Concept 7: Gametes combine at random to form the individuals in the next generation

Anyone who has been in a corn field during sexual reproduction has witnessed the random nature of male and female gametes combining. Once the pollen or egg is made, it is simply chance that dictates which gametes will get together (Fig. 10). If a large sample of offspring from a given cross is examined, the genetic combinations will reflect the random nature of gametes combining and forming offspring.

Figure 10. Gametes combine at random with respect to the genes that they carry. (Image by P. Hain)