Some tropical plants pick the best hummingbirds to pollinate flowers

3 marzo 2015

Rather than just waiting patiently for any pollinator that comes their way to start the next generation of seeds, some plants appear to recognize the best suitors and ‘turn on’ to increase the chance of success. These findings stem from the discovery that the showy red and yellow blooms of Heliconia tortuosa, an exotic tropical plant, recognize certain hummingbirds by the way the birds sip the flowers’ nectar. The plants respond by allowing pollen to germinate, ultimately increasing the chances for successful seed formation.