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New Jersey Pinelands

Pine Cone from Pigmy Forest
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Credit: Pitch Pine Pete

The New Jersey Pinelands (also known as the New Jersey Pine Barrens) consists of over one million acres located at the Southeast corner of the state. It extends Southward into Cape May and touches east up to the edge of the Jersey Shore. This unique forest covers seven counties and accounts for 22% of New Jersey's land area.

Its biodiversity consists of more than 900 species of plants and trees, including many species of colorful orchids and carnivorous plants. Swamps, freshwater marshes, and stands of hardwood trees marble through the Pinelands. This includes 12,000 acres of a pygmy forest, an unusual stand of dwarf pine and dwarf oak trees most less than ten feet tall.

The Pinelands are mostly populated by several species of Pine trees (pitch pine, short leaf pine, and scrub pine). Its many Oak tree species include black-jack oak and chestnut oak. Other trees of the Pinelands include red maple, Atlantic white cedar, and tupelo. Its dense ground vegetation consists mostly of huckleberry, high bush wild blueberry, mountain laurel, and wild American cranberry.

Among its many rivers, the Great Egg Harbor River and the Maurice River are both designated by the National Park Service as part of the National Wild and Scenic River System.

The Pinelands has numerous streams, lakes, ponds, rural towns, historic villages, and cultivated cranberry bogs. Its blueberry farms are a major supplier of the nation’s blueberries.

In the early 1800s industries in the NJ Pine Forests produced lumber from its trees, iron from its peat bogs, and glass from its sands. These early industries died out and left the ruins and ghost towns, many of which are still intact today and serve as tourist attractions. The abandoned blast furnaces, iron and glass factories, along with the haunting nature of the New Jersey Pine Barrens fired the imagination of many Pinelands people to give rise to local legends such as the "Jersey Devil."

Animals that inhabit the Pinelands include bald eagles, red-tailed hawks, peregrine falcons, screech owls, white tailed deer, black bear, flying squirrels, almost sixty species of amphibians and reptiles, and over ninety species of freshwater fish. Its most famous resident is the Pine Barrens tree frog - hyla andersoni.

The NJ Pine Barrens has over 200 resort areas for activities that include camping, hiking, birding, canoeing, kayaking, freshwater fishing, and mountain biking.

 

Michael Hogan Photography
Michael Hogan Photography - Fine Art Photography of Southern New Jersey
Natural Wonders of the Jersey Pines and Shore
A Visitors Guide to the NJ Pinelands
PineyPower.com - A Visitors Guide to the NJ Pinelands
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Albert Horner Photography

Bob Birdsall Photography

Pine Barrens Photos

   

Georgian Court University

Washington Post Article

Slipping Through the Silence

   

Maurice River

   
 

The Great Egg Harbor River

   
   

   
NJ Pinelands - YouTube Playlist
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NJ Pinelands - 5 Different Videos

First, a short but very informative documentary about the NJ Pine Barrens. A video of Apple Pie Hill shows a panoramic view of the area from a fire tower. The Nature Conservancy reports about the Manumuskin River Preserve in the Pinelands. Last, a video about the ruins of the Herman Hotel on the banks of a Pinelands river.

   

       

       


 

 

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