Sunday, April 28, 2013
Spring Field Trip to Croatan National Forest with Jeannie Kraus(2 - 4 P.M.)
Event Sponsor: South East Coastal Chapter
Come see the Croatan National Forest in early spring with Jeannie Kraus, former education curator of the NC Maritime Museum in Beaufort and author/illustrator of A Guide to Ocean Dune Plants Common to North Carolina and A Guide to Salt Marsh Plants Common to North Carolina.
Habitats seen on the Patsy Pond Trail include longleaf pine forest, isolated wetlands, shrublands and ponds. Millis and Pringle Roads cross floodplain forest, early successional habitat and Millis Road Savanna. To understand the ecology of the area, see Dirk Frankenberg’s The Nature of North Carolina’s Southern Coast: Barrier Islands, Coastal Waters, and Wetlands. It is well worth reading the section, “Beaufort through Bogue Sound”, before the trip.
At Patsy Pond, we should see the rare shrub, Pondspice, Litsea aestivalis. The pitcher plants should be in full bloom in the Millis Rd. savanna. If you are a birder, bring your binoculars! These locations are all on the NC Birding Trail and we may spot the endangered Red-cockaded Woodpeckers.
Meet promptly at 2 PM at Patsy Pond trail parking lot located on HWY 24 midway between Cape Carteret and Morehead City, in the community of Ocean. From there, we will caravan into the forest and end near Hwy 58, just north of Cape Carteret.
From the intersection of US 17 N and NC 24 E, go about 27 miles east on NC 24. The entrance to the Patsy Pond trail is on the left, across the highway from the NC Coastal Federation office (3609 NC 24, Newport).
Heading west on NC 24, the trail head is 1/2 mile west of Croatan High School.
Please dress appropriately and bring water, sunscreen, insect repellent and any snacks you require. There are no restrooms.
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