Allamuchy Mountain State Park is located at the convergence of Morris, Sussex and Warren Counties in the Northern Highlands and is bisected by Interstate 80. The site contains the mixed oak and hardwood forests of Allamuchy Mountain, the early successional fields of Allamuchy Natural Area and the waters of the Musconetcong River flowing through the valley below at Stephens State Park. The site also includes mixed hemlock-spruce forest and Deer Park Pond.

Ornithological Summary

Conservation Concern ? State-threatened: Barred Owl (B)

Conservation Concern ? State-endangered: Red-shouldered Hawk (B)

Regional Responsibility Species - BCR 28 Forest: Cerulean Warbler, Worm-eating Warbler, Wood Thrush, Louisiana Waterthrush, Acadian Flycatcher, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Black-and-white Warbler, Scarlet Tanager, Yellow-throated Vireo, Hooded Warbler, Black-billed Cuckoo, Canada Warbler, Wild Turkey, Wood Duck, Mallard, Gray Catbird, Baltimore Oriole (B)

Significant Congregations-Exceptional Diversity (SM,B)

Significant Migrant Stopover/Flyover-Landbirds (SM)

Conservation Issues

Most of this site is protected as publicly-owned land, however, habitat loss and fragmentation from development of the adjacent privately-owned parcels threatens the integrity of the site. Nonpoint source pollution from expanding development also degrades water quality and creates additional pressure on groundwater resources. Protection and restoration of privately-owned parcels should be a priority. Two nonprofit conservation organizations, the Passaic River Coalition Land Trust and NJ Conservation Foundation, have targeted the remaining privately-owned parcels for acquisition to complete the Sparta Mountain Greenway. Their goal is to connect Sparta Mountain to Allamuchy State Park through the Weldon Brook area. Portions of the Allamuchy Natural Area are maintained in various stages of succession ranging from a field cleared in 2006, to early successional deciduous forest to mature forest. Management strategies for scrub-shrub habitats may include prescribed mowing and haying, grazing and burning. Control and management of invasive plant species and overabundant deer is required at the Allamuchy Mountain State Park IBA, to improve habitat diversity and forest structure. Invasive plant species, including dense infestations of Japanese barberry (Berberis thunbergii) and garlic-mustard (Alliaria petiolata), dominate the shrub layer and outcompete native vegetation. Forest health is also threatened by exotic pests and tree diseases including the hemlock woolly adelgid, a pest causing wide-spread mortality of eastern hemlocks (Tsuga canadensis) and bacterial leaf scorch, a devastating foliage disease. Overabundant deer severely reduce forest regeneration and alter structure by browsing heavily on native plants and the buds and young shoots of woody shrubs and saplings. Off-road vehicle use of the site should also be prohibited to limit disturbance of habitat and nesting birds.

Ownership

Owned by Stephens State Park and the Hackettstown Reservoir

Habitat

Primarily deciduous forest

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