Saturday, February 9, 2008

Attenborough for Emperor

Borneo's Pitcher Plants

have adapted to living in low nutrient soils by evolving a lid covered in nectar glands that lures insects and positions them above its waxy, water-filled pitcher. Most slip, drown, and are slowly digested by an enzyme produced at the bottom of the mini pond-grave. Red Crab Spiders hang in the pitchers like Burroughs to junk, securing a safety line out of silk to the edge and lowering themselves down to feed on decaying ants and beetles. That, I can deal with... but, when mosquito larvae fall in and sink to the bottom, outta reach.... things done changed. THIS holy diver will use a nearby air bubble as an oxygen tank to dive to the bottom. After finishing off some wriggling larvae, he climbs back up his underwater safety line. In a display of mutual responsibility that should make any human shit pants-y with shame, the spider insures that the plant he relies on gets fed by regurgitating remains and waste, which are more easily assimilated than a slowly digested, Sarlacc Pit-style, victim.

Planet Earth, I wanna have your bay bay.

1 comment:

corey said...

oh my god, I know exactly what you mean. I want its bay bay for my own