InternQuest Photoblog: Reproductive Physiology

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Intern Danielle carefully extracts Tule elk sperm from a Frozen Zoo icebox at the San Diego Zoo's Institute for Conservation Research. The Frozen Zoo helps preserve eggs and sperm from a variety of animal species in order to assist with reproduction and re-population efforts. If done improperly, the freezing process can cause harm to the specimen, so the keepers of the Frozen Zoo act carefully to help keep genetic variation present in vulnerable populations.

Intern Danielle carefully extracts Tule elk sperm from a Frozen Zoo icebox at the San Diego Zoo's Institute for Conservation Research. The Frozen Zoo helps preserve eggs and sperm from a variety of animal species in order to assist with reproduction and re-population efforts. If done improperly, the freezing process can cause harm to the specimen, so the keepers of the Frozen Zoo act carefully to help keep genetic variation present in vulnerable populations.

Intern Mateo carefully pipets elk sperm in order to transfer it onto a glass slide for microscopic analysis. Only a miniscule amount is necessary as there are millions of sperm present in the small specimen.

Intern Mateo carefully pipets elk sperm in order to transfer it onto a glass slide for microscopic analysis. Only a miniscule amount is necessary as there are millions of sperm present in the small specimen.

After thawing the specimen, Intern Sarrah looks into the microscope to assess sperm motility. Some sperm have decreased motility after the freezing and thawing process and this must accounted for when identifying a healthy specimen for insemination.

After thawing the specimen, Intern Sarrah looks into the microscope to assess sperm motility. Some sperm have decreased motility after the freezing and thawing process and this must accounted for when identifying a healthy specimen for insemination.

 Kellie, Photography Team

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