Bird's Head Birthwort
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Bird's Head Birthwort
ntroduced Photo: Sindhu Thomas
Common name: Bird's Head Birthwort
Botanical name: Aristolochia ornithocephala    Family: Aristolochiaceae (Birthwort family)

Bird's Head Birthwort is an climbing shrub with large alternate, long stalked leaves which are heart-shaped to kidney-shaped. Stipules are prominently leaf-like. The flowers are singly borne on stalks 8-10 inches long. The flower tube is divided into three parts. The lower pouch-like part contains the style and stamens. The tube is suddenly inflated in the upper quarter into the so-called bird's head. Two expansions are attached to the head which may be termed the beak and the lip. The lip is 6 x 4 inches. Bird's Head Birthwort is native to Brazil, but now cultivated widely. It flowers in the rainy season.

Identification credit: R.K. Nimai Singh
Photographed at Yercaud, Salem, Tamilnadu.
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