What the world needs now is love sweet snail love studies, according to Burt Bacharach and a $880,000 federal grant.
The study looks at the New Zealand mud snail, which, like my former college roommate, can have sex with or without a partner.
Sex with other sentient creatures is “more costly” than asexual reproduction, “yet nearly all organisms reproduce sexually,” scientist Maurine Neiman declares. “Why is sexual reproduction so common despite its costs?”
I’m no scientist, but I’m guessing it helps divorce attorneys pay their bills.
Alas, answering the question is “more complicated that is appears,” the scientists write.
“Because only females can directly produce offspring, the production of sons by sexual females creates a two-fold ‘cost of males’ that should culminate in the rapid elimination of sex,” Neiman notes.
“Elimination of sex?” Now you’ve got my attention. Throw money at this thing!
The study, first funded in 2011, will be extended to 2015. So far, the grant has paid out $502,357, reports CNS.