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Yup, that’s true- a man changes sex
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The oceans harbor a wide array of reproductive tactics, and some of them are pretty darn weird. This week we have already learned about parasitic males and some slightly unromantic mating strategies. We also learned that the movie “Finding Nemo” would be far different if screen writers accurately depicted the symbiotic relationship between Nemo, nemonemomne” home. But that isn’t the only thing Pixar got wrong. Anemone fish (also called “clown fish”) start their life off as males (like Nemo and Marlin) and live in a single anemone with several other males and a single, larger female (Figure 1). The movie is doing okay so far, but here’s the hitch- when that large female dies (o, like Nemo’s mom did!) the breeding group does not simply usher a new female into their ranks. The largest of the males actually becomes the new female.
Anemone seafood are hermaphrodites (definition a single individual enjoys one another men and women reproductive areas at some stage in existence) and are generally by no means the actual only real seafood to make use of it fascinating mating strategy. Hermaphroditism is pretty common inside invertebrates (like the water slug) however, fishes certainly are the only vertebrates considered functional hermaphrodites (in lieu of instances of hermaphroditism which occur due to mutations and people are not functionally reproductive).