Sperm replacement in sperm-storage tubules causes last-male sperm precedence in chickens

Br Poult Sci. 2024 Feb;65(1):97-104. doi: 10.1080/00071668.2023.2287732. Epub 2024 Mar 1.


1. This study elucidated the last-male sperm precedence (LMSP) mechanism in chickens by examining replacement in storage tubules (SSTs) after multiple artificial inseminations (AI) and the effects of seminal plasma (SP) and male breed on sperm replacement in SSTs.2. Hens were artificially inseminated with fluorescent dye-labelled spermatozoa from White Leghorn (WL) chickens. Secondary AI was conducted 3 d later with sperm labelled with different nuclear fluorescent dye. Percentage of first and second inseminated sperm in SSTs and their logarithmic odds were calculated. The effect of SP on LMSP was examined using (1) Lake's solution-washed sperm before second insemination, and (2) SP injected continuously after first insemination. Effect of breed difference on sperm replacement was investigated using Barred Plymouth Rock (BP) sperm.3. Successive WL-sperm inseminations at three-day intervals caused > 70% stored sperm replacement in SSTs. Although SP removal from sperm from second insemination significantly decreased replacement, its intra-vaginal injection did not affect release. Secondary insemination using BP sperm significantly increased replacement.4. Sperm replacement is a major factor favouring LMSP in domestic chickens. Two fluorescent staining of sperm, and intra-vaginal multiple AI technique have enabled visualisation, differentiation, and quantification of multiple inseminated sperm stored in the SSTs.

Keywords: Sperm; artificial insemination; chicken; last-male sperm precedence; sperm storage tubules.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chickens*
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Insemination
  • Male
  • Semen*
  • Spermatozoa


  • Fluorescent Dyes