Behold, the giant pitcher plant of the central Philippines, a flesh-devouring hunk ‘o chlorophyll that would make Poison Ivy sigh with romantic bliss as she imagines it consuming her arch-enemy, Batman!
Sorry Ivy, the plant’s simply not big enough to eat the dark knight. But it might be able to eat bats; it does, after all, eat rats. (Perhaps something we could all use in our basement?)
This new species was discovered by two Christian missionaries who got lost climbing Mount Victoria. Three pitcher plant experts then set off on a two month journey to identify the new addition to Earth’s Little House of Horrors. During the expedition, they also came across new varieties of pink ferns and blue mushrooms that have yet to be identified.
Then they came upon the giant pitcher plant—several giant pitcher plants, actually—and immediately realized it was a new species.
“It was immediately apparent that the plant we had found was not a known species,” says Stewart McPhrson of Red Fern Natural History Productions, one of the three experts on the expedition.
Pitcher plants create traps with their tub-like structure. Their prey falls in and is immediately trapped for breakfast.
Another pitcher plant that hadn’t been seen in the wild, Nepenthes deaniana, was also identified during the trip.