New Jersey Chapter Comments on Sparta Mountain WMA Forestry Management

thumbnail.jpgThe New Jersey Chapter sent a a letter in support of the proposed forestry management practices proposed for the Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Unit. The plan laid out by the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife (NJDFW) is conducive to habitat improvement, not only for species that are endangered like the Golden-winged Warbler, but for all wildlife, including game species, as well.  

The NJDFW is seeking comments from the public on the Sparta Mountain WMA forestry management plan and amendments to it. Be sure to send your comments to [email protected] Your comments as hunters and anglers help the NJDFW know you recognize that improved habitat for threatened or endangered species also helps the game species we hunt and fish for.  

Please email a comment before March 31st, 2024 and use our letter as a guide as well as the following bullets we feel are important aspects of the forestry management plan:

  • Young forest management is to regenerate patches of hardwood oak-hickory forest type as well as a variety of shrubs, sedges and forbs which is beneficial to all wildlife
  • Increased plant diversity and low-level shrub structure will promote biodiversity and sustain a complexity of habitat types
  • Helping to perpetuate native species dependent on natural disturbances such as fires, beavers, and hurricanes by replicating this with forest management
  • Management of young forest habitat will be implemented through leaving seed trees or shelterwood forest type. Neither of these management practices are clear cuts
  • Creating open woodlands with 10-15 large trees per acre in areas surrounded by thicker forest cover aids the recovery of the state endangered Golden-winged Warbler
  • To date, the number of bird species using managed sites during the breeding season is more than doubled prior to management; 82 different bird species, 30 of which are Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN), have been observed using at least one of the managed sites
  • This habitat will also benefit a variety of mammals and reptiles that require open and/or young forest conditions during some stage of their life cycles
  • Diversifying forest stands improves resiliency in the face of a changing climate


About New Jersey BHA

We are an informed and engaged grassroots group of hunters and anglers who value the challenge, peace and solitude that comes from a backcountry experience. We promote, conserve and improve our diverse public lands and stand up for these wild places.

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