Saturday, May 08, 2010

LIFE IN THE UNDERGROWTH - Part4: Intimate Relations (2005)

In this 4th episode of the wonderful series Life in the Undergrowth, we are dealing with the relationships developed by the invertebrates not only towards their own kind but also towards plants. Most of us know that generally plants and insects depend on each other. But the kind of footage that they have shot for this episode is unbelievable.

This clip shows how a Gall wasp uses an Oak tree for the development of its egg.

In the following snap, there are 3 invertebrates. You can recognize the ants. The small black insects are aphids. The ants herd & protect the aphids from any other predators (such as the colorful  ladybug in the snap) because aphids secrete honeydew which is a favorite food for the ants. In this snap the ants are trying to drive away the ladybug which came to eat the tiny aphids.

The following clip showing a botfly using a housefly to put its larvae inside a cow's skin is one of the best scenes that you would see in this series. This clip is definitely not for the weak hearted.

By the way, there are many cases were the above larvae have used humans as the hosts. Painful to imagine, isn't it?

This beautiful looking creature is called a feather legged bug.

The following clip involves Methocha and a beetle larva. The care taken by the Methocha to see that its young has enough constant supply of food is wonderful.

The 1st snap below is of a stick insect (if you carefully observe). The 2nd snap is of a baby stick insect taking its first steps.

Another great episode from the Life in the Undergrowth series. Once again, this is a 1 hour program and the clips that you've seen here forms only 10 minutes, so you can imagine the beauty that's in store in the full episode.

You can watch the best bits from Life In The Undergrowth as chosen by the TV production team at this BBC page.
Also some snaps/clips from episode 1 Invasion of the Land.
Few snaps/clips from episode 2 Taking to the Air.
Few snaps/clips from episode 3 The Silk Spinners.
Some snaps from the episode 4 Intimate Relations.

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