Important Bird and Birding Areas
Peaslee Wildlife Management Area

IBBA Site Guide

Atlantic and Cumberland Counties
Coordinates: N 39.37241
W 74.89271
Site Map
Delaware Bay: New England / Mid-Atlantic Coast

Area: 56,525 Acres     

Habitat: Primarily mixed woods with grasslands and shrub-scrub

Site Description: Peaslee Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is bordered by the Manumuskin River to the west and the Tuckahoe River to the east. It is the second largest WMA in New Jersey and is also the southern-most example of a true Pine Barrens community, characterized by a predominance of pine-oak forest. Other habitat types found in this IBA include grasslands, cultivated fields and forested wetlands. The site intersects the Manumuskin Natural Heritage Priority Site, which encompasses the Manumuskin River and extensive freshwater marsh dominated by wild rice.

Scarlet Tanager
Scarlet TanagerKevin Watson
Birds: Extensive, contiguous parcels of forested habitat support impressive numbers of breeding state-threatened Barred Owls. State-threatened Red-headed Woodpeckers prefer open areas that are interspersed with trees. A long list of regional responsibility species also breed among Peaslee’s scrub-shrub, mixed upland forest and forested wetland habitats including Broad-winged Hawks, Worm-eating Warblers, and Scarlet Tanagers.

Conservation: Peaslee WMA is protected from development, however, habitat loss and forest fragmentation from nearby residential and industrial development will impact the site’s habitats. The widening of roads, creation of power lines, conversion of forests to nursery operations and expansion of nearby sand and gravel operations along the periphery of the WMA are all threats. Protection and restoration of agricultural and upland forests adjacent to the WMA is necessary to prevent further impacts from the encroaching development and non-compatible agricultural practices. This can be accomplished by promoting landowner incentives for protecting and managing habitat and by prioritizing parcels for acquisition. Additionally, early successional habitats of Peaslee, such as grasslands and scrub-shrub, require active management including brush hogging, disking and/or prescribed burning to keep them from reverting to forest.

Additional Information: Site Report
Mixed forest type
Mixed forest typeMichael Hogan