Researchers from the Aichi University of Education in Japan have discovered a new species of plant that feeds itself with insects.
The plant was discovered in the Aichi prefecture and was initially mistaken to be plant Drosera Indica, which is found in Asia. However, a genetic analysis confirmed that the plant was indeed a separate species, the international press reports.
The plant is one of the four species of the Bladderworts plant and has purple red flowers. It uses a suction device to catch the insects, from which then slowly extracts the nourishing substances.
“It is a species which has not been recorded in the Isle of Man for more than 15 years it is a remarkable discovery,” The Manx Wildlife Trust’s Wildflowers of Mann Project Manager, Andree Dubbeldam, said. “They capture their prey in small sacs (the bladders), where they are slowly digested and nutrients extracted. Because they are able to provide their own nutrients bladderworts survive entirely without roots”.
It is not yet clear if the plant is a common bladderwort or a greater bladderwort as it does not have flowers to analyze yet, according to Dubbeldman. However, this could be a greater bladderwort species, he said.