Carnivorous Plants Story
Picture book for a young audience /
Copyright (c) 2013-2017 by Makoto Honda.
All Rights Reserved.
The simplest trap is a pitfall. The leaf has become a hollow tube, or a pitcher,
which usually contains some fluids at the bottom. An insect is attracted to the
pitcher because of its brilliant colors and sweet nectar. The edge of the
pitcher opening is very slippery and often insects fall into the depth of the
pitcher during the feeding. Once inside, it is almost impossible for the victim
to climb out because of the down-pointing hairs growing on the inner surface of
the pitcher tube. Thirty or so species of pitcher plants in North and South
America, some 100 species of tropical pitcher plants mainly from the southeast
Asia, and one species of Australian pitcher plant all use the pitfall trap to
acquire animal prey.
Australian pitcher plant Cephalotus.
A pitcher of
the Western Australian pitcher plant Cephalotus. Ants are considered to
be the main diet of this plant. The side wall is cut off (right) to reveal the
interior of the pitcher. Note a heavy ridge on the inner wall to prevent the
trapped prey from scaling.
development sequence of the Western Australian pitcher plant, Cephalotus
Australian pitcher plant, Cephalotus.
growth of tropical pitcher plants, Nepenthes.
characteristic shape of the pitchers.
pitchers of tropical pitcher plants, Nepenthes.
congregate around the pitcher peristome (opening) to sip sweet nectar. Note that
the surface of the peristome is made of hard, ring-shaped ridges, making it very
slippery for venturing insects.
to watch your step!"
pitchers of tropical pitcher plants.
An army of
small ants exploring nectar offerings of the pitcher.
Flowers of a
tropical pitcher plant. This is a male tree producing a male flower.
flower of a tropical pitcher plant. Yellow pollen covers the anther of the
flower. Tropical pitcher plant flowers are considered to be wind-pollinated.
pitcher plant - pitcher production sequence: The hairy tip of the long tendril
gradually swells and forms a pitcher. Note that the lid of the pitcher is closed
until the pitcher is fully matured. The pitcher contains a sterile liquid.
pitcher forming at the end of the long tendril. The lid is fully open, and the
pitcher contains a small amount of liquid at the bottom.
PITFALL TRAPS FLYPAPER
TRAPS SNAP TRAPS
SUCTION TRAPS VENUS
PITCHER PLANTS COBRA
Plants Story - Copyrighted Material
Copyright (c) 2013 by Makoto Honda. All Rights Reserved.
a young audience, click
"Eaten Alive by Carnivorous Plants" by Kathleen J. Honda & Makoto Honda