Researchers have found three different sexes in an algae species found in a Japanese river. The algae are called Pleodorina starii and its third sex is considered “bisexual” by researchers as it can produce both male and female sex cells. It was also found that all the three sexes can breed in pairs with each other.
Hisayoshi Nozaki, a biologist at the University of Tokyo says, “It seems very uncommon to find a species with three sexes, but in natural conditions, I think it may not be so rare.”
Some researchers believe that the answer to how living beings evolved different sexes may lie in algae history and that this discovery of three sexes could help them find out how different sex systems came into being.