Tentacled, Carnivorous Plants Catapult Prey Into Traps

Drosera glanduligera, a rare type of sundew, has long been a puzzle to scientists because, it has two types of leaf protrusions that radiate outward. Both these leaves have different functions. one of the leaves, the sticky, bug-ensnaring tentacle, is a common evolutionary aspect in carnivorous plants. But the second type of leaf, a sort of snapping tentacle, has no glue and makes jerky movements when touched–which for a long time couldn’t be explained.

An experiment was done to find out the function of this strange leaf, and scientists then realized that it acted as a sort of catapult, flinging the insects directly into the glue tentacles around the plant’s center, where the bug can be digested. 

What interested the scientists even more about this phenomena, is that this catapult system is actually very effective. The insect hardly ever escapes once its been catapulted.   

A carnivorous plant.



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