Solo reproduction gets stranger in the insect world. Among certain wasp species, fertilized eggs develop into female offspring with the regular number of chromosomes. Unfertilized ones develop into males with only half. But if the female wasp is infected with the Wolbachia bacteria, a different kind of immaculate conception results. Instead of splitting to yield eggs with half the normal number of chromosomes, these wasp eggs forgo division and keep their normal chromosomal number. They then develop into females that are clones of their mothers. The females that result, though, are unable to reproduce sexually. And soon, the entire female population is made up of infected wasps with no possibility of producing offspring that can escape the infection. The bacterium plays the long game, but eventually wins.
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