Conserve Wildlife Blog

Archive for the ‘Get Involved’ Category

Protecting Flood-Prone Communities Through Wetland Restoration

Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

by Christine Healy

Hurricane Ida. Hurricane Irene. Superstorm Sandy. These weather events represent three of the four most devasting storms recorded in New Jersey history. Though data dates back 218 years, all 3 have occurred within the past 11, substantiating concerns over the effect of climate change on tropical cyclone severity. Therefore, taking measures to safeguard communities from devastating floodwaters is more important now than it ever has been. But who said helping people can’t, in turn, help wildlife?

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Shorebird Stewards Make A Difference

Sunday, May 29th, 2022

by: Larissa Smith, CWF biologist

Since 2003 Conserve Wildlife Foundation has been coordinating the Delaware Bay Shorebird Stewards. Shorebird Stewards are posted at the beaches with restricted access during the shorebird season. This is done so that the shorebirds can feed undisturbed on horseshoe crab eggs. The beach restrictions are from May 7th to June 7th. The Delaware Bay is an important stopover for these birds on their way north to their breeding grounds. Stewards educate the public about the need for the beach restrictions. Once most people learn about the connection between the horseshoe crabs and shorebirds, they are more than happy to accept the restrictions. This season there were thirty-one stewards on 10 beaches in Cape May and Cumberland Counties. They are dedicated and on the beaches despite the weather, bugs and sometimes lack of shorebirds. Stewards are on beaches through Monday, so stop by and say “hello”.

Thank you Shorebird Stewards

Shorebirds on Thompson’s Beach, photo by: Matt Tribulski

Restored Garden is Ready for Wildlife at Watchung Reservation

Friday, May 6th, 2022

by Meghan Kolk, Wildlife Biologist

Conserve Wildlife Foundation has successfully completed the restoration of the Certified Wildlife Habitat behind the Trailside Nature and Science Center at Watchung Reservation. The project was initiated last fall with a major clean up of the overgrown and neglected garden. The cleanup included pulling weeds, digging up unwanted and overgrown plants, trimming shrubs and trees, clearing vines from trees, and raking and blowing leaves. As a result, sunlight was let into the garden so that new wildlife-friendly plants could be added. After the cleanup, new native shrubs were planted that attract bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other birds. A new deer fence was also installed to protect the plantings from deer browse. 

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Delaware Bay Shorebird Stewards needed for 2022 season

Wednesday, March 30th, 2022
Shorebirds along Delaware Bay: photo by Shorebird Steward Bob Bocci

May is wonderful time of year at the Delaware Bay. Horseshoe crabs are spawning and shorebirds stopping over on their migration to feed on the eggs. One of these shorebirds the red-knot, is a federally threatened species. Beaches along the Delaware Bay in New Jersey are extremely important stops in their migration. Many of these beaches have been restricted from May 7th to June 7th to allow the shorebirds to feed undisturbed. They need to gain enough weight to be able to fly non-stop to their breeding grounds in the artic.

photo by Shorebird Steward Dom Manalo

People come from all over to view this natural phenomenon and the Delaware bay is a popular tourist destination. It’s important to have Shorebird stewards on these restricted beaches to educate the public about the crabs and shorebirds. Shorebird stewards support beach restrictions by being present at closed beaches during shorebird season to ensure that resting and foraging shorebirds are not disturbed. This job includes educating beach visitors as to why the beaches are closed and the importance of the beaches to horseshoe crabs and migrating shorebirds.

Stewards are needed short term in May at beaches along the Delaware Bay in Cape May County from the Villas north to Reed’s Beach and beaches in Cumberland.

Please contact Larissa Smith at Larissa.Smith@conservewildlifenj.org for more details.

Part time Shorebird Stewards needed

Who would win in a fight between an osprey and a bobcat?

Tuesday, February 8th, 2022
Dryophytes “Pine Barrens Treefrog” andersonii, State Threatened, #10 seed, hailing from the Atlantic white cedar swamps of the Pine Barrens vs. Scaphiopus “Eastern Spadefoot Toad” holbrookii, Species of Concern, #7 seed, straight from the Pygmy Pine Plains, also of the Pine Barrens. Who will reign supreme?!

If this query has you thinking, please read on…

Introducing Critter Chaos! The CWF team got together and selected 40 species that spend at least part of their lives in New Jersey to compete in a series of simulated battles to determine the most adapted (or luckiest) of the bunch. Call it a game of natural selection or simply of chance- contestants each represent one of four divisions; Shorebirds & Raptors, Mammals, Reptiles & Amphibians, and Grassland Birds & Invertebrates. We’ve given each contestant a rank within their division, based on their defense mechanisms, predatory techniques, camouflage, parenting style- anything that we felt would be relevant in fictional combat. The top competitor from each face-off will advance until we discover the worthy winner of the symbolic 2022 CWF Darwin Award.

If this is sounding a bit familiar, then yes- this competition is based on the NCAA basketball tournament “March Madness” and inspired by March Mammal Madness, a fun and educational alternative for those who are more (or equally) interested in springboks than sports. And if you’re most interested in spadefoots, then I’m pleased to tell you that the Eastern spadefoot toad is making an appearance as the #7 seed in our Reptiles & Amphibians division.

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