All of the parthenogenetic species with which I'm familiar are female. Females, obviously, have all the machinery for reproduction in place, and all they have to replace is the function of one itty-bitty little sperm, while for a male to reproduce without females, he'd have to replace the functions of big, well-stocked eggs and uteruses or whatever equivalent organs the mother of the species has at her disposal. It's hard for males to get around the female contribution to reproduction. At last, though, one species of fire ant has shown a way to do it, not that I'd ever want to go down this particular road.
I'm going to expand on this strange genetic pattern John Wilkins described. First, though, here's a little background on haplodiploid sex determinatiion.
Continue reading "Clone war of the sexes" (on Pharyngula)