Acres of N.J. wetlands were illegally cleared during state project, conservation groups allege

stiltzkin

Explorer
Feb 8, 2022
484
686
Medford
The clearing occurred as a special task force appointed by legislators issued a long report with 16 recommendations on what New Jersey should do to better manage its 2 million acres of forests.

And one of the recommendations was "you should clear-cut, bulldoze, and obliterate 21 acres of mature forest?" Who is on this task force? They should be stopped from implementing whatever their next great idea may be.

I haven't seen a timberdoodle (American Woodcock) in a long time, although they are reclusive. The last photo I have of one is from December 2005.

DSCN3347.JPG
 
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Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
25,743
8,379
In 2015 Jessica and I were walking a dune near Rockwood and saw a bird in a tree. I put her on my shoulders and she took video of it. This is a still from it and I think it is a Woodcock.

bird.jpg
 

RednekF350

Piney
Feb 20, 2004
4,970
3,155
Pestletown, N.J.
When they were required, I bought the NJ Woodcock hunting stamp every year and always managed a few each season incidental to rabbit hunting in and near swampy areas right here in P'Town. When I was a kid, we used to bag quite a few on the Laurel Oak Golf Course in Gibbsboro near dusk behind one of the greens in a wet meadow area. They are a tasty bird right there with quail.

A stamp is no longer required and there is still a season on them with a daily bag limit of three. I don't think I ever saw three in one day. According to NJFW, 50% of the current harvest is in Sussex County with another 25% in Cape May County.

Creating the proper habitat in an upland area is going to be impossible.
 

GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
1,126
451
Little Egg Harbor
Just looking at it from a different and very general perspective, the net effects of clearcutting and a severe wildfire are not all that different. And a fire would kill far more than 21 acres of trees. Most here are already aware of fire being a natural part of the pines, and are not terribly upset an the environmental consequences. Such major impacts on habitats, natural or human-caused, have positive effects on some species and negative ones on others. The long-standing preoccupation with preserving every mature forest stand is one based on aesthetics rather than science. The impacts that initially present the worst aesthetics often result in the most species diversity. I'm looking out my window as I type this at a sparsely forested grassland, teeming with songbirds, where a forest of impressive trees was laid waste by a tornado a year and a half ago. I viewed that destruction as a gift. I'm not saying there shouldn't be rules and required adherence to them, but the resulting public outcry is usually the same regardless.

And I want to reiterate that these comments are generally speaking and not defending this particular project. But this type of clearing for habitat management would be attacked by the majority no matter where it occurred.
 
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bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
14,352
4,493
Pines; Bamber area
....But this type of clearing for habitat management would be attacked by the majority no matter where it occurred.
This time the attack is particularly clamorous. I decided to stay out of it for lack of knowledge and experience on my part as to the damage vs benefit. I am simply unqualified to take a stand.
 

dragoncjo

Piney
Aug 12, 2005
1,538
247
42
camden county
I wouldn’t have a problem with clearing. But it looks like they bulldozed the ground. Simply going in and cutting trees to stumps is ok. Seems like they bulldozed the ground completely.
 
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Teegate

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It has to bother you German that they can do this but you may have roads closed to places you like to go.
 

GermanG

Piney
Apr 2, 2005
1,126
451
Little Egg Harbor
It has to bother you German that they can do this but you may have roads closed to places you like to go.
Not at all. I simply don't connect the two. This is a Division of Fish & Wildlife project while the road closure issue has so far involved only Division of Parks & Forestry land. And I can attest to different offices within far smaller government entities than the state not having anything to do with the affairs of each other. The fact that Fish & Wildlife and Parks & Forestry are both divisions of the DEP does not mean one is responsible for the actions of the other.
 
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1Jerseydevil

Explorer
Feb 14, 2009
567
214
Once again, we the public are going to pay the bill. Public funds were used to create the damage and now public funds are going to pay for the restoration and any fines. We the public get shafted again and there's nothing we can do about it.
 

1Jerseydevil

Explorer
Feb 14, 2009
567
214
"The violation notice includes the threat of penalties, but it was unclear how that might work when the DEP is both the accuser and the accused. Nor was it immediately clear whether any money might actually change hands. The department did not respond to questions about potential fines."

Somebody keep an eye out for this if it's reported. Out of curiosity, I would like to know how this is handled, and if money does change hands where did it originally come from?
 
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Boyd

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Staff member
Site Administrator
Jul 31, 2004
9,601
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Ben's Branch, Stephen Creek
Article in the Washington post about this yesterday. Didn't see much new there however. It will say you need a subscription (which I don't have). It will let you read it if you enter your e-mail address, so they can send you spam. :D


The fish and wildlife division will also wait to see whether it faces further punishment. Fines for violating the Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act can exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars, Arsenault said — though it’s unclear how the Department of Environmental Protection would impose the penalty on itself. “How do you fine yourself?” Arsenault said. “Reach in one pocket, go to the other?”

But if you have an iPhone or a Mac, you should be able to read it for free in Apple News here:

 
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1Jerseydevil

Explorer
Feb 14, 2009
567
214
Article in the Washington post about this yesterday. Didn't see much new there however. It will say you need a subscription (which I don't have). It will let you read it if you enter your e-mail address, so they can send you spam. :D


The fish and wildlife division will also wait to see whether it faces further punishment. Fines for violating the Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act can exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars, Arsenault said — though it’s unclear how the Department of Environmental Protection would impose the penalty on itself. “How do you fine yourself?” Arsenault said. “Reach in one pocket, go to the other?”

But if you have an iPhone or a Mac, you should be able to read it for free in Apple News here:

“How do you fine yourself?” Arsenault said. “Reach in one pocket, go to the other?”

This is what I'm curious to know. No matter what, since it's a public entity we the public end up paying.
 
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