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Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog

  • Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog
  • From: "Steve Ritchey" sritchey@shreve.net
  • Date: Mon, 4 Apr 2005 18:49:54 -0500

It turned too cool for the wasps to be out on the callas this weekend, but had plenty of small flies. The instant one lands on the spathe, the frogs' eyes open and zap!- lunch. Then they close their eyes and become virtually invisible again. They either can't detect the flies landing on the spadix behind them or just ignore them til another one lands directly in front of them on the spathe.

I have some aethiopica 'Kiwi Blush' getting ready to flower. It will be interesting to see if they can match this spathe color, or just stay green parked on the leaves.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Julius Boos" <ju-bo@msn.com>
To: <aroid-l@gizmoworks.com>
Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 5:43 AM
Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog

&gt;From: Jonathan Ertelt &lt;jonathan.ertelt@vanderbilt.edu&gt;
&gt;Reply-To: Discussion of aroids &lt;aroid-l@gizmoworks.com&gt;
&gt;To: Discussion of aroids &lt;aroid-l@gizmoworks.com&gt;
&gt;Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog
&gt;Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2005 15:30:31 -0600

Dear All,

This discussion about the tiny frog inhabiting the bloom of the native African Zantedescia sps. ("Arum lily") brings to mind something that I know of in Trinidad, W.I.
Many years ago I was trying to collect one of the rarest of the many frog species we have on Trinidad, Flectonotus (Gastrotheca) fitzgeraldi, the Trinidad Marsupial frog, called that because it incubates its few large eggs in a 'marsupium' or pouch/groove along its dorsum. I was told that the way to see this little (finger-joint sized) frog was near the Bat caves near Tamana in Central Trinidad`s jungle. One of my Mentors, Dr. Jack Price, had collected it there when working w/ Dr. Jake Kenny on the frogs of Trinidad and Tobago. HERE COMES THE AROID CONNECTION!! Jack told me that it lived in the basal leaf-sheaths of a giant Xanthosoma sp. (Xanthiosoma cf. undipes), known locally as 'wild tannia' that grew there. I made a trip and climb to these caves where we discovered this plant was abundant near the entrances to these smelly bat caves, and after much chopping and searching we did see this little tree-frog slipping effortlessly in and out of the sheaths, NOT easy to catch! I wonder if perhaps this plant , besides providing a moist/wet safe haven in its basal leaf sheaths for this tiny frog, might also provide a higher temp. than that of the surrounding air?? I was also thinking that perhaps the higher temperature produced within the spathe of Zanthedescia would be advantagous to a tiny frog, plus of course the insects provided as food and attracted to the scent of the bloom at anthesis???? All food for thought and further research!



Does anyone on the list know of references, reprints of articles,
&gt;&gt;or research on the relationship of the Arum lily (reed) frog,
&gt;&gt;Hyperolius horstocki, and the arum lily, Zantedeschia aethiopica?
&gt;&gt;This tiny frog (I believe endemic to South African Fynbos) inhabits
&gt;&gt;the inflorescence of the Arum lily and can change its color to
&gt;&gt;match its background inside the Arum lily for camoflauge. Beyond
&gt;&gt;that I am having difficulty locating much information on this cool
&gt;&gt;little creature, and would like to know more if anyone has
&gt;&gt;experience with it.
&gt;&gt;Thanks for your help,
&gt;Here's a site with an illustration of one clutching a spadix:
&gt;if you enter the scientific name into the google search engine,
&gt;several sites come up with information.
&gt;Aroid-l mailing list

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