|Home - Checklist of the Plants from the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge|
Dr. John Van Dyk was born and grew up
in the Netherlands. His early interest in plants, birds, reptiles and
butterflies suggested a career in biology. Inability to pass chemistry —
so he claims — led him to abandon formal studies in science and turn to
philosophy, history, classical languages and educational theory instead.
Upon his retirement he moved to Southern Illinois. In 2011, as a
volunteer amateur botanist, he began his survey of the flora of Crab
Orchard NWR, bringing the total number of species to nearly 1000.
Dr. Daniel Nickrent officially retired from the Plant Biology Department at Southern Illinois University Carbondale in 2014, but he is still actively engaged in many botanical projects. For example, his long-term interest in the taxonomy of plants, combined with a love of botanical photography, resulted in the website PhytoImages. Photos of a large number of the species found in southern Illinois are present on that site. For this reason, it seemed natural to use these photos, along with the checklist of plants prepared by John Van Dyk, to construct a series of web pages highlighting the flora of Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge. As far as we know, this is the only online checklist of its type for the southern Illinois region. You can visit Daniel Nickrent's professional web page HERE.