View Full Version : Forsythe/Brigantine

Ed Vatza
08-22-2008, 06:13 AM
I keep reading good birding reports from here. Has anyone here done any photography there? How is it for bird photography compared to bird watching? I've never been there as I tend to focus on the coast from Sandy Hook to Barnegat. I'm thinking it might be worth a visit.

Dave Woeller
08-24-2008, 02:37 PM
My wife and I shoot at Forsythe quite regularly. There is an 8 mile wildlife drive through the marsh and wetlands and several lengths of songbird trails. While I don't profess to have vast technical skill, one of the challenges is that the wildlife drive is built up above the mud flats and wetland areas. It is quite difficult to get that low shooting angle that the folks here love so much. I am constantly shooting down on birds to a small degree. Forsythe is a great place though and we love it. Maps can be viewed from their website. Be aware also that the hawk migration will also be starting up soon and they will be funneling down through Cape May. I would imagine that you are already aware of the Cape May shooting potential. Regards and enjoy the trip.

Ed Vatza
08-24-2008, 07:16 PM
Thanks Dave. I appreciate the info. Given where I live in PA, it is easist to hit Sandy Hook and the North Shore. We make one or two trips to Barny for the Harlequins but rarely hit South Jersey. And to be honest, I have not been down to Cape May for photography. My understanding is that it is one of those places that is great for birding but not necessarily for bird photography. Is that accurate?

Dave Woeller
08-24-2008, 09:11 PM
Yes, Cape May is especially famous for birdwatchers. The birding platforms at the Lighthouse area can sometimes get quite crowded. I will say though that Artie had some really impressive shots from this area in his first book. I haven't been to Sandy Hook area for a number of years. The wife and I are planning a trip to Bombay Hook Refuge in Maryland this fall. It has been very quiet for bird shots around here lately. We did capture a Kingfisher at the Heislerville reserve this weekend.

Ed Vatza
10-31-2008, 06:04 AM
I am planning a trip to Forsythe tomorrow morning. Last trip was a couple of weeks ago. Anyone there recently? Any recent reports? Thanks.

Dave Woeller
10-31-2008, 03:51 PM
Hello Ed,

I haven't been to Forsythe for a few weeks myself. My last trip there was windy as all getout. Tomorrow should be much better. The last trip saw tons of cormmorants and egrets. I've been spending a lot of time there practicing BIF with the terns. The latest batch of night herons is growing up. There were a couple avocets at the bend in the road for a while. My last trip also saw some Black Neck Stilts among the other waders. Unfortunately my lens was not long enough and I would have had to crop mercilessly. By the way, on November 8th they will be judging the "Refuge Shootout" competition at the refuge center. This is a photo competition where all shots must have come from any National Wildlife Refuge in the U.S. Deadline for entires is Nov 1 at the Refuge center. Maybe someday we can meet at the refuge and shoot together.

Ed Vatza
10-31-2008, 05:30 PM
Thanks Dave. It sounds like we may have been there the same day - two weeks ago Sunday. The winds were howling no doubt about that.

Hey the Forsythe website just updated their most recent counts. Yesterday's (10/30) count produced 13770 Brant; 6267 Dunlin; 1539 American Black Duck; 541 American Green-winged Teal; 502 Northern Pintail; 448 Mallard; 435 Snow Goose and so on.

Egrets are down to 52. There were 100s last time we were there. And just 15 GBHs.

Now if just a few of these guys would please position themselves close enough, at a good angle, with good light, with proper head turn, and against a beautiful background; I'll be very happy!!!:D:D:D;)