Reproductive biology

Courtship, mating, and pup lactation occur inside the burrows.

Courtship begins with aggressive postures and continues with an intense exchange of chemical, tactile, and acoustic signals. Long pre-copulatory interaction periods and, in general, more than one copulation occur before ejaculation because of

Despite their resemblence to pocket gophers, Azara's tuco-tucos (Ctenomys azarae) do not have external cheek pouches. (Photo by Gabriel Rojo. Reproduced by permission.)

their induced ovulator condition. In induced ovulators, strong stimulation of the female during copulation is needed. The mating system is polygynous.

Gestation takes about 100 days. Two to six pups per litter are born fully developed, and the lactation period duration is about two months. In general, males do not participate in pup care.

One or two reproductive periods per year may appear. In species with only one reproductive period, it occurs during the austral winter.

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