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Thread: Most gluttonous / effective nepenthes?

  1. #1

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    Unhappy

    I was just wondering what Nepenthes species is the best in the gathering of nutrients. I would like to hear your guess or perhaps even fact. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img]

    No doubt every natural species has evolved to suit it’s own environment perfectly and it also depends a lot on the number of bugs and their size in that given environment of course...

    There are several ways to judge the effectiveness of Nepenthes.

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    1) Overall gathering of nutrients.
    Sure a Rajah can produce monstrous pitchers, however they grow very slow so in the time they create one pitcher, another species might have produced loads more and in the end result have catched more prey in total.

    - So what is the most effective Nepenthes? -> “Amount of gathered nutrients of the whole plant over the period when it’s starts as a seed and lets say 10 years after...”

    Taking into account: Everything. For example:
    Reproductive rate; nutrients gathered by offspring also counts. Otherwise it wouldn’t be fair if the plant ‘decided’ to make small pitchers and stay small, and make lots of offspring instead of growing larger itself.
    Basically it’s a balance of how much nutrients the plant spends and received back as total. (Effectiveness of the leaf structure/size (photosynthesis) also plays a big role in a plants growth rate, however this is not counted as total nutrients received through pitchers.)

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    2) Effectiveness of a single pitcher. (Choose lower or upper pitcher type)
    Personally I find this one more interesting.

    - What single pitcher has the best results of gathering nutrients once it has finished developing.
    (Not taking into account how long it takes to develop or the required resources to make one.)

    The answer to this question will probably favour the more special and/or elaborately designed pitchers. Bicalcarata having the extra teeth for increased effectiveness no doubt. Lowii serving as bird toilet... Perhaps against expectations a way better source for nutrients than catching mere insects?

    To make this competition fair for the smaller –yet special- traps (aristolochioides for example) don’t take the space available to store the catched insects into account. (For example; prey that would normally be catched however they can't anymore due to the small pitcher already being completely full...)

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    Okey, take your pick and try to explain why you’ve made that choice. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/laugh.gif[/img]
    [img]http://home.**********.com/users/phyrex/phyrex.gif[/img]

  2. #2
    Jeremiah Harris's Avatar
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    I would have to go with N. bicalcarata because how fast it grow and how long the pitchers last.

    thanks
    -Jeremiah-

  3. #3

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    I think that there are other things that you have to take into account, like you said, in the time a rajah produces its one big pitcher another will produce many other smaller ones, it all depends on the plants needs and on the plants itself. faster growth, smaller pitchers, slower growth, bigger pitchers, i think its all the same difference, the only thing different is time. Wether its most effective at gathering nutrients or not entirely depends on its need for nutrients. It's not trying to race its other nepenthes friends [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/confused.gif[/img]
    They say if you play a Microsoft CD backwards, you hear satanic messages. Thats nothing, cause if you play it forwards, it installs Windows.

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    Well Amature_Expert, I don’t completely agree. Evolution makes sure a certain organism is optimal in survival.(The “reason for living”) Thus in a way is striving to become better and better. When a species is ‘slacking behind in evolution’ it will be outgrown/ extinct eventually.

    The only thing that is impossible to take into account (for question 1) is: environment difficulty.
    Of course it’s not completely fair to compare two species in different locations. Like a normal tree with a cactus in the desert...
    To make question 1 fair you would have to give a handicap bonus for certain environments or something which is of course impossible to know so I left it out. ^_^ But you can ‘nominate’ a Nep in such an environment anyway when giving good reasons. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/laugh.gif[/img]

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]
    it all depends on the plants needs and on the plants itself. faster growth, smaller pitchers, slower growth, bigger pitchers
    I think one of the main reasons for a Nep to create a large pitcher is when his environment receives enough sunlight so the only problem factor is nutrients. When a Nep lives in a place with little sunlight it would probably favour bigger/longer leafs (main problem is getting enough photosynthesis) and smaller pitchers.
    The bottom line is that each organism tries to grow as fast as his environment allows him to.


    Jerimiah >>
    Yeah I like the Bical with its incredible big leafs and more important its cooperation with Golden ants. However, accommodating room for these ants (in the stem) will probably slow down his growth a bit though. In return he receives protection from the ants of course. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile.gif[/img]
    [img]http://home.**********.com/users/phyrex/phyrex.gif[/img]

  5. #5

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    Not to mention, the ants form chains and take prey out of the pitcher to eat themselves(I am pretty sure I read that anyway).
    N. albomarginata seems to attract lots of termites, and some pics I have seen are of bushy plants with a lot of pitchers, so I would throw that intot he mix.

    Cheers,

    Joe

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    srduggins's Avatar
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    Just a little story about mirabilis in my greenhouse. When it was new and I just started growing neps I had a colony of ants move into my plants. They were lots of them everywhere. Mirabilis was a glutton. I would find hundreds of ants in a single pitcher. After a few months, the ants were all gone. I think mirabilis ate them all. The sequel to this was attack of the mealy bugs. They also seem to favor mirabilis over any other Nep, but they don't fall into the pitchers. Mirabilis is like a lure to keep them away from my other Neps and then I only have to treat one plant.
    A day without Nepenthes is like a day without sunshine

    --steve

  7. #7
    Capslock's Avatar
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    Hmm. I think you'd have to give the nod to the most widespread species, which obviously is able to do the job in the most varied conditions. What is the mose widespread nep? mirabilis? maxima?

    Capslock
    Malo Periculosam Libertatem Quam Quietum Servitium

    My photos are copyright-free and public domain

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    I think mirabilis is, from China to Micronesia.

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