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  • Hello. This is 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English.

    大家好,歡迎收看BBC的6分鐘英語。

  • I'm Neil.

    我是尼爾。

  • And I'm Rob.

    我是羅伯。

  • Do you think there are big differences between men and women, Neil?

    尼爾,你覺得男人和女人有很大的不同嗎?

  • Apart from the old stereotypes we sometimes hear

    除了常聽到的刻板印象之外,

  • like, that men can't express emotions...

    例如,男人不擅長表露感情…

  • I suppose biologically

    我想就生物學而言

  • there are differences, Rob.

    確實有差異,羅伯。

  • I mean, men and women's bodies are different.

    我的意思是,男女的身體構造不同。

  • Right, and it takes both a man and a woman to make a baby.

    沒錯,而且生孩子需要男人和女人的合作。

  • Well, that's true, in humans anyway.

    這倒是真的,至少對人類來說是如此。

  • But in this programme

    但在今天的節目中,

  • we'll be hearing about creatures in the wild,

    我們會發現對於某些野生生物來說,

  • where the classic 'boy meets girl' love story doesn't apply.

    典型「男歡女愛」的愛情故事並不適用。

  • Yes, we'll be meeting some female animals who don't need a male to make babies.

    是的,我們會看到一些不需要雄性動物就能生孩子的雌性動物。

  • These creatures reproduce by parthenogenesis,

    這些生物透過孤雌生殖繁衍後代,

  • also called virgin birth.

    也稱為「處女生殖」。

  • This is the process where the female can reproduce without a mate,

    這就是指雌性不需要配偶就可以繁衍後代,

  • a term used for an animal's sexual partner.

    這裡的配偶指的是動物的性伴侶。

  • All animal species survive by making babies,

    所有的物種都是靠生育傳宗接代,

  • reproducing to make copies of themselves.

    透過繁殖進行自我複製。

  • But amazingly,

    但令人驚訝的是,

  • the female of some species can do it all by herself!

    有些雌性物種可以自己做到這一點!

  • But before that, it's time for my quiz question.

    但在節目開始前,先進行提問環節。

  • In Britain's Chester Zoo in 2006,

    2006年,在英國的切斯特動物園,

  • Flora laid eleven eggs that developed into healthy babies.

    Flora 產下11顆蛋,它們發育成健康的嬰兒。

  • Her zookeepers were mystified

    動物園管理員都感到很困惑,

  • because Flora had only been kept with other females and had never been near a male.

    因為Flora跟其他雌性動物飼養在一起,從未接近過任何雄性動物。

  • What type of animal was Flora?

    請問Flora是哪種動物?

  • Was she a) a python, b) a zebra shark,

    她是 a) 蟒蛇,b) 斑馬鯊

  • or c) a Komodo dragon?

    或 c)科摩多龍?

  • Pythons are pretty unusual creatures,

    蟒蛇是很不尋常的生物,

  • so I'll say Flora was a python.

    所以我猜 Flora 是蟒蛇。

  • OK, Rob, we'll find out later if you're right.

    好,羅伯,我們稍後看看你有沒有猜對。

  • Actually, it's not only reptiles who behave this way.

    其實,不僅爬行動物有這種特質。

  • The females of many animal species are able to reproduce without sex.

    許多雌性物種都能進行無性繁殖。

  • By doing this they gain several advantages:

    這麼做有幾個好處:

  • they can rapidly spread, colonize and control large areas,

    她們可以迅速地繁衍擴散、建立聚落和控制大片領域,

  • and they don't waste time and energy looking for a mate.

    而不需要浪費時間和精力尋找伴侶。

  • But if a world without sex is so much better,

    但如果無性世界這麼好,

  • why bother with males at all?

    為什麼還需要雄性動物?

  • Good question, Neil,

    好問題,尼爾,

  • and one which BBC World Service programme, Discovery, asked evolutionary biologist, Chris Wilson.

    BBC國際台 Discovery 頻道也問了演化生物學家 Chris Wilson 同樣的問題。

  • Well, absolutely!

    當然!

  • And there are other advantages,

    而且還有其他優點。

  • I mean, if you're an all-female population,

    我的意思是,如果是全女性物種,

  • you don't have to waste time searching and competing for mates,

    就不用浪費時間尋找和爭奪配偶。

  • there are no more sexually-transmitted diseases

    也就不會有性傳播疾病,

  • and so it seems like the easiest decision

    這似乎是最簡單的做法,

  • and yet,

    然而,

  • less than one percent of all animal species are completely celibate,

    只有不到百分之一的物種可以進行無性繁殖,

  • and that's a huge fundamental puzzle in evolutionary biology

    這是巨大的演化生物學之謎,

  • that we're still not entirely sure we understand

    我們至今仍然無法完全理解。

  • it's called sometimes the paradox of sex.

    它有時候被稱為「性悖論」。

  • Despite the advantages of going without sex,

    儘管無性繁殖有許多優點,

  • in reality fewer than one percent of all animals are celibate - live without having sex.

    在現實生活中,不到百分之一的物種可以進行無性繁殖,也就是沒有性生活。

  • This begs the question,

    這就帶出了一個問題,

  • why is sex so common when it seems so inefficient?

    如果性交效率不彰,為何性行為如此普遍?

  • Chris calls this the paradox of sex.

    Chris 稱此為「性悖論」。

  • A paradox is a situation which seems contradictory because it contains two opposite facts.

    悖論是一種看似矛盾的情況,因為它包含兩個相反的事實。

  • For example, the existence of males if we can reproduce without them.

    例如,如果不需要雄性生物就能繁殖,其存在意義為何?

  • As a male myself,

    身為男性,

  • I have to say I'm feeling a little underappreciated right now, Rob!

    老實說我覺得有點不受重視,羅伯!

  • Well, don't worry, Neil,

    別擔心,尼爾,

  • because it turns out there might be a use for males after all!

    因為事實證明雄性生物還是有些用處的!

  • It seems the sex paradox has been solved by one of nature's most ingenious insects - aphids.

    性悖論似乎被自然界中最聰明的物種之一,蚜蟲,解決了。

  • Here's ecologist, Amber Wright,

    生態學家 Amber Wright

  • explaining how to the BBC World Service's Discovery programme.

    在 BBC 國際台上的說明。

  • See if you can hear the strategy American aphids use to reproduce.

    看看你是否能理解美國蚜蟲的繁殖策略。

  • The aphids we have in the US,

    美國的蚜蟲

  • when spring comes around,

    在春天來臨時,

  • the eggs hatch and they'll be all female for several generations,

    卵會孵化並持續幾代都是雌性。

  • and then at the end of the summer,

    然後在夏季的尾聲,

  • they will hatch out males and females and mate,

    卵孵化後則為雄性,並和雌性進行交配,

  • and then create eggs that wait for next year,

    接著產下隔年將孵化的卵。

  • kind of the best of both worlds.

    聽起來簡直是兩全其美。

  • Hedging their bets basically,

    基本上就是一種規避機制,

  • using cloning to rapidly colonize

    透過繁衍後快速形成聚落,

  • and then using sex to mix up the genes.

    再透過性交來混合其基因。

  • In the spring, female aphids lay eggs which hatch,

    春天時,雌性蚜蟲產卵孵化,

  • break open, allowing the young to come out.

    幼蟲破殼而出,

  • The young aphids that hatch are all female.

    孵化的年幼蚜蟲都是雌性。

  • But later, at the end of the summer,

    但到了夏季末期,

  • both female and male aphids hatch out

    孵化出雌性和雄性蚜蟲

  • and start to reproduce by mating.

    並開始交配以繁衍後代。

  • So, the aphids have the best of both worlds,

    所以,蚜蟲的生活可說是兩全其美,

  • they enjoy the advantages of very different things at the same time.

    同時享受兩種不同事物帶來的好處。

  • Or to put it another way,

    或者,換一種說法,

  • the aphids hedge their bets.

    蚜蟲採取兩面下注的策略。

  • They follow two courses of action

    牠們同時採取兩種行動

  • instead of choosing between them.

    而不是擇一進行。

  • By cloning themselves with 'virgin births' and reproducing sexually,

    透過自我複製、處女生殖和有性生殖,

  • aphids maximize their chances of survival.

    蚜蟲最大限度地提升牠們的生存機會。

  • Gardeners around the world will be upset to hear that

    世界各地的園藝家聽到這個消息肯定會很不高興,

  • those young aphids just love eating tomato plants!

    因為年幼的蚜蟲最愛吃番茄植物!

  • But on the plus side,

    但往好處想,

  • it seems being male can be useful after all.

    這表示男性還是有用的。

  • But not if you're Flora,

    但若你是 Flora 就不同了。

  • the female you asked about in your quiz question.

    你剛才問答環節提到的雌性動物。

  • So, what type of animal was she?

    那她是什麼類型的動物?

  • Right, I asked whether the virgin Flora was...

    沒錯,剛才我的問題是,處女 Flora 是

  • a) a python, b) a shark

    a) 蟒蛇,b) 鯊魚

  • or c) a Komodo dragon.

    或 c)科摩多龍。

  • I guessed a python.

    我選了 a)蟒蛇。

  • Well, Rob, you're right that some female pythons can reproduce by themselves,

    羅伯,你說的沒錯,有些雌性蟒蛇可以獨自繁衍後代,

  • and sharks too.

    斑馬鯊也是。

  • But the correct answer is that

    但正確的答案是

  • Flora was c) a Komodo dragon.

    Flora 是 c)科摩多龍。

  • OK, let's recap the vocabulary,

    好,讓我們來複習一下詞彙。

  • starting with mate, an animal's sexual partner,

    從配偶這個詞開始,動物的性伴侶,

  • something you don't have if you're celibate - living without sex.

    如果你是無性繁衍就不會有性伴侶,也就是沒有性生活。

  • Animal eggs hatch or break open to let the young out.

    動物蛋的孵化或破殼而出。

  • And a paradox is a situation which seems contradictory

    而悖論是一種看似矛盾的情況,

  • because it contains two opposite facts.

    因為它包含兩個相反的事實。

  • Species which reproduce parthenogenetically and sexually have the best of both worlds -

    同時進行孤雌生殖和有性生殖的物種擁有兩全其美的生活,

  • enjoy the advantages of very different things at the same time.

    同時享受不同事物帶來的好處。

  • And if you hedge your bets,

    如果你兩面下注,

  • you follow two courses of action instead of choosing between them so you don't miss out.

    就表示你採取兩種策略而不是擇一進行,這樣就不會錯過任何機會。

  • Well, that's all there's time for. Bye for now! Goodbye!

    我們的時間差不多了,再見!

Hello. This is 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English.

大家好,歡迎收看BBC的6分鐘英語。

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B2 中高級 中文 雌性 動物 悖論 孵化 尼爾 男性

為什麼還需要雄性動物? - 6分鐘英語 (When males are not needed - 6 Minute English)

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    林宜悉 發佈於 2021 年 06 月 03 日
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