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Sun May 30, 2021, 10:51 PM

How a Venus flytrap knows to snap shut (earthsky.org)

Posted by
Shireen Gonzaga
May 30, 2021

Few plants capture our imagination like the otherworldly Venus flytrap. Its snap-trap leaves clamp down on small insects in as fast as 1/10 of a second. That’s unexpected behavior among the staid plants we’re familiar with! Even now, scientists continue to learn new things about these enigmatic plants, like, for instance, how they know when to snap shut.

How does a Venus flytrap close up?

A Venus flytrap leaf has two lobes connected at a hinge on its stalk. Each lobe secretes nectar to attract insects. And each lobe is lined with cilia hairs that will later seem like prison bars to some unfortunate prey.

The lobes themselves are curved out and stretched open, like a clam. Each inner lobe has three sensory hairs. When something bumps against those hairs – whether it’s a raindrop, debris in the wind, or a visiting insect – that mechanical stimulus is converted into electrical signals in cells at the base of the hair. Those electrical signals then spread across the leaf.

An insect crawling on a lobe will most likely bump against the sensory hairs several times. But all it takes are two bumps within 30 seconds of each other for the lobes to clamp shut, imprisoning the prey.

So, how does the Venus flytrap keep track of the time interval between these bumps? Scientists had long suspected that calcium ions were somehow involved.

This video clip shows green fluorescence lighting up the Venus flytrap leaf when a sensor hair on its lobe is stimulated by a needle. Video via National Institute for Basic Biology.

more: https://earthsky.org/Earth/Venus-Flytrap/?utm_source=EarthSky+News

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Reply How a Venus flytrap knows to snap shut (earthsky.org) (Original post)
eppur_se_muova May 30 OP
oasis May 30 #1
I_UndergroundPanther May 31 #2
keithbvadu2 May 31 #3

Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun May 30, 2021, 11:45 PM

1. Wow. I gotta show that to my grandson.


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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Mon May 31, 2021, 12:33 AM

2. When I was in middle school

I had a huge Venus flytrap I named Medusa.

I would feed her bits of hamburger with a tooth pick.

My father killed her

One day she looked a little bit yellow like she needed some light . So I sat her in the sun on the middle the kitchen table in february. She was away from the window so I thought she'd be fine.

The house was warm. I didn't think anything would happen to her.

While I was at school my asshole drunk father opened the kitchen window,he left it open and the house was cold as shit. He had gone out somewhere and the sudden cold shock it killed all the traps. They turned black and fell off. She never recovered.

But Medusa was beautiful. She was cool. It was fun having her. Never had bugs flying in the house.

Good video .

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Mon May 31, 2021, 01:46 AM

3. Not always a success

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