As a way to cope with life in environments ridden with poor soil quality, carnivorous plants have evolved to supplement their diets with animal organisms. While most carnivorous plants capture, kill and consume insects, some have been known to eat small rodents like mice. Here are five types of carnivorous plants that will leave your head spinning.
Carnivorous Plants No. 1: Drosera
Species from the drosera genus are often called sundews since they, as you might imagine, appear as if they’re covered in dew. Attracting unsuspecting insects with this “dew”–which is actually a sticky, digestive enzyme–drosera plants are able to ensnare and even digest their prey. These plants are common in nutrient-deficient places like bogs and sandy beaches. Nearly 200 different species of drosera plants have been identified.
Carnivorous Plants No. 2: Flytraps
When people think of carnivorous plants, Venus flytraps are usually what first come to mind. The Venus flytrap (scientific name dionae muscipula) is known for its hinged, leafy “jaw” that snaps together to trap and consume unsuspecting insects. When an insect, beetle or frog touches two or more of the plant’s “hairs”, the flytrap quickly hinges shut, trapping and then slowly digesting the organism.