Male Reproductive System
Examine the structures associated with the male reproductive system and trace the path sperm would take to leave the system. Note that the testes of the rat descend from the body cavity into the scrotal sacs during the breeding season. At other times of the year the testes will be found in the body cavity. In the image on the left the testes have been removed from the cremasteric pouches, which are extensions of the body wall musculature that extends outside the body cavity. Sperm begin their journey in the paired testes, move into the head then tail of the epididymis, and pass cranially in the ductus deferens, which is part of the spermatic cord. The spermatic cord contians the ductus defrens, and the nerves and blood vessels that supply the testes. After passing through the body wall the ductus derferens curve caudally and enter the urethra. Near their entry into the urethra they are supplied with secretions from the ampullary and prostate glands, which produce seminal fluid and secretions to neutralize the acidic female vagina. The vesicular and coagulating glands also contribute to the seminal fluids.
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Click for an enlarged view of the glands that are part of the male reproductive system.
Click to see the relationship between the penis and the external urogenital opening.
Click to test your knowledge of the entire male reproductive system.
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