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..........                »»»»»»»»»»»               ..........
-.........              %%           %%             .........-
»-........            =   BLUE FIRE   =             ........-»
=»-.......             %%           %%              .......-»=
%=»-......                »»»»»»»»»»»               ......-»=%
£%=»-.....                                          .....-»=%£
#£%=»-....  THE .BLUE FIRE. IS A CARNIVOROUS PLANT  ....-»=%£#
@#£%=»-...  LIVING MOSTLY AT THE WESTERN ALVAR (BUT ...-»=%£#@
#@#£%=»-..   IT HAS SPREAD TO A FEW OTHER PLACES,   ..-»=%£#@#
##@#£%=»-.          MOSTLY ROCKY COASTS).           .-»=%£#@##
#@#£%=»-..                                          ..-»=%£#@#
@#£%=»-...     THE PLANT IS A DENSE NETWORK OF      ...-»=%£#@
#£%=»-....  GREEN-BROWN TENTACLE-LIKE ROOTS, WHICH  ....-»=%£#
£%=»-.....    IS OFTEN CALLED "RAT'S TAIL" BEFORE   .....-»=%£
%=»-......    BLOOMING. IN LATE JUNE, IT QUICKLY    ......-»=%
=»-.......      SPROUTS FEELERS, TEN TO THIRTY      .......-»=
»-........   CENTIMETERS HIGH, FILLED WITH PURPLE   ........-»
-.........    HAIRS - THIS IS THE BLUE FIRE. THIS   .........-
..........    STAGE LASTS FOR ONE OR TWO WEEKS,     ..........
..........     DEPENDING ON FOOD ACCESS, WATER,     ..........
..........                 CLIMATE.                 ..........
..........                                          ..........
..........  OFTEN IT'S NOT CLEAR HOW FAR THE PLANT  ..........
..........    HAS SPREAD UNLESS ITS IN THE FIRE     ..........
.......... STAGE. SUDDENLY, AS IF OVERNIGHT, WHOLE  ..........
-.........  FIELDS CAN BE TURNED ABLAZE (WITH THE   .........-
»-........  SAME INDIVIDUAL PLANT, AS WELL)! IN THE ........-»
=»-....... BLOOMING PEAK, IT'S NOT UNUSUAL FOR THE  .......-»=
%=»-...... WHOLE ALVAR TO BE CONNECTED NORTH-SOUTH. ......-»=%
£%=»-.....                                          .....-»=%£
#£%=»-....                =%%»»»»»%%=               ....-»=%£#
@#£%=»-...                                          ...-»=%£#@
#@#£%=»-..  FIFTY WEEKS OF THE YEAR, WHILE IN RAT   ..-»=%£#@#
##@#£%=»-. STAGE, THE BLUE FIRE FEEDS ON THE STONE  .-»=%£#@##
#@#£%=»-..  ITSELF VIA A SLOW CHEMICAL ATTRITION.   ..-»=%£#@#
@#£%=»-...  THIS IS ENOUGH TO KEEP THE ROOTS ALIVE, ...-»=%£#@
#£%=»-....   BUT ALL GROWTH AND PROCREATION MUST    ....-»=%£#
£%=»-.....   HAPPEN DURING THE TWO WEEKS IN JUNE.   .....-»=%£
%=»-......                                          ......-»=%
=»-.......     NOW THE PLANT FEEDS ON BIRDS; THE    .......-»=
»-........  SEMISTIFF UPRIGHT FEELERS LOOKS LIKE AN ........-»
-.........    EXTENSION OF THE SEA, AND BIRDS ARE   .........-
.......... TRICKED INTO LANDING OR DIVING INTO IT.  ..........
..........    THEY ARE QUICKLY PARALYZED BY THE     ..........
..........      POISON ON THE PURPLE HAIRS, AND     ..........
..........     DEVOURED OVER A PERIOD OF HOURS.     ..........
..........                                          ..........
..........    PROCREATION CAN HAPPEN SEXUALLY VIA   ..........
..........  SPORES (CRYPTOGAMIA) OR ASEXUALLY WHEN  ..........
-.........      THE ROOTS ARE CUT, DIVIDING AN      .........-
»-........           INDIVIDUAL INTO TWO.           ........-»
=»-.......                                          .......-»=
%=»-......                                          ......-»=%
£%=»-.....                                          .....-»=%£
#£%=»-....                                          ....-»=%£#
@#£%=»-...                                          ...-»=%£#@