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  Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog
From: "Julius Boos" ju-bo at msn.com> on 2005.04.04 at 10:43:06(12826)
>From: Jonathan Ertelt <jonathan.ertelt@vanderbilt.edu>
>Reply-To: Discussion of aroids <aroid-l@gizmoworks.com>
>To: Discussion of aroids <aroid-l@gizmoworks.com>
>Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Arum lily (reed) frog
>Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2005 15:30:31 -0600

Dear All,

This discussion about the tiny frog inhabiting the bloom of the native
African Zantedescia sps. ("Arum lily") brings to mind something that I know
of in Trinidad, W.I.
Many years ago I was trying to collect one of the rarest of the many frog
species we have on Trinidad, Flectonotus (Gastrotheca) fitzgeraldi, the
Trinidad Marsupial frog, called that because it incubates its few large eggs
in a 'marsupium' or pouch/groove along its dorsum. I was told that the
way to see this little (finger-joint sized) frog was near the Bat caves near
Tamana in Central Trinidad`s jungle. One of my Mentors, Dr. Jack Price,
had collected it there when working w/ Dr. Jake Kenny on the frogs of
Trinidad and Tobago. HERE COMES THE AROID CONNECTION!! Jack told me
that it lived in the basal leaf-sheaths of a giant Xanthosoma sp.
(Xanthiosoma cf. undipes), known locally as 'wild tannia' that grew there.
I made a trip and climb to these caves where we discovered this plant
was abundant near the entrances to these smelly bat caves, and after much
chopping and searching we did see this little tree-frog slipping
effortlessly in and out of the sheaths, NOT easy to catch! I wonder if
perhaps this plant , besides providing a moist/wet safe haven in its basal
leaf sheaths for this tiny frog, might also provide a higher temp. than that
of the surrounding air?? I was also thinking that perhaps the higher
temperature produced within the spathe of Zanthedescia would be advantagous
to a tiny frog, plus of course the insects provided as food and attracted to
the scent of the bloom at anthesis???? All food for thought and further



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