Return To Bogs in 2018?

Open Pond at Allenberg Bog, photographed by Jeff Zablow in New York

Bogs? My first visit was to an acid bog near Ligonier, Pennsylvania about 23 years ago. Unforgettable, it was. Pitcher plants, sundew, while all the time enduring that unnerving feeling that you are about to sink down, never to be seen again, and find near eternal rest inches from another body, entombed in acidic sphagnum moss, some 2,000 years long gone. Louise Davies led that Wetland Study Group. A day impressed solidly in my mind.

This was Allenberg Bog in western New York State, 2016. It too is an acid bog, formed of unknown centuries of the deposition of sphagnum moss. So acidy, that species that cannot endure acid pH’s stay away, and the bog goes on, unchanged. This is where I met a flight of Bog Coppers. They were tiny, mostly cooperative, but near the end of their short flight period, and their wings had dulled as the days went on.

Planning now, I am, to visit Allenberg Bog once again, a bit earlier than I did in 2016. I wish to remeet those Bog Coppers, and see them in their full radiance. Rare fritillaries might also be seen, and even rarer bog orchids. Yummy.

Also in the planning is a trip with Angela and friends to Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, to see, among others, northern bog butterflies and botany. Jeffrey Glassberg’s Swift Guide shook out more than 20 butterflies that I might see for the first time on Bruce.

I’ve made new friends, and am again enlisting Dave’s friends to help me locate Atlantic White Cedar bogs. They just might introduce me to Hessel’s Hairstreak, a rare Southern cedar hairstreak, and one of extraordinary beauty.

Acid bogs beckon, and I promise, I will be cautious, even if I locate those Atlantic White Cedar bogs, where for sure I will be alone. Promise.