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Guide to Birding Natco Lake

 

Birding Highlights

The Henry Hudson Bike Path between Union Beach and Keansburg parallels the northern side of Natco Lake and passes through some tall stands of Sweetgum and Oaks that attract migrant passerines.  Yellow-crowned Night-Heron and Black-crowned Night-Heron have both nested in the area.  Herons, egrets, a variety of waterfowl, Least Tern, Belted Kingfisher, and Northern Rough-winged Swallow use the lake for feeding and resting.  An American White Pelican was sighted here in 2005.

South of Route 36  is a Hazlet Township Green Acres Park with extensive woodland.  It has hosted nesting Cooper's Hawk, and a variety of flycatchers, thrushes, vireos, and over 25 species of warbler have been recorded.
 

 

 

 

For more information:

Check out Close Focus on Natco Lake by Tom Boyle.

Directions

  • Take the Garden State Parkway to exit 117 and proceed east on Route 36 for approximately 3 miles to the Rose Lane exit.  (Coming from the Sandy Hook direction, it is about 10 miles to the Rose Lane exit and you need to make a U turn here.)
  • Just east of Rose Lane, turn into the parking lot of the Lakeside Manor restaurant.
  • Park in the rear of the lot, next to the small trailhead sign and explore the marked paths.
  • For the Henry Hudson Bike Path, take Rose Lane north until it ends at factory gates and you are forced to turn left.
  • Park on the right-hand side of the road after making the turn.
  • Walk east on the bike path to view the north side of the lake.