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Re: Hybrids

-----Original Message-----
From: Jay Vannini <interbnk@infovia.com.gt>
To: Multiple recipients of list AROID-L <aroid-l@mobot.org>
Date: Monday, May 01, 2000 10:40 PM
Subject: Re: Hybrids

Dear Jay,

Thanks for the kind words--what you describe is what I miss most of all
while living here, the lack of the tropical jungle insects/contacts.


Excellent observation on the VERY specific tastes of many insects! Now, if
you really want to get into esoteric baits, talk to the tropical butterfly

I know!!   Really enjoyed reading about your observations, you lucky guy!!
Now for a few more of my inane ramblings--In T`dad we have several genera
and species of Brassolids (the huge 'owl' butterflies), and the males have
scent glands which they use in courtship/combat 'dances' at dusk.   As a boy
I`d wait in the growing gloaming at the side of a jungle stream among the
Spathiphyllums, Dieffenbachias and Helliconias for them, the giant Caligos
with parchment-sounding wing-beats, to come to me, and one could smell them
before you saw them!!   They would meet and swirl around and around in their
mad courtship flights, and even now, 40 years later, I can 'pull up' the
memory of this scent!   The hair on the nape of my neck rises as I recall
 I always wondered what the males used to feed on that allowed them to
produce this very musty, bat-like smell.   I noted that the different
species produced slightly different scents by which I could tell them apart.
A related genus is Opsiphanes, and one of the two species found on T`dad is
O. cassinia, it`s larva feed on palms, and the adult males smell STRONGLY of
vanilla!   The other slightly larger species, O.cassiculus, has no scent.
NOW--- in the Amaz. of E. Ecuador, the first species will and does  feed on
fresh human excrement, and around the oil rigs that I worked on you did NOT
want to sample the smell of a male when you caught one!!   My question was,
I KNOW what causes the Ecuadorian specimens to smell bad, but what could
cause the T`dadian specimens of the SAME butterfly to smell so GOOD!!!???
THIS is why we need more field observations on all of nature, as it is fast
being destroyed, as Eduardo so eloquently pointed out!!
(By the way, we could tell when a person on the rig had diabetes, as the
'sweat bees' and butterflies would single out his urine 'spot' and
concentrate on it!)

Hope that this note does not bore the purists amongst us!

Cheers and good growing,


>While wandering around my garden this morning with a cup of coffee I was
tickled to see "mass" aggregations of male Eulaema sp. (cingulata?) on four
or five receptive Anthurium huixtlense spadices (three mature plants). This
was really quite impressive - literally standing room only for many dozens
of these bumble-bee sized velvet black euglossines with shiny gold abdomens.
Curiously, I also have a number of A. armeniense and A. chiapasense that are
also in various stages of flowering right now, and they do not appear to
attract these bees but rather, a sorta nondescript Trigona species.

BTW - I have, on many occasions during the rainy season, observed some type
of nocturnal, "haemophagus-looking" dipteran clearly attracted to the nectar
secreted by my Anthurium andreanum 'Kansako' plants. They appear to be very
engrossed in tubing up nectar when I have put a light on them.

Anyhoots - neat stuff - I suppose this is one of many reasons to grow
tropical plants in the tropics.

Cheerio - Jay<<

----- Original Message -----
From: "Julius Boos" <ju-bo@email.msn.com>
To: "Multiple recipients of list AROID-L" <aroid-l@mobot.org>
Sent: Monday, May 01, 2000 5:42 PM
Subject: Re: Hybrids

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Don Martinson <llmen@execpc.com>
> To: Multiple recipients of list AROID-L <aroid-l@mobot.org>
> Date: Sunday, April 30, 2000 10:52 PM
> Subject: Re: Hybrids
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: Neil Carroll <zzamia@hargray.com>To All Friends,
> >
> >My little bit of input into this--no one has as yet touched deeply on
> Mother
> >Nature`s strategies for PREVENTING hybrids, this is what interests me,
> >
> >... the bees were specifically
> >attracted ONLY to the scent of that specific orchid!
> >>>I've often joked with friends that the difference in smell between
> the flower of my Amorphophallus konjac and Typhonium (=Sauromatum)
> gutattum is like the difference between cat <excriment> and dog
> <excriment>.   In nature, parasites are often quite species specific
> and it should come as no surprise that there might be differences in
> preferences of the type of <excriment> in which insects may lay their
> eggs.  Perhaps there is some type of species-specific mimicry at work
> here.<<<
> Dear Don,
> EXACTLY!!   See my note on the ideas about the possible pollenators of
> Dracontium near the end of my note.   And by the way, there in fact at
> one group of dung beetles that in fact ARE  specific to different animals
> excrement in the Neotropical jungle, and years ago when I was studying one
> genus, Phaenus, the rarest was only trapped if I ate a large fish meal the
> day before I provided the 'bait' for my trap!   To obtain another species,
> bait had to be 'made' by eating ripe fruit and hanging the trap high, as
> these fed only on monkey dung which stayed on leaves and limbs on its way
> down to the forest floor, where yet another related but different group of
> beetles disposed of it!
> All collectors should collect, note and more importantly observe which
> insects are attracted to the blooms of all Aroids in the wild during their
> scent production period.
> Cheers,
> Julius
> --
> Don Martinson
> Milwaukee, Wisconsin
> Mailto:llmen@execpc.com

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