7.8 Wrapping Up: Sex and the Single Whiptail Lizard

The Single Whiptail Lizard

Figure 7.15 Whiptail lizard

The asexual whiptail lizards discussed in the beginning of this chapter are a fascinating, recently evolved example of an organism that reproduces asexually. Comparisons of these lizards with their sexually reproducing relatives provide great experimental opportunities to explore the reasons for sex.  In reality, there may not be only one reason sex exists; it may exist for several reasons, or sex may have evolved for one reason and been maintained for another reason.  Regardless, the presence of bdelloid rotifers, whiptail lizards, evening primroses and other asexual organisms provides fascinating experimental fodder for those who are kept awake at night pondering the question, “Why sex?”

As we conclude this chapter and prepare for in-class discussion, be sure to return to the chapter’s goals and objectives.


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The Evolution and Biology of Sex Copyright © 2020 by Sehoya Cotner and Deena Wassenberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.