Chelyocarpus chuco (Mart.) H.E.Moore
  • Principes 16: 73 (1972) 

Notes: Distribution: Brazil (Acre, Rondônia) to N. Bolivia

General Description

Leaves 10-22 in a crown; sheath more than 3 dm. long, pale (golden?) appressed- villous; petiole elongate, to ca. 1.8 m. long (teste Martius), ca. 2 cm. 3_ Fruits of Chelyocarplls Chuco. Photo by S. Kiem. wide basally, 1 cm. wide apically, with brown furfuraceous scales at first, becoming glabrate; hastula deltoid or truncate-deltoid, 1.5-2.5 cm. long, 2-3 cm. wide at base; blade thin, green, to 1.05 m. long at center, 1.8 m. across, divided centrally to within 1.5-2 cm. of the base, divided laterally one-fourth to nearly three•fourths to the base into 15-24 lanceolate l-ribbed segments on each side, these mostly grouped in pairs toward the margins or irregularly toward the center, the ultimate segments to 50 cm. long, 2.5-6 cm. wide, each with a midrib, 2-3 lateral secondary and several finer tertiary nerves on each side more prominent below than above, flexuous cross-veinlets prominent on both surfaces when dry, proximal segments often conspicuously narrowed and "shouldered" toward the acute or very briefly bifid apex, lower surface of blade green but paler than upper surface, very densely beset with minute, shining, translucent dots. Inflorescences 3-4 (teste Martius), to more than 5.5 dm. long; sterile bracts 2 (or more?), densely light brown floccose-lepidote outside, glabrous within, ca. 21 cm. long; branches 5-7, each subtended by a fertile bract similar to the peduncular bracts but progressively smaller, the lowermost branches bearing a membranous prophyll to 12 cm. long, upper branches with incomplete prophylls or prophyll lacking, main axis and branches more or less flattened, branches mostly curved with flattened base to ca. 18 cm. long, 1.3 cm. wide in fruit, fertile portion to ca. 20 cm. long; rachillae to 8 cm. long, subtended by narrowly triangular, membranous, tomentum. tipped bracts to 15-17 mm. long on lowermost branches, shorter above, shortly adnate above the bract and with a short sterile base. Flowers sessile or briefly pedicellate, borne singly in a spiral on the rachillae, bracts short; perianth 2-2.5 mm. long, creamy white, erect at anthesis; sepals 3, connate for ca. 0.5 mm., 2.0-2.5 mm. long, lobes deltoid; petals 3, about as long as the sepals, distinct, imbricate; stamens 6, filaments broad and thick basally, subulate above, anthers exserted and spreading from the narrow mouth of the perianth; carpels 3. Fruit globose or depressed.globose, with persistent thickened perianth, 1.62.0 cm. wide, 1.6-1.8 cm. high; epicarp not tessellate; mesocarp rather thin; endocarp membranous; seed brown, depressed-globose, ca. 1.6 m. wide, 1.4 cm. high; embryo above the middle.


Bolivia and Brazil along banks of rivers, larger in forests than along the banks (fide d'Orbigny), flowering November (Prance et al.) to January (d'Orbigny), fruiting April (d'Orbigny) to July (Prance et al.).

Common Names

Carnaubinha fide Prance et al.; chuco in Itonama, huechichaho in Baures, iriai in Cayuvava, sava in Itenes, choinan in Pacaguara, fide d'Orbigny.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
Found in
  • Southern America Brazil Brazil North
  • Western South America Bolivia


  • 1 Lorenzi, H., Noblick, L.R., Kahn, F. & Ferreira, E. (2010). Brazilian Flora Arecaceae (Palms): 1-268. Instituto Plantarum de Estudos da Flora LTDA, São Paulo, Brazil.
  • 2 Govaerts, R. & Dransfield, J. (2005). World Checklist of Palms: 1-223. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • 3 Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. Continental Publishing, Deurne.
  • 4 H.E. Moore, Chelyocarpus and its Allies Cryosophila and Itaya (Palmae). 1972

 Information From

Palmweb - Palms of the World Online
Palmweb 2011. Palmweb: Palms of the World Online. Published on the internet Accessed on 21/04/2013
  • A Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
eMonocot. (2010, 1st November). Retrieved Wednesday, 8th February, 2012, from
  • B Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
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