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Hello to all,

I spent the last 2 weekends exploring for CPs in areas close to Brasília, central Brazil, together with fellow CPer Vitor Batista. We saw loads of interesting species, making it impossible to post all at once. So I've decided to make separate posts.

This first one deals with one of the most amazing discoveries we made, one of the most fantastic Genlisea populations I've ever seen.

Last Sunday Vitor & I visited his grandfather's farm near the town of Cristalina, ~150km south of Brasília. Among soybean and corn plantations are boggy grassy seepages with buriti palms (Mauritia flexuosa).

A few months ago Vitor found several CP species along a stream in one of these seepages. See the link below for his pics (sorry, text in Portuguese!).

http://www.forum.clickgratis.com.br/planta...vor/t-1564.html

We revisited the site together, a really great place for CPs! When we were about to leave, we walked past a man-made hole, probably an old mining site, about 1.5m deep.

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We thought we saw some Drosera along the margins and decided to go closer, walking through high grasses in boggy soil. As we got closer to the hole, the soil suddenly began undulating beneath us and we realized we were walking on a floating mat of vegetation. It reminded me of stories I've read of Sphagnum mats in peats bogs of temperate climates.

Sure enough, the edges of the floating mat were covered with D.communis, which we'd already seen growing all around that area. But it was interesting to see them in such a different habitat, some even growing aquatically with elongated stems. The edges of the floating mat were mostly made up of a spongy orangish algae, which hung like a curtain beneath the D.communis. We could even see roots of grasses dangling in the water from this algae curtain.

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Suddenly, a purple flower among D.communis caught my attention. What was that? Could it be...? No, it's just too rare!!

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But it was! I couldn't believe it! A species that is very rare in Brazil south of the Amazon Basin (where I've only seen it once): Genlisea guianensis!! I couldn't believe our luck! They were growing with D.communis in the spongy algae. So when we pulled out a flower scape, it came off with the traps fully intact -- a true herbarium dream, considering the traps of Genlisea always break off when you try to wash the soil off wild-collected plants.

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When we were about to leave, I joked out loud: "Wouldn't it be cool if we had a snorkeling mask so we could dive under the algae curtain to see the dangling traps of G.guianensis?"

And even before the words had finished coming out of my mouth, my eyes were widenning with amazement and disbelief. Remember those grass roots dangling in the water from the curtain of algae? Well take a closer look (and check the pics above again!)...

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They were forked! It was G.guianensis! There were hundreds, maybe thousands of G.guianensis traps visible on that curtain of algae, growing down to about a meter in depth!!

Standing there in awe, together with Vitor and his younger brother, Daniel, I said: "One of us has GOT to jump in this water so we can take pictures!" Vitor volunteered, and I was happy to let him since I was the only one with a camera (and because I hate cold water!! :) ).

Here's a picture of Vitor next to the algae curtain and one of G.guianensis with clean unbroken traps:

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What a fantastic population!!

Enjoy!

Fernando Rivadavia

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Spectacular! It's great to see the traps intact attached to a mature flower scape. Beautiful pictures - keep them coming. I need to get back to Brazil!

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I HAVE NO WORDS!!!! :D

Beautiful pics (also Vitor's), they remind me that uman kind could do something to save CP in habitat...

I will dig a hole in my garden and fill it with water, waiting for genlisea will establish in there too... just kidding :D

excellent reportage!!!

hope to hearing from you soon!!!

ciao

AndreaS

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Wow Fernie, what a treat! The pics are amazing...mind if I borrow some for a journal article!

Regards

Brian

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You both did an excellent job! Those pictures are very valuable.

François.

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Hi guys!

I'm glad you're liking it! :) Noah, the only other time I saw this species S of the Amazon, it was growing in a seepage with buriti palms, at the edge of a lagoon, also semi-aquatically. I've seen a few other herbarium specimens from Goiás and Mato Grosso states, always in similar habitats. Strangely, this habitat is much different to how it's found in Venezuela. Could it actually be a different species...?

Take Care,

Fernando Rivadavia

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Now, where is the 'Green With Envy' emoticon....

Another great account of a frighteningly magnificent field trip.

Thank you Fernando for reminding us of your good fortune.

Well done!

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Hi Fernando,

I was frightened (I did not find a better word in this language - "impressionado") with the long traps of this Genlisea and for the intensity of the color of its flowers.

You already it had seen others thus growing submerged?

They do not possess leves?

How much time they delay to be with this size (a estimate is enough)?

Very thanks!!!

Carlos.

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Guest Ivan Snyder

>It reminded me of stories I've read of Sphagnum mats in peats bogs of temperate climates.

Hey Fernando,

Yeah, I've seen temperate sundews and utrics together growing on floating mats here in California. But not quite that spectacular. Still, you would enjoy swimming in Willow Lake just outside Lassen Volcanic National Park. I saw the CPs and great volcanics on one trail. Remember this when you come to California.

Cheers,

Ivan

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Wow, stunning photos! It's really interesting to see CPs in their habitat, but it's so rare to find an environment where you can see the below ground detail undisturbed!

greenBen

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Well done Fernando and thanks to Vitor for the sacrifice :wink:

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Hello all,

Carlos, the translation would be "impressed". :) The plants did have leaves, but these broke off easier than the traps. They are very thin and fragile, up to about 10cm long by 1-2cm wide. The other population I saw in Minas Gerais was in a similarly wet habitat, as were apparently the ones from the herbarium specimens studied. In Venezuela they grow in boggy soil, but I did not see them at the edges of lagoons with their traps so free.

Best Wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

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Thanks Fernando,

for the explanation and the translation, this a very big Genlisea.

I remembered another thing. How is that one its project of culture?

This friday I visited the place that you it indicated in Florianópolis, I dispatched by post the images tomorrow, I wait. :D

Good weekend :D

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Guest Nilber

Unforgettable field trip, rare plants, beautifull views, perfect specimens, new discoveries......... Just a commom weekend for Fernando. :o

Fantastic traps!!!

Abraços,

Nílber

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Hi Fernando,

great discovery - thank you for sharing these photos.

The water seems to be quite muddy. As I heard from a friend who also saw this species in the wild it seems that G. guianensis is not depending on fresh and running water like some others.

In cultivation it is the most tricky of all Genlisea species.

Cheers,

Markus

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Hello to all,

Nilber, that weekend was a bit more exciting than usual, hehehe! More pictures soon!! :)

Matt, you think that if there were leeches in that hole I wouldn't have post pics here of us peeling them off Vitor?? :) Believe it or not, I have never seen leeches in Brazil. That's something you usually find in your dangerous part of the world, where you also have terrible diseases like West Nile Virus, Anthrax, and Lyme's disesase! :)

Markus, the water was very clear, although very slightly tea-color. Just look at the picture of Vitor in the water and you'll see. And it was in no way static, it was fresh and flowing, although slowly. That water hole is fed by a permanent seepage on a hillside. At all places I've seen this species, in Brazil & Venezuela, there was always fresh water flowing over the plants, either because they were growing in a seepage, on a streamside, or on a lakeside.

Best Wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

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