oa African Zoology - The occurrence and development of 'Siamese twins' and other abnormalities in Oreochromis mossambicus (Pisces, Cichlidae)

Volume 28, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



Specimens from a clutch of Oreochromis mossambicus (Pisces, Cichlidae) exhibited a number of abnormalities such as enlarged pericardia, thin tube-like hearts, large depressions in the yolksac, spinal deformities and twinning. Descriptions of the differences in early ontogeny of two pairs of 'Siamese twins' over a period of at least eight days are given. The developmental pattern of the twins is similar to that of normal specimens but the developmental rate is slower in the twins. Possible explanations for these occurrences of polyembryony are given.

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