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The Lie: Evolution


The Sex Life of a Mosquito

by Mark Stewart

To most people, the mosquito is a nuisance, a bothersome pest with an irritating proclivity for drawing blood. But the sex life of the mosquito is a fascinating study in the hidden intricacies of what is usually considered a "simple" or "lower" organism. Indeed, the structures of the sexual apparatuses of the female and male mosquito are incredibly complex, and the sexual behavior patterns of the mosquito are surprisingly elaborate.

There are many mysteries and complexities surrounding the sex life of the mosquito. I wish to focus on only one specific aspect: the incredibly baffling change in male anatomy necessary for the mating of the species Aedes Aegypti.

What is this mysterious anatomical change? Shortly after a male mosquito emerges as an adult, his rear end undergoes a remarkable rotation. The last two segments of the abdomen begin to rotate until, over a period of 20 hours, they have made a full turn of 180 degrees. In other words, the male's posterior turns upside down - permanently. The female abdomen, by contrast, always remains in its original position.

This curious twist is absolutely essential for mating to occur, since the male must clasp the female in a very complicated fashion to ensure fertilization. A partial twist - say 90 degrees - will not do the job. Extensive research on the amazing reproductive systems of the mosquito has been done, yet the mechanism responsible for the strange posterior rotation is, as far I am aware, still not known. Studies indicate that the muscles of the body wall do not cause the rotation.

But whatever the mechanism, how could such a revolutionary rotation have evolved? According to evolutionary theory, changes in organisms accumulate over long periods of time, eventually resulting in a superior creature. In the case of longer legs, or bigger horns, such a concept might make sense. But can you imagine male mosquitos slowly learning, over millions of years, to completely rotate their hind ends so that they could mate with a female? Unless the male mosquito had the ability to effect an essentially complete rotation from the very beginning, the mosquito couldn't successfully mate, and would now be extinct. Yet mosquitos quite obviously exist today. And remember, the posterior flip of the male mosquito is only one of a series of spectacular changes and transformations that are vital for mosquito mating and reproduction.

The curious twist in the sex life of the mosquito would seem to provide strong and compelling evidence for the unfathomable inventive genius of God.