14 April, 2016

Parthenogenetic reproduction reported for the buthid Pseudolychas ochraceus

Partogenetic reproduction has been reported for several scorpion species, but not all observations have been made under controlled circumstances. Francke (2008) proposed that the parturition of a captive isolated female collected immature in the wild is the minimal evidence required to conclude that a scorpion species is parthenogenetic.

Seiter, Schramm and Barthel have now published a research note demonstrating true parthenogenesis in the South African buthid Pseudolychas ochraceus (Hirst, 1911).

Of all scorpion species described to date, only a small fraction are known to reproduce without fertilization by a male, instead producing offspring by parthenogenesis. Here we show that isolated females of the buthid Pseudolychas ochraceus (Hirst, 1911) are capable of parthenogenetic reproduction and we provide data on the postembryonic growth of this species.

Seiter M, Schramm FD, Barthel A. The South African scorpion Pseudolychas ochraceus (Hirst, 1911) (Scorpiones: Buthidae) can reproduce by parthenogenesis. Journal of Arachnology. 2016; 44: 85-87. [Subscription required for full text]

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