Nature and climate News | Scientific ecology

Hermaphrodite bee: she has one half a female body and the other half a male body.

Hermaphrodite bee: she has one half a female body and the other half a male body.

Nature has given the animal world two floors. Which means there are male and female specimens that reproduce offspring. But sometimes nature offers surprises. It creates extraordinary organisms that combine the two sexes at once - male and female. This phenomenon is called gynandromorphism. And recently, scientists have found the first gynandromorphic specimen in nature.

A bee with signs of both sexes lives in Central and South America. On the left side, this insect is a physiological male. The whole left side of the bee's body is fully consistent with the male. This part of the body has an elegant lower jaw, a long mustache, a thin back leg with short bristles.

And the right part of the body completely corresponds to a female. This half has a massive jaw, a short whisker, a powerful limb with long bristles. This phenomenon is not common and only in 140 species, including bees, butterflies, crustacean birds. In bees, such a phenomenon can be seen only after sweating it and observing it and its features are simply impossible.

But Cornell University scientists have managed to do it after all. Anthropologist Erin Kriczylski and his colleagues work with the living bees of the Barro Colorado forest in Panama. They learned a lot about these insects and were able to study a unique natural phenomenon.

In their opinion, the cause of such a phenomenon as the manifestation of both sexes in the body of one individual may be related to the evolutionary processes of certain species, and new breeding methods. Watching the "double" bee, the researchers found out that it has a completely different behavior, its rhythms are closer to the behavior of a female bee.

This may indicate that the brain of the gynandromorphic bees has a mixed sexual alarm, and scientists are unable to explain why this happened. Another option is that the manifestation of two sexes in one insect may indeed be a single failure of the gene structure, and one should not wait for its hereditary repetition.