14 Amazing Facts You Didn’t Know About Venus Flytraps

A Venus' flytrap can actually eat small prey—insects. It traps tiny insects using hairlike projections on its leaf, called trigger hairs. The plant then closes and the insects are digested by the digestive process of cell sap leak.
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Do you know the meaning of the word “Venus”? It means beautiful. This name is appropriate because Venus Flytraps are one of the most beautiful plants in existence! There are more than 200 types of flytraps, but only three species that are native to North America – Dionaea muscipula, Dionaea vernalis, and Dionaea ampullaria.

What are some of the most amazing facts about the venus flytrap? They can grow up to 24 inches tall and have leaves that look like a little octopus or starfish with “teeth” on them. These teeth lure insects into its mouth-like trap, where they get digested by enzymes and then absorbed as nutrients for the plant. Venus Flytraps are the only plants on earth to have a stomach and they can eat animals up to three times their size.

The flytrap stands out when it comes to its defense mechanism. This article takes a look at 10 of the most interesting facts about Venus Flytraps:

1.     Prey is Lured in With Nectar And Bright Colors

The venus flytrap  has a trap that closes quickly when triggered by prey. This plant can close its traps in half a second and the leaf will snap shut when an insect or spider crawls along its trigger hairs.

 A sweet secretion covers the leaves of this plant which lures in prey and attracts them to the flytrap. Insects are attracted to the nectar and color of the flytrap’s leaves, which makes them easy targets for their next meal.

2.     Scientists Have Created Robot Flytraps!

Did you know that scientists are working on creating robots that mimic how a flower is pollinated? They use this technology to create robots that can pollinate other plants. It sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, but it is actually happening right now.

The scientists took the principles of how a Venus flytrap works and applied it to the robot. The robot can sense when an insect is near, just like the plant does, and then it traps and eats the bug.

3.     It Takes Longer Than A Week For Larger Insects To Digest.

Insects are small enough when they get trapped inside the trap and they do not take long to digest because they are small and easy to eat for this plant.

It takes longer than a week for larger insects to digest. It can take up to two weeks for large bugs such as crickets or moths, which is why it is important not to feed your flytrap any bug that you would like back alive!

4.     Hamburgers Cause Flytraps to Rot

This plant is unique because it can go weeks without eating any food, but if you feed your plants hamburgers or other types of meat they will not be healthy and may even die.

A dying venus flytrap.
If you feed your plants hamburgers or other types of meat they will not be healthy

The digestive enzymes produced during the process of digesting an animal cannot handle fatty foods like meats so this will cause the plant to rot. This is why it is important not to feed your venus flytrap anything that you would like back alive – or else they will end up dying.

5.     It Evolved From an Early Sundew Relative

This plant may look similar to a sundew, but it is actually a relative of the early sundew. The venus flytrap evolved from the early sundew and it shares some similarities with this plant. This includes the trapping process and how they both consume insects for food.

6.     Venus Flytraps Also Glow Blue

This plant has a unique defense mechanism that not many plants have – it can glow! When under stress, such as if an insect bites the leaves of the plant when trying to digest them. This will cause venus flytraps to emit a blue light.

7.     Traps Even Catch The Occasional Frog

This plant has adapted over time and learned how to catch more than just insects. The Occasional Frog is the smallest frog in North America and they can be found near Venus flytraps.

These plants can eat up to three frogs at a time and it is not uncommon for them to catch one. 

8.     The Most Common Meal For Venus Flytraps is Not Flies

Venus Flytrap’s are Carnivorous Plants that trap and consume insects, spiders, and other small animals for food. The most common meals for these plants are bugs such as flies, but they can also catch and eat frogs, lizards and even small rodents.

Venus Flytrap with fly.
Venus Flytrap’s are Carnivorous Plants that trap and consume insects and other small animals for food.

9.     It Is The Official “State Carnivorous Plant” Of North Carolina

The venus flytrap is the official carnivorous plant of North Carolina! It has been designated as an important part of our state’s natural heritage. In fact, it is illegal to collect wild flytraps in the North Carolina because of how endangered they have become.

10.Venus Flytraps Produce Flowers

Since venus flytrap’s catch and eat animals for food, this plant has adapted over time so that it can reproduce without attracting prey. The flower looks similar to a snapdragon or other flowering plants that attract insects for pollination.

A Venus Flytrap white flower.
The flower looks similar to a snapdragon or other flowering plants that attract insects for pollination.

11.Venus Flytrap Do Not Consume Bug Pollinators

One of the most interesting facts about venus flytraps is that it uses a smart mechanism to avoid eating its pollinators. It does this by closing its trap when it detects that the insect is landing for pollination. This way, it can continue to get food without harming the insects that help it reproduce.

12.Venus Flytraps Are an Endangered Species

Venus flytraps are an endangered species and it is estimated that around 33,000 flytraps are lost each year due to urban development. This means that it takes the plant an average of three years to produce enough seeds for one new adult flytrap.

Over the years, they have become less common because of how people have been taking them from the wild. As a result, conservationists have made it illegal to take any of these plants from the wild.

 

13.Tap Water Is Poison for Venus Flytraps

Venus flytraps consume insects for food, and like all living things, they need water to survive. However, the water that comes out of our taps is not good for these little wonder plant.

The chlorine and fluoride that are in tap water can kill venus flytraps. As such, it is important to use distilled water for these plants.

14.Fertilizers Weaken Venus Flytraps

Since most succulent fertilizers contain high levels of nitrogen, this will actually harm venus flytraps because the plant requires low amounts of this element in order to survive. As such, you should avoid using any fertilizer that contains excess nitrogen.

Can Flytraps Be Grown At Home?

Yes, even if you do not live in North Carolina, it is possible to grow venus flytraps at home. They can be kept as potted plants and they need soil that contains plenty of peat moss or sphagnum moss.

Venus Flytrap in a Whale pot.
It is possible to grow venus flytraps at home.

How big do Venus Fly Traps get?

The size a venus flytrap will get depends on how much food it has access to. Normally, they will reach a size of around six inches in width but if they are well fed, they can grow up to 12 inches wide.

Do Venus flytraps need sunlight?

Venus fly traps do need sunlight in order to photosynthesize and produce energy. However, they are very sensitive to direct sunlight. As such, it is recommended that you place these plants in an area where there is plenty of indirect light each day.

How do flytraps reproduce?

Each venus flytrap produces small white flowers during the spring and summer months. These flowers then produce seed pods that contain up to 400 seeds. The seeds will germinate once they are exposed to wet conditions for a period of two weeks.

Do Venus fly traps need soil?

Venus fly traps do not need soil to live but they do need a pot with good drainage so that they do not get waterlogged. You can use a soil-less planting mix for these plants since it will contain the peat moss and sphagnum that venus fly traps need to survive.

Can Venus Fly Traps eat humans?

Venus fly traps are carnivorous, but they cannot consume humans because of how large we are. They can only eat insects, frogs and other small prey that they find in their natural habitat.

What do Venus Fly Traps smell like?

The traps of the venus flytrap produce a sweet, fruity smell that is very attractive to insects. This scent is caused by the same chemicals that are found in bananas and strawberries. 

How big do Venus Fly Traps get?

The size a venus flytrap will get depends on how much food it has access to. Normally, they will reach a size of around six inches in width but if they are well fed, they can grow up to 12 inches wide.

How long does the Venus Flytrap wait before eating its prey?

A venus flytrap eating its prey.
It can take up to ten days for the plant to fully digest an insect.

The venus flytrap has a very slow reaction to its prey, and it can take up to ten days for the plant to fully digest an insect.

Conclusion

A venus flytrap is, no doubt, a wonder of nature. While they are not extremely common, it is possible to have them as pets or in your garden if you live in the right climate zone.

As a result, understanding how these plants work and what kind of environment they need can help keep them healthy for years to come. By avoiding things that will kill the plant, such as tap water and fertilizers, you can ensure that your Venus flytrap will thrive. Remember, these plants are carnivorous and they require a specific environment in order to survive. As such, you should do quite a bit of research before adding one as a potted plant or as part of your garden.

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