Photo of the week – Ceropegia intermedia

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c-intermedia-ls-280417-1

Photo: L. Shyamal

(under creatice commons license (3.0))
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0

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Natural enemies

Most, if not all species of the genus Ceropegia contain larger or smaller amounts of the alkaloid Ceropegin, and thus are probably not specifically taken by mammals as food, however, giraffes have been observed in the Niger to occasionally eat shoots of Ceropegia aristolochioides. [5]

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On the other hand, however, several species of Ceropegia are very important food plants for the caterpillars of some butterfly species from the Brush-footed Butterfly family (Nymphalidae).

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danaus.genutia.raupe.fm.li

danaus.genutia.fm.li

above:

The caterpillars of the Common Tiger (Danaus genutia (Cramer)) from India feed on Ceropegia elegans, Ceropegia intermedia, Ceropegia lawii, Ceropegia manoharii, Ceropegia oculata, and Ceropegia thwaitesii. [1][6][9]

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parantica.aglea.raupe.fm.li

parantica.aglea.fm.li

above:

The caterpillars of the Glassy Tiger (Parantica aglea (Stoll)) have been recorded from the Andaman Islands to feed on Ceropegia andamanica, and from India on Ceropegia bulbosa, Ceropegia hirsuta, Ceropegia lawii, and Ceropegia oculata. [2][6][9][10]

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parantica.taprobana.fm.li

above:

The caterpillars of the Ceylon Tiger (Parantica taprobana (Felder & Felder)) from Sri Lanka are thought to feed on Ceropegia thwaitesii, however, this is still to be proven. [8]

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euploea.core.raupe.fm.li

euploea.core.fm.li

above:

The caterpillars of the Common Crow (Euploea core (Cramer)) in Australia – which, by the way, is a collective species, consisting of at least five distinct species – are known to feed on Ceropegia cumingiana. [4]

Depictions from: ‘F. Moore: Lepidoptera Indica. London 1890-1913’

http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org

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danaus.chrysippus.raupe.kn

danaus.chrysippus.kn

above:

The caterpillars of the African Monarch (Danaus chrysippus L.), a species that is distributed over Africa and parts of Asia, are known to feed on several species of Ceropegia in Africa, and at least on Ceropegia bulbosa in India. [2]

The same species was formerly a straggler to the Canary Islands but is now a resident, its larvae were recorded on the islands first on the introduced asclepioid species Orbea variegata (L.) Haw. in 2010. [7]

This species is now known to feed on the endemic Ceropegia species as well (see photograph, which, by the way, was taken in 2008 (!)).

Photos: Klaus Nowak; by courtesy of Klaus Nowak

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References:

[1] Naresh Chaturvedi; Meena Haribal: New larval food plants for the Common Tiger Butterfly in India (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae: Danainae). Tropical Lepidoptera 3(2): 158. 1992
[2] N. Patil; M. R. Almeida: Ceropegia bulbosa var. lushii (Grah.) Hook. f.: a new food plant for plain tiger butterfly Danaus chrysippus (Linn.). Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 93(3): 600. 1996
[3] P. V. Sreekumar; K. Veenakumari; Mohanraj Prashanth: Ceropegia andamanica (Asclepiadaceae) a new ‘fly trap flower’ from the Andaman Islands, India. Blumea 43(1): 215-217. 1998
[4] R. L. Kitching; E. Scheermeyer; R. E. Jones; N. E. Pierce: Biology of Australian Butterflies. CSIRO Publishing, 1999
[5] I. Ciofolo; Y. Le Pendu: The Feeding Behaviour of Giraffe in Niger. Mammalia – International Journal of the Systematics, Biology and Ecology of Mammals. 66(2): 183–194. 2002
[6] Mamata Chandrakar; Sachin Palekar; Sangita Chandrakar: Butterfly fauna of Melghat Region, Maharashtra. Zoos’ Print Journal 22(7): 2762-2764. 2007
[7] T. van der Heyden: Orbea variegata (L.) Haworth, 1812 (Apocynaceae, Asclepiadoideae) als Futterpflanze der Larven von Danaus chrysippus (Linnaeus, 1758) auf den Kanarischen Inseln (Spanien) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae, Danainae). Shilap Revta. lepid., 38(149): 107-110. 2010
[8] George van der Poorten; Nancy van der Poorten: New and revised descriptions of the immature stages of some butterflies in Sri Lanka and their larval food plants (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Part 1: Sub-family Danainae. The Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 44: 1-16. 2011
[9] P. Sujanapal; P. M. Salim; N. Anil Kumar, N. Sasidharan: A new species of Ceropegia (Apocynaceae: Asclepiadoideae) from India with notes on rare and threatened Ceropegia in Nilgiris of Western Ghats. Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas 7(1): 341-345. 2013
[10] M. Bhakare; H. Ogale: Larval host plants — Asclepiadaceae. In: K. Kunte, S. Kalesh & U. Kodandaramaiah (eds.). Butterflies of India, v. 2.00. Indian Foundation for Butterflies 2014

Eine erstaunliche Entdeckung!

Manchmal macht man die erstaunlichsten Entdeckungen während man ganz profane Dinge tut.

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Bei der gestrigen ersten Umtopfaktion fielen mir zum allerersten mal die Wurzeln einer meiner Pflanzen auf, tatsächlich sah ich sie am gestrigen Tag auch zum allerersten mal.

Diese Pflanze ist mit dem Namen Ceropegia racemosa ssp. setifera versehen, eine Pflanze die aus verschiedenen Teilen Afrikas kommt und die Ceropegia affinis oder gar Ceropegia carnosa als Synonym zugeordnet wird.

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Die Geschichte speziell meiner Pflanze selbst ist recht interessant, ich kaufte sie vor einigen Jahren per Internet in einer deutschen Gärtnerei, und als sie eintraf war sie nahezu geschreddert und ich musste die Einzelteile bewurzeln …, zwei davon verschickte ich an andere Leute, und einen behielt ich – diese Pflanze starb leider einige Monate später.

Die Pflanze, die ich jetzt habe, ist ein Ableger eines Ablegers von einem der Ableger, die ich weggegeben hatte.

Könnt Ihr mir noch folgen?

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Wie auch immer, wäre meine Pflanze ein Klon der C. affinis/carnosa/racemosa-Superspezies, müsste sie fleischige, spindelförmige Speicherwurzeln haben – hat sie aber nicht!

Im Gegenteil, ihre Wurzeln sind die dünnsten, die ich je bei irgendeiner Ceropegia-Art gesehen habe.

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Die Pflanze hat nur einmal geblüht, 2010, und die eine Blüte, die aufging, war denen jeglicher C. affinis/carnosa/racemosa-Klone unähnlich, war aber dagegen nahezu identisch mit denen der indischen C. candelabrum.

Wie auch immer, diese Art besitzt unterirdische Speicherknollen, wenn auch sehr kleine – aber es gibt eine weitere indische Art, die nahezu identisch mit C. candelabrum ist und sich von dieser nur durch ihre faserigen Wurzeln unterscheidet, und das ist Ceropegia intermedia.

Ich denke, ich kann sagen: “Heureka!”

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An amazing discovery!

Sometimes the most astonishing discoveries are made while one is making very mundane things.

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During yesterday’s first repotting campaign the roots of one of my plants attracted my attention for the very first time, actually it was only yesterday, when I saw them for the very first time.

This plant is labelled as Ceropegia racemosa ssp. setifera, a plant that comes from several regions of Africa, and which may be assigned as a synonym to Ceropegia affinis, or even to Ceropegia carnosa.

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The story of my particular plant itself is quite interesting, I bought it several years ago via internet in a German nursery, and when it arrived, it was almost chopped, and I had to root the pieces …, two of which I sent to other people, and of which I kept only a single plant – unfortunately this plant died some months later.

The plant, that I have now, is a cutting of a cutting of one of the cuttings, that I had given away.

Can you still follow me?

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Anyway, if my plant would be a clone of the C. affinis/carnosa/racemosa superspecies, it should have fleshy, spindle-shaped storage roots – but it just doesn’t!

The reverse is true, it’s roots are the thinnest that I have ever seen in any Ceropegia species.

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This plant did bloom only once, in 2010, and the sole flower, that appeared was very much unlike those of any C. affinis/carnosa/racemosa clone, but was almost identical to the flowers of the Indian C. candelabrum.

However, this species has subterranean storage tubers, even if they are very small – but there’s another Indian species, which is said to be almost identical with C. candelabrum, differing only by its fibrous roots, and this is Ceropegia intermedia.

I think, I can say: “Eureka!”

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c.cf.intermedia.141110.1

Ceropegia (cf.) intermedia; meine Pflanze / my plant

c.candelabrum.poka

Ceropegia candelabrum; zum Vergleich / for comparison

Foto / Photo: Poornima Kannan; mit freundlicher Genehmigung von / by courtesy of Poornima Kannan

http://wanttobeanomad.wordpress.com

EDIT: this is actually Ceropegia candelabrum, I have a Ceropegia candelabrum!