Nepenthes are carnivorous plants that capture and digest insects within a pitcher that is filled with liquid. Indonesia is one of the countries with the greatest diversity of Nepenthes in the world. Amongst the 139 species that have been recorded to date, 68 species inhabit Indonesia's various islands: 34 species in Sumatra, 22 in Kalimantan, 3 in Java, 11 in Sulawesi, 3 in Maluku, and 11 in Papua.

A species living on borrowed time

Due to their popularity as ornamental plants, many species have been taken from their natural environment to be sold and are now endangered. Cultivation and maintenance of these plants are complex, and the demand currently exceeds the supply that comes from ex-situ cultivation. Species like Nepenthes clipeata and Nepenthes adrianii are now seriously threatened. The survival of Nepenthes plants is further threatened by forest fires as well as gold and coal mining.

Conservation actions

The botanical division of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences and Chester Zoo are working in collaboration with Beauval Nature to create a centre for the cultivation and conservation of Nepenthes plants. It will be called “The Indonesian Nepenthes Conservation Centre” and its mission will be to preserve Nepenthes plants through cultivation and propagation, research, training, education, scientific tourism, and in-situ conservation of Nepenthes plants.
The construction of a 120 m² greenhouse and laboratory for the cultivation of endangered Nepenthes species is essential to achieve these objectives.

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