Nepenthes on TV

Walter Greenwood (
Thu, 27 Apr 1995 11:07:53 EST5EDT

I had been snoozing in front of the TV last night for almost
30 minutes when a beautiful full-screen closeup of the mouth of
a Nepenthes rafflesiana upper pitcher knocked me conscious. The next
shot peered down into the pitcher at a spider hanging under the
peristome, ogleing some flys struggling in the brew below.

The voice of Anthony Hopkins described how the spider lives his
life, eating the plant's captives and pooping into the pitcher. He
called the spider the plant's "food processor". The narration,
unfortunately, did not make it clear that the Nep would do just fine
without the spider, at least not while I was awake.

The other part of the program I remember seeing had some absolutely
incredible footage of a cuttlefish flashing colors across his body.
Looked like one of those kaleidoscope screen savers running on a
90MHz Pentium with a 24-bit VGA, only better.

It was a BBC film called "Predators and Prey" or something similar,
and was aired on the Discovery Channel.

Gotta get some quality sleep. This work stuff is for the birds.

Walter Greenwood
U. of Pitt.