Spring Birding in Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge
in New Jersey
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I took a friend from California to tour Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in New Jersey for bird
watching on April 21, 2016. We saw many snowy egrets busily catching and eating small fish as shown on
the following YouTube website:


Please take a look of these snowy egrets in action.

It was at low tide which concentrates many small fish in the shallow pool. Furthermore, the shallow water
was rushing out to the sea. It seemed that this is the ideal time and ideal location for these snowy egrets to
catch and to eat many small fish.

At the end of this movie, a cormorant emerged from the shallow pool indicating that this cormorant had also
been under the shallow pool catching and eating fish.

On the other hand, during period of rising high tide when the sea water is rushing into this NWR, another
location in the NWR seems to be ideal for many terns to catch fish as shown on my web page at:


However, at the low tide period on April 21, 2016 while many snowy egrets were busily catching fish in the
shallow pool inside the NWR, I noticed that many terns were busily hovering and diving to catch fish just
outside the NWR where water was rushing from NWR out to the ocean.
Many seagulls were busily eating clams or mussel on the Wildlife Drive (unpaved, 8-mile auto tour loop) in this
National Wildlife Refuge.
The way these gulls crack the shells of clams is by picking up the clam, flying up about 30 or 40 feet in the air,
then dropping the clam down to crash on the hard surface as shown on following three pictures that I took
from my previous tour of Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge.
The seagull dropped the mussel in the air to let it fall to the ground to crack the shell.
The seagull was enjoying eating the mussel after it was dropped and cracked.
We also saw many Canada geese flying in the air or on the water.
An osprey perching on a tree near a pond, probably is waiting for a fish to catch.

We also saw several other ospreys in their nests, probably feeding their babies similar to those photos and
movie clips on the web page above for summer season except that the baby ospreys in April are much smaller
than those in the summer season.
Signs of Spring, Breeding Plumage on the Great Egrets: the elegant Great Egret dons even more formal attire
for the breeding season. Already clothed in spotless white, the Great Egret grows long, lacy plumes from its
back, called aigrettes. It is delightful top see such beautiful display by these Great Egrets.
When we drove closer to a gull eating a clam, the gull picked up the clam and took off into the air.
A seagull got a clam/mussel in its beak and flew up in the air about 30 to 40 feet above ground to prepare to
drop the mussel to the ground in order to crack the mussel open
I was surprised to see several snow geese in this National Wildlife Refuge in New Jersey on April 21, 2016.

Normally, in late February or early March, millions of snow geese fly north to their breeding ground in arctic
tundra to mate to lay eggs and to raise their babies in the spring, summer and autumn seasons. So, I am
puzzled to see these several snow geese in New Jersey in late April.
Location and Direction for Edwin B. Forsythe (Brigantine) National Wildlife Refuge:

Address: 800 Great Creek Rd. Absecon, NJ 08205 ((East End of) E. Great Creek Road )

(or East End of East Lily Lake Road, off Highway 9)

Phone: 609-652-1665

Website: http://www.fws.gov/northeast/forsythe/




1.       Set the Destination of GPS navigator at the intersection of Highway 9 and E. Great Creek Road,
Absecon, NJ 08205
2.       Turn East into E. Great Creek Road (East bound).
3.       Continue on E. Great Creek Road for about one mile all the way to get into Forsythe (Brigantine)  
National Wildlife Refuge (NWR)
4.      Continue to the entrance of NWR. There is a parking lot with restroom near the entrance. Pay your fee
at the Fee Station then drive onto the Wildlife Dr which is an 8-mile, one way, rectangular loop of unpaved Dike
to enjoy bird watching on both sides.

Note: Senior people with Golden Age Pass can enjoy FREE entrance to all national parks,
national recreation areas and national wildlife refuges in USA.  Senior people can get a Golden Age Pass by
paying $10 only once in any office of any national park throughout USA.

Click here to see Google Map showing location of Entrance to Edwin B. Forsythe NWR