Under the care of the Chattanooga Zoo in Tennessee, a female Komodo lizard named Charlie is asexually bred without any male companion,media BGR reported. Although the male Komodo python Kadal lives with Charlie, zoo staff have never really seen the two lizards mating. Despite this, Charlie gave birth to three eggs. The scientists then conducted DNA tests on all of the male cubs to determine whether Kadal was his father.
Incredibly, Kadal is not the father of the cubs, but the result of Charlie’s asexual reproduction. This incredible feat was achieved through a process called parathenogenesis. In this process, the females of a species produce offspring without mating with the males. There are not many species with this capability, but Komodo is known to be one of the few.
“In September 2019, we announced that our female Komodo lizard Charlie has become the mother of three giant lizard cubs,” Chattanooga Zoo wrote in a Facebook post. At the time, it was not known whether they were offspring of their breed spawning with the male Kadal, or whether lone female reproduction occurred. DNA results show that the cubs actually breed through solitary female reproduction! “
But why does a species need to be able to reproduce asexually? As zoo staff say, this is a complicated situation. “In the wild, Komodo pythons live mainly in isolation and tend to become violent as they approach them, allowing these animals to evolve to either sexual reproduction or solitary female reproduction,” the article explains. “