Pulling wings off flies

From: James D Annan (jdan@mail.nerc-bidston.ac.uk)
Date: Tue May 18 1999 - 03:17:19 PDT

Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 11:17:19 +0100
From: "James D Annan" <jdan@mail.nerc-bidston.ac.uk>
To: cp@opus.hpl.hp.com
Message-Id: <aabcdefg1725$foo@default>
Subject: Pulling wings off flies

> Hi, Yesterday I caught my round leaf sundew a gnat. I
> broke off the wings so that it couldn't fly, but it
> was alive and moving. When I dropped it on the leaf,
> it began walking from leaf to leaf as if the leaves
> weren't sticky at all. So I killed it, and dropped the
> dead insect on the leaf. Now a couple days later, the
> insect is still on the leaf and it hasn't curled up.
> Why is the insect not getting stuck on the leaf, and
> why is it not curling up when it gets food on it's
> leaf?? I just got this sundew and this was the first
> time I tried to feed it, and I don't know what to do.

I thought that pulling wings off flies was the sort of thing that only
nasty schoolboys did before they grew up. But I suppose it's not a
great deal crueller than suffocating them and then eating them like a
sundew will do anyway, with or without human help.

If a sundew isn't dewy, then that might be just because it's a bit dry.
I recently bought a pot of d. capensis which was on the dry side and
completely dew-free by the time I had got it home and repotted it.
Within a couple of days it had caught almost all the fungus gnats I'd
been specially cultivating...it's a much better fly-catcher than I am!


This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Tue Jan 02 2001 - 17:31:58 PST