March welcomes the first glimpses of the end of winter and the official first day of spring! New Jersey is full of beautiful farmlands, with diversity in flora and fauna alike. The beaches here attract millions of visitors each summer to enjoy the surf, sand, and sunshine. This state is home to over 40 state parks and forests, not to mention recreation and natural areas. There is something for any outdoor lover found somewhere within the borders of New Jersey.
The Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey is a prominent organization doing invaluable work to protect wildlife in the state. In part of their mission statement included on their website, they state the following:
Rare wildlife species live, much like New Jersey residents, in the mountains of the north, the pastoral farmland of central New Jersey, the bays and swamps along our coasts as well as on skyscrapers, bridges, and at the edges of suburban subdivisions.
These species live a challenged life where roads represent impenetrable obstacles, developments spell the demise of habitat, and contamination in wetlands can wipe out an entire generation.
Considering the protection of natural areas and our non-human neighbors is important not only because it is the ethical consideration for our natural surroundings, but also to protect the beauty that we enjoy at our leisure. As those at the Wildlife Foundation say, it is our duty – and our privilege – to do the work in protecting these species. The work here includes ongoing research into rare and endangered species in the state; education programs about New Jersey’s wild heritage, and how to protect it; developing conservation plans for areas and species we know are at risk, as well as restoring such habitats.
Enjoying time outside is a shared, loved activity across New Jersey. While we wait (im)patiently for the warmth and beach days ahead, let’s think about how we can contribute to preserving the beauty of New Jersey’s outdoors. Visit the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey website to find ways to volunteer, including donating directly, volunteering or joining the foundation, or “adopting” a species.