If These Trees Could Talk
Glades Wildlife Refuge | Sun, December 03, 2017, 12:00pm - 4:00pm
Lace-up sturdy boots and join us for a vigorous hike through a vast, marshy area known as Bear Swamp, located within Natural Lands’ expansive Glades Wildlife Refuge. In this remarkable old-growth forest—where the Jersey Pine Barrens meets Delaware Bayshore habitat—Bald Eagles soar and woodpeckers tap on hollow trees.
Natural Lands’ staff members Steve Eisenhauer and Brian Johnson guide this fascinating hike, where you’ll touch 450-year old trees, and learn about climate, wildlife, and more.
Glades Wildlife Refuge is an expanse of diverse landscapes: vast tidal marshes, wooded uplands, beaches along the Delaware Bay, and a remarkable old growth forest. Here the cycles and rhythm of the natural world are evident in the seasonal weather, migrating birds, and fluctuating tides.
Grasses that tolerate tidal, brackish water dominate Glades, such as salt hay. These grasses provide rich habitat for crustaceans, mollusks, and birds, and are an important food source for ducks and other waterfowl. In addition, the grasses filter pollutants from the water and buffer the shoreline from flooding and erosion.
The refuge also includes forested swamps where sweetgum, holly, and red maple jockey for position with pitch pines. A section of old-growth forest, known as Bear Swamp, includes sourgum trees that are more than 450 years old.
Every May, thousands of horseshoe crabs leave the ocean depths to spawn on the moonlit beaches of the Delaware Bay. The eggs, full of fat and protein, are critical sustenance for migrating Red Knots, which lose up to half their body weight in their grueling journey from South America. An estimated 90 percent of the entire population of these federally-threatened shore birds can be found on the Bay—including Raybin’s Beach at Glades Wildlife Refuge—in a single day. After a century of decline, the population of horseshoe crabs is now holding steady.
The refuge is part of four “Important Bird Areas” (a National Audubon Society designation).
Bear Swamp provides ideal nesting and roosting site for eagles and other raptors, so bring binoculars and a camera on this exploratory adventure.
Prepare for a vigorous hike of several miles on uneven terrain, potentially muddy. Dress in seasonal layers.
Bring full water bottle and snacks or brown-bag lunch to munch along the way. Please leave your four-legged friends at home.
Registration required to reserve your spot. Please complete and submit the secure, on-line registration form below, or call 610-353-5587 ext. 221. $5 member, $8 non-member.
Registrants will be emailed directions to the meeting location, a few days before the event.
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Events may be cancelled due to inclement weather or low registration. In that case, we will make every effort to update our website and contact registrants. Note that we cannot offer refunds of paid registrations or ticket purchases, but rest assured that your donation will help us in our work to save open space, care for nature, and connect people to the outdoors.
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