Tuesday, December 26, 2006

My Komodo dragon deduction

News report:

Scientists report of two cases where female Komodo dragons have produced offspring without male contact...Tests revealed their eggs had developed without being fertilised by sperm - a process called parthenogenesis, the team wrote in the journal Nature... "Parthenogenesis has been described before in about 70 species of vertebrates, but it has always been regarded to be a very unusual, perhaps abnormal phenomenon..."But we have seen this in two separate, unrelated female Komodo dragons within a year, so this suggests maybe parthenogenesis is much more widespread and common than previously considered...Because of the genetics of this process, he added, her children would always be male.

and another:

Only about 4,000 dragons remain in the wild, of which 1,000 are female.

The news reports generally say it's unknown how commonly this occurs in the wild, but we have this information:

1. Komodo females can reproduce by parthenogenesis.

2. The viable reproduced eggs from this process are all males.

3. There are three times as many males as there are females in the wild.

My deduction: Komodo dragon parthenogenesis is common in the wild.

News you can use, only here at Backseat Driving.

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