Megan Buccere - The egret and the snake plant


Megan Buccere
The egret and the snake plant
12" Tondo, oils on panel
The snake plant and the green footed egret live deep in the swamps of Louisiana. Rarely ever seen, the two have evolved an extremely interesting symbiotic
relationship that is steeped in Louisiana Folklore. The Egret stands within the snake like carnivorous foliage of the plant, its green legs making it appear to almost float within. During the day the egret pokes around the waters edge eating small bugs and fish. When it comes across a crawfish the green footed egret feeds it to the snake like tendrils of the plant who voraciously snap up the meal. So what does the egret get out of this relationship you may ask? Well it all begins with the folklore of the Rougarou.
The Rougarou is a giant animal that, while having never been seen or captured on film until recently, was said to have the body of a human with the head of a wolf or rabid dog. Cajun folklore says the Rougarou hunts mostly women and children who happen to wander through the swamp. While this is true in a handful of cases, in reality it has been found that they are more afraid of humans than previously thought. They actually love hunting birds, especially the green footed egret.
Fortunately for our delicious bird the crawfish it feeds the snake plant contains proteins that turn into venom when metabolized. While the Rougarou approaches the green footed egret the snake plant entwines itself around the bird making it near impossible for the large creature to gain access without being bitten (and possibly killed) by this carnivorous plant.