The Carnivorous Plant FAQ Field Trip Report -

Explorations in the Borderlands, 2002

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Wrap up:
By now, I had used up all my film. I did not want to start a new roll, since I had tired of looking through my camera viewfinder. It was time just to sight-see.

Dave and I headed to the last site, a well-known, publicly accessible location called Webb's Mill Bog. I would say without reservation that if you had limited time, and could only visit one New Jersey site, make it Webb's Mill Bog. This place has a great boardwalk so you can tromp all around the bog and never get your feet wet or mess up the Sphagnum. We saw in glorious abundance all the common carnivorous species (Sarracenia purpurea, Drosera intermedia, Drosera rotundifolia, Drosera filiformis, Utricularia cornuta, Utricularia striata, Utricularia gibba, and Utricularia subulata). We also saw "Curly-grass fern" (Schizaea pusilla), a very primitive plant of interest. Particularly noteworthy was the largest Drosera rotundifolia I had ever seen. With its large lamina and long petioles, it was approximately 9-10 cm (3.5-4 inches) in diameter. I was astounded.

A storm was brewing, and I had to get back to my rental car and drive to Virginia, so I told Dave I wouldn't be able to have dinner with him. Alas. Rain started pelting us from the dark clouds, so we had to trot out of the bog.

After I said my goodbyes to Dave, I drove by myself through the tangled roads of the Barrens. As I reflected on the day's events, it dawned on me--all the pieces fit. The proximity to Egg Harbor. His death-goth music. The strange affinity to ticks. His bright red hair. Did the angry storm appear only only after I had refused his dinner suggestions? Could the connection to the Jersey Devil be any more obvious?

During the entire day, Dave never removed his shoes. Cloven hooves would have been a dead give-away.

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Revised: October 2007
©Barry Rice, 2005