rentals, guided and non-guided kayak tours Rancocas Creek Watershed

Kayak Rentals and Personalized Natural History/ Ecology Guided and Non-Guided Paddles in the Rancocas Creek Watershed. Contact Rita’s Kayaks. Hainesport. Launch from Rancocas Pathways – North Branch Rancocas Creek Mount Holly. NJ 25B Church Street.Text or call

Rancoas Creek Watershed 360 square miles of wet, wild and wonderful. Located 20 minutes East of Philadelphia, 30 minutes South of Trenton, New Jersey, 90 minutes from NYC, 2 hours from Washington DC and 3 miles from Exit 5 of the NJ Turnpike.

From the NJ Pine Barrens National Reserve headwaters to the Delaware River Estuary tides, over 80 miles of water trails are found. Floating along on Pine Barrens amber waters to letting the tide sweep you along the North Branch, the South Branch, the SW Branch and the Main Stem holds many hours of paddling through 400 years of heritage and 6,000 years of indian tribes. State of NJ Natural Area envelops one in a quiet tidal cloak, much like Pine Barrens waters whisper. Covered and flanked by NJ State Parks Camp Sites, Free Public Landings and Launches, Mount Holly Oxbow places one in the historic downtown tidal channel of Mount Holly. Timbuctoo to the west anchors explorations, past Horse Head Point and down to the confluence and elsewhere. Wet, Wild, Wonderful We Extend an invite to paddle one of NJ’s magnificent natural resources.

For rentals, tours and other information to spend time in the Rancocas Creek Watershed text or call. By appointment only. 609-876-3086

Rancocas Creek 2020 Paddle Atlas

Rancoas Creek Watershed 360 Square Miles, from the Pine Barrens to the Delaware River. Numerous water trials traverse the non-tidal waters and tidal waters. When your done paddling support local business. Leave no trace but an eddy behind when paddling. Zap along any questions, concerns or issues. Atlas is part and parcel of the nomination of the Rancocas Creek as a National Water Trail. Lots of thanks go out to all the folks who helped dissect content and worked on getting material together for inclusion and editing. Contact 609-876-3086 if you have any questions. Atlas is free, 155 pages long

BCT Osprey Article

A pair of Ospreys have built a nest on top of a crane at the site of the former Centerton Road bridge, marking what Rancocas Creek advocates believe is the first time the threatened species has returned to the creek since World War I.

MOUNT LAUREL — Some long-lost friends of the Rancocas Creek have returned.

A pair of Ospreys have built a nest on top of a crane at the site of the former Centerton Road bridge, marking what Rancocas Creek advocates believe is the first time the threatened species has returned to the creek since World War I.

John Anderson, an advocate for the Rancocas Creek Water Trail, spotted the nest around two weeks ago while out kayaking.

“This shows how much the Rancocas Creek is rebounding,” Anderson said. “They could have a nest somewhere else, but for whatever reason they found the top of that crane. It’s a real nice place to build a nest.”

According to Anderson, this could be the first osprey nest since at least their reintroduction in 1975, possibly going back to the turn of the century.

“It’s not definitive, but pretty conclusive. If there had been, somebody would have documented it,” Anderson said. “I’ve been paddling up and down creek for a while, and I’ve seen osprey before, but no nests.”

Anderson, of Westampton, goes by the Rancocas Creek Keeper and has been working to have the creek designated as a national water trail by the U.S. National Park System.

It’s not uncommon for ospreys to build nests atop tall, manmade structures, according to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Division of Fish and Wildlife.

It is, however, late in the season for an osprey to build a nest and lay eggs, according to DEP spokesperson Larry Hajna, and the pair may be practicing and may not lay eggs.

Ospreys were once considered an endangered species after the widespread use of the pesticide DDT, as well as the development of their habitat, nearly wiped them out of the state. Prior to the introduction of the chemical, over 500 nests could be found along New Jersey’s coastline.

By 1974, only 50 nests remained and ospreys were declared endangered.

Since, measures to protect ospreys have been put in place, and as of this year its estimated there are 650 nesting pairs across the state. They are currently listed as threatened under the Endangered and Nongame Species Conservation Act of 1973.

One measure put in place to protect ospreys was to protect nests during their nesting season, which typically is from April 1 to Aug. 31. During their nesting season, osprey nests can’t be moved or disturbed without federal and state permits.

According to Hajna, the division of fish and wildlife has been in contact with the engineering firm contracted to demolish the bridge about the osprey nest.

Work is currently on hold until July 1 due to other restrictions in place to protect migratory fish in the Rancocas Creek.

If the ospreys do not lay eggs, the nest can be removed from the crane, Hajna said. If there are eggs, permits would have to be acquired and the nest would be moved to a nearby nesting platform.

Nesting platforms are something Anderson would like to see more of along the banks of the creek.

“It might be a good idea to start thinking about this, to keep osprey on the creek,” Anderson said. “There’s enough space to put a nesting platform that will not infringe upon recreation along the creek.”

As part of the effort to bring back ospreys from endangered, environmentalists installed manmade platforms near bodies of water across the state to give ospreys more places to build a nest.

“Who would have thought a pair of osprey would have come down the Rancocas Creek. Everybody I’ve talked to about this wants to protect this osprey nest to the fullest extent,” Anderson said. “We lucked out, but let’s protect them also. Let’s do what we can to keep them on the creek.”

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Safety Message. Paddle Safe

Folks who are kayaking Rancocas tidal waters this coming weekend. Head’s Up for Motor-Boats and Jet Ski’s. Stay alert, Listen for other Watercraft. You will see and hear them before they see you. Wear Your PFD 100% of the time. Stay Clear of mid-channel paddling if at all feasible. Paddle on low tides vs high tides. Do not hesitate to report any issues w other craft to the NJ State Marine Police. If you can provide photos of issues to Marine Police as documentation thumbs up. In the narrow, winding channels of the Rancocas Creek tidal waters speed kills. With Centerton Bridge down motorized boats and jet skis use is increasing. PADDLE SAFE

Rancocas Pathways: Where a rising tide lifts all boats….and boots *