Next entry: Vismia laurentii

Previous entry: Cleistanthus mildbraedii


Barteria fistulosa Mast.

General Information

There are two species of Barteria in the area, both with vicious ants. The commonest one is this species which can be recognised by the flowers in an arc of more than five around the petiole base, the wider petiole and leaves with the broadest part above the middle. The ants that live in and on this species are extremely aggressive and give a very painful bite. The trees are eaten by elephants and it is assumed that the ants would hurt the sensitive trunk of an elephant. It is not just protection from animals and people that the ants provide, however; they also keep the leaves clean. If low branches are approached carefully you can drop a piece of leaf litter onto a leaf blade and watch an ant come out to find the piece of litter, pick it up and drop it off the edge of the leaf.


Mixed species terra firma forest.


Distribution: Nigeria to DRC.