• Reuters

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Scientists have documented in Florida a series of “virgin births,” reproduction without mating, in a critically endangered sawfish species pushed to the brink of extinction by overfishing and habitat destruction.

The scientists said Monday it marks the first time the phenomenon called parthenogenesis has been seen in a vertebrate in the wild. Some females may be resorting to asexual reproduction because smalltooth sawfish numbers are so low mating opportunities may not exist, they said.

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