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Roridula gorgonias.jpg
Roridula gorgonias
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Roridulaceae
Engl. & Gilg (1924) nom.cons.
Genus: Roridula
L. (1764)

Roridula dentata L.
Roridula gorgonias Planch.

Roridula distribution.svg
Roridula distribution

Roridula (/rɒˈrɪdjʊlə/; from Latin roridus "dewy") is a South African genus of plants restricted to the Cape Provinces.[1] Its distribution is threatened due to the farming of rooibos.[citation needed] While having many of the adaptations of a carnivorous plant, such as the possession of insect-trapping sticky hairs, does not directly digest the animals it traps. Instead, it has a mutualistic relationship with Pameridea roridulae, a species of capsid bug, which lives on the plant and feeds on the trapped insects. The plant obtains nutrients from the droppings of this symbiotic insect. Whether this plant is regarded as carnivorous or protocarnivorous is essentially a matter of semantics. The genus contains just two species, Roridula gorgonias and Roridula dentata, and is the only genus in the family Roridulaceae.

A pair of fossilised leaves from Eocene Baltic amber have been attributed to the Roridulaceae. The amber is from sediments dated to 35–47 million years ago. Definite fossils of carnivorous plant traps have never previously been found. Their location in the Baltic suggests that the genus Roridula, although now restricted to South Africa, was much more widespread in the past.[2]

Misassigned taxa[edit]


  1. ^ Andrew Millington; Mark Blumler; Udo Schickhoff (2011-09-22). The SAGE Handbook of Biogeography. SAGE Publications. pp. 143–. ISBN 978-1-4462-5445-5. Retrieved 2013-08-07. The Cape Floristic Region in South Africa is comparatively rich in endemic flowering-plant families. Five families of angiosperms (Penaeaceae, Roridulaceae, Geissolomataceae, Grubbiaceae, and Lanariaceae) are endemic to that region ... 
  2. ^ Sadowski, E.M., LJ. Seyfullah, F. Sadowski, A. Fleischmann, H. Behling & A.R. Schmidt (2014). "Carnivorous leaves from Baltic amber." PNAS, published online on 1 December 2014. doi:10.1073/pnas.1414777111
  • Anderson, B (2005). "Adaptations to foliar absorption of faeces: a pathway in plant carnivory". Annals of Botany. 95 (5): 757–761. doi:10.1093/aob/mci082. 
  • Hewitt-Cooper, N (2012). "The Roridulaceae". Carnivorous Plant Newsletter. 41 (4): 146–150. 

External links[edit]