Largest Meat-Eating shrub / Pitcher Plants
Rat-eating plant discovered in Philippines
A carnivorous pitcher plant that eats rats and insects has been discovered in the Philippines and named after Sir David Attenborough.
Rat-eating plant: The team of botanists, led by British experts Stewart McPherson and Alastair Robinson, found the plant on Mount Victoria in the Philippines.
The plant is among the largest of all pitchers and is believed to be the largest meat-eating shrub, dissolving rats with acid-like enzymes.
The team of botanists, led by British experts Stewart McPherson and Alastair Robinson, found the plant on Mount Victoria in the Philippines.
They were inspired to search for the plant after word that it is existed came from two Christian missionaries who described seeing a large carnivorous pitcher in 2000 after they climbed the mountain.
Mr McPherson, of Poole Dorset, said: "The plant produces spectacular traps which catch not only insects, but also rodents. It is remarkable that it remained undiscovered until the 21st century."
The team, which found the plant in 2007 following a two-month expedition, published details of their discovery in the Botanical Journal of Linnean Society earlier this year following a three-year study of all 120 species of pitcher plant.
They decided to name the plant Nepenthes attenboroughii, after the wildlife broadcaster Sir David.