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Flesh Eaters in Your Backyard: Plants That Kill to Eat

Yes, we all know that they very much exist. But many of haven’t yet got the chance to witness them in action. Yes we are talking of those fascinating plants that would rather munch on insect flesh than on sunlight and water.

As a result of adaptation and evolution, these organisms took their form from areas where soil nutrients were so low that flora life struggled to survive.

These plants had to develop special characteristics so as to enable them to be successful in their particular environment.

Some plants have even made some amazing adaptations, turning their bodies into wells that lure and drown victims.

Each organism is equipped with its own special design or mechanism for catching their prey. There are many ways that carnivorous plants lure and trap insects and other tiny bits of food. Some do it by topping off tiny hairs with a sweet-smelling sticky substance to trap and digest insects, while some snap shut and trap a curious bug.

Pitfall traps- pitcher plants trap the prey in a rolled leaf that contains a pool of digestive enzymes or bacteria. Meanwhile the Flypaper traps uses a type of sticky mucilage instead of digestive enzymes or bacteria. Then there are the Snap traps which utilize rapid leaf movements.

Some plants are known for their dexterity, they just need to detect the movement of the prey to capture them. The leaves play an active roll in this process. An example is the Venus Fly Trap which snaps shut on its victims as soon as it senses movement.

In the case of Sundews, the leaves undergo rapid acid growth, which allows the sundew tentacles to bend, aiding in the retention and digestion of prey.

Carnivorous plants are more common than you thought. However, leading plant conservationists have labeled these species as vulnerable. Nature’s creation, right? We need to save them from disappearing from the face of the earth.

 

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