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Utricularia aurea in Cambodia

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I will dedicate this post to my friend Andreas Fleischmann who, I think, quite like bladderworts... ;-))

This is Pursat province. We're in very a isolated village. One needs almost two days to reach that place and it's not a pleasant path to take. On top of that, This is one of the most heavily mined place of Cambodia.


It's the end of the afternoon. The following day, we would climb a hill in search of some Nepenthes. In the meanwhile, I try to enjoy the place by practising one of my favourite hobbies: entomology. I was surprised and delighted to learn that my traveling mate, Jeremy, also shares a vibrant interest for insects.

We were about to chase some bugs in order to take some photos (of course, we first informed ourselves on the dreaded mines) when we stumbled onto a small pond which immediately caught my attention:


The carnivorous plants enthusiast that I am immediately spotted that swarm of yellow flowers which were piercing through the still water.


I immediately thought of some aquatic bladderwort such as U. gibba but unfortuntely, I didn't have my Peter Taylor's monograph with me and my knowledge on Utricularia are more than limited (but I will improve ;-) Nonetheless, I try to take some decent pictures in order to get the plant identified.



I can't do it. I don't have the good camera. The light is not good. I'm beginning to get angry and frustrated. I try however to shot the bladders:



Edited by Sockhom

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I've been there for 20 minutes already, my back toward the sky, waving, squeezing, trying to get a couple of decent pitures. This sad show has attracted some kids of the neighbouring village. They must think I'm nuts ;-))



We exchanged a few smiles and faces with the kiddos, then I try to be a photographer again. And I take a few more. Nothing exceptional, needless to say:




Nothing good. I'm swearing and quit. I will just go to find myself some insects. ;-(

Before I leave the pond, I take a look to my professional photographer friend (and biologist) Jeremy who finally decides to take a picture for me (I must have given him a good laugh...):



Half an hour later, I came back, happier (I saw many insects). Jeremy didn't move.


A few days later, he gives me that picture:


Damn!! :wink::lol:


Edited by Sockhom

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WOW. I love that last pic.

Very nice find. I spent a few hours yesterday looking in the local ponds around here in Texas, without any success.

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Dear François,

Thank you very much for sharing these beautiful photographs with us! I feel honoured, I think I never got dedicated any post so far ;) And of corse yellow aquatic Utricularia are a very good topic to get me interested ;)

The plant you found is Utricularia aurea, a quite widespread and variable plant in Asia. Interestingly, the plants your found in Cambodia do not bear a float at the base of the scape, like the plants of U. aurea that I found on penisular Thailand.

My favourite photo of yours is the one with the damselfly on the scape (do you know which species? ;)), it's both a nice setup and shows all diagnostic characters to recognize the Utricularia as being U. aurea.

All the best,


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