A species of asexual translucent worm has been discovered by scientists. Diploscapter pachys hasn’t had sex in roughly 18 million years, when it parted from its parent species, by exclusively practicing asexual reproduction.
The species has survived for the entire time by copying itself, while still maintaining fairly high genetic diversity. The revelation has taken scientists by surprise – with asexual species usually dying out due to genetic mutations.
Biologist David Fitch of New York University said: “It has been a longstanding mystery in biology how some asexual animals have survived for so many generations.