Diuris brumalis (Orchidaceae) is masquerading as pea plants

Diuris brumalis (Orchidaceae) is masquerading as pea plants


Hello everybody,
I am Daniela, I am here to present to you the discovery of the mimicry pollination strategy of the orchid Diuris brumalis. We are in the south-western Australian corner, a hotspot of biodiversity, where Diuris brumalis grows. The orchids imitate surrounding pea plants of the genus Daviesia in terms of flower similarity and colour spectral reflectance. But why does the orchid imitate surrounding pea plants? Pea plants produce nectar, while the orchids not. For maintaining this strategy the orchid has to be less abundant than its model and anticipate also the flowering peak of pea plants. Native bees of the genus Trichocolletes, solitary Australian bees, confuse the orchids for surrounding pea plants. In their attempt to look for nectar, they don’t find it. But, the pollen of the orchid remains attached on the head of the insect. We have observed many of them on pea plants, carrying orchid pollinia, while foraging nectar and collecting pollen on those pea plants. The orchids with this pollination strategy, known as ‘food source mimicry’, have also to balance their presence in function of pea plants. We found that when pea plants are absent, the success of the orchid is almost zero. Such an incredible evidence of co-habitation! Caring this balance, avoiding competition, the orchid generates its ecological space and its beauty for all of us.

86 thoughts on “Diuris brumalis (Orchidaceae) is masquerading as pea plants”

  1. WOW how Interesting! I love this. Its great that Earth To Be has shared this with the public, Awesome video! I have subscribed…I look forward to watching more of your videos. I have also shared this wonderful video on my personal facebook page as I have some Horticulture in the family 🙂 Thankyou for a great up close watch!. If your reading this comment……WATCH IT!!!

  2. That's an amazing discovery and beautiful orchid. Congratulation for the great job you did. It's wonderful. Keep going on this way.

  3. Complimenti per la grande scoperta. Non sapevo nulla della strategia di impollinazione di questa stupenda orchidea. E' meravigliosa. Aspetto con impazienza le prossime scoperte in campo ecologico. Avanti tutta……!!!

  4. Congratulations on the great discovery. Wonderful. I look forward to the next ecological discoveries. Orchids are magical flowers.

  5. Great content, thank you for dropping facts about plants.

    I personally own a garden and you help me understand about plants better.

    Thank you so much 👐

  6. L'Australia è una terra meravigliosa in cui accadono cose speciali. Una terra affascinante anche per i suoi meravigliosi fiori. Questa scoperta è molto interessante e conferma la magia di questo continente dalla terra rossa. Congratulazioni per la grande scoperta. Continua con il tuo lavoro in questa direzione. "

  7. What an amazing discovery!!! Beautiful orchid. Congratulations for the great job you did. It's wonderful. Keep up the good work!! 💐

  8. Pretty self-explanatory really. One look and it's obvious that Diuris mimic pea-flowers, realized this about 15 years ago as an 18yr old :/

  9. Nice info.. Sub to you for more info. We are sharing lots of interesting things too..hoping for more support of our channel. Thanks

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