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Thread: Is hamata tentaculata? Part II

  1. #17

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    Just on the sheer virtue of the teeth.
    Not a good enough reason to be a different taxon. Pitcher morphology makes for a crappy way to distinguish things, since they are polymorphic to a degree. Floral morphology is much more important, and they have the same exact flowers.

    The whole pitcher structure of hamata is so much more comlex (hairy, more colorful, and bigger i think) too
    Besides teeth and hair branching, they're the same exact plant. Color is a horrible basis to distinguish nep pitchers (or most anything, really).

    How, why, would a plant de-evolve one of the most complex pitchers in the genus?
    It's not that hard to lose a trait, especially if it's not necessary. Perhaps it serves a function higher up the mountain and just doesn't need it down below. Or, it coudl be a result if hybridization with a species that no longer exists.
    Z polski y dumny
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  2. #18
    BigBella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nepfreak View Post
    For practical reasons, I don't think tentaculata and hamata should be clumped. Look at the price difference between the two... you can get a tentac for under $20 but you'd be hard pressed to find a hamata for under $80. If they were clumped, we'd probably get things like "N. tentaculata v. hamata" for $150, buy it and it ends up a normal tentac. Also, all the vendors would use hamata as their stock picture for tentaculata, which just should not happen.
    I'd have to agree. It is a bit like arguing that Nepenthes villosa and N. macrophylla are much the same -- right down to the toothy peristome . . .
    “Sì perché l'autorità dell'opinione di mille nelle scienze non val per una scintilla di ragione di un solo . . ."

    -- Galileo "Biff" Galilei

  3. #19

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    How much genetic change does it take for a plant to evolve such pronounced 'teeth'? How genetically different are Tentaculata and Hamata compared to the differences between other Nepenthes species? I know almost nothing about biology, but my first impression in this debate is that Tentaculata and Hamata deserve to be different species.

  4. #20
    Jimmy's Avatar
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    Take a look at this, I found it in the ICPS article index:

    http://www.carnivorousplants.org/cpn...n4p115_118.pdf

    I think that N. tantaculata evolved first. I mean, just take a look at the climactic conditions and changes that certain Neps went through: Madagascan Nepenthes are relatively primitive and simple, they seem like they haven't changed their morphology much from what I imagine the earliest Nepenthes ancestors, which most likely evolved in Madagascar, looked like, because they have been in relatively constant conditions over their evolutionary timespan. Same is true for most other lowlanders, that's why they all look pretty similar, and as some think, uninteresting (which I disagree with). Now, introduce a radical change to a Nepenthes population and I imagine they would evolve relatively quickly and dramatically to adapt to the relatively quickly changing conditions. Prime example: Mountain formation. With Mt. Kinabalu forming over the course of 1-3 million years, population isolation of Nepenthes would have occurred as conditions changed, and the Neps were forced to adapt. A lot of species are found on Mt. Kinabalu, quite a few of them to be found nowhere else. But they had to move up the mountain, and they evolved radically as they did. N. villosa and N. macrophylla are ultrahighlanders with spiked peristomes. It seems they evolved that trait as they moved up the mountain. When you look at it all, the highlanders have the highest species count and the greatest degrees of specialization in morphology and climate conditions. So, it seems to me, N. tentaculata evolved first, and then as it moved up, it evolved the spiked peristome, becoming N. hamata.

    Jimmy

  5. #21

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    How much genetic change does it take for a plant to evolve such pronounced 'teeth'?
    It could as little as one amino acid, which is to say, not very much at all.
    Z polski y dumny
    Prayer - how to do nothing and still think you're helping.
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