The Carnivorous Plant FAQ Field Trip Report -

Florida waterscapes in 2003

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Ha! Found them!
Just after noon, I found a yellow flower poking out of the water. Then another, then another. Soon I had located a nice little semi-aquatic cluster of these plants. They were growing among other emergent plants, and at first I was afraid I might have a different species than yesterday's boardwalk plants. But no, they had the same tiny floats!

Now to study them more closely... They were a distance away from the water's edge, so I had to figure out how to get them. I picked up the second suitable stick I found (the first was partially buried under some fire ant mounds), shooed away a cottonmouth near the water's edge, and after some embarrassing failures I managed to snag some plants and bring them in.

I looked at the floats close up--yep; and the secondary leaf segments--yep; and the floral spurs--yep! This was a fine stand of Utricularia radiata! I was exhilarated. Time to take some photographs!

Ah, but the best was yet to come. As I worked quietly to capture my mind's image of the scene on film, the most darling imaginable baby alligator swam along and started foraging for food among the plants!

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Revised: October 2007
©Barry Rice, 2005