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1 October 1998 FEMALE PSEUDOHERMAPHRODITE POLAR BEARS AT SVALBARD
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Abstract

During research on polar bears (Ursus maritimus) at Svalbard in April 1996, we captured two yearlings with a normal vaginal opening and a 20 mm penis containing a baculum. The penis was located caudal to the location in a normal male and was concealed within the vaginal opening by a single pair of labia. The urethral opening was situated laterally about 5 mm from the distal end of the penis. Neither of the yearlings showed signs of a Y chromosome, so both bears were regarded as female pseudohermaphrodites. On separate occasions in two bears, we recorded aberrant genitalia morphology with a high degree of clitoral hypertrophy in Svalbard, which we also classified as female pseudohermaphroditism. The observed rate of female pseudohermaphroditism in this area was 1.5% (4/269). Pseudohermaphroditism in this polar bear population could result from excessive androgen excretion by the mother caused by a tumor, or it could be a result of endocrine disruption from environmental pollutants.

Wiig, Derocher, Cronin, and Skaare: FEMALE PSEUDOHERMAPHRODITE POLAR BEARS AT SVALBARD
Øystein Wiig, Andrew E. Derocher, Matthew M. Cronin, and Janneche U. Skaare "FEMALE PSEUDOHERMAPHRODITE POLAR BEARS AT SVALBARD," Journal of Wildlife Diseases 34(4), 792-796, (1 October 1998). https://doi.org/10.7589/0090-3558-34.4.792
Received: 8 November 1997; Published: 1 October 1998
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