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definition - Jellyfish_tree

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Jellyfish tree

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Jellyfish tree
Jellyfish tree with fruit.
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Plantae
Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Magnoliopsida
Order:Malpighiales
Family:Medusagynaceae
Engl. & Gilg
Genus:Medusagyne
Baker
Species:M. oppositifolia
Binomial name
Medusagyne oppositifolia
Baker
Mahé, home of jellyfish trees.
The jellyfish tree (Medusagyne oppositifolia), the only species of the family Medusagynaceae, is a critically endangered and unusual tree endemic to the island of Mahé, of the Seychelles. The plant was thought to be extinct until a few individuals were discovered in the 1970s.[1]

The gynoecium of the flower resembles the tentacles of a jellyfish, hence the common and generic names of the plant. This plant exhibits many adaptations to dry climate, strange on a moist archipelago. It can withstand drought, and its seeds disperse by the wind. This suggests it has Gondwanan origins.[2]

The genus Medusagyne is often included in the family Ochnaceae, e.g. in the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification. The small tropical American family Quiinaceae is also included in this broad concept of Ochnaceae.[3]

References

  1. ^ Nature Protection Trust of Seychelles (1998). Medusagyne oppositifolia. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. www.iucnredlist.org. Retrieved on 09 May 2006.
  2. ^ Kingdon, Jonathan (1989). Island Africa: The Evolution of Africa's Rare Plants and Animals. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. pp. 42-43. ISBN 0-691-08560-9. 
  3. ^ Fay, M. F., Swensen, S. M. & Chase, M. W. (1997). Taxonomic affinities of Medusagyne oppositifolia. Kew Bulletin 52: 111-120.

External links

 

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