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Mannington Meadows Greenway

Mannington Township
Salem County


Mannington Meadows project area

At the heart of Delaware Bay Watershed’s farm belt region lies the Mannington Meadows of Salem County, a 6,000-acre complex of wetlands and tidal waters that provide globally significant migratory bird habitat and interface directly with the agricultural landscape.

For more than a century, local farmers, diked and drained the meadows to farm the rich bottomland below. However, during the middle of the 20th century, agriculture lost the battle to hold back the water after levees were breached by storms.

Today, the Mannington Meadows serve as an oasis for water-dependent wildlife. The surrounding farmland, along with its woodlands, grasslands and wetlands, enhances the overall habitat values of the region. The meadowlands and surrounding farm fields annually host tens of thousands of migratory waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds and raptors. It is a state stronghold for bald eagles and has one of the greatest concentrations of American black ducks found anywhere.

In spite of many initiatives to protect the Meadows, they are not immune to the long reach of suburban sprawl. Surrounding communities have built thousands of new homes and commercial buildings over the past decade, and more have been proposed. The Meadows were granted a reprieve with economic downturn and stagnant housing market, but it is only a matter of time before the threats of sprawl return.

The New Jersey Conservation Foundation’s Mannington Meadows project area focuses on preserving this unique region, where some of New Jersey’s most productive farmland and some its most important migratory bird habitat come together.

New Jersey Conservation Foundation’s flagship land preservation project in the Mannington Meadows is the recent acquisition of the 476-acre Fichera Farms in Mannington Township. Read more about it >

Thanks to a combination of farmland preservation and Green Acres funding, we plan to establish a model preserve to demonstrate the intricate relationship between farming and natural resources in the region and promote sustainable farming. The portion preserved through Green Acres funding will significantly enhance public access for birding, nature study, scientific research, hunting, fishing, paddle sports, and other activities.

For more information about preserving land in the Mannington Meadows project area, contact Fran Rapa, regional manager for the Delaware Bayshore, at fran@njconservation.org or 856-769-0816.



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New Jersey Conservation Foundation           Bamboo Brook, 170 Longview Road, Far Hills, NJ 07931           908-234-1225           info@njconservation.org
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