5 Most Terrifying Carnivorous Plants In The World!
You probably think of nature's cruelest killings as something big, fierce animals do to small, helpless prey, like a lion breaking a gazelle's neck or a tribe of chimpanzees attacking an orangutan. But some of the worst serial murderers of our forests and fields are not animals at all. They're meat-eating plants. Having evolved where the soil is short on proteins and other nutrients, these insect-eaters are some of the most diabolical and dedicated killers in the living world. Here are the top 5 carnivious species in the plant kingdom.
#5 - Pitcher of Purgatory
The North American Pitcher Plant, or Sarracenia, is a type of carnivorous plant that lives mostly in the southeastern United States. Devilishly, it kills by getting insects high. The plant's leaves grow in a funnel shape, with a hood over the opening to prevent rain from diluting the juices of the leaves. Those liquids contain a sweet-swelling nectar that gathers on the lip of the funnel, or pitcher. But in more than one species of North American Pitcher Plant, that same sweet tasty nectar contains a secret ingredient - a narcotic drug. Insects consume the liquid, become relaxed and disoriented, and slip inside the funnel where they are digested by enzymes. Heck, at least they die feeling nice and mellow.
#4 - The Cobra Lilly
The Cobra Lilly, or Darlingtonia Californica, is a rare meat-eater that lives in Northern California and Oregon, only growing in boggy marsh-land around cold running water. The leaves of the plant are bulbous, and form a cavity with two fang-like pointed leaves on each end of a balloon-like structure. Flying and crawling insects are lured inside the opening and become confused by the light speckles shining through its porous outer surface. Then comes the horror - because of the grain of a thousand tiny hairs inside the plant, insects can go in deeper, but can't get out. Despite any frantic effort, there is no escape from this Hotel California, and the bugs are finally killed and eaten.
#3 - The Barbaric Butterwort
Butterworts are a genus of meat-eating plants which use sticky leaves to trap and kill insects. About 80 species of Butterwort span the globe, from Europe to Asia and North and South America. But anywhere you find them, any bugs in the vicinity can count their days numbered. Special cells created by the DNA of the plants produce a secretion that smells sweet and forms droplets on each leaf. But the leaves also trap the insects, as the liquid forms a flypaper-like glue. Flying and crawling critters become cruelly stuck in the ether and are soon digested.
#2 - Plant Cuisine Mama, Like A Water Wheel
The Waterwheel plant is a fierce killer that lives in water and has no roots. It feels on small aquatic vertebrates, using a clever device called a snap trap. The Waterwheel, also known as Aldrovanda Vesiculosa, grows very quickly in groups of stems called whorls. Air-filled petioles help the stems float, and two lobes form the snap traps. In the traps, a coating of tiny trigger hairs sense whenever the organism's small prey is within striking distance.When that happens, the trap closes shut in one of the fastest movements in all of the plant kingdom, trapping insects in a lightning-quick motion that takes only milliseconds.
#1 - The Venus Flytrap
Easily the most recognized carnivorous plant in the United States, the Venus Flytrap is a native of wetlands in North and South Carolina. But did you know that the famous enemy of flying insects is clever enough to cull its snacks? Yes, when a spider or a fly crawls inside its opened leaves, the Venus viciously prepares to strike. But to avoid consuming inanimate objects without nutritional value, the leaves have evolved into only snapping shut if another trigger is sensed within 20 seconds of the first one. Also, the Venus Flytrap will only begin the digestive process if five more stimuli are felt, protecting the deadly damsel of the eastern forest from swallowing anything that doesn't suit her appetite for crushed insect blood.
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