Thursday, February 21, 2008
Old and new leaves of the timbó vine (Paullinia pinnata). In a previous post I described timbó as the plant that Amazonian Indians have used for easy fishing. I've never had the honor of going on one of these fishing trips, but I've seen them take place on video and film. The fishermen essentially beat the heck out of the water with the poisonous plant, including crushed roots. In little time many fish come floating to the surface, where they are quickly plucked by hand or nets. Notice the old leaves in the image. Some insects, maybe grasshoppers, have made a good meal out of them. Evidently they don't respond to rotenone, like fish do. Also notice the third new leaf from the left. It was curled up like a Cuban cigar with some signs of webbing inside. I unfurled it for the picture.