Effects of Acute Sublethal Gamma Radiation on Populations of the Old-Field
Mouse, Peromyscus polionotus
populations of 20, 20 and 22 old-field mice (Peromyscus polionotus)
were introduced into outdoor enclosures of approximately two acres in July and
August, 1968. Before release into
the enclosure, half of each population was given an acute, sublethal dose of
gamma irradiation (500 R of 80Co).
The nonirradiated members of the populations served as controls.
Mice in different introduced populations were allowed to interact freely
under natural field conditions for nine days in one experiment and fourteen days
in another. After these periods of
interaction the populations were removed by live-trapping and were analyzed for
gross body composition between irradiated and nonirradiated mice in two
introduced populations after nine days of interaction.
Weights of liver, spleen, paired kidneys, paired adrenals, heart and lung
were measured in a third population along with reticullocyte number and relative
numbers of leucocytes. There were
no significant differences in either absolute or relative organ weights of
irradiated and nonirradiated mice in this population, but the variances of
relative weights were greater in irradiated mice, significantly so for lung.
Relative numbers of lymphocytes were significantly lower and those of
monocytes significantly higher in irradiated mice as compared with controls.
Relative neutrophil numbers were higher and reticulocyte numbers were
lower in irradiated as compared with nonirradiated mice, but the differences
were not significant.
SREL Reprint #0228
Sealander, J.A. 1970. Short term effects of acute
sublethal gamma radiation on populations of the old field mouse,
Peromyscus polionotus. Health Physics 19:299-306.