Seeking out the wildlife of Morris County New Jersey

 

Some thoughts on finding wildlife – from Troy Meadows in Parsippany NJ

Wildlife observation is all about researching and documenting the proper habitat for the animals.

In this video I demonstrate locating a slumbering raccoon by seeking out a naturally occurring tree cavity in Parsippany New Jersey.

Do you have any questions or comments about finding wildlife or finding wildlife habitat?

POWWW’s 2019 Guided Mushroom Walk

Powww’s first Mushroom walk was a great success! With 50 enthusiastic participants we covered a lot information at a show and tell table cover in a variety of fungi from at least 25 different species.

After the table discussion most of the group trekked off on the teal trail from the parking lot to do some foraging of their own were we found many more fungi to marvel at. Some we positively identified

And some were left as unknown or know only to general group.

Our next event will be the Hawk Watch Hike on September 21st. RSVP here – https://www.facebook.com/events/2455768184491915/

Find us on the web at http://powww.org and http://facebook.com/protectourwetlandswaterwoods/

Leaderless Walk at Allamuchy Mountain

Leaderless Walk at Allamuchy Mountain State Park

Leaderless Walks are small organized groups compromised mostly of butterfly, dragonfly, bird, and botany enthusiasts.  The walks are free, informative, and informal. Most will take place on weekdays. If you’d like me to put you in touch with the organizers let me know.

The highlights for me on this trip were getting close-up shots of the Black Racer and also getting the shot of two very young Five-lined Skinks in one frame.

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Rockaway River

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Rockaway River
 
Parsippany, New Jersey
 
I accessed this area via the Edwards Tract off of Sagamore Road in Parsippany. This is a nice wooded wetlands parcel in which to look for wildlife.

Peggy Gray Bridge at Muriel Hepner Park

Peggy Gray Bridge at Muriel Hepner Park

Denville NJ January 2019

This scenic stone arched pedestrian bridge was just complete. A nice use of funding by the Denville Open Space Trust Fund. The bridge is in memory of Peggy Gray who founded the Denville Beautification Committee and Denville P.R.I.D.E.

This image is a 3 photo HDR merge from the Canon SL2 DSLR and is available print at sizes up to 20″ x 30″.

Harlequin Ducks preening in NJ

Harlequin Ducks preening


Barnegat Lighthouse State Park, LBI NJ

December 2018


When engaged in behavioral interactions, the Harlequin Duck gives distinctly unducklike squeaks, the source of one of its local names: sea mouse. More info on Harlequins –https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Harlequin_Duck/overview


Tamron USA SP 150-600mm VC + Lumix GH4

83rd Annual Boonton Christmas Bird Count

Scenes from the 83rd Annual Boonton Christmas Bird Count

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It was great to meet up with all of the passionate local birders this morning at the Empire Diner in Parsippany NJ before getting outside.  We overhead stories of double digit Screech Owls and a Barn Owl being detected in the pre-dawn hours.

We had a sunny morning outdoors, tallied 29 species of birds for a total of 175 birds observed in our territory.

See our sighting checklist here – https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S50892929

We will await the full Boonton CBC tally from mocosocoBirds

High resolution birding sample – Tamron 18-400mm Di II VC HLD

Yesterday morning in Morris County NJ I had the good fortune of finding a cooperative and photogenic Gray Catbird during my walk.  The photography equipment I used for this birding outing was the Tamron 18-400mm Di II VC HLD telephoto zoom lens paired with my Canon SL2 DSLR.  A very nice compact and lightweight setup.

Clicking on the image below will to take you to the high resolution sample from my Google Drive account.  Below the image is a little background on the shot and my original caption for facebook.

tamron 18400 birding and wildlife sample

Gray Catbird in NJ photographed with the Tamron 18-400mm VC + Canon SL2.

 

Parsippany, New Jersey

A gray morning outdoors this morning made for challenging photography conditions. The key to making usable wildlife shots in dim lighting is to make the main subject (i.e. catbird) just as bright as it would be on a sunny afternoon. Turning the dial to “M” (manual exposure) and raising the ISO (light sensitivity of the camera) will accomplish just that.

Handheld shot with the
Tamron Lenses USA 18-400mm VC HLD + Canon SL2

1/80th F/8 ISO 3200, 400mm

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments!

Recent Video Production: Denville Beekeeping

I recently completed a short digital video project on beekeeping to be used as a learning tool for the Denville Community Gardens. I filmed local resident, naturalist and beekeeper Mike Leone, of Rockaway Township New Jersey, to provide both the action and dialogue.

 

Conceptually, Mike and I wanted to keep the video informative but also upbeat.  This was easy to achieve as Mike knows many pearls of wisdom about the importance of honeybees and the work which goes into beekeeping.

I found a terrific poppy royalty-free soundtrack online by Kevin MacLeod to set the tone.  I created the intro animation myself by drawing a cartoon bee from reference images. I then drew basic animation paths to bring our pollinator to life.

The filming was done in two stages. For outdoor filming I utilized the Tamron 16-300mm VC PZD All-In-One lens. The broad zoom range lens allowed me to frame environmental and detail shots. Mike and I recorded the voice-over indoors using the R0DE VideoMic Go wired into my Canon SL2 DSLR.

I have received great positive feedback from this Beekeeping production and I look forward to taking on more educational projects in the future. Let me know if you have feedback or comments on this video.  I have included a few affiliate links above if you wish to purchase the same equipment I use.

Are you interested in collaborating with me on your own video project? Get in touch today by emailing me at daveblinderphotography@gmail.com

Jonathan’s Woods Red Trail to Green Trail

Located in Denville and Rockaway New Jersey, Jonathan’s Woods is owned in parts by Morris County Park Commission, as well as both townships.

Trails are maintained by Protect Our Wetlands, Water and Woods (POWWW).

New Jersey Hiking

Hiking trail at Jonathan’s Woods in Morris County NJ

Kiosk for Red Trail is located on Old Beach Glen Road in Denville.

Denville Trails

Kiosk at Jonathan’s Woods on Old Beach Glen Road

A Google Maps search for Jonathan’s Woods will get you to the main parking area. Take the Red Trail from the parking lot on Old Beach Glen Road.

New Jersey Nature

Red Trail at Jonathan’s Woods in Denville Twp

Turn Right at the Green Blaze on the old gravel road to head towards the wetlands.

NJ outdoors

Green Trail at Jonathan’s Woods county park

The Beaver Brook marsh is a great place to sit and look for wildlife or just unwind.

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Beaver Brook marsh with Wildcat Ridge beyond

Wildlife watching NJ

Beaver dam at Jonathan’s Woods

Following the Green Trail will take you across seasonal stream crossings before you return to the parking lot.  You will also pass near the “Cathedral Pine” area which was largely toppled by Hurricane Sandy but has since been re-planted.

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Seasonal wetlands on Green Trail

Pine Trees Grove NJ

Former Cathedral Pine Area devastated by Hurricane Sandy. The area has since been re-planted and is being monitored by Morris County Park Commission and POWWW.

For any info on the trails at Jonathan’s Woods contact info@powww.org