Sexual reproduction is by conjugation. Hyphae belonging to different strains (plus and minus strains) come in close contact with one another. Tips of the hyphae are separated by septa from the rest of the hyphae. Each tip contains many nuclei with cytoplasm, mitochondria and food material. The two tips are called gametangia. The walls of the gametangia that are in contact dissolve away allowing the two protoplasts to fuse. The zygote resulting from this fusion develops into a zygospore. Zygospore has a thick wall and is quite resistant to unfavorable conditions. The zygospore will later germinate under favorable conditions. It undergoes meiosis, germinates to produce sporangium which release spores. Each spore can germinate and continue the life cycle.
|Conjugation in Rhizopus|