1 minute read

Carnivorous Plants

Ecology Of Carnivorous Plants, The Types Of Traps, Conservation And Protection Of Carnivorous Plants

Carnivorous plants are botanical oddities that supplement their requirement for nutrients by trapping, killing, and digesting small animals, mostly insects. Carnivorous plants are photosynthetic, and are therefore fundamentally autotrophic. Still, their feeding relationship with animals represents a reversal of the normal trophic connections between autotrophs and consumers.

Carnivorous plants have long been fascinating to humans. They have the subject of some captivating tales of science fiction, involving fantastic trees that consume large, unwary creatures in tropical forests. Tales have even been told about ritual sacrifices of humans to these awesome carnivores, presumably to appease evil, botanical spirits. Fortunately, fact involves much smaller predators than those of science fiction. Still, the few species of carnivorous plants that really exist are very curious variants on the usual form and function of plants. Scaled up, these carnivores would indeed be formidable predators.

All species of carnivorous plants are small, herbaceous plants, generally growing in nutrient poor habitats, such as acidic bogs and oligotrophic lakes. The usual prey of these green predators is not unwary deer, cattle, or humans, but insects and other small invertebrates, although a few of the larger species are capable of capturing tadpoles and small fish.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Calcium Sulfate to Categorical imperative