Anaconda Gives 'Virgin Birth' At New England Aquarium
According to a report by Huffpost, a Boston aquarium has confirmed that the surprise birth of anaconda snakes to a mother living with only other females was an instance of parthenogenesis, a word that originates from the Greek words meaning 'virgin birth.' Anna, an 8 year-old, 10 foot-long green anaconda living in the New England Aquarium's Amazon exhibit, lived with only female snakes, a decision intended to prevent her from reproducing. National Geographic claims that parthenogenesis is an extremely rare occurrence in vertebrate species that usually reproduce sexually. The phenomenon has reportedly also been seen in Komodo dragons as well as some species of birds, sharks, and other snakes.