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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Loquats and the Monkeys that eat them

 

lo·quat

[loh-kwot, -kwat] noun

1.a small evergreen tree, Eriobotrya japonica, native to China and Japan, cultivated as an ornamental and for its yellow, plumlike fruit.

2.the fruit itself.

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Exhibit A:  Ethan-van Spidermanus

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The not-so-rare sighting of an Ethan in the loquat tree is often accompanied by the distinctive calls of “my crock is stuck again!” or “Nate just stepped on my hand!” One of the more avid tree climbers in his family line, when the branches of a fruit-laden tree are shaking, you can assume he is nearby. Once he has “mastered” a tree, there’s no telling the number of juicy, ripe loquats he’ll consume in one sitting.  Also of note is the high velocity by which the discarded loquat seeds themselves can be hurled from whatever perch he may be occupying; close proximity monkey-watchers beware!

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Exhibit B:  Nater-gator Crawlanywhereus

DSC_0028 (2)You’ll know this guy is close simply by being aware of the decibel level that your ears are experiencing.  Seemingly not at all concerned by revealing his location, this one climbs to heights otherwise not seen by his relatives.  His extremely low body weight to agility ratio enables perching on the smallest of branches at the topmost reaches of the tree, as well as easily stretching across large, gaping expanses to procure the most coveted clusters of loquats in hard to reach places.  The only concern with this species is its refusal to let several falls from 10 to 12 feet up to deter him from climbing even higher and more dangerously the next time.  One wonders how this will effect the survival of the fittest rule in his future family line. 

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Exhibit C:  Evie-Mae Landdwellerus

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Easily the most beautiful and graceful of the species we’re studying today, Evie has a propensity towards the sweet juice found in the loquat fruit.  Upon observation, you’ll notice her most consistent method is to simply tear into and suck out all the juice, discarding the rest with a level of disdain only matched by her insistence on getting to her next victim.  Not yet taken to climbing the heights, she will occasionally be seen in the low-lying branches, but is most often found directly beneath the trees.  By doing so, she masterfully takes advantage of the carelessness of the other two specimens, exhibiting a scavenger quality that reveals the genius of her minimum-effort-for-maximum-gain approach to feeding.  Oddly enough, she can often be seen with a pink and yellow cloth-like item which she continually refers to as “blankie”;  it rarely leaves her side.

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On a promising and exciting note, there have been several cases of domestication and training for each of the above species.  Much more study and observation much take place, but the future looks bright.  Just recently, one brave soul was able to enlist the assistance of all three to procure several buckets worth of the delectable fruit. 

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As a result, and after hours of peeling, pitting, and preparation, the aforementioned individual was able to enter and utilize one of the most rare and safely guarded sanctuaries know to modern man – the kitchen of Courtney Lynn Stayoutoftheonlyplaceicanbealoneus

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Advancing with much care and trepidation, this courageous researcher has seen success in the creation of two loquat pies (one has already been devoured by the inhabitants of this savage land).

Reporting from the field,

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