Saturday afternoon, a group of 30 campus and community Dogwood Alliance volunteers gathered at the Nature Conservancy’s Green Swamp Preserve in Brunswick County for a tour of the amazing forests we’re working to protect. Students, grandparents and children alike came to check out the 15, 907 acres of awesome long leaf pine savanna and all the neat critters and carnivorous plants that live there.
Joe Abbate of Cape Fear River Watch (www.cfrw.us), a long
leaf pines expert and riveting bird enthusiast joined our group to give us the
low down of just how awesome long leaf pine savannas really are. Also with us
was Mark Todd of the North American Sarracenia Conservancy (http://www.nasarracenia.org/). (Sarracenia is the
fancy name for a pitcher plant.) While this isn’t the best time of year to find
them, Mark was able to hunt down a few choice carnivorous plants. He even
pulled some of the dried ones apart so we could see the dead bugs inside-
definitely a highlight for the youngest among us.
After touring the beauty that our forests have to offer, we drove back towards Wilmington and stopped at a pine plantation to get a taste for what industrial logging is really like. There Mark gave us the run down on ditching and draining, herbicides and all the other things that make pine plantations problematic. We checked out some of the pine plots and then went to a recent clearcut. The silence seemed to be the first thing everyone noticed. After some exploring we picked a spot and took this awesome picture- soon to be in a Yum! Brands inbox- as well as some video for our documentary project.
To learn more about the Green Swamp Preserve or how to get there, check out: http://www.nature.org/wherewework/northamerica/states/northcarolina/preserves/art5606.html