Tropical pitcher plants are the only carnivorous plants which can grow to large sizes large enough to swallow huge insects to large rodents. There are over 150 different species of tropical pitcher plants and every one shows mother nature’s dark side of revenge against small mammals and mammals. The largest tropical pitcher plant current is “Nepenthes Rajah”.
Even though these plants are beautiful and produce some of the most amazing looking flowers which are entirely benign, the fact that the flower was made because of all of the nutrients it captured from the prey it devoured is frightening. To grow among those king carnivore plants in your backyard method to establish a death trap for any tiny critters nearby. In Lakeland Florida, the Nepenthes Miranda species is well known for capturing one particular prey much too frequently than any fleas and insect. Although this prey can possibly escape the majority of the time, it’s been seen on YouTube, photography and books this prey can in fact drown and become plant dinner when it drops into a big trap which occurs far too frequently in Lakeland Florida.
Anole lizards appear to play a large part in any Nepenthes diet in Lakeland Florida. These lizards are everywhere and have been the main path to a meal plan oblivious. It is really sad to see that these anole lizards became a part of a plants supply of protein; they don’t appear to get a rest whatsoever. Not only do cats feast upon them, birds, large insects, Fish and other reptiles such as Frogs & Toads will gobble these lizards up and today we’re adding plants because their enemies today?!
So how can they get caught? It’s extremely straightforward and somewhat different than the way the insects become captured. Let us first clarify the difference. Insects fall prey to the Nepenthes pitcher plants for two major reasons; due to the plant’s colour and due to the plant’s nectar. Nepenthes pitcher plants produce colorful leaves and traps that catch the attention of hungry bugs & insects passing by. The leaves resemble yummy fruits and the nectar that the plant releases around the traps lip seals the deal and tips that the insects into believing it’s a free meal with no price tag. Almost like a person drinking beer or vodka, drink too much and it is over. The lip of the traps are also slippery, designed so prey could fall inward to the trap when they’ve become groggy and can no longer hold themselves on the slippery surface.
The capture process is comparable to anole lizards; The lizards are drawn to the smell of the delicious nectar and start licking it off the lip but that doesn’t seal the deal as quickly as it does with insects. In the state of Florida, it can be quite hot during the summer months and it isn’t always simple for lizards to locate drinking water. They become tempted to push their luck by scaling in the pitchers and make their way to the digestive juices to drink; after drinking from a pool of drowned and digested insects is far better than not drinking in any way. Some lizards hide interior pitcher plants from other predators or find insects still residing inside a pitcher trap and try to catch and consume it. The issue about this is that the lizard will more and probably fall in the liquid and if he’s lucky, he can swim and climb his way out but when he can’t escape and becomes exhausted in the unsuccessful attempts of escape, then he’ll drown and become dinner. This happens far too frequently for pitcher plant growers in Florida. Some pitchers can catch more lizards than they could digest, leading to the trap rotting away.
Insect meals can take about 3 weeks to digest completely while anole lizards can take up to 2-3 months prior to leaving only lizard bones at the base of a pitcher plant snare. A pitcher plant that eats nothing but reptiles can grow into a really large plant and whether the plant is receiving the humidity, warmth & lighting it requires, it can develop some rather large traps (depending on the species).