Secondary egg envelopes, Biology

Secondary Egg Envelopes

These are secreted by oviducts and other accessory parts of genital organs while the egg is passing through them from ovary to the exterior.

a) In ovoviviparous sharks the egg is surrounded by a hard shell secreted by shell glands of the oviduct. The shell is drawn out as twisted horns which serve to entangle the egg among sea weeds.

b) In amphibians, the eggs are surrounded by a layer of jelly which protects the egg from adverse effects of sun rays, abrasion as well as from predators (because of its bad taste). The jelly absorbs water and swells.

 c) In birds, reptiles and monotremes, the secondary envelopes include the white of egg surrounding the yolky ovum, followed by inner and outer shell membranes (which are in close contact with one another) and the outermost calcareous shell which is 'porous. The shell is elastic and compressible when the egg is laid but it hardens on exposure to atmosphere.

Posted Date: 1/25/2013 12:12:52 AM | Location : United States

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