Orchids and Carnivorous Plants in Tasmania’s Forests

Down under in Tasmania, it’s spring. The blooms in the island’s forests include orchids and carnivorous plants. Over 200 orchid species are native to Tasmania, many found nowhere else. Bird Orchids, or Chiloglottis, resemble baby birds with mouths open, begging for food. Caladenia and Greenhood orchids also abound. While some orchid varieties provide nectar rewards, others seduce their pollinators. They trick them into believing that they’re finding a mate. The insects help pollinate the orchids, and may be frustrated, but are not harmed. However, carnivorous plants, like Sundews, have a lethal deception. They feature shiny drops which appear to be nectar, but are actually glue. Small bugs are trapped and digested. It’s surely a risky time of year for insects in Tasmania.

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