birding-aus from lerps to manna

Subject: birding-aus from lerps to manna
From: "Sean Pywell" <>
Date: Fri, 21 May 1999 09:59:50 +0000
Thanks to all those who repsonded re my enquiry about lerps. To those 
who missed it, it is definitely the exudates of pysillid insects that 
are properly known as 'lerps',a nd not the insects themselves.

Now, what about manna? 

Syd Curtis wrote: 'MeKeown records that when the sugary scales 
fall to the ground beneath trees, they are popularly called "manna"'. 

Are there any other alternative meanings - proper or otherwise, to 
'manna'. Someone has suggested to me that trees themselves produce 
a sugary exudate (perhaps just sap?) in resposne to insect attack, 
and that this is called manna. Gliders are well known for feeding on 
exudates from trees - is this just standard sap that they obtain by 
cutting into the phloem? or is it something else that the tree 
produces to plug the wound? And if so, is the same response given to 
insect attack, and does this consitute manna? And do birds feed on 
any such exudate, or do they stick just to lerps?

Sean Pywell
Coordinating Editor - Wildlife Guides
Lonely Planet Publications
PO Box 617, Hawthorn, Victoria 3122, Australia
Office: 192 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn, Victoria 3122
Telephone: +61 3 9819 1877
Fax: +61 3 9819 6459
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