Monday, May 2, 2016

Programs and Events at the Pequest Trout Hatchery

The Pequest Trout Hatchery is open seven days a week through October. Take a self-guided tour of the hatchery facility, explore the outdoors on the trails or enjoy for a FREE program! Guided trail hikes, beginner fishing classes, fly fishing classes, bird walks and talks, fish talks and amphibian programs - there's something for everyone! All programs require registration.


 Look what is scheduled so far for May.

First Saturday Hike
Saturday, May 7
9:00 a.m.
Join Wildlife Conservation Corps member and member of the NJ Woodland Stewards Program, John Hooven in a two-mile guided hike on our trail system. Explore animal tracks and evidence and immerse yourself in a variety of different habitats as you explore the Pequest Wildlife Management Area. Open to anyone able to walk 2 miles on moderate trails.

First Saturday Hike
Saturday, May 7
12:00 p.m.
Join Wildlife Conservation Corps member and member of the NJ Woodland Stewards Program, John Hooven in a two-mile guided hike on our trail system. Explore animal tracks and evidence and immerse yourself in a variety of different habitats as you explore the Pequest Wildlife Management Area. Open to anyone able to walk 2 miles on moderate trails.

Take Mom Fishing
Saturday, May 7
10:30 a.m.
Help mom learn the basics of fishing in this hands-on session. Topics will include fish biology and identification, casting techniques, equipment, knot tying and more. Discussions will be followed by an actual trout fishing experience in our Education Pond. This program is geared for ages 8 years and above. Younger children are welcome to participate with direct adult assistance. All equipment is provided for the program. You supply the nightcrawlers. We recommend that at least one adult per family has a fishing license, so come a few minutes early and buy yours at the front desk when you sign in.

Hunter Education
Saturday, May 14
8:00 a.m.
Beat the fall rush and get ready for hunting by taking your Hunter Education class at the hatchery. You must have your completed homework with you at the class and be pre-registered. To register for your class go to www.nj.wildlifelicense.com. After you pass the class, stop by the front desk and buy your hunting license. Youth hunting licenses are free!

Fly Fishing with Streamers
Saturday, May 14
10:00 a.m.
In this course, Wildlife Conservation Corps volunteers Pierre Benoist and Jim Flatley will discuss reading a trout stream, basic knots, fishing streamers and a review of streamer patterns. After the morning discussion, students will get to test their new knowledge on the Education Pond. This program is the second in a series of seven fly fishing/tying classes. Students completing all seven classes will receive a course completion certificate. Those unable to attend all sessions or not wishing to earn a certificate may pick and choose the classes to attend. Students should bring their own equipment if available. Open to anyone 10 years old and above.

All About Bluebirds
Saturday, May 21
1:00 p.m.
Join us and get the scoop on bluebirds! Volunteer Leo Hollein will present his fabulous slide show with fun facts and cool info! Program includes a walk to check out nest boxes! This presentation will cover all aspects of bluebird breeding as well as discussing their nest box competitors and predators. Open to all ages.

Leo is a long time member of NJ Audubon and The Friends of the Great Swamp. He has authored several articles on bluebirds for NJ Audubon magazine and for over 10 years he has coordinated the monitoring of the 140 box bluebird trail in the Great Swamp.

Warbler Walk
Saturday, May 28
9:30 a.m.
Wildlife Conservation Corps volunteer and member of the NJ Bluebird Society, Frank Budney, will lead this discussion and walk as you roam the grounds searching out warblers. Discussion will include why warblers migrate and where they go and where they are from. You will learn to look at distinguishing marks that will help you identify birds in the field and their habitat requirements. Please bring binoculars and a birding field guide if you have one. Open to anyone aged 10 years and above.

Sturgeon
Saturday, May 28
1:00 p.m.
Division employee, Russ Dodge will lead this program on sturgeon. Russ will cover the unique physical and living characteristics of sturgeon and paddlefish, as well as the commercial value of sturgeon (caviar). Most sturgeon species in the US closed to commercial and recreational fishing. Open to all ages.

World of Amphibians
Sunday, May 29
2:00 p.m.
Join us as we learn about the world of amphibians. In this program for adults young and old, we will discover where amphibians came from, how they grow up, and their importance in the ecosystem. Amphibians were some of the first animals in history to move onto land, but they still rely on water for major parts of their life cycle. They are key species in their environments not only because they eat bugs and are eaten by top predators, but they also tell us how healthy their environment is. Then, once we learn all of these amazing things about amphibians, we'll go meet some in person at Pequest's own muck pond! Please bring nets if you have them and boots that can get wet.

Presented by Allegra Mitchell, Wildlife Conservation Corps. Allegra completed a Bachelor's degree in Conservation Biology and a Master's degree in Biology at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her Master's degree work on amphibian locomotor performance as it relates to habitat preference is being published in the scientific journal, Functional Ecology. She has led and assisted in multiple research projects on herpetofauna and other groups of species, both domestically and abroad. Allegra also educated her fellow students in herpetology as a teaching assistant at her university. She now shares her knowledge of amphibians through symposia presentations and through volunteering with educational programs in her home state of New Jersey. She is passionate about amphibian conservation and carries this mission with her as she begins her career in wildlife biology.

For the full program schedule visit www.njfishandwildlife.com/budding.htm


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