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  • Georgia's Own Swamp Thing

    Don Berryhill, science specialist with the Okefenokee Regional Education Service Agency, guides students in a canoe through the Okefenokee Swamp and points out many unique species in this specialized ecosystem. Bill Cribbs, a descendant of a farmer who came to the Okefenokee in the late 1800s, and park ranger Pete Griffin describe life in the swamp when people worked at the Hebard Lumber Company. Like any mysterious place, legends abound, Cribbs and Griffin have a few stories to tell.

    Support Materials

    Discuss

    1. Why is it important to protect the Okefenokee Swamp?

    2. Create a food chain of animals and plants that live in the Okefenokee Swamp.

    3. Explain why the Okefenokee Swamp was a good place for settlers to live. 

    Expansion

    1. View a map to see the relative size of the Okefenokee Swamp and discuss the following: the physical characteristics of the swamp; how you think people used it; reasons why the federal government would purchase the property; and the economic value of the swamp. You can learn more about the Okefenokee Swamp by exploring GPB's Physical Features of Georgia virtual field trip.

    Vocabulary

    ivory-billed woodpecker: A huge black and white bird (males had bright red crests) that lived in the Okefenokee as late as the first part of the 20th century
    indigenous: native to; animals indigenous to the Okefenokee Swamp are animals that live in the swamp
    merchantable: worth money; sellable
    reconnaissance: relating to general surveying; sampling a region or an area
    Seminole: Indian tribe that once inhabited the Okefenokee. They are often remembered as the group Andrew Jackson fought in Florida
    turpentining: process of extracting turpentine (a type of liquid) from trees 

    For Teachers

    Discussion Guide

    ivory-billed woodpecker: A huge black and white bird (males had bright red crests) that lived in the Okefenokee as late as the first part of the 20th century
    indigenous: native to; animals indigenous to the Okefenokee Swamp are animals that live in the swamp
    merchantable: worth money; sellable
    reconnaissance: relating to general surveying; sampling a region or an area
    Seminole: Indian tribe that once inhabited the Okefenokee. They are often remembered as the group Andrew Jackson fought in Florida
    turpentining: process of extracting turpentine (a type of liquid) from trees 

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    External Resources