|Winter Wildlife Watching in New Jersey
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In the winter, White-tailed Deer meet up and form herds, sometimes with more than a hundred deer. Winter is
also the mating season for deer. From November 2008 to February 2009, I visited Dorbrook Recreational Area
4 times. 3 out of 4 times, I saw very large herd of white-tailed deer in large grassy areas in or near the Soccer
Fields on the south side of Route 537 several hundred feet east of junction of Route 537 and Laird Road. I took
some pictures of the large number of deer as shown on this web page.
These pictures show only the central portion of the large herd with higher concentration of deer. There are many
more deer that are spread out on both right side and left side of these pictures and also on the other side of the
I tried to walk closer to get better pictures. But those deer just kept on running away to keep a good distance
from me. So, I had to rely on my super-zoom compact digital camera to zoom in for closer view. My new
Canon PowerShot SX10 IS compact camera has 20X optical zoom.
My camera can also take movie in addition to still pictures. Therefore, I also took a movie of this large herd of
deer in action and uploaded the movie to the YouTube website at:
Again, the movie and the still pictures cover only one portion of the large herd of deer with many other deer
outside of the scope of my camera.
This is the landmark on Route 537 at Dorbrook Park Recreation Area to see the large herd of deer. The
unpaved road is off Route 537 and is pointing south.
I parked my car on the roadside of Route 537 near that sign of “Park System Vehicle Only” and walked south
along this unpaved road to see the large herd of deer at far end near the tree line. In case if you do not see
deer here, there are two large soccer fields on the left side separated by tree lines. Walk over there and check
out those large soccer fields too because the herd of deer may be over there. Some more views of the herd in
I also saw many fishing birds, cormorants, and seagulls in Swimming River Reservoir near the loop hiking trail
on north side of Dorbrook Recreational Area as shown in the following:
On February 3, 2008, we toured other parts of the Swimming River Reservoir and saw large number of many
kinds of water fowls including mallards, common mergansers, hooded mergansers, green winged teals, heron,
vultures, American coots, Canada geese, swans, and bald eagle as shown on my Travelogue web page at:
On the north side of Route 537, there is a 2.2-mile paved hiking loop-trail in Dorbrook Recreation Area. The
northern half of this large hiking loop is within about 50 feet of the shore of Swimming River Reservoir. There
are several short hiking trails to go from the paved hiking loop through the woods to reach the shore of the
Swimming River Reservoir to see many water fowls in action in the reservoir in the winter season. However, in
other seasons, it may be more difficult to follow these short trails to go through the woods because of the thick
shrubs and poison ivy.
Map: Click here to see Google Map showing the hiking loop trail and Swimming River Reservoir
In the winter season, large number of several kinds of waterfowl from north migrate to Swimming River
Reservoir in Colts Neck-Lincroft area in New Jersey. These two pictures show some buffleheads.
On January 11, 2009, I went to tour other parts of the Swimming River Reservoir and saw many hooded
mergansers as shown in these pictures. Many hooded mergansers comes to Swimming River Reservoir in the
Two of several mallards that we saw in Swimming River Reservoir
The top one in this picture is a ring-necked duck
More hooded mergansers in Swimming River Reservoir in the winter season
There are also many Canada geese on the Swimming River Reservoir.
More hooded mergansers and 3 Canada geese on the Reservoir
This picture shows that hooded mergansers are much smaller than the Canada geese
Some American Black ducks in Swimming River Reservoir near the LongBridge Road
Some of these pictures were taken on a sunny day with strong sunshine while some others were taken on
cloudy days or after sunset with low light. Therefore, the quality of these pictures varies depending on whether
it is sunny day or not.
There are also many Canada geese, in addition to deer, in Dorbrook Recreational Area
When I walked closer, many Canada geese took off into the air
Many Canada geese in the air over Dorbrook Recreational Area.
Zoom in for closer views of some of the Canada geese in the air over Dorbrook Recreational Area.
Many Canada geese in Thompson Park on north shore of Swimming River Reservoir near LongBridge Road.
Some more Canada geese are coming in and are preparing for landing to join the large group on the ground in
Thompson Park in Lincroft.
On January 2, 2015, three friends and I came to Island Beach State Park in New Jersey shore for winter
birding. This is one of several fox that we saw here.
While standing on the beach of Island Beach State Park, I saw this loon busily fishing in the ocean. The loon
spent most of the time underwater chasing fish and came up to the surface only briefly, then it divined into
water again. Each time when it surfaced, its position was 30 or 50 feet away from its last position indicating
that it was swimming very fast underwater. So, when it came up to the surface briefly, I had to act fast to take
its pictures using my compact super-zoom camera.
Map: Click here for interactive Google Map showing location of Island Beach State Park
Spring Migration After Long and Harsh Winter - The winter from December 2014 to April 1,
2015 is very cold, harsh and long. We got many heavy snow storms in this long winter. Most lakes in New
Jersey were still frozen until about March 29 or 30. The big piles of snow/ice on my driveway were still not fully
melt away yet on April 2, 2015. April 2, 2015 was the first warm day with air temperature above 60 degrees
Fahrenheit. It was a very windy day with strong wind blowing from southwest towards northeast. I went to
Holmdel Park for my walking exercise. I heard the sound and saw wave after wave of many geese in formation
taking advantage of the strong wind flying north in their belated spring migration north.
融，求偶配對的時期，飛呀飛， 飛往北極苔原， 他們的出生地和繁殖地，傳宗接代，
Their call and flight in tight formation with succession of waves signal that spring has arrived.
It is a wonderful sight, their noises are music to my ears.
Formations of Canada geese flap by, blaring news of their northward passage as they go。