Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge


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I visited the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in southern New Jersey with a photography group a few years ago. The group leader had reserved a tour for us on an electric tram with a naturalist. Check the Refuge Events page of the Forsythe website for information on reserving a tour.


The National Refuge was created in 1984 out of the existing Barnegat and Brigantine refuges in order to protect tidal wetlands for migrating water birds. The refuge is located along most active flight paths of the Atlantic Flyway and is named for Edwin B. Forsythe, a conservationist and a former NJ Congressman.


The tram took us around the 8-mile wildlife drive while the driver told us about the history of the area and the types of birds that can be found in the refuge. We stopped at several points and got out to take some photos.


On one side of the loop, there is the incongruous juxtaposition of the refuge with the Atlantic City skyline.


We wanted to take a more leisurely loop around as we hadn’t been able to stop everywhere we wanted on the tram. So once back at the visitors center, we piled in one of the cars.


The snow geese were in the wetlands at the time of our visit…hundreds of white birds covering the wetlands as far as we could see. Snow Geese gather by the thousands at the refuge each winter.


While there, we also saw a few different ducks, egrets/herons and a juvenile bald eagle. Osprey also come here to nest, but we were there too early in the season for them.


Location: 800 Great Creek Road, Galloway, New Jersey 08205

Designation: National Wildlife Refuge

Date designation declared: 12/18/1986

Date of my visit: February 2016

A juvenile bald eagle perches on an osprey habitat with Atlantic City in the background.