Female Insect Carries Around Own Sperm Just In Case

Meet the female insect who is able to use her own sperm to procreate — which is quickly causing a serious shortage of males:

The female scale insect (Icerya purchasi) is an independent woman. She carries her own sperm-harbored in tissue passed down through the generations-so she doesn't need a male to have her babies. Scientists have long believed that this unique procreation strategy-scale insects are the only hermaphroditic insects and the only animal in the world to employ such a sperm packet-is harmful to the female, as the "sperm packet" consumes resources in her body that she could otherwise devote to making more eggs.

Share This Story