Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant Facts
- First of all, the Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant ranks as one of the largest carnivorous plants known to exist. As a result of its great size, its bowl actually measures large enough to occasionally trap and digest small rodents.
- Not surprisingly, this remarkable plant bears the name of the famed naturalist Sir David Attenborough. He has been a great enthusiast of the entire genus, throughout his life. His work also continues to inspire others to follow in his footsteps.
- In addition, many botanists list this species as one of the 10 rarest plants in the world. As s direct result of this, the IUCN lists it as Critically Endangered. It also inhabits a range that is both extremely restricted and isolated. This fact serves to further earn the status.
Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant Physical Description
Firstly, the Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant genuinely earns its listing as one of the largest known carnivorous plants. That holds true because the species remains capable of attaining great heights. The plant sometimes attains a height of slightly less than 4.9 ft (1.5 m).
Furthermore, the stem reaches as much as 1.4 in (3.5 cm) in thickness. In addition, the leaves vary in size depending on which part of the plant they develop on. Those on the stem grow the largest, averaging 15.8 in (40 cm) in length, and 6 in (15 cm) in width. Its colors also vary and include green, brown, and purple.
Also, these plants evolved as dioecious and display a moderate degree of sexual dimorphism. The male inflorescences occasionally reaches as much as 31 in (80 cm) in length. Yet those of the smaller female average only 25.5 in (65 cm) long.
However,the pitcher itself remains its best known feature by far. That’s due to the fact that it ranks as one of the largest known to man. In fact, some individual specimens achieve a total volume of as much as 2.1 qt (2 l).
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Phylum: Angiosperms
- Class: Eudicots
- Order: Caryophyllales
- Family: Nepenthaceae
- Genus: Nepenthes
- Species: N. attenboroughii
Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Sadly, the rather incredible Attenborough’s Pitcher Plant evolved with an extremely restricted habitat range. To be more precise, this carnivorous marvel of Nature only lives on the Victoria Massif, in Palawan, in Asia.
It also only inhabits a specific area, even there. It only grows at altitudes of more than 4,757 ft (1,450 m) above sea level. In addition, the species only develops among shrubs of less than 5.9 ft (1.8 m) in height. It primarily grows in regions rocky soil.
While this species has been proven to occasionally feed on rodents, its principal prey consists of large insects. Furthermore, these plants developed a symbiotic relationship with mosquitoes. The larva live in the water that collects in its bowl.