SMALLER GREENHOODS

Small 'greenhoods' have small pollinators.  In this case, the Hymenochilus cycnocephalus has a flower that is about 7mm (1/4 inch).

The visiting mosquito is obviously attracted to the basal appendage of the labellum.

A split second after taking this photo, the labellum snapped shut and trapped the insect inside the 'hood'.  I could see it moving around inside and I assume it eventually escaped.

The movement of the insect may cause the pollinia to become attached to the insect's body.  Of course, if the visiting insect is not a pollinator the end result may be pollen left behind. (see photo left)

This is a loss to the orchid because the pollinia will eventually break apart and the pollen is unavailable to be transported to another H. cycnocephalus flower.

Index

Next Page