Monday, June 02, 2008

TSD? I Thought You Said Something Else..

I read an article recently about temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) in alligators.

Apparently, through some experiments conducted in the early 1980's that were based on controlled incubation in a laboratory and also by carefully recording temperatures in natural nests in coastal Louisiana, they were able to determine that higher temperatures, 32-34° C (90-93° F), produced all males while slightly lower ones, 28-30° C (82-86° F) resulted in all females. Temperatures below 28° C or above 34°C produced a mix of genders, skewing towards female.

Recently, however, scientists determined keeping eggs at exactly 31°C for the entire incubation period resulted in this.1

Which certainly explains a lot.

1 For any non-Americans, here's a link explaining the previous link.