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Angraecum sesquipedale and Xanthopan morganii praedicta

Angraecum sesquipedale and Xanthopan morganii praedicta

This species from Madagascar is colloquially known as the 'comet orchid'.
A friend of mine lent this plant to the BBC Wildlife Production team in Bristol where he lives and also where the BBC studio's are located, They had four of these moths flown over to Bristol from Madagascar to record the moth collecting nectar from the long spur.

This orchid achieved fame when Charles Darwin predicted that it would be pollinated by a long-tongued hawk moth. His prediction was verified when it was indeed found to be pollinated by a hawk-moth which was named Xanthopan morganii praedicta in honor of Darwins prediction. Morgan was Darwin's assistant and accompanied Darwin on his travels to Madagascar.

The hawk-moth can be seen top right of the picture which shows the length of the tongue, The BBC kindly let my friend take this picture.

Angraecum sesquipedale and Xanthopan morganii praedicta

Vote Result

Score: 9.0, Votes: 1

Life with an orchid

I love this image. Hawkmoths have a role in a lot of pollenation - not least my papaya flowers and it great to see live images of such an amazing moth/orchid relationship


As seen on TV!!

I saw that documentary. Fascinating! Gorgeous flower; wanted one the moment I saw it!


It's amazing how the plant and animal kingdom work together to continue the propagation of life in nature.