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Shrub: Black Thorn (Acacia mellifera)

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arks
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Shrub: Black Thorn (Acacia mellifera)

Unread postby arks » Thu Jan 17, 2008 1:54 am

Here are two shrubs that I think are similar, perhaps the same?

1 Seen at Augrabies, I'm also wondering what that "nest" might be?
Image

2 And I saw this one in KTP
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Unread postby Jeanus » Thu Jan 17, 2008 4:58 pm

Arks look up Acacia mellifera
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Unread postby arks » Thu Jan 17, 2008 9:53 pm

Thanks, Jeanus, that looks to be the one! Any ideas on what that "nest" might be? :?
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Unread postby restio » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:35 pm

arks, can you post a pic with a blow-up of the nest?
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Unread postby arks » Thu Jan 17, 2008 11:12 pm

How's this, restio?

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Acacia mellifera

Unread postby restio » Tue Jan 22, 2008 5:02 pm

arks, my dad agreed that the flowering acacia is probably A. mellifera. He said that he'd need a good close-up of the thorns to be 100% sure.

He guessed the nest to be a Cape Sparrow - but said it was a real guess. I suggest that you post the pix in the appropriate ID needed thread in the Birds forum. Maybe a birder will know!

Dad did have an interesting botanical tidbit about nests. Some work done by Sue Milton and Richard Dean suggests that some plants lwhich have seeds enclosed in a woolly mat of fibres (e.g. Wild Rosemary) are dispersed by birds. The birds use the plant fibre to line their nests and when the nests disintegrate or burn the seeds get liberated.

I'll see if I can find Sue and Richard's paper.
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Unread postby arks » Tue Jan 22, 2008 5:40 pm

restio, many thanks to you and your Dad for all this interesting information! The forum limits on photo size make it hard to show details. I could email you the large version of some pix, or else crop way, way,way down to try to show the thorns? :roll:

I have several nest pix, so will collect them together and try posting them in the birds forum. I just get SO curious about everything that I see. :roll: :wink:
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arks
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Unread postby arks » Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:12 pm

Thanks, restio! I've sent you the original photo, and here are a couple of tight crops to show the thorns a bit better?

Image
Image
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Unread postby restio » Wed Jan 23, 2008 1:50 pm

restio's dad wrote:Must be A. mellifera - just was a bit concerned that it may be a form of A. senegal which has three thorns - two pointing backwards and one forwards, but generally has a spicate inflorescence, and Coates Palgrave does not show it there - though that is not definitive!


A spicate inflorescence is a spiky-looking group of flowers.

If you have a keen interest in botany, have a look at the Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflorescence
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Unread postby Jeanus » Wed Jan 23, 2008 2:12 pm

I will put my head on the chopping block and say deffinitely A. mellifera as A. senegal has niether the same growth form or inflorescence
"The grass is always greener over the sceptic tank"


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