Poachers Threaten Rare Wild-growing Venus Flytrap

By Salon Staff

Published January 25, 2012 7:27PM (EST)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Venus flytrap's struggle for survival in the wild along coast of the Carolinas faces an added threat from poachers looking to make a buck by uprooting and selling them.

North Carolina wildlife enforcement officer Matt Criscoe says three people were arrested this week and charged with uprooting an endangered species without permission, a misdemeanor. Criscoe says they took about 200 plants, which they expected to sell for about 10 cents apiece.

A spokeswoman for the nonprofit group The Nature Conservancy says that roadside stands sell the plants for about $15 each.

The species grows wild only in the sandy soils within about 100 miles of the coast of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Salon Staff

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