Monday, August 17, 2009

Rat Eating Plant Discovered in Philippines

Philippines: British scientists said they have discovered the largest of all meat eating plants that feeds by luring and consuming rats.
Botanists Stewart McPherson and Alastair Robinson said the plant, named Nepenthes attenboroughii after legendary wildlife broadcaster Sir David Attenborough, consumes "whole rats" by luring them into its mouth and dissolving them with acid-like enzymes.
"The plant produces spectacular traps which catch not only insects, but also rodents," McPherson said, "It is remarkable that it remained undiscovered until the 21st century."

Pitcher plants are carnivorous. Carnivorous plants come in many forms, some have sticky surfaces that act like flypaper, others like the Venus fly trap are snap traps, closing their leaves around their prey.
Pitchers create tube-like leaf structures into which insects and other small animals tumble and become trapped.