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Floral Decor is For the Birds...and Crabs

After spending some time in space with the last post, it is time to come back down to Earth and a more mundane topic: decorating. Believe it or not, humans are not the only animals that tap into the decorative properties of plants or even the only animals who use blooms to help romance blossom. Take a look at Dusty here, whose look is made all the more dapper with the addition of a succulent bow-tie. (Like Dusty's style? Inquire about your own floral bowtie or jewelry here.)

The Decorator Crab

Okay, so we jest with Dusty, who obviously has been subjected to the whims of his humans, but there are animals who decorate with plants without any prompting from people. Take, as one example, the decorator crab. Decorator crabs are actually a category of crab, about 75% of which decorate their shells in some manner. Their bodies are covered in tiny, velcro-like hairs that allow them to stick animals and plants alike to their carapace. (We like to shell out the occasional ten dollar word in this here blog.)

These crabs will affix living seaweed, algae, sponges and anemones (the animal, not the flower) to their backs in an effort to better blend into their environments. Attached anemones have the added benefit of being a stinging decor; talk about bobby trapping your lawn! But wait, there's more! These crabs are not only stylish but also socially conscious. They reuse, carefully removing decor from their old shells to reattach to their new shells when they molt.

The Bower Bird

Now, some of you may be protesting that the decorator crab's behavior is about camouflage, not about decorating to improve aesthetics. But for another animal, the bower bird, flowers are definitely about increasing the attractiveness of a space. The male bower bird courts potential mates by tricking out his bower with different, color-grouped decorations. These amorous avians show off their homes to potential mates, pointing out collections one at a time to elicit oohs and aahs. "Hey, look at my pile of pink petals over here and my collection of shiny, black beetle shells. They sure beat the blueberries and seeds of that guy over there!"

And bower bird decor is never stagnant. The male will move pieces around and refresh items when needed. And once the male, and his bachelor pad, are chosen by a female, they mate, she goes off to build a nest and lay eggs, and he goes back to curating his space in an attempt to catch the next lady's eye. Feeling inspired? Want to add floral decor to or refresh the floral decor found in your space? Click here to see what Polycarp has on offer!

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