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
- Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve A field trip on Saturday, September 28, at 8:00 am led by Sharyn Magee and Brad Merritt. The Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve, 164 acres of grasslands and woodlands in Somerset Co., is home to sensitive species, including the Grasshopper Sparrow, Cooper’s Hawk, American Kestrel (NJ State threatened species), and Eastern Meadowlark (NJ State special concern species). With a variety of bird houses located throughout, we have opportunities to view American Kestrels, Wood Ducks, Bluebirds and Purple Martins. Directions: From 206 at Woods Tavern take 514 East (Amwell Road). From South Middlebush Road, turn onto Skillmans Lane. Entrance on west side of Skillmans Lane, between the two 90-degree curves.
- Birds of Mercer County Park Central A field trip on Saturday, October 5, at 8:00 am led by Mark Witmer and Brad Merritt. Mercer County Park Central is a 2,500-acre public park with fields, forests, and a 300-acre freshwater lake. We will walk for two to three hours along Lake Mercer. Bring binoculars and a field guide, and dress for the weather. Directions: Enter park from Hughes Drive or Old Trenton Road (Route 535). Meet at the boathouse parking lot. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.
- Fiddler’s Creek Preserve at Baldpate Mountain A field trip on Saturday, October 12, at 8:00 am led by Sharyn Magee and Tyler Christensen. Fiddler’s Creek Preserve is the old Hollystone Farm across Fiddler’s Creek Road from Baldpate Mountain. The main field and hedgerows support numerous species of sparrows during fall migration, making the reserve a hot spot. Directions: From Pennington, go west on Pennington- Titusville Rd and turn right on Bear Tavern Road (Route 579.) Take the first left onto Church Road; then turn right onto Fiddler’s Creek Road. Continue 1.3 miles to the main Baldpate Mountain Preserve parking lot on your right. We will meet here and walk across the road to the Fiddler’s Creek Preserve.
- Mount Rose Preserve A field trip on Saturday, October 19, at 8:00 am led by Sharyn Magee and Jim Myers. Mount Rose Preserve consists of 387 acres of meadows, shrub land, and forest. On this walk we will be looking for a variety of late fall migrants. With the diversity of habitat, this should be a naturalist’s treat. Directions: From Rosedale Road, turn right on Carter Road and continue approx. 3/4 mile. Entrance to preserve is on the left; meet at parking lot. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.
- NEW for the Fall: Mercer Meadows Pole Farm A field trip on Saturday, October 26, at 8:00 am led by David Dorini with Sharyn Magee and Jim Myers. Join us for a fascinating walk around the Pole Farm of Mercer Meadows. We will be on alert for Sparrows, late Fall migrants and Northern Harriers in the native grasslands. Meet at the Pole Farm entrance at corner of Cold Soil and Keefe Rds. in Lawrence Twp. Directions to Mercer Meadows: Take Keefe Rd to Cold Soil Rd. The parking lot entrance is on left. For more information, call Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.
- NEW for the Fall: Mercer Meadows Pole Farm A field trip on Saturday, November 2, at 8:00 am led by Jim Myers. Join us for a fascinating walk around the Pole Farm of Mercer Meadows. We will be on alert for Sparrows, late Fall migrants and Northern Harriers in the Pole Farm’s native grasslands. A Vesper Sparrow was seen here last November. ***Meet at the Reed Bryan Farm entrance on Federal City Rd., Hopewell Twp.*** Directions to Mercer Meadows: From Rt. 206 in Lawrenceville just north of I-295 overpass: take Lawrenceville-Pennington Rd towards Pennington. Continue straight through traffic light at Keefe Rd. Turn right at the light at Federal City Rd. The Reed Bryan Farm parking lot is on the right. For more information, call Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964.
- Sandy Hook National Park A field trip on Saturday, November 9, at 9:00 am led by Brad Merritt and Andrew Bobe. Sandy Hook is a prime spot to learn more about shore birds, with opportunities to see raptors, marsh birds, and migrating songbirds along the Jersey shore. Directions: Meet at the parking area in Guardian Park in Fort Hancock on Sandy Hook. For more information, contact Brad Merritt at 609-921-8964
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
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.
Sort Calendar by “FIELD TRIPS” category on left; Sort by “MONTH”, “WEEK” and “AGENDA” views on the right
Birds of Mercer County Park Central 8:00 am
Fiddler’s Creek Preserve at Baldpate Mountain 8:00 am
Fiddler’s Creek Preserve at Baldpate Mountain @ Fiddler's Creek Parking Lot for Baldpate
Oct 12 @ 8:00 am
Fiddler’s Creek Preserve at Baldpate Mountain A field trip on Saturday, October 12 at 8:00 AM led by Sharyn Magee and Tyler Christensen. Fiddler’s Creek Preserve is the old Hollystone Farm across Fiddler’s Creek Road from[...]
Jeffrey Keller: Age, Size, Configuration, and Context: Useful Landscape Attributes for Conserving and Managing Biodiversity 8:00 pm
Jeffrey Keller: Age, Size, Configuration, and Context: Useful Landscape Attributes for Conserving and Managing Biodiversity @ Stainton Hall at Pennington School
Oct 21 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Jeffrey K. Keller: Age, Size, Configuration, and Context: Useful Landscape Attributes for Conserving and Managing Biodiversity Monday, October 21, 2019, at 8:00 pm Functional Habitat Patch Size Habitat modification GIS-based Wildlife-Habitat Analysis Threatened and endangered[...]
Mercer Meadows Pole Farm 8:00 am
Pole Farm at Mercer Meadows at corner of Cold Soil and Keefe Rds.
GPS: 40.312911, -74.737523
Deer management in winter
Baldpate Mountain, Fiddler's Creek Entrance
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
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
Rogers Wildllife Refuge next to Institute Woods
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.
Pole Farm Federal City Rd./Reed Bryan entrance
St. Michaels Preserve
Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association
31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington, NJ 08534
Mercer County Park
Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve
Washington Crossing State Park Nature Center
355 Washington Crossing Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560, USA
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.
Cumberland County Heislerville WMA
Dikes on Matts Landing Rd, Leesburg, NJ 08327, USA
Peace Valley Nature Center
42-64 N Chapman Rd, Doylestown, PA 18901, USA
Mt. Rose Preserve
Mount Rose Preserve, Carter Rd., Hopewell Township, NJ 08540, USA
Please confirm parking on west or east side of Carter Rd.
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.
Round Valley Reservoir Boat Launch
County Rd 629, Lebanon, NJ 08833, USA
Pryde's Point Trail
Park on 23 Gulick Rd., Ringoes, NJ:
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/