Conservation Projects

Local Conservation Projects

WCAS has funded numerous local conservation projects to protect and improve habitat for birds and other animal and plant life through the Holden Grant program and funds raised by our annual Birdathon.

The following projects were either fully or partially funded by WCAS:

  • Construction and installation of nest boxes for state-threatened American Kestrels, a species in rapid decline in the state due to habitat loss and lack of appropriate nesting sites.
  • Invasive species control within a number of regionally important preserves, including the Ted Stiles Preserve at Baldpate Mountain, the John A. Roebling Memorial Park at the Abbott Marshlands, the Cedar Ridge Preserve, and the Charles Rogers Wildlife Refuge.
  • Strategic reforestation projects that will improve current forested ecosystems, including those at the Fiddler’s Creek Preserve, the Kulak Preserve, and the Ted Stiles Preserve at Baldpate Mountain.
  • Habitat restorations involving the use of native herbaceous and woody plants.
  • Establishment of a native plant nursery at the St. Michael’s Farm Preserve in Hopewell, NJ that will provide a source of native plants propagated from local wild populations for habitat restoration projects within the region.

From Dedication of Lou Beck Memorial Spring 2016

Welcome to the Charles H. Rogers Wildlife Refuge

The Charles H. Rogers Wildlife Refuge is a 39-acre sanctuary between the north bank of the Stony Brook and the edge of the Institute for Advanced Study woods. Established in 1968 through a conservation easement between the Township of Princeton and a predecessor to New Jersey American Water, the tract provides nesting habitat for as many as 90 species of birds. Scores of others visit during migration.

At the heart of the refuge is a marsh, providing habitat for birds, reptiles, frogs, toads, fish and crustaceans. It acts as a safety valve during peak rains and helps maintain the water table level. To sustain the marsh during times of drought and to maintain a constant water level, a pump draws water from the Stony Brook and circulates it into the marsh on both sides of the roadway.

Lou Beck Memorial

Nesting boxes for Purple Martins, Tree Swallows, Bluebirds and Wood Ducks, placed throughout the refuge as well as in the Institute Woods, are dedicated to the memory of Lou Beck, former President of Washington Crossing Audubon Society, who led regular walks through this area and introduced many people to the pleasures of birding. He was devoted to the preservation of this Refuge and habitats for birds.

The refuge is supported by the Friends of the Rogers Refuge, the Municipality of Princeton, New Jersey American Water and the Washington Crossing Audubon Society.

Visitors are requested to stay on the trails at all times. To protect ground-nesting and ground-foraging birds, dogs must be leashed at all times.

Enjoy your visit to the Refuge.

Thompson Meadow Restoration
A restored meadow at the Thompson Preserve, a Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space property. The meadow restoration was funded in part by a WCAS Holden grant. Photo © Pat Sziber.
Restoration Bloomberg
Volunteers from Bloomberg restoring a meadow, photo © Tyler Christensen
Purple Martin Houses Rogers Refuge, Princeton
Purple Martin House, Rogers Refuge, Princeton, photo © Lee Varian
Rogers Refuge, Princeton
Interpretive signage supported by Holden Grant funds, photo © Lee Varian