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Thursday, Feb 29th

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You are here News Science No Daddy Shark in sight: Zoo greets a cute shark pup after apparent parthenogenesis

No Daddy Shark in sight: Zoo greets a cute shark pup after apparent parthenogenesis

by shark worn without a daddy

What if the song "Baby Shark" stopped after just two stanzas?

For non-fans of the catchy tune, that might sound like a dream. For a real-life Mommy Shark in Illinois, it's reality: She produced a baby without a Daddy Shark.

The epaulette shark pup hatched this summer at Brookfield Zoo, just west of Chicago. Its mother has been at the zoo since 2019; in that time, she's never shared a tank with a male.

It's a rare case of parthenogenesis, a type of asexual reproduction, according to the zoo.

"Beginning in 2022, the adult female shark began laying two to four, typically infertile eggs, each month," the zoo said in a news release. "One of those eggs was fertile, and following a five-month incubation the pup hatched and has been behind the scenes being monitored by staff."

Sharks, we'll remind you, are fish and not mammals, although some shark species do give birth to live young.

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