Thursday, August 14, 2014

Cedar Bog & Gallagher Fen State Nature Preserves

We spent some time hiking and exploring at two very cool Ohio nature preserves - Cedar Bog and Gallagher Fen, which are two very cool protected wetlands. Most of the original wetlands in Ohio and our homestate of Indiana are gone due to development, agriculture and other reasons so those that are left are priceless! They harbor some rare species mainly because these types of habitats are rare. We didn't see the cute spotted turtle, but we did see some interesting plants and insects and really enjoyed the feel of these wetlands interspersed with woodlands, sedge meadows, prairie fens and cool flowing streams.

Tall Bellflower with a nectaring bee...

Swamp Milkweed with a nectaring Giant Swallowtail. These butterflies lay their eggs on plants in the citrus family (Rutaceae). One of our favorite nature moments of all time occurred at Lindenwood Nature Preserve in Indiana when we hiked by a Prickly Ash and noticed dozens of bird poop mimicing Giant Swallowtail caterpillars feeding. What a defense mechanism!

A mile long boardwalk winds through Cedar Bog allowing visitors to explore.

Who doesn't love blazing star? We planted lots of this plant in our new wildflower beds.

Steve spotted the always captivating Sundew, a carnivorous plant! I sure would not want to be a fly and get stuck on those little balls of goo.

Lovely view of the fen...

The cool wetland waters harbor the spotted turtle, a threatened species in Ohio due to habitat destruction.

We may not have seen the spotted turtle, but we did see a five-lined skink!

Young Green Stinkbugs are so colorful...

Happy hiker Steve...

Here's another plant included in our new wildflower beds - Queen of the Prairie. What an appropriate name for this brilliant bloom!

A nature center welcomes visitors to Cedar Bog.

We just adore all these blooming flowers and all the insects that call them home!

Can you tell?!

Gallagher Fen is awesome! Bluffs with prairie with wetlands in the valley makes for stunning scenery.

A vestige of a homesite? Blackberry lily.

Identification time! The wetland loving Ohio Goldenrod lives here.

We would like to grow Swamp Thistle. The buds are interestingly colored and thistles are such a great source of nectar for insects and seeds for birds.

Nature is really just this cool:

We hope you all are enjoying some outings too!


  1. What a great spot to wander and check out the wild plants...Im wanting to do a wander myself maybe tomorrow before the weather returns to rain! Love your lizard shot!!

  2. That looks like a really special spot. Love all the diversity.

  3. I grew up right near there in Yellow Springs, Ohio.... We loved that place! I need to travel that way and take my hubby on a walk through.... There is another place near there called Glen Helen you should try and wander.... and treat yourself to some homemade ice cream at Youngs Jersey Dairy...

    1. Hey Lea! Yes, we've been to Glen's fantastic! There are so many great places to explore in that area. How fun for you to grow up there! :)


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