Bactris acanthocarpoides Barb.Rodr., Enum. Palm. Nov. : 31 (1875)

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (
Brazil North present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
French Guiana present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Guyana present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Suriname present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
The Guianas and Brazil (Amazonas, Pará); lowland rain forest on terrafirme or near streams in places liable to inundation, 200-260 m elevation. Near Manaus this species is usually seen in low, wet places near streams, but in French Guiana it is reported to occur on well drained slopes (de Granville, 1997); in Suriname it occurs in both habitats (Wessels Boer, 1965). (Henderson, A.J., Bactris (Palmae) in Flora Neotropica Monographs 79. 2000)A


  • Bactris acanthocarpoides is diagnosed by its linear pinnae, filamentous, densely spinulose rachillae, and pistillate flowers with the calyx shorter than the densely spinulose corolla. Wessels Boer (1965) and Henderson (1995) placed Bactris acanthocarpa var. crispata Drude in synonymy under this name, but it clearly belongs under B. acanthocarpa. (Henderson, A.J., Bactris (Palmae) in Flora Neotropica Monographs 79. 2000)A

Common Name

  • Guyana: jawi, ulukpana. Suriname: bongie-bongie, haai maba, hanaimaka, maka kow maka, manai maka, nao maka. (Henderson, A.J., Bactris (Palmae) in Flora Neotropica Monographs 79. 2000)A


  • Stems cespitose, with 2-6 stems per clump, 1-4 m tall, 2-5 cm diam., spiny on internodes and often at least partially obscured with persistent, decaying leaf bases. Leaves 6-15; leaf spines mostly solitary and scattered, black, somewhat flattened, to 7(-15) cm long, denser on sheath and proximal part of petiole, scattered on rachis; sheath 35-75 cm long; ocrea not seen; petiole 0.6-2 m long; rachis 1.8-2.5 m long; pinnae 20-40 per side, irregularly arranged in clusters of 2-6, spreading in different planes, linear, with visible cross-veins, occasionally spiny on the margins; middle pinnae 61-70 x 2.5-3 cm. Inflorescences interfoliar; peduncle 8-15 cm long, recurved, flattened, spiny; prophyll 14-19 cm long; peduncular bract to 30(-40) cm long, persistent, moderately to densely covered with blackish or brownish, somewhat soft spines interspersed with straight black spines; rachis to 8 cm long, densely spiny; rachillae 25-89, to 14 cm long, filamentous, densely to moderately covered proximally with spinules; triads more or less regularly arranged (but often with solitary staminate flowers interspersed) on proximal ca. half or more of rachillae, and there tending to be absent from adaxial side of rachillae (paired or solitary staminate flowers only on distal ca. half of rachillae); staminate flowers 2-3 mm long; sepal lobes 0.5-1 mm long; petals 2-3 mm long; stamens 0, 3, or 6; pistillode absent; pistillate flowers 4-7 mm long; calyx cupular, 1-1.5 mm long, glabrous; corolla urceolate, 3-5mm long, spinulose; staminodes absent; fruits 1.2-2 cm diam., broadly obovoid, shortly rostrate, yellowish, orange, or red, with soft spinules; mesocarp starchy; endocarp obovoid, the sterile pores slighly displaced longitudinally; endocarp fibers few or absent; fruiting perianth with lobed calyx much shorter than the lobed corolla, without staminodial ring. (Henderson, A.J., Bactris (Palmae) in Flora Neotropica Monographs 79. 2000)A


    A. Henderson, A.J., Bactris (Palmae) in Flora Neotropica Monographs 79. 2000
    B. World Checklist of Arecaceae