<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

Sexual reproduction and embryonic development

Almost all animal species are capable of reproducing sexually; for many, this is the only mode of reproduction possible. This distinguishes animals from fungi, protists, and bacteria, where asexual reproduction is common or exclusive. During sexual reproduction, the male and female gametes of a species combine in a process called fertilization. Typically, the small, motile male sperm travels to the much larger, sessile female egg. Sperm form is diverse and includes cells with flagella or amoeboid cells to facilitate motility. Fertilization and fusion of the gamete nuclei produce a zygote. Fertilization may be internal, especially in land animals, or external, as is common in many aquatic species.

After fertilization, a developmental sequence ensues as cells divide and differentiate. Many of the events in development are shared in groups of related animal species, and these events are one of the main ways scientists classify high-level groups of animals. During development, animal cells specialize and form tissues, determining their future morphology and physiology. In many animals, such as mammals, the young resemble the adult. Other animals, such as some insects and amphibians, undergo complete metamorphosis in which individuals enter one or more larval stages. For these animals, the young and the adult have different diets and sometimes habitats. In other species, a process of incomplete metamorphosis occurs in which the young somewhat resemble the adults and go through a series of stages separated by molts (shedding of the skin) until they reach the final adult form.

Asexual reproduction

Asexual reproduction, unlike sexual reproduction, produces offspring genetically identical to each other and to the parent. A number of animal species—especially those without backbones, but even some fish, amphibians, and reptiles—are capable of asexual reproduction. Asexual reproduction, except for occasional identical twinning, is absent in birds and mammals. The most common forms of asexual reproduction for stationary aquatic animals include budding and fragmentation, in which part of a parent individual can separate and grow into a new individual. In contrast, a form of asexual reproduction found in certain invertebrates and rare vertebrates is called parthenogenesis (or “virgin beginning”), in which unfertilized eggs develop into new offspring.

Classification features of animals

Animals are classified according to morphological and developmental characteristics, such as a body plan. With the exception of sponges, the animal body plan is symmetrical. This means that their distribution of body parts is balanced along an axis. Additional characteristics that contribute to animal classification include the number of tissue layers formed during development, the presence or absence of an internal body cavity, and other features of embryological development.

Art connection

The phylogenetic tree of metazoans, or animals, branches into parazoans with no tissues and eumetazoans with specialized tissues. Parazoans include Porifera, or sponges. Eumetazoans branch into Radiata, diploblastic animals with radial symmetry, and Bilateria, triploblastic animals with bilateral symmetry. Radiata includes cnidarians and ctenophores (comb jellies). Bilateria branches into Protostomia and Deuterostomia, which possess a body cavity. Deuterostomes include chordates and echinoderms. Protostomia branches into Lophotrochozoa and Ecdysozoa. Ecdysozoa includes arthropods and nematodes, or roundworms. Lophotrochozoa includes Mollusca, Annelida, Nemertea, which includes ribbon worms, Rotifera, and Platyhelminthes, which includes flatworms.
The phylogenetic tree of animals is based on morphological, fossil, and genetic evidence.

Which of the following statements is false?

  1. Eumetazoa have specialized tissues and Parazoa do not.
  2. Both acoelomates and pseudocoelomates have a body cavity.
  3. Chordates are more closely related to echinoderms than to rotifers according to the figure.
  4. Some animals have radial symmetry, and some animals have bilateral symmetry.

Questions & Answers

Species A has 12 pairs of chromosomes and Species B has 11 pairs of chromosomes. Explain what occurs during mitosis and during meiosis in the hybrid that allows normal development and growth from zygote to adult, but causes the adults to be sterile.
Christina Reply
Why does water move through a membrane?
Christina Reply
How many bones are in the human skeleton
Treasure Reply
203
Oyeleke
procce of digestion of proteins a long human alimentarycanal
Carson Reply
what are the properties of lipids?
Isiah Reply
They are: Fatty acids, fats, oils, waxes, phospholipid, glycolipids, steroids and some vitamins
Rachel
explain why a fresh water fish excrete ammonia
Leonard Reply
plz answer my question
Leonard
sorry i meant it has a nucleous unlike plant cells lol
Lailah
Ammonia is the end product of protein catabolism and is stored in the body of the fish in high concentrations relative to basal excretion rates. Ammonia, if allowed to accumulate, is toxic and is converted to less toxic compounds or excreted
Rachel
What are eukaryotic cells?
Nwosueke Reply
cell with no nucleous so not a plant cell
Lailah
eukaryotic cells are membrane bound organelles that have a membrane bound nucleus
ojeen
where does the cell get energy for active transport processes?
A'Kaysion Reply
IDK maybe glucose
Lailah
what is synapsis
Adepoju Reply
how many turns are required to make a molecule of sucrose in Calvin cycle
Amina Reply
why Calvin cycle occurs in stroma
Amina
why do humans enhale oxygen and exhale carbondioxide?
Maryam Reply
why do humans enhale oxygen and exhale carbondioxide? For the purpose of breaking down the food
dil
what is allele
uzoka Reply
process of protein synthesis
SANTOSH Reply
what is cell
Zulf Reply
a cell is a smallest basic, structural and functional unit of life that is capable of self replication
Lucas
why does a fresh water fish excrete ammonia
Leonard
plz answer my question
Leonard
Ammonia is a toxic colorless gas and when its inside the fish biological system is converted to a less toxic compound then excreted in the form of urea. However too much ammonia will kill the fish " Ammonia Poisoning " which is a very common disease among fish.
This
what is cytoplasm
uzoka Reply
cytoplasm is fluid of cell.
Deepak

Get the best Concepts of biology course in your pocket!





Source:  OpenStax, Concepts of biology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 29, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11487/1.9
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Concepts of biology' conversation and receive update notifications?

Ask