Orchid-pollinating cricket discovered on Reunion


This video is called Wild orchid wasp mimic – David Attenborough – BBC.

From Royal Botanic Gardens Kew in London:

Cricket as an orchid pollinator

An orchid researcher based on the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean and collaborating with scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (RBG Kew) has used motion sensitive night cameras to capture the first known occurrence of a cricket functioning as a pollinator of flowering plants. Not only is this the first time this behaviour has been documented in a member of the Orthoptera order of insects who are better known for eating plants but the ‘raspy cricket‘ is also entirely new to science. The discovery is revealed in a paper published recently (12 January 2010) in Annals of Botany.

In 2008 Claire Micheneau, a RBG Kew-associated PhD student studying how the epiphytic orchid genus Angraecum has adapted to different pollinators on Reunion Island, and Jacques Fournel, her collaborator, shot the remarkable footage. It shows a raspy cricket (Glomeremus sp) carrying pollen on its head as it retreats from the greenish-white flowers of Angraecum cadetii.

The genus Angraecum is best known for Darwin’s study of the comet orchid, Angraecum sesquipedale of Madagascar, and his hypothesis that it was pollinated by a bizarre, long-tongued moth pollinator a theory that was later proved to be true a number of years after his death.

See also here, with video.

Plant-wasp pollinator relationship: here.

The first fossil spider cricket (Orthoptera: Gryllidae: Phalangopsinae): 20 million years of troglobiomorphosis or exaptation in the dark? Here.

The Silent Mass Extinction of Insect Herbivores in Biodiversity Hotspots: here.

Dutch orchids in winter: here.

In this study we provide the first genetic data on the critically endangered species the Reunion cuckoo-shrike Coracina newtoni: here.

Pollinating birds and mammals declining, reveals first global assessment of trends in the status of pollinators: here.

Enhanced by Zemanta

7 thoughts on “Orchid-pollinating cricket discovered on Reunion

  1. Pingback: New lichen species discovered, grows on orchids | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Wildlife in French colonies threatened | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Insect pollination book wins best wildlife book prize | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Réunion grey white-eye birds, new research | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: Moth pollinates orchid, video | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  6. Pingback: Madagascar’s first human inhabitants | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s