Ecological Research

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 487–494 | Cite as

Pollinator trapping in selfing carnivorous plants, Drosera makinoi and D. toyoakensis (Droseraceae)

  • Kazuki TagawaEmail author
  • Mikio Watanabe
  • Tetsukazu Yahara
Original Article


Carnivorous plants use insects not only as prey, but also as pollinators. Whereas outcrossing carnivorous plants are known to avoid trapping pollinators, selfing carnivorous plants may capture the pollinators as prey. Here, we provide evidence that two selfing carnivorous plant species with short flower-trap separation, Drosera makinoi (white-colored flowers) and D. toyoakensis (pink-colored flowers), caught some major pollinator species belonging to Diptera and Hymenoptera: four out of five species in D. makinoi and one out of six species in D. toyoakensis. We also tested the function of flowers to attract pollinator or prey insects by experimentally removing Drosera flowers. Flower removal did not significantly affect the number of trapped insects. On the other hand, the removal of flowers of co-flowering neighbor plants, Eriocaulon decemflorum for D. makinoi and Lysimachia fortunei for D. toyoakensis, significantly decreased the number of trapped insects. This finding suggests an exploitative relationship between Drosera spp. and co-flowering species.


Carnivorous plants Droseraceae Pollinator Self-pollination Sundew 



We thank Ms. Sora Morimoto in Aichi University of Education and Mr. Masumi Owada for supporting the field survey. Suggestions and comments given by members of the ecological science laboratory in Kyushu University and the biology laboratory in Aichi University of Education were greatly helpful in analyzing data and writing this article. We also thank Dr. Firouzeh Javadi for correcting the English in this article. We are grateful to the Board of Education in Toyoake city for allowing us to have a survey in the protected area.


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Copyright information

© The Ecological Society of Japan 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Systems Life SciencesKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan
  2. 2.Department of BiologyAichi University of EducationAichiJapan
  3. 3.Department of Biology, Faculty of SciencesKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan

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