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Presentation
A Genetic Investigation Into a Shark 'Virgin-Birth': Asexual Reproduction, Inter-Specific Hybridization or Long-Term Sperm Retention?
Oceanography Faculty Proceedings, Presentations, Speeches, Lectures
  • Demian D. Chapman, Nova Southeastern University
  • Mahmood S. Shivji, Nova Southeastern University
  • Ed Louis, Henry Doorly Zoo - Omaha
  • Paulo A. Prodohl, Queen's University - Belfast
Event Name/Location
American Elasmobranch Society 20th Annual Meeting, Norman, OK, June, 2004
Document Type
Conference Proceeding
Publication Date
6-1-2004
Abstract

Asexual reproduction via parthenogenesis is relatively rare among chordates and has never been recorded in the class Chondrichthyes. In December 2001, a female Bonnethead Shark, Sphyrna tiburo, gave birth in captivity to a single female pup, despite having been separated from any male S. tiburo for a period of at least three years. Widespread media attention quickly led to this case being billed as "the shark-virgin birth" (i.e., asexual reproduction), however other explanations (sexual reproduction coupled with long-term sperm storage, inter-specific hybridization with a male leopard shark, Triakis semifasciata, tank-mate) could not be ruled out. We present the results of a genetic investigation aimed at ruling out these alternatives and determining whether this birth is the first known case of asexual reproduction in this ancient lineage.

ORCID ID
G-4080-2013
Citation Information
Demian D. Chapman, Mahmood S. Shivji, Ed Louis and Paulo A. Prodohl. "A Genetic Investigation Into a Shark 'Virgin-Birth': Asexual Reproduction, Inter-Specific Hybridization or Long-Term Sperm Retention?" (2004)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/mahmood-shivji/1/