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Parthenogenesis
Parthenogenesis (; from the Greek grc, παρθένος, translit=parthénos, lit=virgin, label=none + grc, γένεσις, translit=génesis, lit=creation, label=none) is a natural form of asexual reproduction in which growth and development of embryos occur in a gamete (egg or sperm) without combining with another gamete (e.g., egg and sperm fusing). In animals, parthenogenesis means development of an embryo from an unfertilized egg cell. In plants, parthenogenesis is a component process of apomixis. In algae, parthenogenesis can mean the development of an embryo from either an individual sperm or an individual egg. Parthenogenesis occurs naturally in some plants, algae, invertebrate animal species (including nematodes, some tardigrades, water fleas, some scorpions, aphids, some mites, some bees, some Phasmatodea and parasitic wasps) and a few vertebrates (such as some fish, amphibians, reptiles and birds). This type of reproduction has been induced artificially in a fe ...
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Asexual Reproduction
Asexual reproduction is a type of reproduction that does not involve the fusion of gametes or change in the number of chromosomes. The offspring that arise by asexual reproduction from either unicellular or multicellular organisms inherit the full set of genes of their single parent and thus the newly created individual is genetically and physically similar to the parent or an exact clone of the parent. Asexual reproduction is the primary form of reproduction for single-celled organisms such as archaea and bacteria. Many eukaryotic organisms including plants, animals, and fungi can also reproduce asexually. In vertebrates, the most common form of asexual reproduction is parthenogenesis, which is typically used as an alternative to sexual reproduction in times when reproductive opportunities are limited. Komodo dragons and some monitor lizards can also reproduce asexually. While all prokaryotes reproduce without the formation and fusion of gametes, mechanisms for lateral gene t ...
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Apomixis
In botany, apomixis is asexual reproduction without fertilization. Its etymology is Greek for "away from" + "mixing". This definition notably does not mention meiosis. Thus "normal asexual reproduction" of plants, such as propagation from cuttings or leaves, has never been considered to be apomixis, but replacement of the seed by a plantlet or replacement of the flower by bulbils were categorized as types of apomixis. Apomictically produced offspring are genetically identical to the parent plant. Some authors included all forms of asexual reproduction within apomixis, but that generalization of the term has since died out. In flowering plants, the term "apomixis" is commonly used in a restricted sense to mean agamospermy, i.e., clonal reproduction through seeds. Although agamospermy could theoretically occur in gymnosperms, it appears to be absent in that group. Apogamy is a related term that has had various meanings over time. In plants with independent gametophytes (notably ...
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Phasmatodea
The Phasmatodea (also known as Phasmida, Phasmatoptera or Spectra) are an order of insects whose members are variously known as stick insects, stick-bugs, walking sticks, stick animals, or bug sticks. They are also occasionally referred to as Devil's darning needles, although this name is shared by both dragonflies and crane flies. They can be generally referred to as phasmatodeans, phasmids, or ghost insects, with phasmids in the family Phylliidae called leaf insects, leaf-bugs, walking leaves, or bug leaves. The group's name is derived from the Ancient Greek ', meaning an apparition or phantom, referring to their resemblance to vegetation while in fact being animals. Their natural camouflage makes them difficult for predators to detect; still, many species have one of several secondary lines of defense in the form of startle displays, spines or toxic secretions. Stick insects from the genera ''Phryganistria'', ''Ctenomorpha'', and ''Phobaeticus'' include the world's lon ...
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Water Flea
The Diplostraca or Cladocera, commonly known as water fleas, are a superorder of small crustaceans that feed on microscopic chunks of organic matter (excluding some predatory forms). Over 1000 species have been recognised so far, with many more undescribed. The oldest fossils of diplostracans date to the Jurassic, though their modern morphology suggests that they originated substantially earlier, during the Paleozoic. Some have also adapted to a life in the ocean, the only members of Branchiopoda to do so, even if several anostracans live in hypersaline lakes. Most are long, with a down-turned head with a single median compound eye, and a carapace covering the apparently unsegmented thorax and abdomen. Most species show cyclical parthenogenesis, where asexual reproduction is occasionally supplemented by sexual reproduction, which produces resting eggs that allow the species to survive harsh conditions and disperse to distant habitats. Description They are mostly long, with ...
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Cloning
Cloning is the process of producing individual organisms with identical or virtually identical DNA, either by natural or artificial means. In nature, some organisms produce clones through asexual reproduction. In the field of biotechnology, cloning is the process of creating cloned organisms (copies) of cells and of DNA fragments (molecular cloning). Etymology Coined by Herbert J. Webber, the term clone derives from the Ancient Greek word (), ''twig'', which is the process whereby a new plant is created from a twig. In botany, the term ''lusus'' was used. In horticulture, the spelling ''clon'' was used until the early twentieth century; the final ''e'' came into use to indicate the vowel is a "long o" instead of a "short o". Since the term entered the popular lexicon in a more general context, the spelling ''clone'' has been used exclusively. Natural cloning Cloning is a natural form of reproduction that has allowed life forms to spread for hundreds of millions of years. ...
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Aphid
Aphids are small sap-sucking insects and members of the superfamily Aphidoidea. Common names include greenfly and blackfly, although individuals within a species can vary widely in color. The group includes the fluffy white woolly aphids. A typical life cycle involves flightless females giving live birth to female nymphs—who may also be already pregnant, an adaptation scientists call telescoping generations—without the involvement of males. Maturing rapidly, females breed profusely so that the number of these insects multiplies quickly. Winged females may develop later in the season, allowing the insects to colonize new plants. In temperate regions, a phase of sexual reproduction occurs in the autumn, with the insects often overwintering as eggs. The life cycle of some species involves an alternation between two species of host plants, for example between an annual crop and a woody plant. Some species feed on only one type of plant, while others are generalists, colonizi ...
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Vertebrate
Vertebrates () comprise all animal taxon, taxa within the subphylum Vertebrata () (chordates with vertebral column, backbones), including all mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. Vertebrates represent the overwhelming majority of the phylum Chordata, with currently about 69,963 species described. Vertebrates comprise such groups as the following: * Agnatha, jawless fish, which include hagfish and lampreys * Gnathostomata, jawed vertebrates, which include: ** Chondrichthyes, cartilaginous fish (sharks, Batoidea, rays, and Chimaeriformes, ratfish) ** Euteleostomi, bony vertebrates, which include: *** Actinopterygii, ray-fins (the majority of living Osteichthyes, bony fish) *** lobe-fins, which include: **** coelacanths and lungfish **** tetrapods (limbed vertebrates) Extant taxon, Extant vertebrates range in size from the frog species ''Paedophryne amauensis'', at as little as , to the blue whale, at up to . Vertebrates make up less than five percent of all described a ...
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ZW Sex-determination System
The ZW sex-determination system is a chromosomal system that determines the sex of offspring in birds, some fish and crustaceans such as the giant river prawn, some insects (including butterflies and moths), the schistosome family of flatworms, and some reptiles, e.g. majority of snakes, lacertid lizards and monitors including Komodo dragons. It is also used in some plants where it has probably evolved independently on several occasions. The letters Z and W are used to distinguish this system from the XY sex-determination system. In this system, females have a pair of dissimilar ZW chromosomes, and males have two similar ZZ chromosomes. In contrast to the XY sex-determination system and the X0 sex-determination system, where the sperm determines the sex, in the ZW system, the ovum determines the sex of the offspring. Males are the homogametic sex (ZZ), while females are the heterogametic sex (ZW). The Z chromosome is larger and has more genes, like the X chromosome in the XY sy ...
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Reptile
Reptiles, as most commonly defined are the animals in the class Reptilia ( ), a paraphyletic grouping comprising all sauropsids except birds. Living reptiles comprise turtles, crocodilians, squamates ( lizards and snakes) and rhynchocephalians (tuatara). As of March 2022, the Reptile Database includes about 11,700 species. In the traditional Linnaean classification system, birds are considered a separate class to reptiles. However, crocodilians are more closely related to birds than they are to other living reptiles, and so modern cladistic classification systems include birds within Reptilia, redefining the term as a clade. Other cladistic definitions abandon the term reptile altogether in favor of the clade Sauropsida, which refers to all amniotes more closely related to modern reptiles than to mammals. The study of the traditional reptile orders, historically combined with that of modern amphibians, is called herpetology. The earliest known proto-reptiles origin ...
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Nematodes
The nematodes ( or grc-gre, Νηματώδη; la, Nematoda) or roundworms constitute the phylum Nematoda (also called Nemathelminthes), with plant- parasitic nematodes also known as eelworms. They are a diverse animal phylum inhabiting a broad range of environments. Less formally, they are categorized as Helminths, but are taxonomically classified along with arthropods, tardigrades and other moulting animals in the clade Ecdysozoa, and unlike flatworms, have tubular digestive systems with openings at both ends. Like tardigrades, they have a reduced number of Hox genes, but their sister phylum Nematomorpha has kept the ancestral protostome Hox genotype, which shows that the reduction has occurred within the nematode phylum. Nematode species can be difficult to distinguish from one another. Consequently, estimates of the number of nematode species described to date vary by author and may change rapidly over time. A 2013 survey of animal biodiversity published in the mega journ ...
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Scorpion
Scorpions are predatory arachnids of the order Scorpiones. They have eight legs, and are easily recognized by a pair of grasping pincers and a narrow, segmented tail, often carried in a characteristic forward curve over the back and always ending with a stinger. The evolutionary history of scorpions goes back 435 million years. They mainly live in deserts but have adapted to a wide range of environmental conditions, and can be found on all continents except Antarctica. There are over 2,500 described species, with 22 extant (living) families recognized to date. Their taxonomy is being revised to account for 21st-century genomic studies. Scorpions primarily prey on insects and other invertebrates, but some species hunt vertebrates. They use their pincers to restrain and kill prey, or to prevent their own predation. The venomous sting is used for offense and defense. During courtship, the male and female grasp each other's pincers and dance while he tries to move her onto his sp ...
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Tardigrade
Tardigrades (), known colloquially as water bears or moss piglets, are a phylum of eight-legged segmented micro-animals. They were first described by the German zoologist Johann August Ephraim Goeze in 1773, who called them Kleiner Wasserbär ("little water bear"). In 1777, the Italian biologist Lazzaro Spallanzani named them Tardigrada (), which means "slow steppers". They have been found in diverse regions of Earth's biospheremountaintops, the deep sea, tropical rainforests, and the Antarctic. Tardigrades are among the most resilient animals known, with individual species able to survive extreme conditions – such as exposure to extreme temperatures, extreme pressures (both high and low), air deprivation, radiation, dehydration, and starvation – that would quickly kill most other known forms of life. Tardigrades have survived exposure to outer space. There are about 1,300 known species in the phylum Tardigrada, a part of the superphylum Ecdysozoa consisting of animals tha ...
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