AUG 03, 2016 11:26 AM PDT

These Fish Change Their Gender Up to 20x Daily

Although you and I are born with a specific gender and have to stick with it for the rest of our lives, some animal species have an innate ability to trade gender roles on demand because they have both male and female reproductive organs already present in their bodies.
 
One such species is the chalk bass, which can reportedly change its gender up to 20 times per day, switching gender roles with its partner to greaten the odds of reproductive success, a study published in the journal Behavioral Ecology explains.
 

Chalk bass switch between male and female up to 20x daily.

 
As National Geographic explains, the process is known as ‘egg trading’ which is essentially where while laying eggs, the fish divide the eggs into parcels before laying them and then switch their genders repeatedly to try and fertilize each other’s eggs.
 
During the process of switching their gender, the chalk bass would help ensure commitment by taking turns fertilizing each other’s’ eggs, as one would have to reciprocate to the other until the process was complete.
 
Mary Hart, an ecologist for the University of Florida, explained that it’s very unusual for animals, even those of the simultaneous hermaphrodite kind, to switch their genders so often in such a short period of time, but also notes that the feature isn’t unique to chalk bass and they do not self-fertizlie their own eggs.
 
Another fun fact, the chalk bass seemed to be very loyal to one another despite not being a monogamous species.

“All of the fish that I marked in the first month were together for the entire six months until one or both of them disappeared from the social group,” Hart explained.

Chalk bass are certainly an oddity in terms of their reproductive process, as it’s relatively uncommon for animals of any species to do what they do. Nevertheless, it may provide reproductive advantages and could explain why they’re still around today.
 
Source: National Geographic

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
SEP 20, 2019
Earth & The Environment
SEP 20, 2019
July 2019 is the Hottest Month on Record
Headlines of record-breaking heat have become more common this summer. Just a few weeks ago, cities throughout Europe suffered through an intense heatwave....
SEP 20, 2019
Earth & The Environment
SEP 20, 2019
US forests under threat from non-native pests
A new study published recently in PNAS documents the epidemic of non-native pests that are threatening US forests. According to the study, which concentrat...
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
Crows Can Be Silent If They Choose to Be
Researchers have long thought that songbirds unleash their colorful vocalizations involuntarily in response to activities happening around them, such as fo...
SEP 20, 2019
Earth & The Environment
SEP 20, 2019
Will Banana Crops Survive a Changing Climate?
Climate change impacts, most notably rising temperatures and changing precipitation patterns, are impacting agricultural production around the world. It&rs...
SEP 20, 2019
Earth & The Environment
SEP 20, 2019
Massive Phytoplankton Bloom Resulted from Kilauea's Eruption
The 2018 eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano didn’t just change the lives of several hundred residents and the local landscape. It also had sh...
SEP 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 20, 2019
Watch a Hungry Polar Bear Respond to an Opportunity to Eat
Polar bears necessitate lots of food to ensure their long-term survival, but many times, hunting prey isn’t easy. It’s estimated that one in tw...
Loading Comments...