New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife Back to State of NJ Homepage Back to Fish and Wildlife Homepage Back to DEP Homepage 

September 9, 2002


For more information contact:
Pequest Trout Hatchery at 908-637-4125

In a joint celebration of the watershed and National Hunting & Fishing Day, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's (DEP) Division of Fish & Wildlife, Upper Delaware Watershed Management Project, North Jersey Resource Conservation & Development Council, WNTI 91.9 Free Form Radio of Centenary College and Covanta Energy, will host the Upper Delaware Wildlife Heritage Festival at the Division's Pequest Trout Hatchery and Natural Resource Education Center in Oxford on Saturday, September 28. The free event is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be held rain or shine.

National Hunting and Fishing Day marks its 31st year this year. The purpose of the celebration is to raise awareness of the contribution of hunters and anglers to wildlife conservation. For more than 100 years, hunters and anglers have been staunch supporters of conservation and scientific wildlife management. They were the first to recognize that rapid development and unregulated use of wildlife was a serious threat to the future of many species. Each day, 71 million Americans -- hunters and anglers -- are working to conserve and improve natural resources.

The festival is designed to highlight the historical and present uses of wildlife and our mutual reliance on the watershed. Some of the events include: fly-casting demonstrations from Trout Unlimited members; live music; trout spawning demonstrations; and many children's activities. There will be numerous exhibits from regional environmental organizations and businesses that have an interest in maintaining the health of the watershed. The AmeriCorps, New Jersey's watershed ambassador for the region, will be demonstrating what a watershed is and how we, as people living and working within the watershed, can protect and care for it.

Visitors can step back in time to visit an historical village to experience an era when people were more directly connected to natural resources for their survival. Presentations will highlight Native American life and the colonial fur trade, as well as showcase quill and beadwork, primitive archery techniques, 18th century cooking and quilting, leather working, apple cider making, soap making and much more. There will also be ongoing activities including knife and tomahawk throwing, flintlock and percussion rifle demonstrations, wool and flax spinning/weaving and chainsaw art demonstrations. Several wildlife artists will also have their works on display and for sale.

Various Division of Fish & Wildlife staff members will be on hand. The Black Bear Management team will have a display of equipment and information about their research and management work. Rockport Pheasant Farm will display pheasants. The Hunter Education Program will offer the field test part of its Hunter Education Program (registration necessary) enabling potential hunters to complete one of the requirements for obtaining a New Jersey hunting license. Bureau of Freshwater Fisheries biologists will have displays and demonstrate electro-shocking and team with the Pohatcong Creek Watershed Association to investigate life in the river.

New Jersey DEP designates New Jersey's Upper Delaware Watershed as "Watershed Management Area 1." This area covers about 10 percent of the State's total land surface and includes 54 municipalities. All of Warren County and parts of Sussex, Morris and Hunterdon counties are within this watershed area. New Jersey's Upper Delaware Watershed is defined by the tributary watersheds that drain into the Delaware River from the Clove Brook watershed located near the New York border, south to the Musconetcong River watershed boundary. Major streams in New Jersey's Upper Delaware Watershed include the Flat Brook, Paulins Kill, Pequest River, Pohatcong & Lopatcong creeks, as well as the Musconetcong River.

Pequest is located on Rt. 46 about nine miles west of Hackettstown in the Skylands of Warren County.

To learn more about the festival, visit the Division's website at or the Upper Delaware Watershed Management Project's site at Individuals can also contact Grace Messinger by phone at (908) 735-0733 or by e-mail at