A leopard shark Asexually reproducing sharks an Australian aquarium has reproduced asexually after being separated from her mate. It is the first reported case
Asexually reproducing sharks a shark switching from sexual to asexual or parthenogenetic reproduction and only the third reported case among all vertebrate species.
The leopard shark, Leonie, was captured in the wild in and introduced to a male shark at the Reef HQ Asexually reproducing sharks in Townsville, Queensland, in Leopard sharks are also known as zebra sharks. She began laying eggs in and had several litters of viable, sexually produced offspring before being separated from her mate inbecause the aquarium decided to scale back its breeding program.
One of the offspring was Lolly, a female shark has shared
Asexually reproducing sharks tank with her mother since Lolly has not shared a tank with a male shark since she reached sexual maturity.
They attempted to incubate them but none of the eggs hatched. The next year, both Leonie and Asexually reproducing sharks produced eggs
Asexually reproducing sharks contained embryos. Female sharks have been known to store sperm for up to four years. The only other documented cases of a female switching from sexual to asexual reproduction involved an eagle ray, which reproduced asexually after being separated from her mate for year, and a boa constrictor, which reproduced asexually despite being caged a male boa constrictor.
Dudgeon said it was not clear what triggered the switch, but said Asexually reproducing sharks appeared to be a short-term evolutionary response to extend the reproductive life of a female in response to a scarcity of mates.
There have been no reported cases of an offspring that was the product of asexual reproduction going on to reproduce sexually. Dudgeon will be monitoring the reproductive habits of Cleo and Kitkat, when they reach sexual maturity at the age of seven. Zebra sharks, Asexually reproducing sharks stegostoma Asexually reproducing sharksare named for the zebra-like stripes they display as
Asexually reproducing sharks. Mature zebra sharks have spots, meaning they are commonly also known as leopard sharks, not to be confused with the different species of leopard sharks off the of California.
Hamish Tristram, a senior aquarist with Reef HQ, said he hoped the unusual case of Leonie would bring greater attention to the struggling species. Inboth Leonie and Lolly laid eggs.
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