Zoologger: The lizard that changes its intercourse to match the weather

Zoologger: The lizard that changes its intercourse to match the weather

(Image: Arthur Georges)

Zoologger is our regular line highlighting extraordinary pets – and occasionally other organisms – from about the whole world

Species: The main beardie (Pogona vitticeps)Habitat: Arid woodlands and deserts in Central Australia

If you can’t stay the warmth, modification intercourse. Male lizards from Australia become super-fecund females in hot weather.


Increasing conditions may lead to a intercourse change avalanche that pushes populations – and perhaps the species that are entire towards a society without adult men.

An embryo to develop as either a male or a female for some reptiles, such as many snakes and lizards, sex chromosomes trigger. For other individuals, including crocodiles, alligators and marine turtles, intercourse depends upon heat, with extremes generally resulting in more females, possibly by inhibiting male genes.

Bearded dragons reveal a 3rd means – a type of evolutionary change amongst the two.


They have sex chromosomes like us. For them it is a Z and a W. Having ZZ chromosomes usually makes a male, and ZW a lady. However, if male eggs are confronted with conditions over 32 °C, this logic gets overridden. And even though their chromosomes are telling them become male, the warmth makes many ZZ embryos develop as females.

We knew this from lab experiments, nonetheless it ended up beingn’t clear whether or not it took place the crazy or what impact it had.

“No one knew whether it was likely to donate to the people, or if it absolutely was a few freaky weird thing that takes place when it gets hot, ” says Clare Holleley through the University of Canberra, Australia. Continue reading “Zoologger: The lizard that changes its intercourse to match the weather”