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Observation Station

Let's start our observation shall we? Figure.1 is called the peristome which have pretty sharp teeth that edge around the outside of the plant acting as rails to a slippery slide for unsuspecting insects. Figure. 2 is pretty rare as usually Nepenthes catch arachnids and flies but here we see a young brown anole that has unfortunately been overtaken in the pit of the Nepenthes. Next in Figure. 3 we have the body whose ecosystem is comprised of fly larvae and aquatic mosquitos but there is a rare ant called (Camponotus schmitzi) that has adapted to navigate the slippery peristome and actually dive to scavenge the Nepenthes liquid. They also keep peristome clean and protect it from herbivores which makes a nice mutualistic relationship, they even get to live rent free in the hollow tendrils. Figure 4. we see the tree shrew looking rather cheeky as it eats the exudate from the lid of the plant while also leaving its excrements for the plant to fertilize nitrogen. Learn more about Nepenthes Phylogeny here.

Figure. 1

Figure. 2

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"Pitcher Plants" by Alias Rex is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Figure. 3

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Figure. 4

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