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Highlands Woods Reserve Autumn Guided Walks

Dorothy Miele

Monday, October 7, 2013 • 1:00am

The South Plainfield Environmental Commission (SPEC) invites the public to Highland Woods Environmental Education Reserve and Nature Center on October 20 from 1-4 pm for an autumn afternoon of guided walks and talks, and entrance to the environmental center building. 

The easy-walking trails meander through a variety of habitats where more than 80 species of birds have been recorded, as well as 4 species of amphibians, 5 species of reptiles, and 17 species of mammals, earning the reserve a “Watchable Wildlife” designation site by the NJ Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife’s Endangered and Nongame Species Program. 

Walkers will be introduced to the deer fencing project completed in June, co-sponsored by the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions and the Friends of the Woods. The fencing was installed to keep deer out of a sensitive native wildflower area. Loss of habitat in the surrounding area has driven deer into the reserve in greater numbers to browse, causing a loss in the native wildflower population. Information will be available about the SPECs “citizen scientist” program which will recruit or train people interested in inventorying the remaining native wildflower plant species within the enclosure.

 

Of interest inside the Nature Center are exhibits on: The Native American Indians of South Plainfield; The Ice Age in New Jersey; Rocks of New Jersey; Animal Skulls and Bones; Winter Woods Objects; Geologic Time Line and Fossil Display and several more. Play the Wheel of Eco Knowledge, Bird Bingo or Birdopoly, listen to recorded  bird songs or watch them at the outside Wild Bird Feeding Station from the inside observation windows.

 

Admission to Sunday’s event is free of charge, and programming is recommended for all ages. Highland Woods is located at 115 Sylvania Place (off South Clinton Avenue), South Plainfield, NJ. For further information, contact spnaturetrails@verizon.net.

 

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