Reproduction, or sex, was the biological process in which new organisms were produced from "parent" organisms. In order for organisms to genetically reproduce they must be compatible on a genetic level for a successful outcome. The various forms of reproduction between species could be categorized into two global types: sexual and asexual reproduction.
In many species that had two sexes, the creation of a new organism was obtained by combining the genetic material of two "parents," that is two opposite-sex organisms.That usually required mating, sexual union involving penetration so the male's sperm could impregnate a female's ovum. In most mammals, the offspring would then gestate in the mother's womb until birth. Depending on the genital and cellular compatibility, two individuals of different species could reproduce or not.
By contrast, asexual reproduction involved an individual organism producing new organisms without the involvement of another. Those organisms were either capable of self-replication or were hermaphroditic—meaning they contained both male and female reproductive organs. Such was the case with most gastropods and plant-based species.
Other reproduction methods
Cloning referred to the process of reproducing a near symmetrical duplicate of a being through artificial means. By obtaining the genetic code of an individual, numerous copies of said individual could be created depending on the state of the technology available to the cloner.
Various species, such as the , relied on cloning as their chief means of reproduction.
There have been various instances where an organism had genetically reproduced on a scale previously undocumented.
Reproductive and post-reproductive strategies
There was a wide range of reproductive strategies employed by different species in the galaxy.
Some species, many of which are humanoids, are not capable of reproduction until many years after birth. Other species can reproduce quickly after birth, with numerous offspring however, most of these offspring do not survive to adulthood due to environmental influences.
In terms of evolutionary habits, species who could only reproduce a few offspring at a time tended to devote more resources to the nurturing and protection of said offspring than in comparison to those species who could produce many offspring who tend to devote fewer resources to each offspring; for these species it is common for many offspring to die soon after birth, but enough individuals typically survive to maintain the population.
Various species and organisms reproduced at various seasons continuously throughout their lives. These intervals could usually be mapped into cycles, known as reproduction cycles.
In contrast, other organisms could only reproduce once in their lifetime, often dying shortly after reproduction either due to the actions of their mate or due to genetic influence.
While mating normally took place in the context of reproduction, sapient beings often engaged in sexual intercourse for recreational purposes, or as a means to express their romantic love and care for one another. In the latter case, mating was referred to as the loving. While romantic and sexual attraction to the opposite sex was considered the norm, some sapient individuals were attracted to people of their own sex, controversy depending on the culture in question.
Some beings who were referred to as prostitutes engaged in promiscuous sexual relations for payment. Such activities were normally confined within brothels, a type of buildings that were often associated with other seedy venues, including bars and gambling dens.Some prostitutes, however, would directly solicit potential customers in the streets.
Among many species, particularly among those that derive physical and/or emotional pleasure from the act, the allure of reproduction was a source of entertainment with various displays and depictions usually centering around the reproductive act itself and/or the organs associated with the act, such as the genitals as well as other, associated, themes.
The topic is popular enough that the pornography trade, or “Adult Content”, can be a lucrative business.
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