The Makepeace Lake Wildlife Management Area in Hamilton and Mullica Townships in Atlantic County is vast at 11,726.96 acres of Pinelands habitat. The tract contains a shallow 300-acre lake, upland areas and wetlands bordering the lake.
Unique pinelands vegetation and herptiles, including Pine Barrens tree frogs are found on the tract. Warblers and other songbirds in migration can be seen along the lake edge and in wetland and upland habitats. Barred owls hunt the shoreline. Many different species of damsel and dragonflies utilize the lake. Wood frogs and spring peepers can be quite loud here at times.
The shallow impoundment was once used as a source of water for cranberry bogs and is only about four feet deep. Game fish populations are limited to pickerel and yellow bullheads. Cartop boats may be launched from Elwood/Weymouth Road.
The lake supports a breeding population of black ducks and wood ducks, and a variety of waterfowl winter on the lake or use it during migration. A cartop launch is available for waterfowl hunters or anglers.
Hunting & Trapping:
Oak-pine forests provide habitat for white-tailed deer, rabbits, and woodcock. The area provides good deer hunting opportunities and small game hunting is available. Beaver, otter, and upland furbearers are found in the area.
There is a range for shotgun (fine-shot only) and a 100 yard muzzleloader range, where muzzleloaders, shotguns, and rimfire rifles can be sighted-in.
Access to the property is from Elmwood-Weymouth Road near Egg Harbor City and from the Black Horse Pike via Tamminen Road. Be advised to not drive through sugar sand without four-wheel drive and lower tire pressure.
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 Makepeace Lake 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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