Carnivorous plant found in Wirth Lake

Bladderwort - Photo courtesy of Ann Journey, WHEP MuckStars
Photo courtesy of Ann Journey/Wetland Health Evaluation Program

Park Board staffers made a new discovery in Wirth Lake last month.

In July, researchers found an undercover carnivorous plant, Utricularia, more commonly known as bladderwort. It’s the first aquatic carnivorous species to be found in Minneapolis, said Rachael Crabb, water resources supervisor for the Park Board. The plant has small sacs that can capture insect larvae and even mosquitos, she said. The plant, which is native across North America, appears to be well established in Wirth Lake.

“This was a surprise,” she said.