Definitions for utricularia

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Princeton's WordNet

  1. Utricularia, genus Utricularia(noun)

    bladderworts: large genus of aquatic carnivorous plants; cosmopolitan in distribution

Webster Dictionary

  1. Utricularia(noun)

    a genus of aquatic flowering plants, in which the submersed leaves bear many little utricles, or ascidia. See Ascidium,

Freebase

  1. Utricularia

    Utricularia, commonly and collectively called the bladderworts, is a genus of carnivorous plants consisting of approximately 233 species. They occur in fresh water and wet soil as terrestrial or aquatic species across every continent except Antarctica. Utricularia are cultivated for their flowers, which are often compared with those of snapdragons and orchids, especially amongst carnivorous plant enthusiasts. All Utricularia are carnivorous and capture small organisms by means of bladder-like traps. Terrestrial species tend to have tiny traps that feed on minute prey such as protozoa and rotifers swimming in water-saturated soil. The traps can range in size from 0.2 mm to 1.2 cm. Aquatic species, such as U. vulgaris, possess bladders that are usually larger and can feed on more substantial prey such as water fleas, nematodes and even fish fry, mosquito larvae and young tadpoles. Despite their small size, the traps are extremely sophisticated. In the active traps of the aquatic species, prey brush against trigger hairs connected to the trapdoor. The bladder, when "set", is under negative pressure in relation to its environment so that when the trapdoor is mechanically triggered, the prey, along with the water surrounding it, is sucked into the bladder. Once the bladder is full of water, the door closes again, the whole process taking only ten to fifteen thousandths of a second.

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