Saturday, 7 March 2009

A fishy story about sex

Recently there have been news reports of fossil finds which show that, 380 million years ago in the Devonian, fish were reproducing by internal fertilization and giving birth to live offspring. PZ Myers had a good post on this, see 'Exposing the intimate details of the sex lives of placoderms', and Nature have released a video describing the fossils and their interpretation. Watch it on YouTube:

F**king ancient fish! This of course raises questions as to the lineage of land vertebrates such as ourselves. The majority of fish reproduce externally by spawning (the aquarium guppy is another exception though I'm sure there are more). Amphibians can vary. Most spawn, though the females of some frogs and salamanders can take up the male's sperm packet to fertilize their eggs inside. The unusual caecilians all practice insemination, though some species then lay eggs whilst some give birth to live young. Reptiles, birds and mammals all copulate, sometimes with surprising variety.

But there remains one important question I have to ask.

Did Tiktaalik fuck? Inquiring minds would like to know.
(And if so, did the guys dress to the left or to the right?)
Thanks to Atheist Media Blog for the video link.

No comments: