Darwin's bee-trap: The kinetics of Catasetum, a new world orchid
Volume 3, Issue 1
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Pages 19 - 23http://dx.doi.org/10.4161/psb.3.1.4980
Authors: Charles C. Nicholson, James W. Bales, Joyce E. Palmer-Fortune and Robert G. Nicholson View affiliations
The orchid genera Catasetum employs a hair-trigger activated, pollen release mechanism, which forcibly attaches pollen sacs onto foraging insects in the New World tropics. This remarkable adaptation was studied extensively by Charles Darwin and he termed this rapid response “sensitiveness”. Using high speed video cameras with a frame speed of 1000fps, this rapid release was filmed and from the subsequent footage, velocity, speed, acceleration, force and kinetic energy were computed.
Received: May 7, 2007; Accepted: September 5, 2007