VIRGIN CROCODILE GIVES BIRTH TO A CLUTCH OF EGGS IN COSTA RICA, STARTLING SCIENTISTS
This story is wild, and makes me wonder all the more about the wonders of life. In the original Jurassic Park movie, Jeff Goldblum’s character made the pronouncement, “Life finds a way.” And this played out later in the series when the dinosaurs were able to breed, even though there were no males. That was fiction, of course. But what isn’t fiction is how a “virgin crocodile” birthed a clutch of eggs in Costa Rica. As far as I know, we’ve never seen that before with crocodiles. In other words, this momma croc became a mama with no daddy to hand.
ONLY ONE EGG WAS VIABLE, AND IT DIDN’T SURVIVE, BUT WAS 99.9% IDENTICAL TO VIRGIN CROCODILE MAMA
While I don’t expect this to create a new religion or anything (Lord, I hope not, anyway), this is noteworthy. Because this lady crocodile hadn’t been around any males of her species for 15 long years when she birthed the clutch of eggs. But alas, out of the entire clutch, only one of the eggs had a viable fetus, and it didn’t survive. But not surprisingly, it was 99.9% genetically identical to its virgin crocodile mama. And in case you were wondering, what do we call a virgin birth in nature? Pathogenesis.
VIRGIN CROCODILE BIRTH, OR PATHOGENESIS, OPENS UP INTERESTING QUESTIONS ABOUT DINOSAURS
Pathogenesis, or virgin births in nature, have a bit of precedent. We already knew that king cobras, sawfish and California condors could do this. But now we have to also add the crocodile to the list. And, well, that’s kind of crazy. Why? Because now that there’s been an observed and recorded virgin crocodile birth, it suggests some interesting things to surmise. Crocodiles in their current evolutionary form are old. As in, the current crocodile design has been around a lot longer than most other life on Earth. Like, think dinosaurs. In other words (again), the fictional idea from Jurassic Park may have been right on the money.