A fen is a type of wetland that is often confused with bogs. Fens are wetlands with continuous sources of groundwater rich in magnesium and calcium.

 “Femme fatale” is the French phrase for deadly woman; a “fen fatale” suggests a deadly wetland but in this case, she is just a funny character who finds herself in murky situations.

 About Fen

Fen is an avid “alkaline skier,” constantly getting herself into quagmires—floating fens, or the occasional confusing situation, and yet always seems to get to the minerogenous bottom of it. She frequently visits fens, of course, but also seeps her feet into bogs (a.k.a. heaths), swamps, marshes and vernal pools. Her favorite places are coastal estuaries and saltmarshes, but she gets her socks off (to get her feet wet) in wet meadows and forested wetlands, too. Her boyfriend, Wild Timothy, is a calciphile and a “rebound” relationship after things didn’t work out too well with Sterile Sedge.  Wild Timothy likes to take Fen fishing for trout; cold trout streams are associated with calcareous fens because of the cold, pure H20 provided by the springs and seeps. After a long day of fishing, Wild Timothy likes to relax with a bit of grass-of-parnassus, although he never inhales. Fen walks along the stream bank hunting for white lady slippers, and laughs when she comes across a few of her own slippers among the flowers (very funny, Tim! she giggles). When she’s not on a date with Wild Timothy, she hangs out with her best friend, Sage Willow, works at the Blazing Star Cafe. 

 Many of the bogs marked on maps are actually fens. Fens occur in the bases of morainal slopes, sloping deposits of glacial outwash, headwaters of spring runs and small streams, as well as on the shores of alkaline drainage lakes. For a good description of fens and bogs as it applies in Maine, go to: http://maine.gov/dep/blwq/wetlands/peatlands.htm