Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"New Self-Cloning Lizard Found in Vietnam Restaurant "

I think that qualifies for Internal Monologue's headline of the day:

You could call it the surprise du jour: A popular food on Vietnamese menus has turned out to be a lizard previously unknown to science, scientists say.

What's more, the newfound Leiolepis ngovantrii is no run-of-the-mill reptile—the all-female species reproduces via cloning, without the need for male lizards.

Single-gender lizards aren't that much of an oddity: About one percent of lizards can reproduce by parthenogenesis, meaning the females spontaneously ovulate and clone themselves to produce offspring with the same genetic blueprint.

Maybe species hunters should pay more attention to restaurants. I suppose a cloned species would have culinary advantages: you could develop very specific cooking procedures and not have to worry too much about individual variation.

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