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, [email protected] 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

  • Abbott Marshlands A field trip on Saturday, April 24, at 8:00AM, led by Brad Merritt and John Maret. Roebling Park is a Mercer County park in the Abbott Marshlands. We plan to walk the trails in search of spring migrants. For additional information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964. Directions: Take South Broad St. to Sewell Ave. turn onto Sewell at traffic light; at road’s end, turn left and continue downhill to parking lot. For additional outings that complement WCAS, see abbottmarshlands.org. Co-sponsor with Friends for the Abbott Marshlands. Due to COVID-19 concerns, PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. For the safety of all, participants must wear face coverings and social distancing will be observed.
  • *** CANCELLED DUE TO RAIN FORECAST for Sunday, April 25 *** Fireman’s Eddy (D&R Canal State Park south of Lambertville) A field trip on Sunday, April 25, at 8:00 AM, led by Juanita Hummel. This field, bisected by a row of trees and bounded by the canal and the Delaware River, was restored as native grasslands. The combination of wooded riparian habitat, edge habitat and meadows mean that a large variety of birds may be seen here, including early warblers, swallows, bluebirds, grassland sparrows, raptors and wood ducks. To register contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964 and email [email protected]for parking directions. Co-sponsored with the D&R Canal State Park. Due to COVID-19 concerns, PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. For the safety of all, participants must wear face coverings and social distancing will be observed.
  • Assunpink Wildlife Management Area A field trip on Saturday, June 5, at 8:00 AM led by John Maret. We will seek resident birds, such as blue grosbeaks, orchard orioles, and cedar waxwings, and butterflies. 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, email: [email protected]
    Assunpink GPS Coordinates: 40.215254, -74.516866
    Due to COVID-19 concerns, PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED with prevailing COVID guidelines in effect.
  • Washington Crossing State Park A field trip on Saturday, June 12 at 8:30 AM, led by Wayne Henderek and Franta Broulik. We will walk trails looking for spring migrants and resident birds in wooded areas and adjacent fields.  For more information, email: [email protected]
    Washington Crossing State Park
    355 Washington Crossing Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560, USA
    GPS Coordinates: 40.313753, -74.862957
    Directions: Off Washington Crossing–Pennington Road in Titusville. Follow signs to the Nature Center parking lot.
    Due to COVID-19 concerns, PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED with prevailing COVID guidelines in effect.

Birdathon ’21! The Big Day is Saturday,  May 15th, but events will be happening throughout the month of May!

Get outdoors and bird to help raise money for WCAS’s education, research and conservation efforts!

  • Our “Big Day” this year is Saturday MAY 15 and this is your chance to compete for the 1st Annual WCAS Cup!  To enter, register yourself or your team and find as many species of birds as you can between 12:00 am and 11:59 pm on May 15th in the NJ counties that are completely or partly within our chapter area – Mercer, Hunterdon, Somerset and Burlington. Feel free to ask family and friends to sponsor you or your team with pledges per species seen to spur you on to greater effort! Minimum requested donation to register $25.
  • NEW! Family Weekend Challenge: gather family and friends and go birding wherever you happen to be on May 15 and/or 16th —your backyard, neighborhood park or even Grandma’s house! Email us your list of the birds you were able to identify and the ages of any children under 13 in the party. Min. requested donation $10
  • Prizes will be awarded for Most Bird Species Identified and Most MoneyRaised for WCAS for those who have pre-registered in each event. You may also register by regular mail — WCAS, P.O. Box 112, Pennington, NJ 08534-0112.
  • DIY: Just want to spend a relaxed few hours birding by yourself or with friends? We still want your bird list for May 15th!  Go out on your own or with a team and ask your friends and family to support your efforts with a donation or per-species pledge. Email your list to [email protected]  Remit collected donations through the secure Donation sign-up link in this email or mail a check to WCAS, P.O. Box 112, Pennington, NJ 08525 by June 1.  Thank you!

Join a special small-group guided walk on 5/15Covid guidelines will be observed:

  • South Hunterdon Birding with Juanita Hummel on 5/15 – only a few spots left. Join for all or part of the day, AM or PM.  The complete itinerary will be emailed to participants before the event.  Min. requested donation $25. For more information email [email protected] 
  • Mercer Meadows including the Pole Farm on 5/15 at 7:30 AM lead by Pole Farm grassland birds monitor Jim Myers. Park at the Maidenhead Trail parking lot on Keefe Road (just past Federal City Road) at 7:30 am on Saturday. Min. requested donation $25. For more information email [email protected]

  • DONATE ONLY or submit collected pledges:  Even if you can’t participate in one of our events on May 15th, please consider making a donation.  “Sign up” to donate using the secure donation slot in this email up until June 1. Alternatively, you can mail a check to WCAS, P.O. Box 112, Pennington, NJ 08534-0112.  Thank you for your support – it means everything to us!

SIGN UP FOR BIRDATHON NOW!
https://www.signupgenius.com/go/birdathon

UPCOMING FIELD TRIPS
(details to come)

  • Sat, Jun 5, 2021 8 AM Assunpink Leader – John Maret, Brad Merritt     (15)
  • Sat. Jun 12, 2021 830AM       Washington Crossing Leader- W. Henderek, Franta Broulik
  • Sat. Jun 19, 2021 8AM Pole Farm?
  • Sat. Aug. 14, 2021 9 AM Forsythe NWR (Brig) Leader – Brad Merritt (15)
  • Sat. Aug 28, 2021 9AM Allentown Sod Farms Leader – Brad Merritt (15)

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 [email protected]

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. 

Events co-sponsored with the Watershed Institute

Beginner Birding Walk

Wednesday, May 19, 7:30 – 10:00am

Join Jeff Hoagland, Watershed Education Director and Washington Crossing Audubon Society Board Member for a beginner birding walk on the Watershed Reserve. Whether you are a seasoned birder or a beginner, this hike is perfect for you! Over the decades, Jeff has recorded almost 200 species of birds on this nearly 1000-acre Reserve. On this morning, explore several habitats, meeting a wide variety of spring migrants and residents, focusing on their identification and natural history. Sanitized binoculars are available to borrow upon advanced request. Register here for this FREE program, space is limited: http://thewatershed.doubleknot.com/event/calen

Beginner Bird Walk

Wednesday, June 16, 7:30 – 10:00am

Join Jeff Hoagland, Watershed Education Director and Washington Crossing Audubon Society Board Member for a beginner birding walk on the Watershed Reserve. Whether you are a seasoned birder or a beginner, this hike is perfect for you! Over the decades, Jeff has recorded almost 200 species of birds on this nearly 1000-acre Reserve. On this morning, explore several habitats, meeting a wide variety of resident birds, focusing on their identification, natural history and family life. Sanitized binoculars are available to borrow upon advanced request. Register here for this FREE program, space is limited: http://thewatershed.doubleknot.com/event/calen

Field trip leader Brad Merritt (middle) © Tyler Christensen
Photos © Tony Singleton
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.

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

[ai1ec view="monthly"]

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/