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62-Year Old Snake Lays Eggs, Despite Not Being around Males for 20 Years

The ball python (whose identity the St. Louis Zoo is protecting), laid a clutch of eggs despite being the oldest known snake in a zoo and, even more impressively, having no males to mate with. How is this possible? Stuff reports that the snake may have kept a sperm sample handy:

Mark Wanner, manager of herpetology at the St. Louis Zoo, said it unusual but not rare for ball pythons to reproduce asexually. The snakes also sometimes store sperm for delayed fertilization.

Photo: St. Louis Zoo/Chawa Schuette


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