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Syagrus is a genus of 30 to 42 species of Arecaceae (palms), native to South America, with one species endemic to the Lesser Antilles. The genus is closely related to the Cocos, or coconut genus, and many Syagrus species produce edible seeds similar to the coconut.

Description

Palms in this group have solitary trunks, clusters, and subterranean stems. Crownshafts are not present in the genus; inflorescences emerge from the leaf crown. Leaves are pinnate, often recurved, from 2 to 5 m. They are monoecious, producing white or off-white unisexual flowers of both sexes. The woody bract is spoon or boat-shaped

Ecology

S. coronata nuts are the favored food of Lear’s Macaw, whose bill size and shape are particularly adapted to crack them.(del Hoyo et al. 1997).

Syagrus species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Batrachedra nuciferae (recorded on S. coronae), Hypercompe cunigunda (feeds exclusively on S. romanzoffiana) and Paysandisia archon (recorded on S. romanzoffiana).

 

Written on February 20th, 2012 , Botany, Forestry Tags:

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