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Vic2

Drinking Nepenthes pitcher fluid

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This thread is a spin-off from another, on things which eat Nepenthes and other CPs.

A quote from that thread:

There is an article in the May, 1964 issue of National Geographic that shows an orangutan sipping from a Nepenthes (that was handed to it.) Also has a picture of a close relative of the orang doing the same thing.

Here is a link to a PDF of the article:

http://www.sendspace.com/file/igws8c

Free bonus, another CP article from NatGeo:

http://www.sendspace.com/file/zmk6bx

The first Nat Geo article also shows the (human) author - and similarly brave/nutty mate - drinking from N. sanguinea pitchers:

gallery_4487_260_222108.jpg

And the legend for this photo:

gallery_4487_260_10698.jpg

So that makes three primate species that drank from pitchers - essentially an open stomach, with low pH and proteases, phospatases, etc. - and lived to tell the tale :wink:

The immature, sealed pitchers may make a difference: They're not secreting the full range of corrosives yet, and they won't be fortified with insects and tree shrew poo! :Elffy_16:

Still, my gut feeling is: Don't try this at home...

V2

Edited by Vic2

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I think the corrosives in the human stomach are way more dangerous than anything a nepenthes can produce.

Maybe so, but they're in your stomach, which has a specific mucous lining to protect it.

The Nepenthes fluid has to get to your tum via your mouth and throat!

Remember the first time you had neat Scotch whisky?

V2 :tu:

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I did it with unopened N. ventricosa pitchers while in the Philippines ten years back; and the fluid was largely flavorless or some, slightly redolent of that wheat-grass crap people like to swig here in California . . .

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I've also tried with various species and hybrids, nothing strange about the fluid itself. Then again I'm the type to unconsciously lick off any nectar on my hands and fingers after handling Neps, even mid-conversation (no Nep nectar beats Heli nectar though).

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I've also tried with various species and hybrids, nothing strange about the fluid itself. Then again I'm the type to unconsciously lick off any nectar on my hands and fingers after handling Neps, even mid-conversation (no Nep nectar beats Heli nectar though).

I hate to be the party-pooper at this chow-down, guys, but please remember:

The secretions and fluids from these plants are intended to kill, or help kill, everything from invertebrates to mammals.

You may not be the intended prey, but that doesn't mean you can't be caught unintentionally in the cross-fire.

Ther's a whole host of biological toxins out there, and we don't know them all.

Enough doom-mongering! :smile: Just be careful out there.

V2

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I hate to be the party-pooper at this chow-down, guys, but please remember:

The secretions and fluids from these plants are intended to kill, or help kill, everything from invertebrates to mammals.

You may not be the intended prey, but that doesn't mean you can't be caught unintentionally in the cross-fire.

Ther's a whole host of biological toxins out there, and we don't know them all.

Enough doom-mongering! :smile: Just be careful out there.

V2

The fluid from the unopened pitchers is largely sterile and I experienced far greater corrosives from the grapefruit juice I had this morning; further, the vessels of some species have been used to cook or store foods, especially rice . . .

Edited by loligo1964

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Its-Nev-R Given ME-PRO-blems! ((^o*")

:smile:

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The fluid from the unopened pitchers is largely sterile and I experienced far greater corrosives from the grapefruit juice I had this morning; further, the vessels of some species have been used to cook or store foods, especially rice . . .

Last time I looked, only a small minority of toxins can be decribed as corrosive :smile:

I'm also guessing that heat inactivates whatever's in there, or the pitchers were emptied or rinsed out first!

Anyone know of any indigenous tribes drinking this stuff or harvesting the nectar?

It'd be interesting why they don't, wouldn't it...

So far, it seems to be mostly First-World foreigners being intrepid in their greenhouses or in the bush.

Care for a game of Russian roulette, anyone? :wink:

V2

Edited by Vic2

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Anyone know of any indigenous tribes drinking this stuff or harvesting the nectar?

It'd be interesting why they don't, wouldn't it...

V2

For the tiny amount of liquid obtainable and the hassle of finding and harvesting the pitchers. It would be easier to go to the local well, spring or other fresh water supply that any community in the area where these spp grow would surely have.

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Its-Nev-R Given ME-PRO-blems! ((^o*")

hehe... that almost made me fall off my chair :biggrin:

Perhaps we should get someone from an HSE department to look at this topic... they could then spend the few months creating risk assesments and COSHH datasheets :lol:

Edited by mobile

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Anyone know of any indigenous tribes drinking this stuff or harvesting the nectar?

It'd be interesting why they don't, wouldn't it...

So far, it seems to be mostly First-World foreigners being intrepid in their greenhouses or in the bush.

That reminds me of a passage from a Discworld novel, where Vimes is offered a local delicacy of sheep-eye soup. Which he refuses to eat, realizing that it is just something nasty they keep around to see if they can convince foreigners to eat it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discworld_characters#D.27regs

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That reminds me of a passage from a Discworld novel, where Vimes is offered a local delicacy of sheep-eye soup. Which he refuses to eat, realizing that it is just something nasty they keep around to see if they can convince foreigners to eat it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discworld_characters#D.27regs

Or . . . you could be taking a legitimate survival course where drinking from most open water sources -- say, most anywhere in the Philippines -- is a far riskier behavior in terms of disease transmission than drinking some warm liquid from an unopened pitcher . . .

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Or . . . you could be taking a legitimate survival course where drinking from most open water sources -- say, most anywhere in the Philippines -- is a far riskier behavior in terms of disease transmission than drinking some warm liquid from an unopened pitcher . . .

I agree.

But the survival courses I've been on teach you never to drink from open water.

You boil it for 10 minutes first.

Personally, I'd cut the top off unopened pitchers and stick them in a solar survival still, made with rocks , a container of some sort and a piece of plastic (or a large leaf, like that of the palm Licuala orbicularis). The distillate from that would be drinkable.

This is one technique used to make the liquid inside the (mescaline-laden) barrel cactus safe to drink.

(USAF Survival Manual, Vol. I: Yep, I have a copy!!) :biggrin:

V2

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hehe... that almost made me fall off my chair :biggrin:

Perhaps we should get someone from an HSE department to look at this topic... they could then spend the few months creating risk assesments and COSHH datasheets :lol:

But what about the risk of RSI from writing the risk assessment report?

V2 :lol:

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But what about the risk of RSI from writing the risk assessment report?

I'm sure that they would perform a workstation ergonomics assessment first :biggrin:

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I'm sure that they would perform a workstation ergonomics assessment first :wink:

Hang on... yes... I think I'm going to disappear up my own workstation assessment... :lol:

*POP*

Oh, to Hell with it All!!!

Drink buckets of the s*dding pitcher fluid :yucky: I'm sure it'll whiten your teeth, improve your IQ, cure cancer and put hairs on yer chest :biggrin: before it makes you as sick as a parrot :sick:

V2 :lol:

Edited by Vic2

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