gonadoinhibitory for the quail previously exposed to any daylength (13L, 16L or 24L) and 16L and 24L were always stimulatory for the quail previously exposed to other daylength (8L, 13L, 16L). But, when the birds were shifted to 13L, photoresponses cannot be generalized and it depends on the photoperiod to which quail were exposed previously (i.e. photoperiodic history).