Macrophotograph of the Cape sundew plant.

Macrophotograph of the Cape sundew plant.

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Credit: DR. JEREMY BURGESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Macrophotograph of an insectivorous plant, the Cape sundew, Drosera capensis, in which a leaf has curled around the body of a victim, a common house fly Musca domestica. The sundew ensares its victims by means of tentacles capped by sticky glands, which simultaneously attract & capture the insect. Subsequent struggle stimulates the tentacles, which slowly entangle the insect. Large insects cause the whole leaf to curl. Enzymes are secreted to digest the insect. This mechanism has evolved to supplement the diet of the sundew, growing in mineral deficient environments such as uplands & bogs. Nitrogen in particular is obtained. Mag: X1.2 (35mm).

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Keywords: botany, carnivorous plant, carnivorous plants, drosera, drosera capensis, insectivorous plant, nature, plant, sundew

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