Located in Knowlton Township, Warren County, the Columbia Wildlife Management Area features 1,098 acres of mostly deciduous forest along the Delaware River. This WMA was acquired solely through the Green Acres Bond Act.
Columbia WMA is home to Delaware Lake which has a small boat launch and is managed as a trophy bass lake. Large crappies can also be found as well as good populations of bluegills and catfish.
The WMA is formerly the site of Columbia Lake, where a dam constructed in 1909 was removed so that the Paulinskill could free flow and allow for passage of herring, shad, trout, eels and other species that run up tributaries to spawn. The Delaware River is adjacent to the WMA, allowing anglers to fish for striped bass, American shad, walleye, smallmouth bass, trout and muskellunge. Eagles, osprey and red-tailed hawks can be seen hunting the shorelines and river looking for prey.
For hunters, cover is extremely thick and at times can be soggy and wet as there is an absence of a trail system. Vegetation is a bit thinner in the spring and allows for some very productive spring turkey hunting in Turkey Hunting Areas 3 and 4.
Owned by New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Fish & Wildlife, the Wildlife Management Area System is comprised of more than 360,000 acres in 122 areas throughout the state, which is more than 44% of New Jersey’s state-owned public open space. WMAs are maintained and supported with funding from license sales, the Federal Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program and the Wildlife Habitat Supporter Program.
If you are interested in supporting the maintenance of the Columbia WMA and other Wildlife Management Areas, become a Wildlife Habitat Supporter by donating now:
WMAs are patrolled by NJ Fish & Wildlife Conservation Police Officers to ensure public safety. If you see violations while visiting a WMA, please call the 24-hour DEP hotline at 877-WARN-DEP (877-927-6337).
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