It's no secret to anyone who knows me or who reads make-a-(green)plan, I plan on having a green roof. Well, today I read in Treehugger about a plant I want for my green roof. It eats rats! Discovered in the Phillipines and named after David Attenborough. Really, this isn't an Onion spoof.
The BBC describes the newly discovered species as a new kind of pitcher plant. And this one is evidently "among the largest of all pitchers and is so big that it can catch rats as well as insects in its leafy trap." Which makes it a pretty mean carnivorous plant--it catches insects, rodents, and other small animals in its tubes as they tumble down into them. The plant then closes its tube, trapping the prey inside.

I live in a coastal community and we have roof rats. Thanks to some hard working cats I haven't seen any rats - except a dead one left as a 'gift' by his cat recently. But, I am okay with the idea of feeding the plant via any and all rodents.

The down side on my roof would be that killing little birds and insects would be the unintended consequence. And there are millions of possible unintended consequences to the ecosystem that I (or trained scientists) can't even imagine. Of course there is no word in the Treehugger post about when or if the Nepenthes attenboroughii might be available to the US market, so my worries are moot. It does seem like something from a fantasy novel. Funny, I am so opposed to war, bloodshed, violence and killing. But, when it comes to my primal fear - rats - I get a bit crazy. Gotta' work on that.

Update: Not an hour after writing this I looked out my window to see out in the drive, the neighbor's cat sitting proudly over a small dead rat. He then tossed the carcass in the air and did cat attack dance moves. I pulled the curtain. *shudder*


Beany said...

This is just the neatest thing. I do hope it is available...although I do wonder how it will fare in a coastal desert climate.

katecontinued said...

I just love the great, fantastical look of it. Dr. Seuss would love this.