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Photographer's Note

At latitude 38° 43' 5'', the Botanical Garden of Lisbon is home, on a continent, to the northernmost symbol of Macaronesia, one of the remnants of Eden, adult Dracaena draco trees.

Farther north mature trees are found only in the islands of Graciosa and Flores.

Here, altough we are almost at latitude 40°, lowest temperature ever measured in the last 20 years was 5.6°C

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Before the Spaniards arrived on the Canary Islands, some five hundred years ago, Dragon Tree fruits were the main food of an endemic, Dodo-like, flightless bird which is now extinct. Related to the pigeon, it was about the size of a turkey. Because of the extinction of the species, naturally occurring Dragon Trees are becoming very rare. The processing of Dragon Tree seeds through the digestive tract of this bird helped stimulate germination - without this aid, seed must be manually processed in order to sprout.

Dragon trees and those dodo-likes evoluted during millions of years, the seeds and the digestive tract of the birds slowly changing to fit each other .... oops...

Elaine_Blath, snuggleaphagus, Cretense, alive has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Ilena Lo (NaturalLand) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 26 W: 0 N: 141] (639)
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