The marshes of Zarglyf are well-known for their treacherous and often impassible terrain. Roads are frequently drowned by swells during the storm season, leaving trade caravans to risk their lives in order to transport merchandise. Most travelers keep to the swamp's outskirts, where roads are in better condition and fewer predators wander.
The far interior of the swamp is simply called the Deep, or the Nagwa by swamplanders. No roads pass within the Deep, as only fools or Deeplanders dare venture into it. Very little solid ground can be found within the Deep, and the water is fetid and poisonous more often than not. Along with the snappers and raptors that are common threats throughout the swamps, the Deep is also home to plants that release poisonous vapors and immense reptiles that rival dragons in size. But for those willing to venture within, there is a plethora of rare and valuable flora and fauna that make their homes in the Deep.
Fauna & Flora
Besides the usual plants and animals found in Zarglyf's swamps, the Deep is home to many rare - and valuable - resources. Alchemists around the world pay heavily for herbs and animal parts, and several critters native to the Deep are valued by nobility as exotic pets.
ghostweed - a creeping plant with small gray flowers that release poisonous vapors into the air; the vapors cause those that inhale them to go into a death-like state that, while not fatal itself, usually results in the victim drowning in the swamp
kivith - a large flesh-eating flower that traps bugs and small animals in its thick petals; the resin that coats its petals acts as a strong, natural glue valued by certain craftsmen
flytrap - a large plant with a mouth-like frond that closes on flies and other bugs before slowly grinding them into juices for sustenance; their stalks produce an oil that paralyzes small animals
bile toad - a bright red toad that secretes a neuro-toxin from pores on its skin
blue-throated skink - a larger lizard roughly the size of a human's forearm that is valued as a pet for the bright blue coloring along their throat and belly
glider - a furry squirrel-like creature with large flaps of skin along their sides that allow them to glide from tree to tree as they hunt for fruits and berries to eat; highly prized as pets
gold-tipped quail - a speckled quail marked by yellow or golden tips on its wings and tail; their eggs are considered a delicacy, and live ones are prized by merchants as possible breeding stock
raptor - a large, bipedal reptile varying in size between hip-height and taller than the average man; raptors live throughout Zarglyf, their size and coloring varying based on local habitat; smaller ones are hunted for meat or captured as hunting companions, while larger ones are captured and bred as mounts for Zarglyf's soldiers
runner - a small, bipedal reptile that usually stays on the outer edge of the Deep; they travel in groups of between five and twenty members, and are a favorite food of the swamp's raptors
zakai - monstrous reptiles that are often the subject of stories told to scare travelers; many don't believe they are real because few who have seen one have lived to speak of it; sometimes taller than the swamps trees, they are terrifying and vicious hunters, preying on any large animal - or human - that crosses their path