The wildlife of the Riviera Maya and its environment III

Scientific: Brassavola nodosa Lindl English: Lady of the night orchid Description: Usually this epiphytic plant grows from a cluster of long, separate and thin bulb-like structures (pseudo-bulbs) that are attached to the trunks of trees. Each plant has a single leaf and a strong stem from which one to six white or greenish-white flowers emerge. …

The wildlife of the Riviera Maya and its environment IV

Scientific: Brosimum alicastrum Swartz Maaya t’aan: Óox English: Breadnut, Maya nut Description: Possibly attaining a height of over 45 meters (147 feet), this tree is very common; but unlike other common tress of the region, this one is wind-pollinated. During the spring months it produces highly nutritious orange fruits that are consumed by animals and …

The wildlife of the Riviera Maya and its environment V

Scientific: Carica papaya L. Maaya t’aan: Ch’íich’ puut English: Wild papaya Description: This is an herb that resembles a small tree; if it is not pruned, it has a single “trunk.” The branches emerge horizontally from the trunk, which also supports the hanging fruit. The plant tissues have an irritating white sap that can cause …

The wildlife of the Riviera Maya and its environment VI

Scientific: Ceiba pentandra Gaertn. Maaya t’aan: Ya’ax che’, yáax che’ English: Kapok Description: This tree can be very large, capable of reaching 70 meters (230 feet) in height in tall forest areas. It has a thick green trunk, bearing short spines. The branches usually spread horizontally, providing a lot of shade. The large leaves look …