Morphological Studies Of Vomeronasal Organ In The Wild Juvenile Red- Flanked Duiker Cephalophus rufilatus (GRAY 1864)
The vomeronasal organ (VNO) of the juvenile Red-flanked duiker (Cephalophus rufilatus) weighingbetween 0814 kg was studied by gross dissection and light mcroscopy. The organ was found to be present at the base of the nasal septum completely housed by the vomeronasal cartilage, but the various soft tissue components of the organ were not remarkably present as in most adult mammals. The average palatal length of the organ was 1.9 cm, while the transverse diameter of the lumen of the duct measured 0.5 cm. The average thickness of the vomeronasal sensory epithelum on the medial wall was 5005 μm, while that of the ‘non sensory’ respiratory epithelumon the lateral wall was 40.05 μm. Our findings suggest that the VNO of the juvenile duiker is rudimentary at this stage and may not be able to support vomeronasal functions. Further development of the various components is requiredto achieve its functional capacity.
Keywords: Red-flanked duiker, Cephalophus rufilatus, Vomeronasal organ, Anatomy, Histology