Field Trips

Field Trip Institute Woods

Field Trips to local birding “Hot Spots” and beyond

Experienced birders from WCAS lead regular birding field trip to some of the region’s top birding hotspots in Central New Jersey, the Delaware Water Gap, Delaware Bay, the New Jersey shore, and eastern Pennsylvania. Field trips are free, open to the public, and most require no advance registration. Participants of all experience levels are welcome. If there are field trips you would like to see added to WCAS field trip offerings, please feel free to contact us.

For more field trip information, contact our Field Trip Chair, Brad Merritt, 609-921-8964. If the trip is co-sponsored, please note the registration request in the trip description. In case of inclement weather, please check this website or contact Brad for field trip cancellation updates by 10:00 p.m. the night before.

Check our Event Calendar below for details and contact information

  • Round Valley Reservoir: A field trip on Saturday, February 2, at 8:30 AM, led by Mark Witmer and Brad Merritt. This reservoir in northern Hunterdon County covers over 4,000 acres, is more than 180 feet deep, and is a popular recreational site year-round. Winter is a good time to search for bald eagles, various waterfowl, and gulls. Depending on weather conditions, we will combine this with a tour of the adjacent Cushetunk Mountain Nature Preserve or nearby Spruce Run Recreation Area. For further information, or notice of trip cancellation due to weather, call Mark Witmer at 609-730-0826.
  • Assunpink Wildlife Management Area: A field trip on Saturday, March 9, at 8:30 AM, led by John Maret and Andrew Bobe. We will seek wintering waterfowl, raptors and land birds. Other bird sightings may include a snipe, rusty blackbird, a variety of ducks and sparrows, and early arrivals. This is also the time to start looking for migrating waterfowl and other northern-bound birds in this productive local wildlife management area. Directions: East on I-195 to exit 11, Imlaystown. North on Imlaystown Road 2.6 miles to parking area at Lake Assunpink. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.

  • Washington Crossing State Park: A field walk on Sunday, March 17, at 1:30 PM led by Wayne Henderek and Franta Broulik. We will walk trails looking for early spring migrants and resident birds in wooded areas and adjacent fields. Directions: Located off Washington Crossing–Pennington Road in Titusville, enter the park and follow signs to the Nature Center. Park at the Nature Center parking lot. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.

  • Mercer Meadows Pole Farm: A field trip on Saturday, March 30, at 8:00 AM led by Sharyn Magee. Join us for a fascinating walk around the Pole Farm of Mercer Meadows. We will be on alert for raptors, woodpeckers, migration fly-overs, early migrating songbirds and have hopes of spotting a bald eagle. Directions to Mercer Meadows: Take Keefe Rd to Cold Soil Rd. At the intersection, the parking lot entrance is on left. For more information, call Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.

  • Peace Valley Prowl, PA: A field trip on Sunday, April 7, at 9:00 AM, led by Franta Broulik and Margery Rutbell. We’ll walk the trails in this Bucks County park looking for waterfowl, raptors, and early migrating warblers. Directions: Route 202 South toward Doylestown. Right onto route 313, proceed west for 4 miles. Left on New Galena Road, then first left onto Chapman Road. Go to the parking lot across from Nature Center. For more information, call Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.

    Mount Rose Preserve A field trip on Sunday, April 20, at 7:00 AM, led by Sharyn Magee and Beth Craighead. Mount Rose Preserve consists of 387 acres of meadows, shrub land, and forest. On this walk we will be looking for a variety of early spring migrants. With the diversity of habitat, this is a naturalist’s treat. Directions: Meet in the preserve parking lot located off Carter Road. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964. Co-sponsor with Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space

We are looking for additional team leaders—naturalists who can head out into the field and lead a small group of members and friends around your favorite natural location(s). We’ll help coordinate your team and support donation collection. If you would like to volunteer or lead a team, please email Juanita Hummel or Brad Merritt at contact.wcas@gmail.com.

Click on calendar entries below for field trip locations. Clicking on the field trip you wish to join will bring open up the trip’s details including a Google Map and GPS coordinates. You may also visit our birding “Hot Spots” page for a map of local hot spots.

 

 

 

Photos © Tony Singleton

Above & immediately below: WCAS trip to Sandy Hook Saturday, November 10. Photos © Tony Singleton (missing from picture).

Photos © Tony Singleton
Field trip leader Brad Merritt (middle) © Tyler Christensen
Geese on ice © Tyler Christensen
Birding Baldpate Summit © Diana Hayes

Check our event calendar below for individual program details. If there are field trips you would like to see added to WCAS field trip offerings, please feel free to contact us. All photos except where noted above © Tyler Christensen except lower right © Diana Hayes.

More outings in 2019

Sun., April 21 | Pryde’s Point Trail – Axelauken Creek

 Sat., April 27 | Abbott Marshlands

Sun., April 28 | Fireman’s Eddy (D&R Canal State Park)

 

 

Sort Calendar by “FIELD TRIPS” category on left; Sort by “MONTH”, “WEEK” and “AGENDA” views on the right

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
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Assunpink Wildlife Management Area 8:30 am
Assunpink Wildlife Management Area @ Assunpink Wildlife Management Area
Mar 9 @ 8:30 am
A field trip on Saturday, March 9, at 8:30 am, led by John Maret and Andrew Bobe. We will seek wintering waterfowl, raptors and land birds. Other bird sightings may include a snipe, rusty blackbird,[...]
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Washington Crossing State Park 1:30 pm
Washington Crossing State Park @ Washington Crossing State Park
Mar 17 @ 1:30 pm
A field trip on Sunday, March 17, at 1:30 PM  led by Wayne Henderek and Franta Broulik. We will walk trails looking for spring migrants and resident birds in wooded areas and adjacent fields. Directions: Located off of[...]
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Tyler Christensen: Photographing New Jersey’s Bobcats 8:00 pm
Tyler Christensen: Photographing New Jersey’s Bobcats @ Stainton Hall at Pennington School
Mar 18 @ 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Tyler Christensen: Photographing New Jersey’s Bobcats @ Stainton Hall at Pennington School | Pennington | New Jersey | United States
Tyler Christensen: Photographing New Jersey’s Bobcats Monday, March 18, 2019, at 8:00 pm Bobcats are the only naturally-occurring wild feline in New Jersey and are endangered in the state. Rare, intelligent, and highly elusive, bobcats are[...]
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Pole Farm at Mercer Meadows at corner of Cold Soil and Keefe Rds.

Known now as the “Red Barn” entrance at Cold Soil & Keefe Rds. Most birders enter Pole Farm from both this corner or Federal City Rd. entrance aka Reed/Bryan Farm. Can also park at Maidenhead Trail entrance on Keefe Rd. or at Blackwell Rd. entrance.
GPS: 40.312911, -74.737523

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deer management in winter

Baldpate Mountain, Fiddler's Creek Entrance

Fiddler’s Creek Entrance Parking lot for birding the Summit Trail (blue) and driveway on the left
Mercer County Website lists address as 327 Fiddlers Creek Road, Titusville, NJ 08560
Baldpate formerly known as Kuser Mountain
GPS: 40.317418, -74.889530

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check for Deer Management closing dates in winter

Abbott Marshlands

Abbott Marshlands formerly Hamilton- Trenton – Bordentown Marsh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Use Sewell Avenue entrance to Roebling Park section of the Abbott Marshlands and park by Spring Lake. Be mindful that this natural area is located in an urban setting. Use caution when visiting. Don’t leave your camera or valuables lying about. Report any suspicious behavior to the Hamilton (609-581-4000) or Bordentown Township (609- 298-2800) Police. In an emergency, call 911.

GPS Coordinates: N40 11.714 W74 43.923  

Baldpate Mtn., Pleasant Valley Rd. entrance

Pleasant Valley Rd. entrance to Ted Stiles Perserve at Baldpate Mountain formerly known as Kuser Mountain
40.330450, -74.871657

Rogers Wildllife Refuge next to Institute Woods

Charles Rogers Wildlife Refuge entrance to Institute Woods, Princeton

Directions: From Princeton take Alexander Street toward Route 1. At the bend before the canal turn right on West Drive. Go a short distance on West Drive and park near the entrance to Rogers Wildlife Refuge.

GPS:
40°19’38.5″N 74°39’33.6″W
40.327353, -74.659342

Pole Farm Federal City Rd./Reed Bryan entrance

Reed Bryan section of the Pole Farm at Mercer Meadows also known as Federal City entrance with gray barn and “Last pole standing.”
GPS: 40.316586,-74.758068

St. Michaels Preserve

St. Michaels Preserve, Princeton Ave. aka Carter Road entrance.

Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association

Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association

GPS:
40°21’06.3″N 74°46’21.3″W
40.351751, -74.772571

Mercer County Park

West Windsor

Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve

Caution: Hunting in Fall

Washington Crossing State Park Nature Center

Washington Crossing State Park Nature Center
355 Washington Crossing Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560, USA

GPS:
40°18’49.5″N 74°51’46.6″W
40.3137529, 
-74.86295740000003

Assunpink Wildlife Management Area

Assunpink Wildlife Management Area Boat Launch parking lot
Intersection of Imlaystown-Hightstown Rd & Clarksburg-Robbinsville Rd, Millstone, NJ 08535, USA
Directions: East on I-195 to exit 11, Imlaystown. North on Imlaystown Road 2.6 miles to parking area at Lake Assunpink.

GPS:
40°12’54.9″N 74°31’00.7″W
40.215254, -74.516866

Cumberland County Heislerville WMA

Heislerville Wildlife Management Area in Maurice River Twp., Cumberland County, NJ
Dikes on Matts Landing Rd, Leesburg, NJ 08327, USA

GPS:
39°14’02.9″N 75°01’34.5″W
39.234133, -75.026264

Peace Valley Nature Center

Peace Valley Nature Center
42-64 N Chapman Rd, Doylestown, PA 18901, USA

GPS:
40°20’23.8″N 75°10’16.2″W
40.339942, -75.171179

Mt. Rose Preserve

Mount Rose Preserve, Carter Rd., Hopewell Township, NJ 08540, USA
Please confirm parking on west or east side of Carter Rd.

GPS:
40°21’41.4″N 74°44’15.4″W
40.361489, -74.737621

Garret Mountain Reservation

Garret Mountain Reservation
2 Mountain Ave, Woodland Park, NJ 07424, USA  (near Patterson)

Directions: Take I-287 to I-80. Go east to exit 56A (Squirrelwood Road). Go to the stop sign and turn right on Rifle Camp Road. Go up the hill about 0.5 miles to Mountain Ave., which comes in from the left. Turn left on Mountain Ave. (look for army tank and reservoir on the left) and go 0.3 miles to the entrance to Garret Mountain Reservation. Go right up the hill for a short distance to a large parking area. The distance from Somerville on I-287 and I-80 to exit 56A is 40 miles.

GPS:
40°54’08.5″N 74°10’54.5″W
40.902367, -74.181791

Round Valley Reservoir Boat Launch

Round Valley Reservoir Boat Launch
County Rd 629, Lebanon, NJ 08833, USA

GPS:
40°37’54.9″N 74°50’57.5″W
40.631908, -74.849302

Pryde's Point Trail

Pryde’s Point Trail Conservation easement area is adjacent to the Alexauken Creek Wildlife Management Area. It has a wonderful wooded area with vistas of Hunterdon County. The terrain is steep in spots but allows for a leisurely walk to experience a remote area of West Amwell.

Park on 23 Gulick Rd., Ringoes, NJ:
https://goo.gl/maps/D3jcGqNVTSP2

GPS: 40.407954, -74.870407

Don’t park at the WMA entrance for Pond Trail on Rocktown-Lambertville Rd. Pryde’s Point Trail map on NJ Trails website: http://njtrails.org/trail/prydes-point-alexauken-creek/