The effects of estradiol-17β on the sex reversal, survival, and growth of Red Shiner and its use in the development of YY individuals

Chad N. Teal, Daniel J. Schill, Javan M. Bauder, Susan B. Fogelson, Kevin Fitzsimmons, William T. Stewart, Melanie Culver, Scott A. Bonar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The Red Shiner Cyprinella lutrensis is one of the most prolific and ecologically destructive invasive fish species in the southwestern United States. The production and release of YY individuals as Trojan sex chromosome carriers can theoretically eradicate invasive fish populations by eventually eliminating phenotypic females. Methods: The YY individuals are typically produced through hormonally induced sex reversals and selective breeding of subsequently feminized males. We tested three dosages of estradiol-17β (E2)-treated diets (50, 100, and 150 mg of E2 per kg of diet) administered to sexually immature Red Shiner for various durations to determine their effectiveness at feminizing Red Shiner cohorts. Survival, growth, and gonadal development were assessed for each treatment. Result: All E2 treatments had minimal, if any, detrimental effects on the growth and gonadal development of Red Shiner. The 50-mg dosage lasting from 2 to 120 days posthatch achieved a 100% feminization rate while using the lowest amount of E2; therefore, this dosage and treatment interval are recommended when attempting Red Shiner feminization under these rearing conditions. Feminization of males allowed for the spawning of neofemales (FXY) with wild-type males (MXY), which resulted in the first putative YY Red Shiner. The YY verification crosses (n = 20) resulted in predominately male offspring (189 males/191 offspring) except for (1) an intersex individual from an MYY × FXX cross with two previtellogenic oocytes in its testis and (2) a single female that may have resulted from an inbred cross between an XY male and a YY female or from an unknown autosomal or environmental effect on sexual phenotype. Conclusion: More progeny tests with inbred and outbred crosses should be conducted to determine the prevalence of female offspring from YY individuals and how this may impact an eradication strategy featuring releases of YY Red Shiner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)110-129
Number of pages20
JournalNorth American Journal of Aquaculture
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2024


  • YY males
  • exogenous steroids
  • feminization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science


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