The Human Brain

The Human Brain

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Cross-Dressing Cuttlefish

"There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved."
-Charles Darwin

Darwin was absolutely correct when he pointed out that evolution is an extraordinarily unending source of fascinating biodiversity. A wonderful example of this evolutionary diversity is the cuttlefish, a squid-like marine animal that has evolved a complex mating strategy. In the world of cuttlefish, it is the responsibility of the males to compete over sexual access to the females. Sometimes when two males are engaged in a wrestling match over a female, a smaller male will disguise itself as a female in order to sneak past the other males for a chance to offer his sperm to the female. Interestingly, this mating strategy seems to be fairly successful. The female will take the packet of sperm donated by the cross-dresser and tuck it under one of her arms for future use.

Check out this link to learn more.


Dr. Yeti said...

Cuttlefish are awesome. I bet they're delicious too.

Dr. Snail said...

Cuttle fish are the most intelligent invertebrates and more intelligent than most Arkansawers.