Thursday, May 31, 2007

Female Sharks - The World's Unluckiest Creatures

Female sharks can fertilize their own eggs and give birth without sperm from males, according to a new study of the asexual reproduction of a hammerhead in a U.S. zoo.

Bob Hueter, director of the Center for Shark Research at the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Fla., said he doubted it was happening anywhere besides in captivity. He also argued that the power to self-impregnate represents "an evolutionary strategy to keep the population and species going when all else fails. Genetically, it's a last resort tactic because it leads to genetic uniformity, and eventually that will catch up with the population and make it less fit.

"But as a short-term alternative to extinction, it has its benefits," he said.

Some things just aren't worth it...

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