About six years ago, Erik, Michael and I received an offer we couldn't refuse. Floyd Williams, a park naturalist with North Carolina State Parks, asked if we would like to take a canoe trip out into the swamp of Merchant's Millpond - a cypress-wooded backwater in Eastern North Carolina. I had been working with Floyd for a number of months identifying beetles from the park and he wanted to show us an area we couldn't get to by hiking.
We found a number of Donacia beetles on the pond lilies. We also saw several water moccasins swimming across the water. This was a new experience for me. I knew this particular species was fond of water but I had only seen snakes before on dry land. Watching its movement on water was at first fascinating and then a little disconcerting - especially when one swam right past our canoe. Floyd picked up the creature with his paddle for a closer look as if this was the natural thing to do.